Why Joe may get chance to play a mean pinball...

Joe McElderry is ready to rock Blackpool Opera House
Joe McElderry is ready to rock Blackpool Opera House
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Pop, theatre and reality TV star Joe McElderry is planning to see the sights, when he comes to Blackpool later this year.

The X Factor winner, turned stage star, is heading the cast of a new production of The Who’s rock opera musical Tommy at the Opera House in September.

He will play the title role at the Winter Gardens theatre from Friday, September 11 to Saturday, September 26.

Joe said: “I can’t wait to be back in Blackpool,” said Joe. “The audiences are always so supportive and I always have so much fun on stage there.

“Tommy is a fantastic show to be part of and to be staging the premiere of this new production in Blackpool is a great opportunity.”

Joe has performed in Blackpool before, at the Grand last May and for a Christmas lights switch on.

Since winning the 2009 X Factor, South Shields-born Joe’s gone on to also win Popstar To Operastar on ITV and The Jump on Channel 4.

The new staging of Tommy will see him return to the rock opera’s title role after a special one-off performance in 2012.

Joe will follow in the footsteps of The Who’s own frontman Roger Daltrey, who played the role in the 1975 film – which marks its 40th anniversary this year.

“I’m really looking forward to performing at the Opera House and to being involved in bringing such an iconic show to the town,” Joe said.

“It will also be great to be in Blackpool for a couple of weeks with the show rather than just nipping in and out so I’m hoping to get to see some of the sights when I’m there.”

Tommy was adapted for the stage from a chart-topping album, first performed by The Who in 1968, which told the story of a ‘deaf, dumb and blind kid’ who became an international messiah due to his pinball prowess. It was conceived by Pete Townsend and Kit Lambert with contributions by John Entwistle, Keith Moon and Roger Daltrey.

The production will be directed by stage and screen star Paul Nicholas, who appeared in the original movie as the wicked Cousin Kevin.

Visit www.wintergardensblackpool.co.uk for tickets.

* See tomorrow’s The Diary for Anna Cryer’s interview with Alfie Boe as he, too, takes on one of The Who’s masterpieces – Quadrophenia.