Pete's Site Announces Rock Hall of Fame Exhibit
pkeets at hotmail.com
Wed Mar 16 08:34:25 CST 2005
16 March 2005
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'Tommy' is the subject of a new year long exhibition at the Rock and Roll
Hall of Fame in Cleveland. Opening on April 7th the exhibition looks at the
conceptual work from it's very beginnings through to its latest stage
Pete has loaned the museum many of his previously unseen manuscripts, notes,
lyrics, original tape boxes (amongst other things) and has been suppotive of
the exhibition since it was first suggested two years ago.
As well as the exhibition the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is providing a full
supporting programme, including talks by Chris Stamp, Jeff Stein, Des
MacAnuff and Murray Lerner. The full details are contained in the following
press release by the Hall of Fame.
"TOMMY: The Amazing Journey" opens at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and
Rock Hall displays Pete Townshends never-before-seen archives of the Whos
concept album Tommy
CLEVELAND (March 16, 2005) The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum is
pleased to announce the new exhibit TOMMY: The Amazing Journey. The
exhibit will open on April 7, 2005 at the Cleveland music museum and will
remain until March 2006.
Tommy is one of the earliest and most important rock operas. The iconic rock
opera had many incarnations, including an album, movie, soundtrack, a
Broadway play as well as an orchestral version and a ballet interpretation.
Conceived and primarily written by Pete Townshend, the Whos critically
revered concept album, Tommy, was released in 1969.
March 18, 2005 marks the 30th anniversary of the motion pictures version of
Tommy, directed by Ken Russell.
When the album Tommy was released over 35 years ago, the media divided in
two distinctive groups. On one side, critics labeled it shattering and
remarkable. On the other side, some media viewed the work as exploitative.
The story of Tommy is one of a handicapped child who is exploited and abused
by family members and others and goes on to become a spiritual leader. This
is an area that no pop album had dared to tread before Tommy.
The controversy of Tommy led to the album being banned by the BBC and
various radio stations, an act that did little to hurt its sales.
Richard Barnes wrote in the liner notes of the 1993 Tommy reissue, Its
story covers murder, trauma, bullying, child molestation, sex, drugs,
illusion, delusion, altered consciousness, spiritual awakening, religion,
charlatanism, success, superstardom, faith, betrayal, rejection, and
While Townshend did not intend for Tommy to be autobiographical, he has said
that in 1991 -- when the Broadway show was released -- he realized it indeed
The album chronicles the story of a boy who becomes deaf, dumb and blind
after witnessing the murder of his father. Through his mastery of pinball,
he is cured, elevated to prophet status and then turned on by his followers.
Without his major senses, Tommy is left to feel everything through rhythms
This examination of spirituality and self was a massive success and hit
Number 4 on the U.S. album charts. The Whos subsequent tour included a full
performance of Tommy at each show. Ultimately, the barrier-shattering piece
was performed at several major opera houses, including New Yorks
Metropolitan Opera House.
In 1975, director Ken Russell released his film version of Tommy, starring
the Who, Ann-Margaret, Oliver Reed, and Jack Nicholson. The film also
featured appearances by Eric Clapton, Tina Turner and Elton John. A Broadway
musical version debuted in 1992.
The Who are one of the great bands in rock and roll history, and Tommy is
one of their greatest works, said Jim Henke, the Museum's vice president of
exhibitions and curatorial affairs. We have worked closely with Pete
Townshend, who created Tommy, and the result is a comprehensive look at the
first rock opera.
The exhibition features Townshends handwritten manuscripts and production
notes as well as costumes, instruments, posters and other artifacts from the
numerous incarnations of Tommy.
Artifacts in the exhibit include:
Track Listing and Conceptual Notes, 1968 This handwritten manuscript
reveals Pete Townshend's evolving concept of the opera.
"Tommy Can You Hear Me/Go To the Mirror" handwritten lyrics, 1968
UK Tour Concert Program, 1970
Roger Daltrey Suit from Ken Russell Tommy film, 1974
Fillmore East Program, 1969
Ticket and brochure from Woodstock
Program from Theatre de Champs D'Elysses, a European opera house where the
Who performed Tommy.
A typed letter from Pete Townshend to the fan club, Fall 1969
Posters for both Isle of Wight concerts, 1969 and 1970
Letter from Pete Townshend to Ken Russell with detailed casting proposals
for the movie
Posters from 5 different countries for the movie
Poster for the Who, James Gang and James Taylor performance at Public
Hall, Cleveland, 1970
Exhibit opening party details: There will be a special members night on
April 7 to mark the opening of the exhibit. Doors for the event will open at
6:30pm and at 7:00pm there will be a Curator panel discussion in the Fourth
Floor Theater. Members and guests will then be able to tour the new exhibit.
All exhibits will be open and there will be a cash bar and light hors
d'oeuvres. To make a reservation, please call 216.515.8427.
Related Programs at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum: In addition,
the Museums has planned education programs in conjunction with the exhibit.
All programs will take place in the Museums Fourth Floor Theater.
April 13, 7:00 p.m.: An Evening with Des McAnuff Tickets are $5 and go on
sale Monday, March 21 Director and co-writer of the Broadway version of
Tommy comes to the Museum to discuss the staging of the legendary rock
opera. (more bio to come)
April 27, 7:00 p.m.: Rock and Roll Night School with general Who content
This event is FREE and open to the public The Edge of the Invasion: The Who
Blow Things Up The Rock and Roll Night School returns to the Rock Hall in
style with a class looking at the life and music of one of the greatest rock
and roll bands of all time, The Who. This Class will explore The Whos early
singles career until 1969 (when they released the Rock Opera Tommy) and
their role in the British invasion. Rising out of the British Mod culture
in 1965 their early maximum R&B sound yielded such hit singles as My
Generation and Cant Explain. In 1967 they turned their attention to a
more psychedelic sound in the hit I Can See for Miles. Jason Hanley,
musicologist and Education Programs Manager at the Rock and Roll Hall of
Fame and Museum, leads the classes, which are geared towards adults
interested in gaining more knowledge about rock and roll history.
May 4, 7:00 p.m.: Director Murray Lerner Tickets are $5 and go on sale
Monday, March 21 Murray Lerner is perhaps best known as a multi-faceted
filmmaker, having won an Oscar for his feature length documentary, From Mao
to Mozart: Isaac Stern in China and created a fundamental breakthrough in
the creative use of 3-D with Magic Journeys for the Kodak Pavilion at
EPCOT, still considered the best 3-D film ever made. He trained himself to
become proficient in all aspects of filmmaking, believing that it should be
a unified art. Thus, he has written, directed and photographed, as well as
edited, many of his films. He is a Class A Director of Photography and a
member of both the Directors and Writers Guild of America.
May 11, 7:00 p.m.: Rock journalist and author Dave Marsh Tickets are $5
and go on sale Monday, March 21 Dave Marsh, rock critic, historian,
anticensorship activist, talk show host, and Louie Louie expert, has
written more than 20 books about rock and popular music, as well as editing
that many more. He co-founded Creem, the legendary Motor City rock and roll
magazine that helped launch heavy metal, glam and punk, among other styles,
and spent five years as an associate and contributing editor of Rolling
Stone, where he was chief music critic, columnist and feature writer. From
1985-2002, he served as monthly music critic for Playboy. He has lectured
widely on music, politics, and censorship. In 1983 Marsh published Before I
Get Old: The Story of the Who. Written at the request of Pete Townshend and
endorsed by the rest of the band, this in-depth history of the Who took
author Dave Marsh three years to research and write. Complete with
photographs, it covers the groups origins and meteoric rise to fame,
reveals inside information on the personalities and lives of the band
members, and documents the relationships, drugs, destruction, money, and
mayhem behind the music of this legendary rock band.
May 18, 7:00 p.m.: An Evening with Chris Stamp Tickets are $5 and go on
sale Monday, March 21 In the early 1960s, Chris Stamp and Kit Lambert, his
future business partner, developed the concept of finding a rock group,
becoming their managers, record their music, guide their songwriting and
turn them into a success while filming the entire process. The team
eventually found a group called the High Numbers who soon became the Who.
Stamp created Track Records for the Who to record on (as well as Jimi
Hendrix, Arthur Brown, Speedy Keane, Marc Bolan and others) and has
continued to work on Who-related projects, including executive producing Ken
Russells film version of Tommy. After going through rehab in 1987, Stamp
decided he wanted to help others so he became a psychodrama and experiential
therapist. He is a CASAC (Credentialed Alcoholism and Substance Abuse
Counselor), a Certified Experimental Therapist and an Auricular Acupuncture
Detox Specialist. He is a consultant in Manhattan and is in private practice
in East Hampton, NY. He is currently working on the documentary film The
Stamp & Lambert Story.
May 25, 7:00 p.m.: special Tommy Rock and Roll Night School This event is
FREE and open to the public Tommy and Rock Opera: A Genre Emerges Rock and
Roll Night School continues its exploration of The Who by looking at their
pop music innovation, the Rock Opera. With the release of Tommy in 1969, and
Quadrophenia in 1973, The Who developed the idea of a concept album into a
full stage show in which each song played an integral part. This class will
examine the genre of the Rock Opera by focusing on Tommy and looking at the
new Rock and Roll Hall of Fame exhibit The Whos Tommy: The Amazing Journey.
Jason Hanley, musicologist and Education Programs Manager at the Rock and
Roll Hall of Fame and Museum, leads the classes, which are geared towards
adults interested in gaining more knowledge about rock and roll history.
June 1, 7:00 p.m.: An Evening with Jeff Stein Tickets are $5 and go on
sale Monday, March 21 At fifteen, New Yorker Jeff Stein hit the road with
the legendary British rock group the Who. He toured the United States and
Europe witnessing the band's unique blend of musical mayhem, riotous stage
performances with frenzied finales of explosions, smashed guitars, toppled
amplifier cabinets and splintered drum kits. He survived the trashing of
hotel rooms and the death-defying pranks of notorious drummer, Keith Moon,
sometimes fleeing one step ahead of local law enforcement from Malibu to
Germany. Before he was out of his teens, Stein was turning this baptism of
fire into the cult classic, The Kids Are Alright, a tragic-comic chronicle
of the Who's odyssey of rock and roll death and glory. Stein turned his two
obsessions, rock and roll and film-making, into a pioneering career in music
videos. His first video was Billy Idol's Rebel Yell. His second, the Cars
You Might Think won MTV's first Video of the Year Award, as well as dozens
of other honors worldwide. The clip had the distinction of being added to
the Permanent Collection of the Museum of Modern Art. The following year,
his video for Tom Petty's Dont Come Round Here No More, featuring a
controversial version of the Mad Hatter's Tea Party, won MTV's Special EFX
Award, as well as Best Video at the International Video Awards in London.
Stein has continued to conceptualize and direct music videos, television
specials and commercials, documenting musical luminaries from Little Richard
to Bruce Springsteen. A 25th Anniversary Edition of The Kids Are Alright
was released in the fall of 2003. The first week of release, it debuted at
No. 1 on the music DVD charts in England and ranked number 2 in U.S. music
DVD sales. The film was honored that October with three special sold-out
screenings of the rejuvenated 5.1 version at the New York Film Festival in
Lincoln Center. In August of 2004, The Kids Are Alright won Best Music DVD
at the 7TH ANNUAL DVD AWARDS sponsored by IRMA and the CMP. In November of
2004, Stein teamed up with video visionary, Anne-Marie Mackay, to form the
Lab, where they continue to create music-driven entertainment for the
brightest lights of the New Millennium.
About the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum The Rock and Roll Hall of
Fame and Museum exists to educate its visitors, fans and scholars from
around the world about the history and significance of rock and roll music.
The Museum carries out this mission through its efforts to collect,
preserve, exhibit and interpret this art form.
The Museum is open seven days a week from 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. On
Wednesdays the Museum is open until 9:00 p.m. Museum admission is $20.00 for
adults, $14.00 for seniors (60+), $11 for children (9-12) and children under
8 and Museum members are free.
More information about the TheWho