Stortford audience new twists on her classic
original 80s wild child Toyah Willcox, growing
old gracefully was never on the cards. At
the age of 53, the gloriously extravagant and
punk-inspired New Wave singer remains every bit
as keen to strap on an outrageous outfit and
strut into the spotlight.
Best known for 1981 hit
single Its A Mystery, Toyah who is
the star attraction at Bishops
Stortfords week-long Stortfest Crawl
has also enjoyed a career as an actress and
But its her musical
ventures that give her the most satisfaction
and when she comes to Rhodes on May 5,
fans can expect plenty of surprises and fresh
twists on classic tracks.
Asked if she still felt
comfortable hitting the stage in her trademark
costumes, she told the Observer: Its
what I do and what Ive always done, so
its absolutely second nature to
me. I started out in an age of
video, so everything in those early days was
about being visual it had to be. You
couldnt release a single without a video to
go with it.
Im enjoy [the
costumes] immensely, and the reaction it gets
well, the audience just love it because
you can always surprise people.
This particular show is about an album
called The Changeling, which is quite a dark one
and quite adult for me, so weve created a
particular look for those songs.
But I also have looks for other songs
I always have pink hair for Its A
Mystery, for example. Its all incredibly
well thought-out and addressed.
As many an artist has discovered, theres a
fine line between keeping your old fans happy
while appealing to a new generation and an
ever-present risk of trying and failing to relive
However, Toyah said: Im not just
reviving [the songs] but reinventing them as well
- I dont go out on stage pretending to be
My audience is surprisingly young and I
think a lot of the freshness comes
from them mostly thanks to bands like
Florence and the Machine naming me as
Continue reading, at
Herts & Essex Observer, here.