With Green Day’s new album poised for release this October, we thought it’d be the perfect time to go and check out American Idiot at the Arts Theatre – and boy, was it a treat.
Green Day’s musical has returned to the Arts Theatre for a limited run until 25 September, starring singer-songwriter Newton Faulkner and X Factor star Amelia Lily in the leading roles of Johnny and Whatsername.
The musical is more than just a jukebox of Green Day songs; it pays homage to a generation of post-9/11 youngsters trying to find their way in a scary new world. On paper, punk rock and theatre seem worlds apart, but American Idiot offers a wonderful crossover to introduce either side of the coin to something they may have never heard or seen before.
Focusing on Johnny (Faulkner), the plot follows American teenagers in the immediate aftermath of the World Trade Center disaster and their struggle to come to terms with the changes that affected their worlds. Unlike most musicals, American Idiot does not shy away from the open depiction of teenage rebellion, drug abuse and war. The cast can’t be credited enough for nailing the heartbreak, anxiety and rage Billy Joe Armstrong’s words describe; as a music genre that is generally linked to not being taken seriously and the anarchy against the government and authority in general, punk music can easily be portrayed in a more sarcastic form. Not for American Idiot though. It lives every minute of every song with honesty and dedication.
With a backdrop of graffiti-stained walls and small apartment buildings, accompanied by a cast that couldn’t be better suited to play these roles, American Idiot is the perfect musical for lovers of Green Day and punk rock’s teenage anarchists.
It’s only here for another three weeks, so make sure you wake up before September ends and watch Green Day’s American Idiot.
You can buy your tickets at Ticketmaster.co.uk right now.