Pete Townshend’s brief five show US tour of Classic Quadrophenia kicked off last night, with a glorious performance at the historic Tanglewood music venue in Lenox, Mass, where The Who performed Tommy back in 1969. This orchestrated version of Quadrophenia, that was brilliantly scored by Pete’s wife Rachel Fuller, was performed by the Boston Pops Orchestra conducted by Keith Lockhart, and the Tanglewood Festival Chorus conducted by James Burton.
The cast was nearly the same as featured on the 2015 Classic Quadrophenia album, featuring Alfie Boe in the lead role of Jimmy and Billy Idol as the Ace Face / Bell Boy. Pete Townshend expanded his role to play both the Godfather on “Punk and the Godfather”, and also the Dad on “Dirty Jobs” and “Helpless Dancer”, replacing Phil Daniels who performed it on the album. Pete donned a hat and coat to portray the workman character of the father. He also played acoustic guitar on “I’m One” and “Drowned”, along with Alfie and the orchestra.
After taking their bows following the performance of Quadrophenia, Rachel Fuller joined them on stage and they all received beautiful bouquets of flowers. Then Pete, Alfie, and Billy returned to perform a rousing encore of "The Real Me" with the orchestra.
A couple of hours before the show, Pete and Rachel attended a fund raising event for Teen Cancer America and the Cancer Center at Berkshire Medical Center, joined by Alfie Boe and Billy Idol. The event was held on the grounds at Highwood Manor on the Tanglewood campus, and raised about $25,000 for the charities.
Congratulations to Pete, Rachel, Alfie, Billy, Keith, and the Boston Pops Orchestra for this triumphant success!
There are still tickets available to the remaining shows in New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles. This is a very special show, so you don’t want to miss it if you are in town! Tickets are available here.
Many thanks to Diane Corcoran and George Ligouri for all the fabulous photos from this show!