Yusuf - aka Cat Stevens - describes his new musical Moonshadow as an epic new fable based in part on his own life journey.
The singer-songwriter of such worldwide hits as Father and Son and Morning Has Broken has written seven new songs for the show, which makes its world premiere in Melbourne tonight.
The score comprises these and Yusuf's catalogue of classics including Wild World and Moonshadow.
Yusuf said it took him 10 years to bring Moonshadow to the stage, but writing a musical had been a dream for more than 40 years, hatched during his childhood spent in London's West End.
"I was surrounded by theatres," Yusuf told reporters yesterday.
"My first great ambition was to be a composer of musicals.
"So Gershwin, Rogers and Hammerstein, Bernstein, they were my idols before the Beatles."
The world he has created is inspired by his personal odyssey, which includes a conversion to Islam in 1977.
"It's a little bit to do with my journey but at the same time it's also based on some of the early ideas I had about (father of Buddhism) Siddhartha, The Alchemist, but many things to do with the odyssey; the journey outward and the journey home," Yusuf said.
"In a way the musical has a very important message about family as well.
"One of the big statements in the musical is when everything else in the world is broken the first place to fix is the home."
Visually, the night-time land of Alayila has a Brothers Grimm fairytale quality with touches of Ottoman-inspired exoticism and steampunk modernity.
Gareth Keegan, who plays the principal role of Stormy, described it as "Aladdin-ish, Tim Burton-ish, Medieval-ish".
The story follows Stormy in a quest to discover the world beyond his home of Alayila and the endless night that engulfs it.
Magical scenes are created using multimedia.
Yusuf's world has been brought to life by designers layering projections over traditional sets.
"It is a new fable. It's an epic," Yusuf said.
"This is quite original."
Moonshadow opens in Melbourne on Friday.