Look Back at the Original Broadway Production of The Who’s Tommy

The Who’s Tommy opened at the St. James Theatre April 22, 1993. The production, directed by Des McAnuff with choreography by Wayne Cilento, played 27 previews and 899 performances before closing June 17, 1995. The musical would go on to garner 11 Tony Award nominations, winning five, including Best Original Score for The Who co-founder and musician Pete Townshend.

Adapted from the band’s classic rock opera, The Who’s Tommy tells the story of deaf and mute boy who becomes a world-famous Pinball Wizard and the leader of a cult of devotees. The musical features music and lyrics by Townshend and a book co-written by Townshend and McAnuff. The Who’s John Entwistle and Keith Moon provided additional music and lyrics.

The production of The Who’s Tommy featured Michael Cerveris as Tommy alongside Norm Lewis, Alice Ripley, Michael McElroy, Sherie Rene Scott, Crysta Macalush, Carly Jane Steinborn, Buddy Smith, Jonathan Dokuchitz, Anthony Barrile, Paul Kandel, Marcia Mitzman, Cheryl Freeman, Michael Arnold, Bill Buell, Maria Calabrese, Tracy Nicole Chapman, Paul Dobie, Tom Flynn, Jody Gelb, Christian Hoff, Donnie Kehr, Pam Klinger, Lisa Leguillou, Lee Morgan, and Timothy Warmen. Rounding out the company were Victoria Lecta Cave, Romain Frugé, Todd Hunter, and Tracey Langran as swings and Ari Vernon as the understudy for Tommy, Age 10.

The Broadway production featured scenic design by John Arnone, costume design by David C. Woolard, lighting design by Chris Parry, and sound design by Steve Canyon Kennedy with stage management by Frank Hartenstein, Karen Armstrong, Kelly A. Martindale, and Jill Larmet. Visit the Playbill Vault for the complete cast and creative team.