McNally Smith College of Music Presents the REGIONAL PREMIERE of GREEN DAY’S AMERICAN IDIOT!

Can you hear the sound of hysteria? The students in McNally Smith College of Music Theater Ensemble sure can. Coming this November 6th, 7th, and 8th, the students will be presenting the Regional premiere of Green Day’s American Idiot at the History Theatre.

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MSCM Theater is performing this rock opera because they feel they can authentically depict the roles and characters in this show with the students who attend MSCM. They also love the idea of doing this show with young musicians that are wanting the world to listen and pay attention and really ARE the characters in this show. With an added plus there is a Minnesota connection with Green Day and punk music.

The story of youth not being heard is always going to be happening. This show reminds us of the musical Hair; Political unrest, drugs, youth trying to get their voices heard, wanting to change the world, desperation. It is certainly set in a different time in our country for young people but there is so much resonating with the wars, impending elections, debates, and trying to decide what kind of American you are and what kind of America this should be. Do you feel the same way? Or are you an American Idiot? They want to bring to light what they feel should be important to their generation and display their frustration in their apathy with the connection of the stage.

The students at McNally Smith are trained to perform this type of music. They have an authentic edgy punk/rock sound. They can belt it or play instrumentally with a controlled edge that the classic music and theater training programs can’t do. They are unique in that they do not have a theater department, these students are not theater majors or minors. For actors this ensemble is a 2 credit course and 1 credit for the pit band but they don’t care they just love to play together and love the community they build through these projects. For this show they have an eclectic group of students ranging from recording students, business students, instrumental majors, and vocal majors, all on the stage performing together because they LOVE Green Day, they LOVE performing in shows and they have something to say. Honest young people telling their story in their own authentic voices.

The most challenging part for the students has been the development of their characters because the characters stem from something so close to who they really are at the core. The choices the characters make may not be what a trained actor would do, but the raw honesty portrayed will ring true to the people who come to see the show. It is not a story line driven musical so they have had to create a majority of their relationship to the other characters in the show.

Director Erin Schwab says, “My focus is, and will always be, to tell a great story with a show. Every show, every song, every step has to mean something honest to the actors and musicians. What we lack in lavishly designed and built sets and years of training as actors, doesn’t matter to the audience. The audience just wants to hear a great story and root for the characters to win.”

McNally Smith Theater Ensemble cast and crew would also love for Billie Joe Armstrong and his beautiful wife to come see the show.