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American Idiot: John Gallagher Jr., to star


Producers Tom Hulce and Ira Pittelman have announced the complete Broadway cast of American Idiot. The musical will open at Broadway's St James Theatre on 20 Apr 2010, following previews from 24 Mar 2010.

Tony Award winner John Gallagher Jr. (Spring Awakening) is set to star in American Idiot alongside Tony Award Nominee Stark Sands (Journey's End), Michael Esper (A Man For All Seasons), Rebecca Naomi Jones (Passing Strange), Christina Sajous (The Wild Party), Mary Faber (Avenue Q) and Tony Vincent (Jesus Christ Superstar).

With the exceptioin of Stark Sands all the principle cast starred in the musical's world premiere at the Berkeley Repertory Theatre.

The cast also features Declan Bennett (RENT), Andrew Call (Cry-Baby), Gerard Canonico (Spring Awakening), Miguel Cervantes (...Spelling Bee), Joshua Henry (In The Heights), Van Hughes (Hairspray), Brian Charles Johnson (Spring Awakening), Joshua Kobak (RENT), Lorin Latarro (Movin' Out), Omar Lopez-Cepero (North American tour of Evita), Leslie McDonel (Hairspray), Chase Peacock (High School Musical), Theo Stockman (Hair), Ben Thompson (Cyrano with Placido Domingo), Alysha Umphress (bare).

"This wildly gifted company takes my breath away. They bring such depth and passion to the material. It is a rare honor to be blessed with such spectacularly imaginative performers," says Michael Mayer, the musical's director.

Based on the Reprise Records Grammy Award-winning album of the same name, American Idiot features the music of Green Day and the lyrics of its lead singer Billie Joe Armstrong. The show is directed by Tony Award-winning director Michael Mayer (Spring Awakening), who also collaborated with Armstrong on the book, and choreographed by Olivier Award-winning Steven Hoggett (Blackwatch).

The Tony-winning composer Tom Kitt (Next to Normal) is the music supervisor, orchestrator and music arranger. In addition, Kitt also provided string arrangements for Green Day's latest album 21st Century Breakdown.

American Idiot follows working-class characters from the suburbs to the city to the Middle East, as they seek redemption in a world filled with frustration.

The show includes every song from the album, as well as several new songs from '21st Century Breakdown.' Green Day won two Grammys - Best Rock Album and Record of the Year - for its multi-platinum 'American Idiot.' The album sold more than 12 million copies worldwide.

American Idiot played at Berkeley Rep's Roda Theatre from 4 Sep - 15 Nov 2009. The musical's record breaking run brought in the biggest advance sale in the Theatre's 41-year history, the biggest day at the box office, 17 of the top 20 days ever and due to ticket demand had to announce the first extension before it had played its first performance.

The show received positive reviews: " possesses a stimulating energy and a vision of wasted youth that holds us in its grip" (New York Times); "Wildly entertaining" (San Francisco Chronicle); "Green Day musical delivers big-time" (Bay Area News Group); "This show is a sure-fire crowd pleaser" (SFist.com).

The show features scenic design by Tony-nominee Christine Jones (Spring Awakening), costume design by Andrea Lauer, lighting design by two-time Tony-winner Kevin Adams (The 39 Steps, Spring Awakening), Sound design by Brian Ronan, as well as video design by Darrel Maloney.

American Idiot will be produced on Broadway in association with Berkeley Repertory Theatre.

Tickets go on sale to the general public on 14 Feb 2010.

Bios:

John Gallagher, Jr. (Johnny). Broadway credits include David Lindsay Abaire's Pulitzer Prize winning play 'Rabbit Hole' and Duncan Sheik and Steven Sater's rock musical adaptation of Frank Wedekind's 'Spring Awakening' directed by Michael Mayer. His performance in the latter earned him a 2007 Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Musical.

Stark Sands (Tunny) was last seen on Broadway as '2nd Lieutenant Raleigh' in the 2007 Tony Award winning revival of 'Journey's End 'for which he received a Tony nomination for "Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Play." Most recently, Sands starred as 'Clyde' in the 2009 musical adaptation of 'Bonnie & Clyde' at the La Jolla Playhouse and earned critical acclaim for his performance in the Public Theater's Shakespeare in the Park production of 'Twelfth Night.'

Michael Esper (Will) made his Broadway debut opposite Frank Langella in Roundabout Theatre Company's 'A Man for All Seasons.' His other New York credits include 'The Agony and The Agony' (Vineyard Theatre), 'As You Like It' (The Public Theater), 'Big Bill' (Lincoln Center Theater), 'Crazy Mary' and 'Manic Flight Reaction' (Playwrights Horizons), 'The Four of Us' (Manhattan Theatre Club) and 'subUrbia' (Second Stage Theatre).

Rebecca Naomi Jones (Whatsername) Broadway: 'Passing Strange.' Off Broadway: 'Wig Out!' (Vineyard Theatre), 'This Beautiful City' (Vineyard Theatre), 'Passing Strange' (Public Theater), 'How Love is Spelt' (Playwrights Horizons-SPF).

Christina Sajous (The Extraordinary Girl) credits include 'King Lear' with André De Shields at the Classical Theatre of Harlem and 'Wild Party' at The Culture Project.

Mary Faber (Heather). Broadway: 'Avenue Q' (Kate Monster/Lucy). Off-Broadway: 'Saved' (Gary Griffin/dir.) and 'Floyd and Clea Under the Western Sky' (Playwrights Horizons).

Tony Vincent's (St. Jimmy) Broadway credits include starring in 'RENT'and playing 'Judas" in 'Jesus Christ Superstar.' He played "Galileo Figaro" in London's West End musical 'We Will Rock You.'

Christina Sajous, Michael Esper, John Gallagher Jr., Joshua Henry and Miguel Cervantes in a scene from the Berkeley Repertory Theatre

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