The Inventor of All Things casts light on the story of scientist Leo Szilard, the first person to formalize the idea of nuclear chain reactions – knowledge that ultimately led to the development of the atomic bomb.
Should you see it?
With astounding energy and enthusiasm for the story of a scientist largely unknown, Jem Rolls takes us on a history lesson like no other. I mean, seriously, if Rolls had taught my high school history classes, I definitely would have paid more attention.
Rolls tells the story of Szilard’s conception of the horror that paved the way for the atomic bomb. He describes how Szilard sat on that knowledge for years, terrified by the devastating potential, until, inevitably, the weapon was created and he watched his nightmares become reality. Through incredibly lively storytelling, Rolls describes Szilard’s role in the Manhattan Project, his desperation to keep the technology out of Nazi Germany’s hands and his later petition urging the US government to not use the atomic bomb in the war against Japan.
Seeing Jem Rolls in action was truly incredible. And this play would have been absolutely amazing if only I had a clue. But unfortunately, I’m embarrassed to say, my knowledge of the subject matter is pretty negligible. Consequently, I found the story difficult to follow, as I was getting lost in the names and the science. However, given Rolls’ stellar delivery, there’s little doubt in my mind this show will find its audience and do very well for itself.
But that’s just my opinion and I’d love to know what you think. Did Jem Rolls’ impress you with his exuberant performance? Did the story spark a new interest in the largely unknown Leo Szilard? Join the discussion and tell me what you think in the comments below!