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How great's that?

Ringo on the roof, thumbs up from Macca, and Doddy's in there too. It's the Culture year update. So what do you think? £30 bar tab for the best rant

Published on October 2nd 2007.

How great's that?

“I am coming to Liverpool to see what you are doing in 2008.” So boomed the voice of the Fat Controller across the Tate gallery, and the room of vips quivered with anticipation.

But this wasn't an announcement about an impending inspection of the engine shed. No. Ringo Starr himself was in town – or at least the virtual Ringo, on a videolink - to reveal that he is to be the first Beatle standing at Lime Steet when the European Capital of Culture train finally rolls into Liverpool in 94 days time.

The very useful drummer and Thomas the Tank Engine narrator will shout from the rooftops of St George's Hall, at a special event “for the people”, on Friday, January 11, to kick off Culture year.

“I’m going to stand on top of St George’s Hall so you can all see me,” drawled the Fab one. “And the next day we’re going to play in this huge concert that’s going down in the new arena. How great’s that?”

Well, it's boss. Isn't it?

Ringo, 67, perhaps not up on the spiel, failed to give the great white Kings Dock hope its full ACC Arena and Convention Centre title. But he's new. He'll learn.

And it's nice to welcome Dingle's most dulcet son back into the pool. He will appear with his mate Dave Stewart, a whole load of Liverpool bands of yore and the Liverpool Phil Orchestra to produce “Liverpool, the Musical” the following night at the arena's gala opening.

Aside from these two events and Macca (have you all registered your interest?), what else is new since the initial 08 unveiling at St George's Hall last November?

Quite a lot it seems. Too much to list here, but here's a tiny pick. New commissions include a work by composer Steve Reich; Into The Little Hill, an opera based on The Pied Piper story, Ghost Sonata, an epic promenade produced by The People Show and Artichoke's Will You Find It?, a large scale piece of live theatre, played out against city landmarks.

We all like a good show stopper and so there are musicals in abundance. Liverpool: The Musical, Eric's: the Musical and NorthWest Side Story, a musical which has Mancs and Scousers instead of Jets and Sharks. Hmm.

There might not be much of a place for Sayers “official pasty of Capital of Culture” The Bakers, but the CoC pastry partner will be delighted to learn that Viennese whirls are on the menu – at least at St George's Hall. For balls are being offered up, with waltz lessons too.

What's great? Lots, and much of it free. Our May favourite is Liverpool Streets Ahead which will bring a weekend of street entertainment, visual installations, circus and music by the very excellent and friendly Manchester International Arts people. If you think you've seen it all before, see this.

We are also looking forward to the ten-week 100 Superlambananas event. We don't know why, or even what it is, and a whole pile of interesting stuff at the Tate and at FACT.

What's to be expected? National Museums Liverpool will exhibit From the Cavern to Creamfields - a journey through 40 years of Liverpool music. The Tall Ships, The Open at Birkdale The end of the clipper race, the Summer Pops at the arena. Ken Dodd everywhere.

What's not to be expected? Art in the Age of Steam perhaps, which will explore the artist's response to the advent of the steam locomotion, featuring artists such as Claude Monet, Camille Pissarro and Edward Hopper. And more to come.

What's not to forget? The World Firefighter Games, an event we naively say only a firefighting city council leader could truly love. However those WAGs and the Cricket fashion show have now disappeared.

Meanwhile, it would be good to confirm that Pete Postlethwaite is doing King Lear, but that's apparently still on the table. It's felt that nobody else could do it (has anyone rung Jimmy Corkhill yet?), but all in good time.

“What could be better?,” says Ringo. “Liverpool, European Capital of Culture 08. Peace and love.”

And how great's that?

(You're still not getting us on that Adelphi musical though).

What do you think of the latest programme update? Are we on track for a winner? Are Macca and Ringo the wow factor in 2008? Let us know. Best rant gets a £30 drinks tab behind the bar at a pub of your choice.

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33 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

RasputinSeptember 28th 2007.

Dear Nostradamus if you knew this why didn't you bloody tell us.

AnonymousSeptember 28th 2007.

I'll reserve my wow for that fireman

AnonymousSeptember 28th 2007.

Dear Nostradamus,Unfortunately your prophecies are generally unavailable in Liverpool because the Council closed down all the good bookshops years ago.I'm frankly amazed that weren't aware of this. Perhaps you need to give your crystal balls a bit of a buffing?

Penny LaneSeptember 28th 2007.

I can't ignore Ringo's new growth of black hair! Did Macca nick all the henna then?

Baron S. HeySeptember 28th 2007.

I share your concerns, Lord Street. These people have only just started drinking champagne! (From the bottle most likely; it is how these sort of people drink their customary bottled lager and alcopops).I shudder to think how they eat their canapés...

fat gitSeptember 28th 2007.

I have been on incapacity benefit for 15 years and so I have to buy the £75 tickets to see Paul McCartney because they give you a seat and I can't stand up for long, especially after a day on the ice cream van. It's a disgrace that

wayneSeptember 28th 2007.

I don't think that is Ringo, it's just a man with false beard and nose attached to some glasses. I reckon that's Chris Donaldson trying to make sure we have some 'starrs'.

A. E. ScousemanSeptember 28th 2007.

I suppose Ringo can no longer find work as Yasser Arafat's stunt double; he must be getting hard-up. Do you think Phil Redmond will give me the money to stage an 'air-trombone' championship? I think it's a cracking idea.

Jon GardSeptember 28th 2007.

Oh good, Paul, Ringo & a play about Shankly. Is that all we've got?Oh no, hang on, there's a play about the Adelphi. I'm sure there'll be loads of "just cook will ya" hilarity.Staggeringly disappointed knowing these'll be the 'highlights' for most.

London RoadSeptember 28th 2007.

There is all this talk of Paul McCartney saving the day and Phil Redmond bringing a whole new dawn to 2008. But what about that other long overlooked city leader who will save our balls? Crowne Prince Harpik

wayneSeptember 28th 2007.

Although Ringo doing that peace saying and saying that peace thing is doing my head in - has he been institutionalised for forty years.

Stanley StreetSeptember 28th 2007.

It was revealed last night that the Neptune Theatre (run by the Council) will not only not open as a theatre during the 2008 European Capital of Culture year, but there is even the likelihood that it may never open as a theatre again!Surely it is time to start shooting Councillors one by one so that the others will pull their fingers out?I take it that the Philistine City Council will return in full ALL the grants, etc., they have claimed to maintain the Neptune, thus making their financial deficit even bigger?I suppose the Council’s best mates, the property developers, will turn the Neptune into yet more rubbish bars and overpriced cardboard flats. Just what the Capital of Culture needs, eh?I hope Liverpool Confidential will investigate this scandalous outrage.

john lennon airportSeptember 28th 2007.

Now that Phil Redmond has grasped the reins will it all be alright? Time will tell. I couldn't give a monkeys about Macca but he has to be on there. People wouldn't have accepted anything less. I'm still not going wow, although they say there's more to come. So I'll reserve my wow until later

Phil McCrackenSeptember 28th 2007.

Highlight of the programme for me has to be the premiere starring Chris Langham and the comeback of Gary Glitter in the musical 'Fiddler on the Youth'

WappingSeptember 28th 2007.

History repeating itself - first as farce then as tragedy. Has anybody seen any contemporary culture flowering in this old Pool?

AnonymousSeptember 28th 2007.

I wish

Springfield ParkSeptember 28th 2007.

It's nice to see some good news for a change in Liverpool although Paul and Ringo don't really do much for me at their time of life. Mind you, Ringo's lookin good on that picture. Do I win £5?

Jimmy CorkhillSeptember 28th 2007.

Can you send me a list of the free stuff? I'll be there. I'll turn up at anything me

JasonSeptember 28th 2007.

It won't buy much booze at one of my parties. But you could get quite a bit of rioja in the boot on the way back from Spain (do I win £30?)

Mrs BradleySeptember 28th 2007.

I wish too

wayneSeptember 28th 2007.

Phil you're right. The other two Beatles are really lazy, done nothing for years.

nelly longarmsSeptember 28th 2007.

More excited about the 100 proposed Superlambananas event than 2 old crawlies (beatles)!!!!!

HerbertSeptember 28th 2007.

Did anyone see Paul MCCartney's hair on the telly last night? Has he been institutionalised for 40 years? Maybe it's me.

AnonymousSeptember 28th 2007.

I think both Mecca and Ringo should consider themselves honoured if asked to play in the Adelphi Musical considering were the show is taking place.One of the Theatre Ledgends (The Liverpool Playhouse).Many great thespians have been on it's stage and you would like to think they would what their name up there with the Greats. "Think again boy's"

Manesty S. LaneSeptember 28th 2007.

It is my firm opinion that the Crown Prince Harpik would make a good elected mayor for Liverpool, and would cut far more of a dash in appearance than that scruffy tripehound Redmond.

Liverpool ConfidentialSeptember 28th 2007.

So far Nostradamus is winning this and won't be surprised at all. Any more takers? £30. Lot of beverage you know...(well, for some of us)

AnonymousSeptember 28th 2007.

Liverpool has done OK for the last 40 years without Macca and Ringo - I think we can survive one more year on our own....

Kris DonaldsonSeptember 28th 2007.

Wot? No Arthur Askey?

Phil McCrackenSeptember 28th 2007.

So only half the Beatles can be bothered to turn up. Typical! There were four of them weren't there? What excuse have the other two got?

wayneSeptember 28th 2007.

Is that fireman Warren Bradley with his shirt off and his chopper out.

Lord StreetSeptember 28th 2007.

Hear hear, London Road!Crown Prince Harpik has yet again been overlooked by the blithering imbeciles blundering about in charge, despite a promise to throw not one but TWO Viennese Balls in 2008!Quite how these pen-pushers, tie-less yobs and 'iPod'-twiddlers in their Primark suits and funny shoes propose to manage this is beyond me! They’ll be giving tickets to all manner of ragamuffins, vagabonds and estate agents! Next to the historic, mighty balls of the Crown Prince, the Council’s balls will appear very shrivelled indeed.

NostradamusSeptember 28th 2007.

Dear Rasputin, If you had bothered to read my famous prophecies (available at all good book shops) , you would have read:'In the year 2008 Lyverpool, a city by the sea will host the crapital of cultcher - It will be shyte'. Apologies my spelling wasn't too hot in 1555.

NostradamusSeptember 28th 2007.

I knew about this ages ago

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