Reunion shock: Monty Python clothes eaten by moths

Reunion shock: Monty Python clothes eaten by moths
The surviving members of the Monty Python comedy group, from left, Michael Palin, Eric Idle, Terry Jones, Terry Gilliam and John Cleese appear at a photocall to promote a reunion stage show.
LONDON - Comedy troupe Monty Python had to replace all their stage clothes and hats for their upcoming reunion shows because the original garments were ruined by moths.

The veteran sketch show team - John Cleese, Eric Idle, Terry Gilliam, Terry Jones and Michael Palin - announced in November they will be performing 10 shows at London's O2 Arena in July to bring the curtain down on their career.

They have since revealed no original material will be performed at the concerts and fans will instead be treated to the team's classic and best-loved sketches. However, the five funnymen will be dressed in new clothes because their original props were wrecked in storage.

Palin tells British magazine Event, "Most of the overalls and the hats have been eaten by moths, so they don't actually exist. I do have my old spangled jacket from the 'Blackmail' sketch, but sadly it doesn't fit any more."

The "Monty Python Live (mostly)" shows will take place between July 1 and July 20, with the final performance beamed live into movie theaters worldwide - including hundreds in the United States. More screenings are planned on July 23, 24 and Aug. 6. Tickets for the U.S. screenings were going on sale Monday.

"It's not five old guys on a stage doing old sketches," Idle said of the show, which has a budget of $3.5 million. He spoke by phone to The Associated Press from Seattle.

The 15,000-seat stadium will be filled with the help of a live orchestra, film footage, special effects and Terry Gilliam's surreal animation. There will be plenty of "rude songs and rude dancing" from an ensemble of 20 singers and dancers - the approach Idle adopted during his performance at the 2012 Olympics closing ceremony.

"Who wants to look at a bunch of old guys? Put some attractive young people onstage," said Idle, at 71 the youngest of the group. "That's my Broadway background. It's what I learned from 'Spamalot.'"

The sixth member of Monty Python, Graham Chapman, died of cancer in 1989 but will be present in recorded form. Carol Cleveland, who appeared regularly on the Pythons' 1970s TV show, will also take part.