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Berkeley Repertory Theatre Announces Complete 2009-2010 Season

By San Francisco
Lisa Kron
(© Joseph Marzullo/Retna)
Lisa Kron
(© Joseph Marzullo/Retna)
Berkeley Repertory Theatre has finalized its plans for its 2009-2010 season.

The theater will open the season with a stage version of rock group Green Day's album American Idiot, co-authored and directed by Tony Award winner Michael Mayer, with choreography by Steven Hoggett, to run September 4-October 11. The show, which is also written by Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong, follows a group of working-class characters from the suburbs to the city to the Middle East as they seek redemption. It will feature songs from both American Idiot and the group's new album 21st Century Breakdown. The cast will feature 19 performers plus an on-stage band.

Next up, Tony Taccone will direct the West Coast premiere of Tiny Kushner (October 16-November 29, a series of short scripts by Pulitzer Prize winner, Tony Kushner. Aurélia's Oratorio, written and directed by Victoria Thierrée Chaplin, will play December 4-January 24. The piece uses dancing, puppetry, and acrobatics, to tell an inventive adventure set to a quirky score of chamber music and gypsy jazz.

Up next will be Gordon Edelstein's production of Athol Fugard's Coming Home (January 15-February 28). Les Waters will direct the world premiere of Naomi Iizuka's Concerning Strange Devices from the Distant West (February 26-April 11), which was commissioned by the theater. The play looks at how the early use of camera technology selected, filtered, and obscured the truth, even as it promised to provide an authentic look at distant lands.

Berkeley Rep will present the world premiere of the new musical Girlfriend (April 9-May 9), featuring a book by Todd Almond, with music and lyrics by Matthew Sweet, inspired by the songs on Sweet's album of the same name, and telling a boy meets boy romance. Waters will direct.

The season will conclude with the world premiere of Five Questions (May 14-June 27), reuniting the creators of Broadway's Well -- playwright Lisa Kron, and director Leigh Silverman. The play, which unfolds against the turmoil of American politics in the 21st century, centers on a woman who discovers how one kiss can affect her faith in love, her faith in country, and her faith in herself.

For more information, visit berkeleyrep.org.

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