GREEN DAY'S AMERICAN IDIOT
Music by Green Day
Lyrics by Billy Joe Armstrong
Book by Billie Joe Armstrong and Michael Mayer
Lakeside Community Theatre
Director: Benjamin Keegan Arnold
Asst. Director/Choreographer: Christina Kudlicki Hoth
Musical Director: Bryce Biffle
Stage Manager: Patrick Peachee
Asst. Stage Manager: Kyley Sanchez
Intimacy Choreography: Mandy Rausch
Asst. Intimacy Choreography: Emily Leekha
Costume Design: Logan Coley Broker
Prop Design: Katlyn Snader
Asst. Prop Design: Aaron Schultz
Set, Light & Sound Design: Benjamin Keegan Arnold
Light Board Op: Lindy Englander
Sound Board Op: Aaron Schultz
Johnny: Gideon Ethridge
Will: Campbell Boviard
Tunny: Sienna Riehle
Heather: Brittany Brown
Whatshername: Kirsten Amerongen
St. Jimmy: Jayden Russell
Extraordinary Girl: Mallory Pelletier
Alysha: Samantha Kirchdorfer
Andres: Michael Christian
Ben/Rock n’ Roll Boyfriend: Travis Carrick
Chase: Ellie Armitage
Declan: Dayton L. Wilson
Favorite Son: Shane Morgan
Libby: Haleigh N. Beck
Theo: James Martin
Ensemble: Ellie Armitage, Haleigh N. Beck, Travis Carrick, Michael Christian, Samantha Kirchdorfer, James Martin, Shane Morgan, Dayton L. Wilson
Music Director and Keyboards: Bryce Biffle
Guitars: Nate Forrester, Tanner Harrod
Bass: Matthew Frerck
Drums and Percussion: Kami Lujan
Violins: Lukas Bartke, Bethany Hardwick
Cello: Bill Zauner
Reviewed Performance: 8/14/2021
Reviewed by Jeri Tellez, Associate Critic for John Garcia's THE COLUMN
American Idiot is a rock musical based on the concept album of the same name by punk rock bank Green Day. It began at the Berkeley Repertory Theatre in 2009, then moved to the St. James Theatre on Broadway where it ran until April 2011. Reimagined in the cozy theatre on the hill in The Colony, it was a wild ride-along adventure through a year in the life of three small-town friends.
As Johnny, Gideon Ethridge was superb. His singing was strong, his range of emotions was diverse, and his guitar playing was a delightful surprise. He did an impressive job in his interactions with Will (Campbell Bovaird) and Tunny (Sienna Riehle).
Will, portrayed by Bovaird, was your typical small-town young man. Challenged with unexpected circumstances, he struggled to deal with his new reality. As his despondence grew, so did the divide between himself and his girlfriend Heather (Brittany Brown).
Sienna Riehle, as Tunny, was an interesting casting choice. In the original book, the role was scripted for a male to portray the role, and the dialogue would support the role being a male. Having said this, Ms. Riehle did a wonderful job of displaying Tunny’s inability to adapt to big city life, and her mannerisms after a major life change were well-done.
Brown, as Heather, gave a nice balance to the dissatisfied trio. She tried to engage Will, who wasn’t having it. Whatshername, portrayed by Kirsten Amerongen, was a sympathetic character caught up in the drug culture with Johnny. She was believable and honest.
As St. Jimmy, Jayden Russell displayed the dark side of Johnny’s descent into drugs. Russell was convincing in her movements and her words.
The ensemble did a commendable job of setting the tone, especially when they were milling about the stage before the show had even started. It seemed only natural that they were there.
Logan Coley Broker’s costumes were well-done. Each character looked appropriate for the part. Katlyn Snader and Aaron Schultz’s props were relevant and effective. Keegan Arnold’s set was a work of art, personally graffitied by the cast. The different areas within the set flowed together flawlessly, and it made the venue seem bigger than it was.
Arnold’s lighting design was well done, with few noticeable shadows. The light changes helped set the tone throughout the production and were well balanced. Arnold’s sound design was fitting, with no obvious holes or unnecessary distractions. Christina Kudlicki Hoth’s choreography was innovative and brilliant, and the cast executed it well.
As music director, Bryce Biffle did a seamless job in preparing the company vocally, as the parts were well-balanced. At times though, the music fell victim to a problem that is common in small theatres, which is that at times the vocals were hard to hear over the band. There were issues with balance among the company, with some solos easier to hear and understand than others. Also, a few minutes spent tuning the “prop” guitar would have been worth the time.
Overall, I would recommend making an evening to see LCT’s American Idiot. This relaxed little theatre was a little too cozy for my comfort as the chairs were crammed together tightly, but it was an evening well spent.
Green Day’s American Idiot runs through August 28 at Lakeside Community Theater, 6303 Main Street, The Colony, TX 75056.
*Content Warning: This production contains mature subject matter, adult content, sexual themes, strong language, and simulated use of drugs.
*Please Note: All patrons, including LCT Staff, will be required to wear a mask when entering the building and during performances. You will not be admitted without a mask. No outside food or drink is allowed in the theatre, and there is no intermission.
For tickets and information go to https://www.lctthecolony.com/ or call 214.801.4869.