REVIEW: American Idiot @ The Palace, Manchester

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Fans of the US post-punk band, Green Day will not be disappointed by this gloriously bleak and raucous rock opera based on their best selling concept album.

Prepare to embark on a doom-laden journey through the experiences of three men attempting to escape from their humdrum lives.

Brilliantly brought to the stage in production bursting with energy and youthful outrage, American Idiot tells the story of three boyhood friends, each searching for meaning in a post 9/11 world. 

With themes that are still relevant and current the show delivers a searing commentary on the hypocrisy of an American establishment and the frustration and anger of male youth.

It is easy to see why the show was the winner of two Tony Awards and the 2010 Grammy Award winner for Best Musical Show Album.

The show features the music of Green Day with the lyrics of its lead singer Billie Joe Armstrong and book by Billie Joe Armstrong and Michael Mayer.

A strong cast did justice to Green Day’s poignant and effective music with lyrics by Green Day lead singer, Billie Joe Armstrong. Matt Thorpe impressed as Johnny and Tunny and Theo were also ably portrayed by Cellen Chugg Jones and Lawrence Libor.

American Idiot The Musical - UK Tour - Amelia Lily (Whatsername) & Lucus Rush (St. Jimmy) - Photo by Darren BellI struggle to see how former X-Factor hopeful Amelia Lily’s contribution as Whatsername warranted such star billing, although it has to be said that what she did do in the show was excellent. The girl can certainly sing.

With innovative use of props and TVs, together with some imaginative choreography the show kept the audience hooked and lapping it up.

But it was undoubtedly the those modern classic songs which were the stars of the show – Boulevard of Broken Dreams, 21 Guns, and the moving  Wake Me Up When September Ends standing out.

Well worth a visit.

Runs till Saturday April 9

Dave Toomer

 

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