‘American Idiot’: Dark and Electrifying

By CORALIE TYLER

“American Idiot” electrifies, captivates and moves you. And it is all thanks to the powerhouse ‘MiddKid’ effect in the production.

The journeys of Johnny (Bair Lambert ’21), Will (Will Koch ’21) and Tunny (Olivia Christie ’19) takes us into the dark headspaces of young adults trying merely to grapple with life at a time when the world seems to be falling apart. Their stories, views and personal turmoil echo the hopes and fears of young adults in this world today.

The set, designed by Joseph Haggerty ’19, reflected the ultimate attitude and aesthetic of the 2000s punk scene. The colors and imagery elevates your soul into the world of the show before it even begins. The set itself feels like a character in itself, one that brings back fond grunge pre-teen memories, and raises slight alarm all at once. The set is our friend that grows with us as we delve deeper into the show.

Every single person on that stage gave their entire body, mind and soul to their performances. You could sense the fun and joy in moments of youthful revel, and the gloom in moments of reality inevitably returning and slapping them across the face. One stand-out performance in particular belonged to Olivia Christie ’19. She commanded the stage every minute she was onstage. Her eyes seduce you and leave you wanting more by the end of her numbers. Her presence, even in her silent moments, unapologetically demands your attention and gives you the time of your life in the duration of the show.

Director Michole Biancosino ’98 (who directed “The Wolves” last spring and will be directing “The Bacchae 2.1” in the fall) gave the audience everything we could only dream of and beyond. It was a throwback, a concert and a musical all at once. You want to get up and dance with them, your inner twelve-year-old wants to sing along… and yet you’re still invested in the storyline. You want the show to last forever, but alas, all great (and dark) things must come to an end. This triple combination leaves you feeling like a euphoric twelve year old, and an emotional wreck all at once.

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