Pete Townshend’s Classic Quadrophenia show is headed to the intimate Rosemont Theatre near Chicago on Sept. 13. Earlier this year, Townshend announced the limited string of dates for his U.S. Classic Quadrophenia tour and most recently added the stop with a notable addition. Playing with Townshend, Billy Idol, Alfie Boe, and a 100-piece orchestra will be Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder.
The Pearl Jam frontman has worked with Townshend on various charitable events throughout the years and the two are rejoining in September to benefit Teen Cancer America.
“Eddie is literally flying in to do the show and then going back because he is on tour himself,” said Mary Beth Carlin, who is helping to coordinate the event. “I think that just shows the dedication.”
Carlin, who has been coordinating charitable events with Townshend since 1997, added “Pete is focusing on Teen Cancer America because he has seen what good Teen Cancer Trust in the UK has done and it is the same situation in America. Teenagers get cancer and they fall in this crack of going to the pediatrics ward or the adult ward. If you’re a 16 year-old and all the iPads have Barney on them, you notice that the centers are geared towards the kids. Environment is everything when you are healing.”
This will be the second time Townshend and Vedder have performed Classic Quadrophenia at the Rosemont, which donates the theater for the one-off charitable event. All of the major performers for the event also donating their time. All proceeds will go to Teen Cancer America.
“Rosemont Theatre is donating the entire venue for, not only the show, but for rehearsal,” Carlin explained. “They have been really supportive making all of the revenue go to Teen Cancer.”
Each stop on the Classic Quadrophenia tour features a local orchestra performing with the cast of the rock opera. For Chicago, in addition to the 100-piece orchestra being led by Rachel Fuller, the Chicago Children’s Choir will also take the stage. Carlin explained that featuring the Children’s Choir resonated with her and Townshend since kids of similar ages would be performing to benefit teens struggling with cancer.
Rosemont Theatre Executive Director Pat Nagle told Amplify the venue was more than happy to work with Townshend again after their first successful partnership in 2014. The first Classic Quadrophenia show at Rosemont featured Townshend, Vedder, and Joan Jett who was opening for The Who at the time.
“The theater being a small place, it’s a really cool place to see those entertainers that up close and personal,” Nagle said. “It’s a fun, one-off show.”
The Who’s historic rock opera “Quadrophenia” was originally released as an extensive double album in 1973 and has stood the test of time as a conceptual work honoring the Mod movement. The album, later turned into a feature film and theatrical production, follows an angst-ridden teenager in London who creates a new life for himself as a member of the Mods.
For tickets to the Chicago performance of Classic Quadrophenia head to Rosemont.com.
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