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Historical dates / 8 October 2012

Tomorrow Tuesday: Nabil Shaban celebrates John Lennon's Birthday on 9th October by launching on Kindle the original first draft and performance draft of his play 'I am the Walrus'. Nabil introduces the event as: "The world believes Mark Chapman killed John Lennon... but Broadmoor psychiatric patient, Charlie Markham, a little man in a wheelchair, knows he, Charlie was the real killer, even though he was Lennon's 'Number One Fan'.

These drafts date back to 2001 when Nabil Shaban, disabled actor and writer, was commissioned by Robert Rae of Theatre Workshop Scotland to write and perform a one-person play for the Edinburgh Fringe Festival about the death of Lennon, called 'I am the Walrus'.

Fictitious character, Charlie really believes he was responsible for John Lennon’s death… i.e. he inhabited Mark Chapman’s body and made him go out and kill his former idol. However, this psychotic notion of Charlie’s is just a smokescreen for the awful truth that he had in fact murdered his mother, which he is unable to come to terms with and therefore is in denial.

At the end of the play, his idol, the ghost (or hallucination) of John Lennon arrives and tries to coax Charlie into admitting the matricide, as this will help to put him on the road to recovery. 'I am the Walrus' is a drama dealing with issues of disability, specifically, feeling victimized and persecuted for being a disabled child... thus the proposal will appeal to many disabled adults".

This Wednesday is World Mental Health Day. World Mental Health Day (10 October) is a day for global mental health education, awareness and advocacy. It was first celebrated in 1992 at the initiative of the World Federation for Mental Health, a global mental health organization with members and contacts in more than 150 countries.

This day, each October thousands of supports come to celebrate this annual awareness program to bring attention to Mental Illness and its major effects on peoples' life worldwide.In some countries this day is part of the larger Mental Illness Awareness Week. An interesting highlight may be activist Lynn Harrison's radio slot from 6-7pm on West Craven Radiowhich you can hear live on Enjoy.


Finally, the theme for this year’s Disability History Month will be 'Changing Lives, Changing Times: Challenging the ideas that lead to hate crime'. There are some interesting events planned, which will explore the considerable changes that disabled people have faced throughout history. They will also be looking at the origins of hate crime and the impact it has on people with disabilities today.

A pre-launch event is happening with Leeds University on *Wednesday 17 October*, 2-4pm at Cockburn School, Parkside, Gipsy Lane, Beeston, Leeds, LS11 5TT. This will showcase a groundbreaking project which uses musical theatre to take disability history into secondary schools.

They are also planning the official launch for UKDHM 2012 on evening of Thursday
22nd November in Central London at the Abbey Centre, Great Smith Street London SW1. More information will follow shortly, but expect thought provoking speakers, entertainment and a showcase of an exciting new UKDPC project of disability murals.

Disability History Month creates an excellent opportunity to raise the profile of disabled people’s struggles against discrimination and oppression in the wake of the highly successful Parlympics when public attitudes shifted. UKDHM allows the challenging of traditional stereotypes of disabled people and forms a strong platform to argue against discrimination and inequality for disabled people in the UK.

For more information www.ukdisabilityhistorymonth or 02073592855 or


Keywords: nabil shaban,uk disability history month,world mental health day