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Read: American Idiot will rock your world

Seeing a character shooting up on a filthy toilet is not something you tend to associate with musical theatre, but it happened in American Idiot and it’s a stark moment of theatre I am unlikely to forget. 

I hope that image doesn’t put you off the show because for pure entertainment, American Idiot is pretty hard to beat. It’s raw, energetic and surprisingly emotional.

The story concerns three disenchanted young men wasting their lives and taking drugs in a small American town. Each of them eventually leaves the town  – one goes into the army, another gets his girlfriend pregnant, and the lead Johnny descends into a drug filled abyss. 

The show is suffused with the music of Green Day and is the bands reaction to their own desire to reshape themselves and to reflect the chaos of early 21st Century America. This was the age of George W Bush, 9/11 and the subsequent horror that unfolded in the Middle East. 

As someone who only knows one or two of Green Day’s songs, American Idiot was something of an enigma, but what unfolded was a brilliantly orchestrated set of songs performed by an incredible cast and a story that was full of pathos, anger, hopelessness, excitement and joy. 

Even if you aren’t a Green Day aficionado, you are bound to recognise some of their hits Wake Me Up When September Ends, Boulevard of Broken Dreams, Holiday, and of course American Idiot.

This is a different kind of musical, it’s a superbly crafted blend of punk, rock and even soft ballads and it is incredibly exhilarating to watch. 

If like me, you have a wide taste in musical genres American Idiot will give you a shot of adrenaline, make you think about the world, and well and truly rock your world.

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