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<< News >>

Play Review

Thursday, 22 April, 2010 0:20 AM

'Spring Awakening' is exceptional at the Fisher Theatre

Photo credit: Paul Kolnik 2008

Cast of the "Spring Awakening" national tour.

by Jason Rzucidlo
americajr@americajr.com

 

DETROIT -- "Spring Awakening" is now playing at Detroit's Fisher Theatre through May 9. It tells the story of three teenagers who go through self-discovery and learning about their sexuality. The new musical celebrates the unforgettable journey from youth to adulthood. This play is not for young children because it includes mature themes, sexual situations and strong language. "Spring Awakening" is one of the first musicals at the Fisher Theatre in a long time to offer on-stage seating for $25.

The musical is set against the backdrop of late 19th century Germany. There are 11 skits in Act One and nine skits in Act Two. There is one 20-minute intermission. "Spring Awakening" is different from other musicals because the set never changes -- the curtains don't go down all. There are a few times when the lights go off, but the set doesn't physically change.

"All of the characters are really different," said actor Lucas A. Wells, who is an understudy for all of the roles in the musical. "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 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."

"Spring Awakening" opens with the song "Mama Who Bore Me" and closes with a full-company performance of "The Song of Purple Summer." The person next to me said this musical is very similar to "RENT."

The musical is directed by Michael Mayer and is based on the play by Frank Wedekind. The book and lyrics are by Steve Sater and the music is by Duncan Sheik. Christy Altomare plays the character Wendle while Angela Reed is the Adult Women. Sarah Hunt is Martha and Steffi D plays the character of Ilse. Gabrielle Garza stars as Anna and Kimiko Glenn stars as the Adult Men.

"The objective was to tell this unique story in this unique form as well as possible, and be responsive to its needs," said producer Tom Hulce. "We were given such an enthusiastic welcome from the Broadway establishment: I think everyone understood that if we could be successful then the possibilities for Broadway musicals would be enlarged in a way that would be exciting and good for everyone. But I don't know if there will be other pieces that will be a direct response to 'Spring Awakening.'"

Tuesday through Saturday performances are at 8 p.m. while Saturday and Sunday matinee performances are at 2 p.m. Sunday evening performances will begin at 7:30 p.m. There will no evening performance on the final day -- May 9.

"Spring Awakening" is the winner of the 2008 Grammy Award for Best Musical Show Album and the 2007 Tony Award for Best Musical. It also won the Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding New Broadway Musical and the New York Drama Critics Circle Award for Best Musical. "Spring Awakening" also won the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Musical.

I think this is a great musical for college students and adults in their 30s or 40s. People over 50 may be offended with the loud music, the strong language and some of the sexual situations.

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.

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

 

Photo credit: Paul Kolnik 2008

Steffi D in the Spring Awakening national tour

Photo credit: Paul Kolnik 2008

Taylor Trensch in 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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Copyright © 2010 AmericaJR.com. All Rights Reserved.
Unauthorized duplication or use of Text, Photos, Videos, Site Template, Graphics and or Site Design is Prohibited by Federal and International laws. See our Notice/Disclaimer.

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