David Bowie had a knack for the theatrical. He was an artist who loved to explore different personas and dress in outlandish outfits. His songs are some of the most popular in history, with hits like “Space Oddity” and “Changes” topping charts all over the world.
But, how much do you know about his life offstage?
In 1976 he starred as Thomas Jerome Newton, a human-looking alien who comes to Earth seeking water for his dying planet.
Wearing blue contact lenses that make him appear otherworldly, Bowie captured audiences’ imaginations with his daring performance style on both stage and screen.
Bowie’s performance in The Man Who Sold the World, which was released just three months after his film debut as Newton, took him to another level. He established himself not only as a songwriter and performer but also as an actor of some skill.
Yet Bowie’s greatest acting achievement came with a little-known stage musical called Lazarus that he wrote for New York Theatre Workshop in 2015.
It tells the story of Thomas Jerome Newton four decades later: still on Earth, still seeking water for his home planet when it is attacked by invaders who resemble humans so closely they can fool even those closest to them.
Seeing this man had been transformed into something other than human we see ourselves and are forced to ask questions.