According to the New York Times Green Day and the director of Broadway’s Spring Awakening are set to debut a musical based on the band’s 2004 punk epic American Idiot this autumn. “It doesn’t make a lot of sense,” frontman Billie Joe Armstrong told the NYT, “but that’s what I love about it. When people see it, it’s going to be my wildest dream.” The American Idiot musical will premiere September 4th at California’s Berkeley Repertory Theatre and run through October 11th.
Rock music has been an inspiration for Broadway-style musicals recently: U2 are working on music for a Spider-Man stage play, and Michael Jackson’s Thriller will hit Broadway as a full-on musical. It was perhaps the Tony Award-winning success of the rocking Spring Awakening — and the past triumphs of the Who’s Tommy musical — that opened the theatrical door for productions like an American Idiot musical. Green Day’s album inspired Spring Awakening director Michael Mayer during the making of his musical, and he and producer Tom Hulce approached the band about the possibility of a stage play.
According to the Times, the American Idiot musical was quietly workshopped twice in 2008 in New York City to work out the orchestration and choreography, with the band ultimately giving the production the thumbs up. As for the plot, Armstrong admits, “It’s not the most linear story in the world,” but American Idiot’s characters Jesus of Suburbia, St. Jimmy and Whatshername will likely be the main characters. While no plans are set, Mayer envisions the production will eventually come to Broadway.
The NYT article also mentions the Berkeley Repertory will also host an upcoming musical based on Matthew Sweet’s Girlfriend album. Green Day will release their new album 21st Century Breakdown on May 15th.