The HillBenders Present the Who’s “Tommy, a Bluegrass Opry”, Mar. 31 at the High Point Theatre
Band Faithfully Replicates Entire Score of The Who’s Classic Rock Opera from “Overture” to Final Medley of “We’re Not Gonna Take It – See Me, Feel Me” using Guitar, Banjo, Dobro, Mandolin & Bass
High Point, North Carolina – The HillBenders, a dynamic quintet of bluegrass whiz-kids based in Springfield, Missouri, has been winning fans coast to coast since the group’s formation in 2008. It was the band’s passion for pushing the boundaries of bluegrass, including elements of jazz, rock, Americana and blues in their work that appealed to producer and concert promoter Louis Jay Meyers as he envisioned bringing Peter Townsend’s original vision of Tommy to life in a new acoustic roots version. Now on tour performing The Who’s Tommy, A Bluegrass Opry, the HillBenders will make a special stop at the High Point Theatre on Friday evening, March 31, at 8:00 pm, to perform the original opera’s entire score of 23 classic songs.
The HillBenders consists of Mandolin player Nolan Lawrence, banjo player Mark Cassidy, cousins Jim Rea and Gary Rea who play guitar and bass respectively, along with Chad “Gravy Boat” Graves on Dobro. Besides virtuoso playing, all the members sing both harmony and lead, with 3- and 4-part harmony arrangements frequent in their songs. All five write and arrange music as well.
Through the years, The HillBenders have been regulars on the bluegrass festival circuit with appearances at Telluride Bluegrass Festival, RockyGrass, the Grey Fox Bluegrass Festival, Walnut Valley Festival, the International Bluegrass Music Association’s Fan Fest and many others. The quintet won the Telluride Bluegrass Band Competition in 2009, as well as first place in the National Single Microphone Championships. Releasing their debut album Down to My Last Dollar in 2010, followed by Can You Hear Me? in 2012, Tommy: A Bluegrass Opry was officially launched on May 10, 2015. “In just one hour on stage during this year’s SXSW, The HillBenders proved that Tommy: A Bluegrass Opry is going to be a major hit,” said Louis Jay Meyers, in his role as both co-founder of SXSW and producer of the album. “Being referred to as among the ‘best of’ in Rolling Stone, Billboard, and the News & Observer is quite an honor.”
“The HillBenders have successfully taken a rock classic, put a bluegrass spin to it, and created an exciting experience that will resonate with both classic rock enthusiasts and a whole new audience alike,” says High Point Theatre Director David Briggs. “You do not want to miss the opportunity to see a live performance of The Who’s Tommy, A Bluegrass Opry, up close and personal.” Tickets are $20-$25, available by calling the Theatre box office at (336) 887-3001 and online at www.highpointtheatre.com.
About High Point Theatre
Owned and operated by the City of High Point, the High Point Theatre is conveniently located within
the International Home Furnishings Center at the corner of Commerce Avenue and Hamilton Street
in High Point. The Theatre features an elegant 965-seat auditorium with continental style seating,
three exhibition galleries for meetings, displays, and receptions, and free parking.