John Lennon and Yoko Ono’s lightning trip to Vienna

The seven-day bed-in held by John Lennon and Yoko Ono at the Amsterdam Hilton ended on this day. Upon leaving the hotel, they flew to Vienna for a short trip.

Embed from Getty Images

Lennon and Ono held a press conference from Vienna’s Hotel Sacher. It received worldwide press coverage, as the couple spoke from within a large white bag, leaving reporters unable to see them.

The reason for their Viennese trip was the world premiere of Rape, a 77-minute black-and-white documentary in which an unsuspecting young woman, Eva Majlata, was pursued through the streets of London by a cameraman, Nic Knowland.

The best thing we did in a bag together was a press conference in Vienna. When they were showing Yoko’s [film] Rape on Austrian TV – they commissioned us to make the film and then we went over to Vienna to see it.

It was like a hotel press conference. We kept them out of the room. We came down the elevator in the bag and we went in and we got comfortable and they were all ushered in. It was a very strange scene because they’d never seen us before, or heard – Vienna is a pretty square place. A few people were saying, ‘C’mon, get out of the bags.’ And we wouldn’t let ’em see us. They all stood back saying, ‘Is it really John and Yoko?’ and ‘What are you wearing and why are you doing this?’ We said, ‘This is total communication with no prejudice.’ It was just great. They asked us to sing and we sang a few numbers. Yoko was singing a Japanese folk song, very nicely, just very straight we did it. And they never did see us.

John Lennon, 1970
Lennon Remembers, Jann S Wenner

Lennon and Ono spent the night at the Hotel Sacher, where they enjoyed the famous rich chocolate cake Sacher Torte.

As with much of the couple’s honeymoon, the events in Vienna were chronicled in ‘The Ballad Of John And Yoko’, which was recorded at EMI Studios in London the following month.

Made a lightning trip to Vienna
Eating chocolate cake in a bag
The newspapers said, she’s gone to his head
They look just like two gurus in drag
Last updated: 3 March 2023
Mixing: Get Back
George and Pattie Harrison are fined for drugs possession
Also on this day...

Want more? Visit the Beatles history section.

Leave a Reply