Tony Award-winning and critically-acclaimed, “American Idiot” will make its West Michigan debut with a one-off performance tomorrow night (Tuesday, March 26) at 7:30 p.m. Face-value ticket prices range from $20 to $55, but area students looking to get into the show for cheaper are in luck: beginning tomorrow morning, the Miller Auditorium box office will be offering student rush tickets starting at just $10 apiece.
Chances are, if you’re a current college student, you remember when the songs from “American Idiot” (the album) were dominating the airwaves. Throughout the fall of 2004 and well into the following year, few albums were more inescapable than this one, which launched four singles–the title track, “Boulevard of Broken Dreams,” “Holiday” and “Wake Me Up When September Ends”–towards Billboard chart dominance and Grammy recognition.
Eight and a half years later, the album is still considered a modern classic, an epic conceptual piece whose narrative serves as a perfect snapshot of what it was like to live and love within 2004’s warped version of the American dream. The ghosts of 9/11 still lingered, war raged overseas and one of the most hated presidents in our nation’s history scored a re-election, but on American soil, rock ‘n’ roll was making a comeback.
Buoyed by the sudden mainstream success of bands like the Killers, Modest Mouse, Franz Ferdinand and the White Stripes, by the iPod-commercial-driven return of U2–“the biggest band in the world”–or by the appearance of the most acclaimed debut album of the decade (Arcade Fire’s Funeral), 2004 seemed like a musical reset. Half of the bands listed above were drawing from the styles of the of the past, of the ’70s or ’80s, and making them sound fresh again, and Green Day, years removed from their last big hit and seemingly in the midst of a mid-career crisis, rode the crest of that wave to a resurgence of success. The cause for that rousing comeback, a story-based album built around a pair of epic, nine-minute tracks, drew influence from the rock operas of the Who and Hüsker Dü and melded it with Green Day’s patent pop-rock sound, rapidly becoming one of the most memorable musical benchmarks of the decade.
Now, 12 million copies later, “American Idiot” has been immortalized in a new way by its hit Broadway musical, which has brought the album’s high energy rockers, as well as its themes of war, disconnection and love found and lost to audience members all around the world. In many ways, the show has brought the music to an entirely new audience.
So will you join that audience on Tuesday night? With these discount tickets–available to any area student with a valid I.D.–there’s no reason to miss out. The show begins at 7:30 p.m. at Miller Auditorium, and tickets can be purchased online, in person or via phone at 269-387-2300 or 800-228-9858.