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Local News / Entertainment

Wednesday, 14 April, 2010 7:56 AM

Lucas A. Wells to perform in 'Spring Awakening' at Detroit's Fisher Theatre

Photo credit: Brendy Barr Communications

Lucas A. Wells will star as an understudy in "Spring Awakening" at Detroit's Fisher Theatre from April 20 through May 9.

by Jason Rzucidlo
americajr@americajr.com

 

DETROIT -- Lucas A. Wells attended Siena Heights University for acting. Now, he is one of the stars in the musical "Spring Awakening." It is the story of teenage self-discovery and sexuality as seen through the eys of three teenagers. "Spring Awakening" celebrites the journey from youth to adulthood. It won eight of 11 Tony Awards including Best Musical and Best Director in 2007. The musical opens at Detroit's Fisher Theatre on April 20 and runs through May 9.

"This is my first professional job and have been in college at Sienna Heights University in Adrian, Mich.," Wells said during a phone interview. "I was studying theatre there. I went auditioning on a whim and it worked out. For this musical, I sent in a video of myself. Then, they sent me 'Spring Awakening' music from the show and I recorded that, sent it back. I was called to New York City and had seven auditions over a three or four days and then I was cast. The whole process was only about three months long. I've been doing it for two years now."

Wells is part of the ensemble and is an understudy for every role in the musical. He will stand-in as one of the six characters if they are sick or unavailable to perform.

"Sometimes I don't know what role I'm going to be in until half an hour before the show," the actor said. "All of the characters are really different. Each has something that people can relate to whether you're a kid or a grownup going to see it for the first time. It's beautifully done, beautifully written. It's this coming-of-age story of these teenagers in 1890's Germany. The play was written by Frank Wedekind a long time ago. It was adapted by Steven Sater and Duncan Sheik. It's this great classical period piece backed with new age rock music. It's about love, lost and accepting who you are. There's a lot of sadness and a lot of laughter too."

What are some of the cities that you've been to so far with the musical?

"We've been all over the country," Wells responded. "We've been to rehearsals in New York City in July 2008. We started touring in August, San Diego, Los Angeles, Seattle, San Francisco, Washington D.C. We've also come to East Lansing, Columbus, Ohio, Cleveland, Toronto. It's really cool to see how different cities react to material. The more Midwestern states haven't reacted as well as some of the other states. For the most part, everybody really, really loves the show. We've got a good response everywhere we've gone."

What are your thoughts on Michigan's new 42 percent tax incentive for the film industry? Would you like to do a film here?

"I would love to," he said about doing a film within the Great Lakes state. "It's something we need and a lot of states are doing that. So why not jump on board?"

What is your advice to students going into theatre who are now looking for their first jobs?

"If you know this is what you want to do, you can't be lazy about it," Wells said. "It's not going to come to you so you've got to work hard and keep trying and have thick skin. It will happen for you if you keep trying and go to New York and put yourself out there. Don't be afraid to be vulnerable. Just be yourself."

What's next for you after "Spring Awakening" is over?

"I'm doing a production of the Who's Comedy down in Hilton Head, South Carolina for two months," the actor said. "We open June 23 and we close August 1. Then, I'm headed to New York after that."

Ticket prices for the Detroit engagement of Spring Awakening range from $24.00-$79.00 (inclusive of parking and facility fees) and are now on sale at the Fisher Theatre box office and all Ticketmaster locations. Tickets are also available for purchase online at www.ticketmaster.com or www.BroadwayinDetroit.com, and by calling Ticketmaster at 1-800-982-2787. Limited premium seats will be available at the box office only.

 

Photo credit: Paul Kolnik 2008

Cast of the "Spring Awakening" national tour.

 

Photo credit: Joan Marcus 2009

Christy Altomare and Jake Epstein in the "Spring Awakening" national tour.

 

 

 

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