The Brock Musical Theatre Club is fully immersed in their rehearsal process in preparation for their upcoming rendition of Green Day’s American Idiot.
Brock Musical Theatre (BMT) is a not-for-profit organization which is entirely student led and dedicated to producing the highest calibre of musicals for the enjoyment of the Brock and larger Niagara communities. The club proudly boasts the fact that they are the oldest independent theatre group on campus as they are now entering their 11th year of delivering critically acclaimed and financially successful musicals. These well-received plays include: Avenue Q, Rent, Spring Awakening, and most recently, Little Shop of Horrors.
Despite this legacy of producing iterations of what most would consider ‘traditional’ musicals, this year, BMT is trying something completely new and entirely edgy.
“This show is going to be different,” said Adam Caranfra, President of BMT. “Our intent is to put together a performance that combines musical theatre as well as a rock concert. We hope people will be moved to sing along and stand up if they feel like it. There’s also a story at the core of it that rivals most of the others in the industry. Three friends essentially go in different directions. It tries to display the turmoil in North America in the past 11 years, going back to the birth of the album itself.”
The actors themselves share this same passion and spirit to innovate and bring a completely fresh production to the stage this year.
“The show is already starting to come together. We’re working hard to give this show justice. The raw emotion of musical theatre and the pure energy of one of the greatest bands of all time is inspiring us to work as hard as possible in rehearsals,” said Austen Gagnier, one of the lead actors.
“Conventionally, Green Day’s music is punk, raw and gritty. This musical takes it to a much more harmonious place. Instead of one person singing, you have a main person accompanied by a chorus adding power to what’s being presented and it’s different than any other musical. We hope people will come out and take advantage of what we have to offer,” said Caranfa.
Caranfa is confident that BMT’s casting this year has successfully assembled a group of the most qualified individuals at Brock. BMT is student led and funded, meaning that all students enrolled at Brock University had the opportunity to audition. It is a true testament to the inherent pedagogical philosophy of Brock University itself, to support and foster “both sides of the brain”.
“They may not pursue music or theatre but they sound amazing. I would feel fortunate to be in the audience,” added Caranfa.
“We’ve got something for both the theatre goer and the Green Day lover,” states Gagnier.
A group of the cast members as well as BMT alumni perform at Mahtay Cafe’s open mic night every Thursday evening beginning at 8:00 p.m.
BMT’s downtown presence is something Marketing Chair, Evan Vatri, is very excited to develop with this upcoming production.
“I’m most excited to break into the downtown stages in the new facilities. BMT feels like we have a home now, we don’t have to scramble with stages. I feel like we’ll make positive relationships with the places we perform at and the club is moving in the right direction,” said Vatri.
Green Day: American Idiot will be performed in the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre; for ticket information, go to facebook.com/brockmusicaltheatre
Assistant Internal News Editor