AAMA executive vice president Pete Gustafson shared that he and wife Erin attended the opening premiere performance of The Who’s Tommy at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago on June 13; their daughter Haley is in the cast as Sally Simpson. This is the 30th anniversary revival of the Tony Award-winning play, a rock musical with music and lyrics by Pete Townshend.
In the Goodman Theatre lobby, there just so happens to be some old Stern games and one 1994 Data East pinball in particular – The Who’s Tommy Pinball Wizard.
Gustafson said the Tommy game was set to free play and there’s a contest going on through July 30 for the highest score on the game during the play’s theatrical run. The winner gets a Pete Townshend-signed custom Fender Stratocaster guitar. The pins were provided by Mark WIntczak of Midwest Gaming.
Not only did Gustafson gush about his daughter’s performance, but he strolled down memory lane with his connection to Data East. He just so happened to be working with the company when The Who’s Tommy Pinball Wizard was released. (He moved on to Sega when they bought the company and changed it to Sega Pinball.)
Back to Haley’s performance, Gustafson said: “Call me biased – guilty as charged – it was pretty stellar. It was surreal seeing Haley on that big stage. The choreography is exceptional. There are some really great moments of controlled, chaotic energy. Haley’s a mighty fit young lady and she’ll tell you, the dancing requires a level of stamina more suited for an Ironman competition.”
He also shared the plan is to take this 30th anniversary show on a multi-city national tour followed by a Broadway residency.
“Erin and I could not be prouder of what Haley has accomplished. I get goosebumps thinking this is just the start for her. World look out, a force of nature is about to explode on the scene… here she goes!”