15th Anniversary Concert of The Who's Tommy Rocks Broadway Dec. 15

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15 Dec 2008

Michael Cerveris
Michael Cerveris
Photo by Aubrey Reuben
Original cast members from The Who's Tommy reunite for a one-night-only benefit concert of that 1993 Tony-winning rock musical Dec. 15 at the August Wilson Theatre.

Current Road Show star and Assassins Tony winner Michael Cerveris, who earned a Tony nomination for his work in Tommy's title role, leads a company of original Tommy cast members, including Marcia Mitzman (Mrs. Walker), Jonathan Dokuchitz (Mr. Walker), Cheryl Freeman (Gypsy/Acid Queen), Anthony Barrile (Cousin Kevin), Paul Kandel (Uncle Ernie) and Sherie Rene Scott (Sally Simpson).

The sold-out 8 PM concert also features Tommy veterans Alice Ripley, Norm Lewis, Christian Hoff, Donnie Kehr, Michael Arnold, Bill Buell, Maria Calabrese, Tracy Nicole Chapman, Paul Dobie, Tom Flynn, Romain Fruge, Jody Gelb, Pam Klinger, Lisa Leguillou, Lee Morgan and Timothy Warmen with national tour cast member Destan Owens as the Hawker.

David Bologna, who alternates in the role of Michael in Broadway's Billy Elliot—The Musical, portrays the young Tommy for the reunion concert.

Rockers on Broadway and the PATH fund present the 15th anniversary concert, which benefits Broadway Cares/Equity Fights Aids, the Broadway Dreams Foundation and the Bachmann-Strauss Dystonia and Parkinson Foundation.



Original cast member Donny Kehr, who is also the founder of Rockers on Broadway, directs the evening, which features photo stills of the 1993 Broadway production as well as Wendell K. Harrington's Drama Desk-winning projection designs. Original band members back the performers.

"After witnessing the accidental murder of his mother's lover by his father, Tommy is traumatized into catatonia, and as the boy grows, he suffers abuse at the hands of his sadistic relatives and neighbors. As an adolescent, he’s discovered to have an uncanny knack for playing pinball, and when his mother finally breaks through his catatonia, he becomes an international pinball superstar," according to press notes.

The Who's Tommy opened on Broadway at the St. James Theatre April 22, 1993, earning 11 Tony nominations. Des McAnuff won a Tony Award for his direction, and Pete Townshend won a Tony for the show's score. The book was penned by Townshend and McAnuff.

The Who's Tommy: 15th Anniversary Benefit Concert is sponsored by Base Entertainment, The Dodgers, The Frye Company, Joseph J. Grano Jr., Kevin & Tamara Kinsella, and SONY/BMG Masterworks.

The August Wilson Theatre is located at 245 West 52nd Street in Manhattan.