Mar 30, 2010

Thoroughly Modern Musical

My preview of Green Day and Michael Mayer's American Idiot musical/opera/whatever is here. Shorter version: It comes as close, closer even than Tommy, as any Broadway musical has ever come to delivering on the long-unfulfilled promise of a true rock 'n' roll musical, one that both solidly rocks and makes a satisfying evening of theater; the Off-Broadway cabaret Hedwig and the Angry Inch is its only competitor. For what it's worth, I went into this story indifferent to Green Day and came out something of a fan; and while there are a few things to quibble with in Mayer's "libretto" and some of his bolder staging choices, I can report, based on a very early not-for-review performance, that this Idiot looks like a bull's-eye cast-wise, music-wise (great rockestrations by N2N's Tom Kitt), design-wise, and emotion-wise. It won't be for everyone, but it's one for the history books--a milestone for musical theater, and almost certainly a hit. UPDATE: Speaking of Hedwig...

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