the who’s tommy

summer cabaret, june 18 - july 5, 2008

the who’s rock opera about a young boy who becomes deaf, dumb and blind after seeing his father shoot his mother’s lover in the mirror– only to grow up and become an international pinball sensation.  minimally staged production took the story back to its rock concert roots, casting local rock band front man chad raines as both tommy and lead guitarist.

photos: erik pearson / melissa mizell



music and lyrics by pete townshend / book by pete townshend and des mcanuff / additional music and lyrics by john entwistle and keith moon / designed by: andrew boyce (sets), anya klepikov (costumes), melissa mizell (lights), veronika vorel (sound); with: chad raines (tommy/guitar), celina burgueño (young tommy), christina acosta (mrs. walker), austin durant (captain walker), luke robertson (uncle ernie), bix bettwy (cousin kevin), ken robinson (acid queen), liz wisan (sally simpson), nathan roberts (guitar), brian valencia (keyboard), adrienne rooney (bass), kevin adams (drums), jenna woods (french horn) / musical direction by nathan roberts / directed by mike donahue


“you’ll need to see it, so smash the mirror already… what’s important is that mike donahue and a frenzied cast… have set tough aesthetic goals—punk fury’s a lot harder to pull off credibly on stage than lush pop stylings—and succeeded beyond all hopes.”

-christopher arnott, new haven advocate (full story)

“the glory of mike donahue's summer cabaret at yale production of the who's tommy is… the placing of rock cred over theatricality”

-christopher arnott, new haven advocate (full story)

radio interview with lex leifheit from the art agenda