Based on the iconic 1969 rock concept album, The Who's ‘Tommy’ is an exhilarating story of hope, healing, and the human spirit. With a cast of 22 performers and musicians, ‘Tommy’ is the story of the pinball-playing boy which has entertained and intrigued audiences for more than 40 years. Now, the electrifying rock musical will feature a new version of ‘Amazing Journey’ to open the show and a brand new song, ‘Acid Queen 2’ for Act Two alongside classic songs ‘Tommy Can You Hear Me?,’ ‘I’m Free,’ ‘See Me, Feel Me’ and ‘Pinball Wizard.’

Directed by Kerry Michael for Ramps on The Moon (a consortium of regional theatres committed to driving change), the award-winning musical follows the story of a young boy after he witnesses the murder of his father by his mother's lover. Traumatised, he chooses to stop communicating with the outside world as he grows up in post WWII England, where he suffers abuse from relatives and others in the wider community.

However, as an adolescent, Tommy's life begins to change when he finds salvation in playing pinball.  In this new staging every performance features a creative use of audio description, captioning and British Sign Language interpretation which will enhance the experience for everyone.

With music and lyrics by The Who’s Pete Townshend-who wrote two new songs exclusively for the occasion-he said: “When I heard there was a new planned production of ‘Tommy,’ I was pleased of course. But when I heard they planned to do a production featuring actors with disabilities of various kinds, that will actually throw new light on the original story, I became very excited. 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. I can’t wait to see it.”

Director Kerry Michael is artistic director of Theatre Royal Stratford East. His recent credits include The Harder They Come, which transferred to the West End, North America and Canada. Kerry says of this new staging: “'For Tommy, we have gone back to the concept album for our inspiration. Mounting a new production of this iconic rock musical with such a big and diverse cast is exciting, vibrant and full of amazing songs.

The cast for this new revival of Tommy includes Peter Straker (Acid Queen) who performed in the original West End production. Peter Straker is known across TV, theatre and music, starting his career as Hud in the original London production of Hair and notably working with Freddie Mercury on two solo albums.

Tommy rocks into Birmingham Repertory Theatre from May 17-27