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Wanted: Pinball wizards

Posted by Jan Shepherd  May 10, 2013 02:03 PM

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By Jan Shepherd, Globe correspondent

All eyes will be on the silver ball in Thursday's (May 16) free “Pinballapalooza” in Toronto. Organized by the Stratford Festival to herald its new staging of “The Who’s Tommy,” the day-long event features an attempt to set a Guinness World Record when 100 pinball machines are played simultaneously at 12:40 p.m. Even if you’re not a pinball wizard, the 9 a.m.-6 p.m. celebration at First Canadian Place offers games, ticket deals at a pop-up box office, and performances by “Tommy” cast members. The rock opera about a boy who becomes a pinball wizard despite being blind, deaf and unable to speak is the largest musical ever staged by the Festival. Using 21st century technology to enhance the visual “bells and whistles,” the production is led by Des McAnuff who co-created the rock opera with The Who’s Pete Townshend and directed the Tony Award winning Broadway production 20 years ago. The musical is part of the Festival’s 61st season of diverse repertory presented on four stages in Stratford, a city 2 hours west of Toronto. Visit www. stratfordfestival.ca for information on tickets and performances of “Tommy” and other plays and musicals in the season that runs through Oct. 20. For information on May 16 event, visit www. stratfordfestival.ca/pinball.

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