Who I Am (Rock Operas)

by Pete Townshend
You write a book and then you talk about it. You talk about how you wrote it, why you wrote it, and if it was easy, hard or boring to complete. You demystify the intentional gags and ironies because they scream out on the page for elucidation, but you further mystify the unintentional betrayals and disloyalties to friends, family and old lovers.

As a performer, in front of an audience, I operate very differently from the way I do sitting here writing. I am myself, there is no act, but I am a different self, one that I only meet when I walk onto a stage or into a television studio. I have no fear. No nervousness. It isn’t confidence, but fatalism. There is no control. Why worry? This is not what I’m like most of the time. Like everyone else in the world, I worry about health, money, sex, politics and the people in my neighborhood who seem to be struggling so hard today. On the stage, none of this is forgotten, but it becomes collateral to be freely used.

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