20th Century Boy -The Musical

Malvern Theatres


Inspired by the flamboyant, fast-paced, creative life of Glam Rock legend Marc Bolan, 20th Century Boy The Musical celebrates T.Rex’s 70s hits in an explosive rocking life and death tribute at Malvern Theatres.

George Maguire, as Marc Bolan, doesn’t necessarily have an uncanny resemblance but with a voice not dissimilar to Caleb Followill from Kings of Leon he mimics all of Marc’s affectations with a lot of hair flicking, head shaking and strutting to magically transform into a star on stage wrapped in a feather bower.

George’s charismatic performance really builds throughout the first act when the story of Marc’s life as an East End boy sees him develop into a species of ‘mod’ and his mother’s support from her fruit stall in Soho’s Berwick Street encouraging him to chase his dreams of becoming bigger than Elvis.

We travel through his psychedelic period and are treated to an acoustic duet with wife June with one of my favourite tracks Debora recently revived in the film Baby Driver.

With help from music producer Tony Visconti (Derek Hagen), wife June Child (Sarah Moss), mum Phyllis Field (Amy Rhiannon Worth) and singer Gloria Jones (Ellena Vincent), Tyrannosaurus Rex became T.Rex and scored a string of hits which, directed by John Maher, celebrates tunes such as I Love to Boogie, Get it on, Metal Guru, Hot Love and Ride A White Swan.

The duet of Tainted Love sang by Marc and Gloria was a powerful rendition and very fitting for what was to unfold.

As well as T.Rex’s hits, the video clips and sound bites of music around at the time of Marc’s climb to fame treated the audience to newspaper clippings and tunes from Cliff Richard to David Bowie, The Beatles to Jimi Hendrix and The Rolling Stones to Kiss.

Matthew Ashcroft, who played percussionist Mickey Finn, took a very relaxed effort to his bongo drumming which looked hilarious in the background and there were lots of laughs throughout the show.

From poet, to electric warrior, king of glam and godfather of punk, Marc tries it all including copious amounts of drugs and alcohol which results in lows and highs with lover Gloria Jones who ends up having his baby Rolan Bolan just before Marc’s death in a car crash a few days after his 30th birthday in 1977.

Despite four decades since Marc Bolan’s death this musical leaves you upbeat, with ringing eardrums and a thirst for 70’s hits as this celebration of glam rock goes electric. To 12-04-18.

Emma Trimble


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