New Wolsey: 20th Century Boy Review

George Maguire as Marc Bolan in 20th Century Boy, New Wolsey, Ipswich

20th Century Boy tells the story of T-Rex star Marc Bolan, the larger than life character, who lived life in the fast lane and tragically died young, when the car he was a passenger in hit a tree in September 1977.

The production is set in the 1980s, as Marc Bolan’s son Rolan Bolan leaves school and sets out on a quest to find out who is father really was and what happened on that fateful night in 1977.

The story is complimented by many of the hits from the Marc Bolan/T Rex back catalogue by some very talented actor/musicians who, in true New Wolsey style bring the stage to life.

Normally, in a production of this type, the lead role is the stand out performance, and it is true to say that George Maguire’s portrayal of Marc Bolan is stunning. He not only sounds and, with the help of some great make up and costumes, looks like Marc, it is also clear to see that Maguire has spent many hours studying the moves and mannerisms of the T-Rex Star as he captures Marc perfectly. As far as Stand out performances goes though, for this reviewer, there were none, as both of ladies in Marc’s life were fantastic too!

Jenna Lee-James as Marc’s first wife June Child, was both believable and produced some stunning vocals and Donna Hines as Gloria Jones, produced some very moving scenes beautifully, coupled with the most amazing soulful voice. Whilst, Craig Storrod as Rolan Bolan managed to show all the angst of a teenager trying to find out about the father that he has always lived in the shadow of.

20th Century Boy will make you laugh and it will make you cry, and will have you dancing in the aisles to the sound of glam rock. And even if you weren’t a fan in the 70s you’ll be surprised at just how many T-Rex songs you know once the band starts playing!
A brilliant production, that takes the audience back to the time of glam rock at it best, with performances to match and a story well told.

Whether you’re a T Rex fan or not, 20th Century Boy is certainly a great night out, appealing to both the theatre goer and the music fan alike. A thoroughly enjoyable evening out that will have you humming T-Rex songs for days!

— Wendy Cook —

• New Wolsey Theatre, 8th Sept – 1st Oct 2011 –
Box Office 01473 295 900