Victorian Opera has announced a star-studded cast for its Australian premiere production of five-time Tony Award musical, The Who’s Tommy. Based on The Who’s legendary 1969 concept album Tommy, which sold over 20 million copies, the rock musical is set to supercharge Melbourne’s Palais Theatre this August.
In a role approved by The Who’s Pete Townshend himself, Victorian Opera welcomes back rising star Mat Verevis (A Little Night Music, Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, Nine Network’s The Voice) as Narrator / Tommy. He’s joined by stage stars Chris Ryan (A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder) as Captain Walker and Amy Lehpamer (School of Rock, The Sound of Music) as Mrs. Walker.
Legendary performer Paul Capsis takes on the iconic role of The Gypsy (Acid Queen), with Victorian Opera regular Kanen Breen (Black Rider, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory) as Uncle Ernie and Vincent Hooper (The Rocky Horror Show) as Cousin Kevin.
The ensemble cast includes Sheridan Anderson, Jared Bryan, Monique Dawes, Mark Doggett, Darcey Eagle, Courtney Glass, Matt Hamilton, David Hammond, Savannah Lind, Louis Lucente, John O’Hara, Matthew Predny, Emma Russell, Dean Schulz, David Sirianni, Darren Tyler, Jessica Vellucci, and Stephanie Wall. The cast members for Young Tommy will be announced at a later date.
Tommy’s traumatic childhood leaves his senses paralysed, but despite being deaf, dumb and blind, the teenager plays a mean pinball game. His extraordinary talent catapults him to international superstardom in this inspiring story of hope, healing, and triumph over adversity.
With music and lyrics by The Who’s guitarist and vocalist Pete Townshend, the electrifying and timeless score features smash hits such as Pinball Wizard, I’m Free and Acid Queen.
Acclaimed director Roger Hodgman (A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder) is at the helm alongside musical director Laura Tipoki (School of Rock), choreographer Dana Jolly (Dirty Rotten Scoundrels), set designer Christina Smith (The Boy from Oz), costume designer Isaac Lummis (Ragtime), lighting designer Matt Scott (Anything Goes) and sound designer Peter Grubb (Matilda the Musical).
The Who’s Tommy will return to Broadway in 2021 with a new production directed by Des McAnuff (Big River, Jersey Boys) – co-writer of the musical’s book and director of the original five-time Tony Award winning production, which premiered on Broadway in 1993.
The Who’s Tommy
Palais Theatre, Lower Esplanade, St Kilda
Season: 14 – 22 August 2020
Information and Bookings: www.victorianopera.com.au
Image: Chris Ryan, Amy Lehpamer, Mat Verevis and Paul Capsis to star in The Who’s Tommy (supplied)