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Now for something completely different - the Pythons fly again

THE five surviving members of the legendary Monty Python comedy crew have taken to the stage together for the first time in 34 years to begin their last hurrah.

The group has organised 10 shows at London's 02 Arena, the last of which, on July 20, will be screened live in theatres across the globe.

Michael Palin, John Cleese, Terry Jones, Terry Gilliam and Eric Idle kicked off the first show last night and they received a rapturous 

The shows are expected to play 
before audiences of some 15,000 
people each night.

The group lined up classic sketches including some - such as the Spanish Inquisition sketch from The Meaning of Life - that have never before been performed live on stage.

Cleese (pictured right) said the show cost around €5.6m to put 
together and stage.

He said: "It's much more 
complicated and spectacular 
than I realised when we sat down 
for the read-through for the first time."

The only missing Python is Graham Chapman, who died in 1989. Thanks to film, he will still have a presence in the show, including a part in the musical finale.