Globe columnist Peter Grant finds out why Brazil went nuts over Tommy.

FROM Wirral to South America – now the rest of the world beckons

As exclusively revealed in the Globe, Wallasey-based producers Vesbim Media took their acclaimed production of The Who's rock opera Tommy to Brazil.

Now Alan Veste and Phil Bimpson the team behind the successful musical adaptation are looking to go further afield with their live show featuring Tommy in its entirety and some earlier Who classics.

Alan told the Globe: "Last August we were approached to go to South America to play six concerts in six different cities: Belo Horizonte, Porto Alegre, Curitiba, Florionopolis, Sao Paolo and Rio De Janerio."

This international opportunity came about when a friend went to see their sell-out show in New Brighton and recommended to a top promoter in Brazil that he should take them on.

That was all the incentive Vesbim needed.

They put together a package of promotional material, videos and photo stills.

Following months of 'hectic negotiations' the deal was done.

The Tommy crew set off on March 16 and landed in Sao Paulo a day later where they took another plane for the opening show in Belo Horizonte.

Says Alan: "We had been up for forty hours and then played our first gig that night.

"We only had two days off and continued on tour for ten days playing each night.

"We undertook thirteen flights in all during a tough and demanding schedule which was very well received".

Added Alan: "The packed-out gigs were amazing – audiences were incredibly welcoming and like us they enjoyed every minute.

"It was very tiring but we were treated to the best of hotels and hospitality.

"A fantastic crew working behind the scenes made everything move smoothly."

Vesbim were confident that their version of The Who's timeless concept about a deaf, dumb and blind pinball wizard would travel well.

Alan said: "The story of Tommy - written 50 years ago - still works today, especially with the rise of celebrities and what can be seen as worshipping false idols."

Plans are in motion for a tour which will include North America, Canada, Europe and Japan in 2020.

For now it's going to be a triumphant Tommy tour

playing across the UK starting off back at the Floral Pavilion next Saturday, August 17. Performance starts at 7pm.

Rock on ... Tommy.

Tickets from 0151 666 0000