By Jack Greenwood
“21 Guns,” “Wake me up when September Ends,” “Holiday,” are just some of the legendary Green Day songs incorporated into the stage musical, “American Idiot”, which will round out a strong year for Hutchinson Community College’s theatre department.
The musical follows the self proclaimed “Jesus of Suburbia,” Johnny, in his quest to escape the suburban life, with his two buddies, Will and Tunny. However, after leaving the city, Johnny finds himself in a passionate affair with a rebellious woman only known in the show as ‘Whatsername’.
Shortly after, Johnny conjures up a troubling alter ego in St. Jimmy, who encourages drug use and damages Johnny’s relationship.
The musical uses music from two of Green Day’s albums: “American Idiot” and “21st Century Breakdown”. It debuted on Broadway in 2009 and was nominated for three Tony awards, including Best Musical. Throughout its original run, lead singer of Green Day, Billie Joe Armstrong, would play the character St. Jimmy.
The show contains sensitive material including drugs, military propaganda and sex, among others. The cast didn’t hesitate to take on these subjects and prepared to do the story justice.
The show is high energy and physically demanding. At times, the cast sings while performing extreme choreography. To prepare, the cast did cardio and endurance workouts for part of their rehearsals.
The musical finishes out an impressive year for HutchCC theatre, with previous successful productions in September and November with “Gruesome Playground Injuries” and “The Importance of Being Earnest”.
The show runs April 12-14 at Stringer Fine Arts Center, starting at 7:30 p.m. Students and faculty can get in free with an ID but are advised to reserve tickets ahead of time.