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The Guardian: Jubilee To Be Reignited On Stage

June 7th, 2017

guardian17aDerek Jarman’s punk classic Jubilee to be reignited on stage  

Toyah Willcox plays the time-travelling Elizabeth I in the Royal Exchange’s version of the film that caused outrage after 1977’s silver jubilee

Derek Jarman’s anarchic punk film Jubilee is to be adapted for the stage with a cast including Toyah Willcox who made her screen debut in the original version 40 years ago. Willcox played the cackling pyromaniac Mad, a member of a girl gang whose fights, orgies and random acts of cruelty are witnessed by Queen Elizabeth I when she is magically transported to the 1970s. The new stage version, which will open at Manchester’s Royal Exchange theatre this November, casts Willcox in the role of the time-travelling queen.

“At the time it was made, it was utterly outrageous,” says Willcox of the film, which she describes as the tale of “women who are trying to kind of kill everything that controls them or that has exploited them. It’s a very resonant story today. Nothing’s changed except the technology.” The stage version will be firmly set in the modern day, with the script updated throughout the show’s run to acknowledge current events.

“If there’s something noteworthy in the news at 1pm, hopefully you’ll be hearing a reference to it in the show in the evening,” says Chris Goode, the show’s director. Goode, who first saw Jarman’s film as a teenager and has been influenced by the DIY punk ethos throughout his theatre career, added: “We didn’t want our version to be an exercise in nostalgia. Part of the impulse was thinking about where punk is at now.”

• Continue reading at The Guardian.

Manchester Evening News: Toyah Willcox in Jubilee

June 7th, 2017

men17aToyah Willcox in Jubilee and the return of Julie Hesmondhalgh among highlights of Royal Exchange Theatre’s new season of shows

Manchester’s Royal Exchange Theatre reveals an exciting mix of plays for its Autumn/Winter season

80s pop icon Toyah Willcox will play Queen Elizabeth I as she makes her Royal Exchange Theatre debut in Jubilee, part of the striking new programme of shows for the Autumn/Winter season announced by the Manchester venue.

Toyah will star in the theatre adaptation of Derek Jarman’s punk cult classic movie Jubilee, a film she originally starred in as the character Mad in 1978.

She will now take on the role of Queen Elizabeth I, who is transported into a shattered modern Britain in the story adapted by Chris Goode who makes his exchange debut as new associate artist.

• Continue reading at the Manchester Evening News.

The Stage: Chris Goode to Adapt Punk Film Jubilee for the Stage

June 7th, 2017

stage17aChris Goode is to adapt Derek Jarman’s cult film Jubilee for the stage at the Royal Exchange in Manchester.

The production will take place as the film marks its 40th anniversary, and will star original film cast member Toyah Willcox. Goode, who joins the Royal Exchange as an associate artist, will adapt and direct Jubilee. It premieres from November 2 to 18, with press night on November 7.

Goode described the project as “brilliantly daunting and irresistible”, adding: “Derek Jarman has been a hero to me for 25 years and the opportunity to stage a brand new adaptation of one of his most iconic films with one of the country’s most iconic theatres is mind-blowing and heart racing in equal measure.”

“Under Sarah Frankcom’s visionary leadership the Royal Exchange continues to consolidate its position as a boldly risk-taking and boundary-exploding venue where we get to come together and talk about the biggest questions of our age in the most exciting ways we can imagine. At a time when dialogue and dissidence feel more precious than ever, I want Jubilee to be a celebration of the energy of our anger and our hope.”

• Continue reading at The Stage.

What’s On Stage: MRE Announces Autumn 2017 Season

June 7th, 2017

wostage16aManchester Royal Exchange announces autumn 2017 season  

The season includes an adaptation of the film Jubilee and two plays by Bruntwood Prize winners

From 2 to 18 November, the theatre will stage the world premiere of Jubilee, Chris Goode’s stage adaptation of Derek Jarman’s 1978 film. Original cast member from the film Toyah Willcox will front the production, which is updated for the political and social scene of 2017.

• Continue reading at What’s On Stage.

Gibraltar Chronicle: Toyah for Gib Music Week

June 7th, 2017

gibchron17aToyah Willcox ‘up close and personal’ for Gib Music Week

Toyah Willcox will be the first artist to perform as part of the extended MTV Gib Calling festival. The legendary Wilcox, whose career has spanned several decades will kick off Gibraltar Music Week in an ‘up close and personal show’ in St Michael’s Cave on Tuesday 29 August. She will be supported by very popular local band and winners of this year’s Gibraltar Song Festival, Jetstream.

Willcox has13 Top-10 singles under her belt and the organisers believe she is the perfect candidate to start the busy week in music in Gibraltar. Aside from her success in music, is also quite an accomplished actress and has worked with Derek Jarman twice in the movies ‘Jubilee’ and ‘The Tempest’. More recently Toyah starred in the hit British film ‘Ahhhhhhhh!’ directed by Steve Oram and co-starring Julian Rhind-Tutt, Noel Fielding and Julian Barratt.

• Continue reading at the Gibraltar Chronicle.

Live 2017: Toyah to Headline MantonFest 2017

June 1st, 2017

mantonfest17bIn exactly one month’s time Toyah co-headlines, along with Creedence Clearwater Revived, MantonFest 2017. The one day event is taking place at Manton Grange Watermeadow in Manton

This year’s charity fundraising music festival is on Saturday 1st July at Manton Grange Watermeadow, Marlborough, Wiltshire.

All proceeds from this year’s event will be directed into much needed structural improvements needed at Manton Village Hall.  The hall plays a pivotal role in the local community and hosts activities for young and old alike.  Thank you for your support!

In this lively and energetic festival set with Toyah’s full live electric band you can expect to hear hit singles Good Morning Universe, Thunder In The Mountains, It’s A Mystery, I Want To Be Free, Brave New World and Rebel Run.

• Further info and ticket booking details at the MantonFest 2017 website.

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Exmouth Journal: Record Crowds at Exmouth Festival

June 1st, 2017

exmouthjournal17aRecord crowds at Exmouth Festival, but donations desperately needed

This year’s Exmouth Festival – which runs until this Saturday (June 3) – appears to be breaking all attendance records.

However despite record crowds, donations are still desperately needed to ensure that the town’s free festival continues next year. Warm weather on Friday (May 26) and Saturday (May 27) brought large crowds out on to the Imperial Rec’ Ground to see musical acts including Noble Jacks, The Locked Horns, Mr Tea and the Minions and Talisman.

But that was nothing compared to the huge crowd that turned up Sunday night’s evening concert (May 28), which featured local reggae band The Barefoot Bandit, covers band Joey the Lips and headliner 1980s punk princess Toyah Willcox.

• Continue reading at the Exmouth Journal.

Bournemouth Daily Echo: Upton Festival 2017

May 31st, 2017

uptonfestival17bHere’s who will appearing at the Upton House Music Festival

There’s less than two weeks to go until Upton House and Country Park in Poole becomes a showcase for some of the biggest names in the music business. The three-night festival kicks off with a Classical Spectacular on Thursday, June 8, followed by an ’80s Extravaganza on Friday, closing with internationally renowned singer-songwriter, Michael Bolton on Saturday, June 9.

Billy Ocean, the king of R&B is headlining the 80s Extravaganza on Friday, 9 June with Kim Wilde and Toyah co-starring.

The pop star and actress has close links with Dorset through her 30-year marriage to Wimborne born and bred King Crimson musician, Robert Fripp, and her time spent living in Witchampton.

She said: “Dorset is very close to my heart and I love returning there whenever I can. It will be great fun playing Upton House Music Festival as well as meeting up with a few old friends.”

Toyah, whose 13 top 40 hits included It’s A Mystery, I Want To Be Free, and Thunder In The Mountains also includes a starring role in the mod movie Quadrophenia and work with Sir Laurence Olivier on her 35-year CV.

uptonfestival17a

She added: “I love the variety in my career – it keeps it all fresh and I’ll certainly be looking to put on a colourful, energetic and exciting show for the 80s fans at Upton House.”

• Continue reading at the Bournemouth Daily Echo. Visit the Upton Festival website.

Exmouth Journal: Exmouth Festival 2017 is go!

May 31st, 2017

exmouthjournal17aNow celebrating its 21st year, the festival has emerged as one of the South West’s most important – and impressive – free community events.

A freewheeling fiesta of fabulous fun for all the family, it offers homegrown talent a brilliant opportunity to shine brightly in the spotlight. These included the Imperial Recreation Ground, the Bicton Inn and Exmouth Ceramic Group’s exhibition at Meeting Street.

On Sunday evening, the big headliners came into town. A huge crowd – perhaps as large as 6,000 people – filled the Imperial Rec’ Ground and enjoyed sets by Joey the Lips and 1980s punk princess Toyah Willcox. Joey the Lips put on a solid show of singalong dancefloor fillers. More poppy than their soul roots of some years back, the switch to more accessible material – with songs by Queen and Lulu – has done them no harm. The crowd – particularly the youngsters up the front – loved it.

Toyah Willcox bounded on stage an hour later. Her band sounded very tight as she blasted through a solid set of her hits – such as Thunder In the Mountains and Obselete – and 1980s covers, such as Martha and the Muffins’ Echo Beach.

Toyah was clearly delighted by the warm reception she got from the huge crowd, declaring that ‘Exmouth was cool’.

• Continue reading at the Exmouth Journal. (Photo © Exmouth Journal/Paul Strange)

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The Telegraph: Cannes 2017: Nicole Kidman Channels Toyah

May 30th, 2017

telegraph16aCannes 2017: How to Talk to Girls at Parties, review: Nicole Kidman channels Toyah Willcox in this lifeless sci-fi flick

Derived from a Neil Gaiman short story, this must have felt like an opportunity for provoc-auteur and queer cinema hero John Cameron Mitchell to let his hair down, by resurrecting the anarchic spirit of Derek Jarman’s Jubilee and then staging a Shortbus-lite sex romp with added polymorphous perversity. If this film’s an acquired taste, so is kidney sorbet, or a sponge cake seething with live eels. You get to see Nicole Kidman, in a white electroshock wig, grapple with the part of an angry punk matriarch and yell “shut your gaping gob” at one of her minions. A substitute for Toyah Willcox she’ll never be for the life of her, but the silliness of the casting sums the film up, for good and bad.

• Continue reading at The Telegraph.

YES Magazine: 80′s Invasion Tour

March 19th, 2017

80sinvasion17cThe long awaited 80′s Invasion Tour is back and opened at the Pavilion Theatre in Rhyl on the 2nd of March. YES Mag was lucky enough to be on the guest list and what a night it was!

The show opened with Liverpool’s finest guitar duo China Crisis, who within minutes had everyone on their feet dancing to theor classic beat.

Next up the legendary (and very energetic) pop punk princess Toyah burst on to the stage with hits ‘It’s A Mystery’, ‘I Want Yo be Free’ and many more of her 80′s classics.

• Continue reading at YES Magazine/Twitter.

Shropshire Star: 80s Invasion, Theatre Severn – Review

March 11th, 2017

80sinvasion16b‘Let’s make it like an 80s school disco’, said the performers – and the Theatre Severn certainly had a party atmosphere when it came to the 80s Invasion.

Pop stars China Crisis, Toyah, Paul Young and Martika took to the stage in Shrewsbury on Tuesday, performing their nostalgic hits. Most of the shows I go to are chosen by my mum, and this was no exception. The show was opened by China Crisis, who did a great job of getting the mid-week crowd up and dancing.

We both found Toyah a real revelation, she looked absolutely stunning and had energy by the barrel on stage. She also interspersed her hits, including It’s A Mystery, Thunder In The Mountains and I Wanna Be Free, with tales of her time during the 80s. But it was her cover of Echo Beach, originally by Martha and the Muffins, that really got the crowd going.

• Continue reading at the Shropshire Star.

Birmingham Mail: 30 Celebrities from Birmingham

March 11th, 2017

bmail14a30 celebrities you didn’t know were from Birmingham

We take a look at the stars whose connections to the city are not as well-publicised as the likes of Ozzy Osbourne – how many of these did you know had links to Birmingham?

By now, virtually everyone must be aware that Ozzy Osbourne hails from Birmingham, as are all the other members of Black Sabbath including Tony Iommi.

Other famous faces with widely-documented links to the city include comedians Jasper Carrott and Tony Hancock, actor David Harewood (star of American drama Homeland), plus musicians Jeff Lynne, Bev Bevan, Roy Wood, Rob Halford, Toyah Willcox, Jamelia and reggae singer Pato Banton. And of course Duran Duran and girl group Fuzzbox were founded here too.

• Continue reading at the Birmingham Mail.

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News North Wales: Review: 80′s Invasion Tour

March 3rd, 2017

80sinvasion16a80′s legends invade the stage at Rhyl Pavilion

The 1980s, is synonymous with big hair and big aspirations.

It was also undoubtedly one of the best decades for music. Not only did it give birth to the music video but also left us with an eclectic mix of styles and genre’s many of which can still be heard in today’s charts.

Such is the fondness for this power dressing period and its place in our relatively recent memories, 37 years on artists from the day are still singing to scores of fans up and down the country at festivals or gigs. An example of this nostalgia package – The 80′s Invasion Tour – was at Rhyl’s Pavilion Theatre on Thursday.

… A quick turn around enabled the next act Toyah to capatalise on the feel good mood. The diminutive diva, who looked remarkable for someone set to celebrate her 59th birthday, launched into her set of defiant early 80s anthems including ‘ It’s a Mystery’ and ‘I want to be free’ – enjoyed by scores of fist pumping audience members. A strong contender surely for national treasure Ms Willcox was followed by international recording artist Martika…

• Continue reading at News North Wales.

The Herald: 80′s Invasion Tour in Scotland

March 3rd, 2017

herald16aChecklist: 10 things not to miss in Scotland this week

7. 80s Invasion Tour The Edinburgh Playhouse, March 5 – Music fans will be able to take a nostalgia trip in the capital on Sunday. Eighties favourites, including Paul Young, Martika and Liverpool duo China Crisis, will perform during the show. Punk pop star Toyah Willcox completes this year’s line-up.

Tickets cost £38.65. Visit http://www.atgtickets.com/venues/edinburgh-playhouse/

• Continue reading at The Herald.