The Who's Tommy Character Breakdown

Character Descriptions

TOMMY/NARRATOR
This is the oldest version of the young boy stricken deaf, dumb, and blind after a childhood trauma. Tommy discovers that he is a natural master of pinball, and later becomes a cult-like hero figure to masses enthralled by his story. Captain Walker and Mrs. Walker's son. His journey back to normalcy and his reconciliation with his family is the engine of the show. This role calls for a nimble and athletic mover, with a strong lead Rock/R+B voice.
Gender: Male
Stage Age: Starts 18 – Finishes 24
Range: B4 - Db3

MRS. WALKER
She is Tommy's mother and Captain Walker's wife. A woman filled with life, a life that has then made her a weary middle-class woman. Mrs. Walker is tired and frustrated from trying to care for and cure Tommy.
Gender: female
Stage Age: Starts 17 - Finishes 39
Range: D6 - G3

CAPTAIN WALKER
He is father to Tommy and husband to Mrs. Walker. His life becomes one of lingering guilt. Presumed dead, he kills his wife's lover in a confrontation after coming back from a POW camp, resulting in Tommy's trauma-induced blindness, deafness, and dumbness.
Gender: male
Stage Age: Starts 25 - Finishes 47
Range: C#5 - F3

UNCLE ERNIE
A complicated and self-destructive bachelor prone to excessive drink. An inebriated Ernie molests 10 year-old Tommy and later sells merchandise seeking to profit from Tommy's popularity. Mr. Walker's older brother and Tommy's uncle. His journey from a caring brother and brother-in-law, through a spiral of self-destructive behavior, to a life of sobriety and regret, is his story. He is a very real person, not a caricature. The actor who portrays him will have to walk a fine line.
Gender: male
Stage Age: Starts 28 - Finishes 51
Range: Bb4 - G2

COUSIN KEVIN
A bully filled with bravado and bad attitude. He is the leader of the local pack. Torments his cousin, Tommy, when they're young and later seizes the opportunity to profit from Tommy's success, and enjoy the glory by association. This role calls for an energetic dancer, with a strong lead Rock/R+B voice.
Gender: male
Stage Age: Starts 16 - Finishes 29
Range: B4 - Ab2


We are looking for an 18 member ensemble consisting of:
6 men (Stage Age: 17-30)
6 women (Stage Age: 17-30)
3 men (Stage Age: 30-55)
3 women (Stage Age: 30-55)


These ensemble members will fill the roles of Nurses, Officers, Harlots, Thugs, the Church Choir, as well as those specified below:


YOUNG ENSEMBLE (LADS & LASSES)
This ensemble is currently envisioned as being 6 males and 6 females. As a singing and dancing unit in their Lads and Lasses roles they will perform in “Tommy, Can You Hear Me”, “Sensation”, and “Pinball Wizard”. This group will also make up Tommy’s Guards and Tommy’s Dancers.
Stage Age: 16-35


MATURE ENSEMBLE
These are the Grown-Ups in the show. This ensemble is currently envisioned as being 3 males and 3 females. This busy group is seen as covering singing parts such as The Minister, The Minister’s Wife, Kevin’s Father, Kevin’s Mother, The Specialist, The Specialist’s Assistant, Mr. Simpson, and Mrs. Simpson.
Stage Age: 30-55
Most of the ensemble will be featured at some point in the production.Some of the roles that some ensemble members will play include:


The GYPSY aka The ACID QUEEN
A brazen drug addict and prostitute. Tommy's Father brings him to the Gypsy in desperation, seeking any unusual cure. This role calls for a sinuous dancer, with a glorious R+B voice. A true tour du force performance, however she will also participate in other numbers as an ensemble member.
Gender: female
Stage Age Range: 25 to 35
Range: G5 - G3

SALLY SIMPSON
Sally is a classic example of a Mod circa 1963. She is a big fan of Tommy and wants to meet and get close to him. This role calls for a mover. She will take a stage fall into the arms of the guards, and take a beating. She has solo vocal parts that call for both a Rock Belt and tender Pop longing.
Gender: female
Stage Age Range: 17 to 21
Range: D5 - F3

The HAWKER
The Gypsy’s pimp and drug supplier She sings, along with the Harmonica Player, the Sonny Boy Williamson’s song “Eyesight To The Blind.” This is Maximum R+B in the Who style.
Gender: female
Range: A4 - A3

The HARMONICA PLAYER
The Hawker’s side-kick and someone who can blow a mean blues harp. The Player joins in with the Hawker on “Eyesight To The Blind”. We are hopeful that the harmonica playing will come from the actor, not the stage band.
Range: B4 - B3
Stage Age Range: n/a

The SPECIALIST & ASSISTANT
These roles call for people the Walkers would look up to due to their demeanor and learned knowledge. They sing the number “Go To The Mirror, Boy”
Stage Age Range: 35 to 55
Range: F#4 - G#3

The LOVER
He is the new man in Mrs. Walker’s presumed war widowed life. He does not take the arrival of Captain Walker well. He responds with violence toward Mr. and Mrs. Walker
Gender: male
Stage Age Range: 25 to 35
Range: Ab4 - G3