Turning Green Day's American Idiot
into a musical worked out well
for Berkeley Rep
's image across the country, and now the prestigious theater company is hoping to turn the work of another (albeit much lesser known) pop icon into a nationally-buzzed about production.
In the early '90s, power pop songwriter Matthew Sweet
hit college radio and Billboard charts with the album Girlfriend
, A decade later, he has a song on Guitar Hero 2
and Berkeley Rep associate artistic director Les Waters has orchestrated a romantic musical around those tender songs, a love story about two boys falling for one another that the theater company is tagging "a dual-Romeo duet." Waters worked off a book by Todd Almond, who wrote the narrative by playing off the themes and lyrics in Sweet's very earnest and ebullient album.
Girlfriend the musical officially premieres at Berkeley Rep on April 14 and runs through May 9.