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Who: Mark Read
Where: Civic Theatre
When: Thursday April 10, 2003

TWENTY years ago, people would have done their best to steer well clear of self confessed criminal Mark "Chopper'' Read.

People are now paying good money to get up close and personal with him to hear gruesome, although often wickedly funny, tales of his well documented life.

Read has teamed up with former AFL player Mark ``Jacko'' Jackson for an off-the-wall spoken work tour.

The tour has already been a hit with audiences all over Australia and will travel to the UK after appearing at Civic Theatre Newcastle on Friday night.

While Read has became a household name in Australia, his fame was brought on from a violent criminal career in the 70s.

Known to terrorise Melbourne's drug dealers, pimps, and armed robbers, Read has always been quick to defend that he never hurt an innocent member of the public.

His extraordinary life has been documented in a series of best selling books penned by Read and portrayed in the hit 2001 film Chopper, starring Eric Bana.

So what can we expect from the show? ``Listen, we've had the best journalists in Australia come to some of our shows and they can't describe what they see,'' Jackson says.

``It's a brutal, anecdotal comedy night.

'' ``True stories.

Some people find them amusing,'' Read says.

The show, titled Wild Colonial Psycho's, will include spoken word from Read and Jackson as well as a Q&A session with the audience.

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