Richard Petit was eight years old when his brother brought home a record of Pink Floyd’s The Wall.
The needle hit the record and the rest was history — Petit was hooked.
Then, at 14, the story of the iconic rock opera album came to life for Petit when he saw “Pink Floyd — The Wall” movie for the first time.
Now, at 46 years old, his passion for Pink Floyd has never wavered — a passion he’s bringing to Montclair’s Wellmont Theater with his production of the “The Wall Live Extravaganza” on February 27.
“The Wall Live Extravaganza” is for the ultimate Pink Floyd fan as it combines the storyline of the movie with portions of singer Roger Waters’ historic concert in Berlin, and other legendary concerts, to create a stunning tribute performance.
“People will see something that is totally different from anything they’ve seen about Pink Floyd,” Petit said. “We’re not just another tribute or cover band, we’re not trying to be Pink Floyd.”
Instead, the extravaganza aims to bring every aspect of the movie alive through an epic musical performance that doubles each musician as a character, including two singers who play the different personalities of the character Pink.
“We went all in on every aspect… microscopic details, because all of our fans are diehard fans and they know everything about the music,” Petit said, noting that each song is played exactly as it was written.
“We have to be at our best every night and there’s not a second where we can be off. The job is to do it perfectly,” he said.
Petit even went so far as to secure a version of the Mickey Mouse watch that Pink wears in the film for the performer’s costume.
While no artistic creativity is taken with the songs, the production itself is a work of art, featuring tons of LED lights, costumes and props during the two and half hour show.
“I think that what’s made the success of the show, that it is very authentic and artistic,” Petit said. “We do an interpretation, we can be creative and make art by redesigning something that has existed, while still respecting every aspect of it.”
But for Petit, who also plays guitar and sings in the concert, it’s the emotional response from the audience that lets him know each performance was a job well done.
“I think we did something right because every night we play, after some song, we see the emotion in [people’s] faces. We put them somewhere in themselves that make them feel strong emotions — they remember their first car or their first kiss, the summer of their 16th birthday… when you touch the audience at the point where you see them crying, the job’s done. I think that’s our goal to achieve that every night.”
The show will take place on Wednesday, Feb. 27 at 8 p.m. at the Wellmont Theater on 5 Seymour Street in Montclair. Doors open at 7 p.m.
For more information or to buy tickets, visit https://wellmonttheater.com/shows/the-wall-theatrical-extravaganza/.