A Pinball Wizard in post-war Britain: dazzling images of The Who’s rock opera Tommy released
A spectacular new production of The Who’s celebrated cult classic Tommy arrives at West Yorkshire Playhouse from Thursday 4 – Saturday 13 May.
Kerry Michael directs this energetic production which sees traumatised young Tommy cease to communicate with the outside world, before finding his salvation and becoming a national sensation through playing pinball.
This bold reinterpretation includes two new songs written exclusively by Pete Townshend who composed The Who’s original 1969 concept album, and is presented by New Wolsey Theatre Ipswich and Ramps on the Moon, a consortium of seven major theatre companies including West Yorkshire Playhouse, committed to putting Deaf and disabled artists and audiences at the centre of their work.
Pete Townshend expressed excitement about the inclusive cast, saying “This is a totally new adventure, and really does refer back to my original story in which a young man, disabled by extreme trauma, finds his way to some kind of spiritual place because he can FEEL music.”
A blue plaque at Leeds University’s Refectory building commemorates the recording of The Who’s Live at Leeds in 1970, widely regarded as one of the greatest ever live albums, which originally contained 6 tracks released on LP, but also included a live recording of Tommy, later released on CD in 2001.
One of the new numbers is a new song for the Acid Queen, played by Peter Straker (Tommy, The Rocky Horror Show, Hair).