In The Flesh: A Musical Odyssey Through Pink Floyd’s The Wall

This weekend I witnessed something fantastic, and I feel that it is my obligation to write about it. On Saturday, I boarded a train bound for Copenhagen to witness the musical theater adaptation of Pink Floyd’s iconic album “The Wall,” aptly named “Another Brick in The Wall part 5.” As an avid Pink Floyd fan,…

Jakob Österdahl Avatar

black trash bin beside white wall

This weekend I witnessed something fantastic, and I feel that it is my obligation to write about it. On Saturday, I boarded a train bound for Copenhagen to witness the musical theater adaptation of Pink Floyd’s iconic album “The Wall,” aptly named “Another Brick in The Wall part 5.” As an avid Pink Floyd fan, the anticipation for this evening had been building since I saw Roger Waters live last spring. While being a departure from that experience, this show proved to be an epic spectacle, leaving me utterly speechless.

I’ll start with a bit of background to this whole thing. Pink Floyd, an English progressive rock band formed in 1965, gained rapid acclaim with members Syd Barrett, David Gilmour, Nick Mason, and Richard Wright. Known for their psychedelic and experimental music, coupled with philosophical lyrics and elaborate live shows, they quickly garnered a devoted following. In 1967, guitarist and vocalist Roger Waters joined the band, eventually stepping into the role of the new frontman after Barrett’s departure in 1968 due to mental health issues. Waters’ influence propelled Pink Floyd to international success with albums like “Dark Side of the Moon”, “Wish You Were Here”, “Animals”, and the conceptual masterpiece “The Wall.” Today, Pink Floyd is hailed as one of the greatest progressive rock bands of all time.

Now, let’s dive into the core of this experience – “The Wall,” released in 1979, achieved rapid commercial success. This album, best described as a rock opera, revolves around the character Pink, a disillusioned rock star whose self-imposed isolation forms a metaphorical “wall” between him and society. The music delves into Pink’s life, with the figurative wall constructed from bricks serving as a metaphor for the traumas he endured. The album culminates in the completion of the wall, leaving Pink totally isolated before he tears it down, liberating himself. The vivid storytelling of the album was further enhanced by a movie adaptation.

Now, onto the spectacle of “Another Brick in The Wall part 5.” The chosen venue, Østre Gasværk Teater, added an extraordinary layer to the experience. Nestled in an old gas plant, the stone-brick theater perfectly complemented the act. Moreover, the option to purchase and bring refreshments to our seats elevated the overall experience, a perk of being in Denmark I guess. 

With such anticipation, the question looms – can the show live up to expectations? It did, without a doubt. The show commenced with a bang, mirroring the intensity of the album. Pink, portrayed by actor Johan Olsen, appeared in the stands near my seat, uttering the iconic words “So ya thought ya might like to go to the show.” What followed was two hours of pure ecstasy. I sat motionless, muscles tense, unconsciously holding my breath. In short, I was completely immersed from beginning to end, and I’d like to highlight two key aspects:

Firstly, the music. “The Wall” is a phenomenal album with beautiful lyrics and instrumentals. However, this rendition wasn’t by Pink Floyd but by exceptionally talented actors and musicians. Every element was performed live, maintaining authenticity. The music closely resembled the original, with impeccable vocal performances and, crucially for a Pink Floyd fan, guitar solos that echoed David Gilmour. The absence of additional dialogue or lyrics between songs heightened the focus on the album’s narrative, with the scenery providing context to the lyrics.

Now, onto the second part – the scenery. While it was prohibited to take pictures, I’ll do my best to describe it. The theater seating towered over the ground-level stage, creating a colosseum-like atmosphere. The stage featured a central hole that could be raised or lowered, creatively employed to represent Pink’s emotional states. For instance, when Pink was lowered into the hole, it symbolized his entrapment inside The Wall. A standout moment was Pink wired up through the ground-level hole, upside down on a chair, singing the lyrics to “Hey You” – a remarkable depiction of Pink’s descent into madness. In the first act, a see-through wall divided the scene into two sections, used creatively when young Pink and adult-Pink sang “Another Brick In The Wall part 1” on opposite sides, illustrating the impact of trauma on Pink’s life. The overall scenic experience was extraordinary, featuring acrobatic trapeze-like feats, stunning costumes, and a dynamic stage.

In conclusion, while a review traditionally includes negatives, I must honestly say I have none. “Another Brick in The Wall part 5” was, in my opinion, absolutely fantastic. The marriage of music and grand scenery has left me with an unforgettable experience. I reiterate my enthusiasm and leave you with a call to action: listen to “The Wall,” watch the movie adaptation and if circumstances allow, witness the brilliance of “Another Brick in The Wall part 5.”

About Nådiga Lundtan

Founded in 1948 and has since been an important part of student life in the economics program at Lund University. Nådiga Lundtan covers a wide range of topics related to economics, society, and politics, as well as careers, entrepreneurship, and innovation. It is a platform for students to share their ideas and opinions on economics and related fields.

View more articles
  • What’s the deal with sunscreen, really?

    As summer approaches and the weather warms up, the sun’s rays grow stronger and people are bringing out their sunscreen. I am too. This year, when the sun finally appeared, I immediately got sunburned on my shoulders. I soon realized I didn’t have any sunscreen at home, so I picked up my phone to research…

  • The EU Election 2024: Why Your Vote Matters and How to Make It Count

    If you are entitled to vote in the EU elections, you should have received a voting card in your mailbox. So get ready for the EU elections taking place on June 9! You might be wondering why your vote matters, what options you have if you can’t make it to the polls on the big…

  • My newest discovery: Discover Weekly on Spotify

    Like so many others, my passion for music runs deep. However, I often found it unnecessarily difficult to find new music that suits my taste. It is way too easy to get stuck in the same old playlists that you’ve had on repeat for years without broadening your horizons. I mean, Spotify grants you access to…