This girl’s on fire

World premiere of 'Highly Inflammable' the play inspired by Poly Styrene at St Mary in the Castle on 10 June.

When soon-to-be music icon Marianne Elliott-Said saw the Sex Pistols on Hastings Pier she was inspired to form her own punk band. She became Poly Styrene and X-Ray Spex was born.

More than 40 years later an original play influenced by the music of this punk legend is coming to St Mary in the Castle in Hastings on June 10.

Set in two equally explosive eras – 1977 and post-Brexit Britain – “Highly Inflammable” uses Poly’s prophetic lyrics and ideas to explore very modern day problems. Written by award winning playwright Cheryl White and directed by Mark Field, Highly Inflammable crackles with music, energy, ideas and plenty of proper punk outrage at the state of our nation in 2017.

“As a teenage punk growing up in Adelaide, Poly Styrene’s music had a big influence on me,” said White. “Now living in St Leonards where she spent the last years of her life, I have been inspired by the current political climate to revisit Poly’s ideas for a modern audience.”

Highly Inflammable will be the centrepiece of a unique day – June 10  –dedicated to all things Poly Styrene.

• Learn more about Poly by visiting an exhibition in St Mary’s crypt featuring private memorabilia, original artwork inspired by Poly, unreleased recordings and Poly’s last interview.
• Listen to a panel discussion exploring Poly’s influence on a new generation of musicians, writers and artists.
• Pogo the night away to live music by local bands playing Poly.

For more information go to

Photo: Peter Quinnell


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