American Idiot 7:30 p.m. Jan. 2; 2:30 p.m. Jan. 3, The Aurora Fox Arts Center, 9900 E. Colfax Ave. Adult tickets start at $28. Call 866-811-4111 or visit ignitetheatre.com for more information.
Ah, yes: The fall of 2004 When gas was, well, about the same price it is now, the NHL started a nice, healthy lockout, and Green Day’s “American Idiot” etched itself into the collective American psyche forever. It didn’t matter if you were tuning into the radio, TV, or suffering through dial-up Internet, there was no escaping the some half-dozen singles Billie Joe and the boys cranked out with that year’s favorite punk-rock opera thing. Fast forward to the 2015, gas prices are, again, pretty much the same, hockey is happening and “American Idiot” is still, yes still, the obsession of many a musical maniac. The proof of that lingering obsession is in the theatrical pudding this January as Spotlight Theatre is staging their very own production of the musical version of the 2004 smash at The Aurora Fox Arts Center. Directed by Jeffrey Parizotto, the Ignite show at the Fox stars Brian Robertson, Brandon Lopez, Caleb Reed, Lindsey Falduto and Valerie Igoe. It showcases life post-Sept. 11 and features a bulk of the tracks on “American Idiot” as well as Green Day’s follow-up “21st Century Breakdown.” The show runs through Jan. 24.
Funny Girl 7:30 p.m. Jan. 1 and 2, or 2:30 p.m. Jan. 3, The Vintage Theatre, 1468 Dayton St. Tickets are $24 in advance or $28 at the door. Call 303-856-7830 or visit vintagetheatre.org for more information.
There’s no shame in not making plans for News Year’s Eve. What is widely regarded as the most over-anticipated, underwhelming night of the year, doesn’t and shouldn’t exactly require extra attention. However, sitting inside like a reclusive hermit on Dec. 31, despite having no plans, is a cardinal red flag. Because c’mon — spontaneity is the spice of life, or something. Luckily, the folks at The Vintage Theatre have got ‘chu covered with “Funny Girl,” a biographical Broadway musical penned in 1964, that walks through the life of Fanny Brice, the original Hollywood comedienne. Born in the Lower East Side in 1891, Brice was a pioneering female entertainer who wowed in roles on stage, film and radio for several decades. The show is directed by Robert Michael Sanders and runs through Jan. 17.
The Big Bang 7:30 p.m. Jan. 2, or 2 p.m. Jan. 3, The John Hand Theater, 7653 E. 1st Pl., Denver. Tickets start at $22. Call 720-530-4596 or visit thisisspotlight.com for more information.
Jim Parsons isn’t the only one who knows how to make science a profitable, frenzied extravaganza. O contraire, mon frere. The folks at Spotlight Theatre Company and the John Hand Theatre know a thing or two about that topic as well, and are putting their purses right alongside their bookish mouths with the Janurary production of “The Big Bang,” a new musical comedy that offers a snippet of just about everything. More or less a bowl of theatrical potpourri,the show centers on two desperate actors who are forced to stage an last-minute audition for backers of their new show, entitled — you guessed it — “The Big Bang.” Using a slew of impromptu props, the duo walks through the history of the world, from the loud, instantaneous creation of the universe to Cher. The show runs through Feb. 6.
Free Day at Beck Recreation Center – 11 a.m. to close, Jan. 1, Beck Recreation Center, 800 Telluride St. Free. Call 303-739-6888 for more information.
Sometimes, watching the “Twilight Zone” marathon on National Hangover Day just doesn’t cut it. There’s often a very real need to rid the body of very real toxins the night after tossing back flute after flute of barely palatable champagne (pronounced Sham-pag-knee). And luckily this year, the city of Aurora has your back. The city’s parks, recreation and open space department is offering free admission to Beck Recreation Center on Jan. 1, which is an invitation to pushes the aforementioned purge, or maybe just a refuge to hole up and wallow on a day when just about every other establishment in civilization feels closed. Never too early to start that exercise regimen, Dr. Atkins.
DeVotchKa – 9 p.m., Jan. 1 & 2, The Bluebird Theater, 3317 E. Colfax Ave. Visit bluebirdtheater.net for more information.
Aww, they grow up so fast. Alright, it’s been like two decades at this point, so maybe not that fast. It wasn’t 20 years ago that Denver darlings Devotchka were up-and-coming young guns vying to make a name for themselves in the local musical scene. Now, they’re regularly playing with the Colorado Symphony, scoring films and selling out hometown venues on New Years Eve. Thankfully, they haven’t yet evolved to instantly selling out shows on New Years Day, as well — at least at press time. Devotchka is playing The Bluebird on Jan.1 and again on Jan. 2 with Colorado Public Radio favorites The Yawpers for what is sure to be a riotous celebration of Colorado music. Tickets start at $25.