October 21, 2020

1973-04-02 – The Sydney Morning Herald

1973 04 02 The_Sydney_Morning_Herald_Mon__Apr_2__1973_

AN ELABORATE ‘TOMMY’ '

THE production last night
of “Tommy" was certainly
the most elaborate rock
concert staged in Sydney.

The so—called rock opera
attracted about 15.000 to
the Randwick Racecourse
following the only other
performanc. in Melbourne
on Saturday.

Standing hy the race-
track was a huge set. done
out as a stylish pinball
machine.

Nine screens for slides
and light effects were set
in the stage seaflolding.

ducted by David Measham.
from London.

Then. in full costume.
came two English singers
and 10 of Australia's top
artists. It should have been
good.

But. despite the richness
of the production. which
was based on an English
version. “Tommy" was
only a moderate success. It
was worth the exercise. but
it was not the year's high-
light.

Despite the lavishness.
the lightshow was pedes-

Spread before the hack- trian. The orchestra seem-

drop was a vast symphony
orchestra and a chonr con-

ed under~rehearsed and

its sound was thin.

Only the singers tifted
the opera to occasional
peaks. Doug Parkinson.
Ross Wilson and Colleen
Hewett brought strong.
stylish voices to their parts.

Wendy Saddington and
Keith Moon of The Who
had such short roles that
they never had a chance.

The rock orera as re-
corded by The Who is bril-
liant. Composer Pete
Townshend is a genius.

But. in transposing the
music from rock group to
orchestra and turning the
work into a stage perfor-
mance. the excitement was
lost.-——.Iichae| Symons.

M ‘