Broadway's rock whisperer Lorin Latarro gives the Who and Huey Lewis fly (Part-1).

New York — Broadway revives “The Who’s Tommy,” the classic rock musical. A new Huey Lewis and the News rock performance is a few blocks away. Lorin Latarro, a sought-after choreographer noted for her rock fluency, links them.  

“When you try and be literal with rock ‘n’ roll music, you’re in trouble because the beauty of rock “n” roll lyrics is metaphor,” she explains. I think dance is metaphorical. Dance and rock become excellent friends.”  

The love and admiration of a former ensemble member inspired Latarro's strong, fluid, and modern dancing style, which includes twirling and flipping one of the child actors playing Tommy like pizza dough. I love dancers. I think dancers are remarkable people and artists who do it because they like flying and dancing, she says. “They're not doing it for money or fame.”  

Latarro excels with rockers. She has helped Trey Anastasio and Sara Bareilles reach Broadway success, cast Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong and Melissa Etheridge in "American Idiot," and shaped Lewis and Pete Townshend's plays this season. A new musical with Train is next.  

“Probably other than maybe Twyla Tharp, she's the most articulate choreographer I've ever come across,” says Tony-winning “The Who's Tommy” director Des McAnuff, who first worked with Latarro in a 2009 renewal of “Guys and Doll He describes her as highly collaborative and transparent.  

She wants input and feedback. In the room, we switch like tag team wrestlers. You can raise your hand, so I can't say enough about her.” Latarro utilizes the ensemble to move sets, drag and carry the adult Tommy, menace the pinball wizard, and whirl the silent and blind child Tommys in "Tommy."  

Des said, ‘I think you’re expecting too much of these kids.’ It’s funny. I said, "I have a 6-year-old." Last time you seen a 6-year-old? They can accomplish everything.”  

Time Out dubbed her the musical's "most valuable player," saying she makes it a dance show and “Latarro comes through with remarkable numbers — the Broadway season's best choreography to date.”  

stay turned for development