I attended the second nights performance of the Irish Premier of the landmark musical “Spring Awakening” in the Helix on Saturday last.
Firstly, what a beautiful theatre and so easy to find for rural ‘hicks’ like myself, who rarely travel into the big smoke. This latter fact, plus the provision on the theatre’s doorstep of easy, cheap parking, had me relaxed and in stress-free mood long before the show began.
I was aware that “Spring Awakening” is a rock musical adaptation of the controversial 1891 German play of the same title, by Frank Wedekind and it featured music by Duncan Sheik with lyrics by Steven Sater.
Set in late-nineteenth century Germany, it concerns teenagers who are discovering the inner and outer tumult of sexuality, but more than that they are discovering that their emerging thoughts and feelings are not just individual and personal, rather part of the development of every young teenager. In the early 19th century, the original play was banned in Germany for a while, due to its portrayal of masturbation, abortion, homosexuality, rape, child abuse and suicide.
In the past Spring Awakening was nominated for eleven Tony Award, winning eight, including Tony’s for best musical, direction, book, score and featured actor. The show has also won four Drama Desk Awards, while its London production, last year, won four Olivier Awards.
With this endorsement and my passion for all things theatrical, it became essential that I should attend, together with some close friends.
Forget Broadway, The Helix May Never Be The Same Again!
For those of you planning to attend Spring Awakening, which will run for only the next four nights, let me tell you it is nothing short of exhilarating. It is a delightful electrifying fusion of comedy, sadness, morality, sexuality and rock and roll and should be made compulsory to attend.
This show is maybe somewhat adult in nature, in both theme and content and possibly not suitable for those under 16 years, but for everyone else it is a ‘must see‘.
The set is modern and well lit. The orchestra are a group of amazingly talented, well rehearsed and dedicated musician. The talent on stage is, I believe, unlike anything I have ever seen in previous shows.
Songs like “Mama Who Bore Me”, “The Bitch of Living”, “The Dark I Know Well”, “Touch Me”, “I Believe”, in act one, followed by “Totally Fucked”, “The Song of Purple Summer”, “Don’t Do Sadness/Blue Wind” in act two, to name just a few of the numbers, are delivered professionally with high energy and with obvious passion, by each performer.
Here is a perfect opportunity for RTE Hosts to up their ratings, by showing some new, exciting, talent on our TV sets, instead of the washed up performers currently forced upon us, nightly.
I can happily report that Musical Theatre in Ireland, unlike most else, is safe into the next half century. I am also happy to report that no fewer than three of those associated with this cast come from here in Co.Tipperary.
Well done Guys and Gals, I’ve got tickets again for Saturday.