Published Oct 26, 2011Considering its extremely theatrical premise, no one was surprised when Green Day's 2004 album American Idiot was adapted for the stage. After playing out in Berkeley and Broadway in 2009 and 2010, respectively, the musical will now premiere in Toronto, and the principal cast has been announced.
The Tony Award-winning piece will start its engagement December 28 to January 15 at the Toronto Centre for the Arts before making its way to 14 U.S. markets.
While band leader Billie Joe Armstrong has been known to tackle the lead role of St. Jimmy from time to time and is slated to appear in the film adaptation -- much to the chagrin of Dookie-devotees -- he is not slated to appear in the T-dot run.
Theatre vets Van Hughes and Leslie McDonel, who both performed in the play on Broadway, appear as Johnny and Heather, respectively.
Other casting choices include Jake Epstein as Will, Scott J. Campbell as Tunny, original Broadway cast member Leslie McDonel as Heather, Gabrielle McClinton as Whatsername and Nicci Claspell as the Extraordinary Girl.
"I am thrilled that soon we will get to share American Idiot with audiences across North America," director Michael Mayer said in a statement. "The creative team and I couldn't be happier with the stellar group of actors we've assembled which includes original Broadway cast members Van Hughes and Leslie McDonel along with many wonderful and talented new additions to the American Idiot family."
On top of the group's celebrated song cycle -- including "Boulevard of Broken Dreams," "Wake Me Up When September Ends," "Holiday" and, of course, "American Idiot" -- the performance will include tracks from Green Day's 2009 album 21st Century Breakdown and new tune "When It's Time," an "unreleased love song."