Spring Awakening

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Spring Awakening
Spring awakening.jpg
Original Broadway Recording
MusicDuncan Sheik
LyricsSteven Sater
BookSteven Sater
BasisFrank Wedekind's play
Spring Awakening
Productions2006 Broadway
2008 U.S. National Tour
2009 West End
2009 Vienna
Numerous international productions
2010 U.S. National Tour
AwardsTony Award for Best Musical
Tony Award for Best Book
Tony Award for Best Score
Drama Desk Outstanding Musical
Drama Desk Outstanding Music
Drama Desk Outstanding Lyrics
Outer Critics Outstanding Musical
Outer Critics Outstanding Score
Critics' Circle Theatre Award for Best Musical
Olivier Award for Best New Musical
Grammy Award Musical Show Album
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This article is about a 2006 Broadway musical adaptation. For the original play, see Spring Awakening (play). For the music festival in Chicago, see Spring Awakening (festival).
Spring Awakening
Spring awakening.jpg
Original Broadway Recording
MusicDuncan Sheik
LyricsSteven Sater
BookSteven Sater
BasisFrank Wedekind's play
Spring Awakening
Productions2006 Broadway
2008 U.S. National Tour
2009 West End
2009 Vienna
Numerous international productions
2010 U.S. National Tour
AwardsTony Award for Best Musical
Tony Award for Best Book
Tony Award for Best Score
Drama Desk Outstanding Musical
Drama Desk Outstanding Music
Drama Desk Outstanding Lyrics
Outer Critics Outstanding Musical
Outer Critics Outstanding Score
Critics' Circle Theatre Award for Best Musical
Olivier Award for Best New Musical
Grammy Award Musical Show Album

Spring Awakening is a rock musical with music by Duncan Sheik and a book and lyrics by Steven Sater. It is based on the controversial German play Spring Awakening (1891) by Frank Wedekind which was banned in Germany for some time due to its frank portrayal of abortion, homosexuality, rape, child abuse and suicide. Set in late-19th century Germany, the musical tells the story of teenagers discovering the inner and outer tumult of sexuality. In the musical, alternative rock is employed as part of the folk-infused rock score.

Following its conception in the late 1990s and various workshops, concerts, rewrites and its Off-Broadway debut, the original Broadway production of Spring Awakening opened at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre on December 10, 2006. Its cast included Jonathan Groff, Lea Michele, Skylar Astin and John Gallagher, Jr. while its creative team comprised director Michael Mayer and choreographer Bill T. Jones. The original Broadway production won 8 Tony Awards, including Tonys for Best Musical, Direction, Book, Score and Featured Actor. The production also garnered 4 Drama Desk Awards whilst its original cast album received a Grammy Award.

The success of the Broadway production has spawned several other productions worldwide, including various US productions, a short West End production that won 4 Laurence Olivier Awards including Best Musical, and a series of international productions.


Act I[edit]

Wendla Bergmann, an adolescent in late-nineteenth century Germany, laments that her mother gave her “no way to handle things” and has not taught her the lessons she is meant to know as a young woman (“Mama Who Bore Me”). She tells her mother that it is time she learned where babies come from, considering that she is about to be an aunt for the second time. Her mother cannot bring herself to explain the facts about conception clearly to Wendla, despite knowing her daughter is reaching puberty. Instead, she simply tells Wendla that to conceive a child a woman must love her husband with all of her heart. The other young girls in town appear to be similarly innocent and are upset about the lack of knowledge presented to them ("Mama Who Bore Me" (Reprise)).

At school, some teenage boys are studying Virgil in Latin class. When Moritz Stiefel, a very nervous and intense young man, sleepily misquotes a line, the teacher chastises him harshly. Moritz’s classmate, the rebellious and highly intelligent Melchior Gabor, tries to defend him, but the teacher will have none of it, and hits Melchior with a stick. Melchior reflects on the shallow narrow-mindedness of school and society and expresses his intent to change things ("All That’s Known").

University of Birmingham's Guild of Students GMTG production. "All That's Known"

Moritz describes a dream that has been keeping him up at night, and Melchior realizes that Moritz has been having erotic dreams which Moritz believes are signs of insanity. To comfort the panicked Moritz, Melchior, who has learned sexual information from books, tells Moritz that all of the boys at their age get these dreams. The burned-out boys share their own sexually-frustrated thoughts and desires ("The Bitch of Living"). Moritz, who is not comfortable talking about the subject with Melchior, requests that he give him the information in the form of an essay, complete with illustrations.

University of Birmingham's Guild of Students GMTG production. "Bitch of Living"

Some girls are gathered together after school and tease each other as they fantasize about marrying the boys in the town. At the top of the list is the radical, intelligent, and good-looking Melchior ("My Junk"). Meanwhile, Hanschen masturbates as he looks at an erotic postcard, and the piano student Georg indulges in some lively fantasies about his shapely female piano teacher. Moritz has eagerly digested the essay that Melchior prepared for him, but complains that his new knowledge has only made his dreams even more vivid and torturous. Melchior tries to calm and comfort his friend, but Moritz runs off in frustration. All of the boys and girls express their desires for physical intimacy ("Touch Me").

"The Word of Your Body" from Carnegie Mellon University's 2013 production of Spring Awakening

Searching for flowers for her mother, Wendla stumbles upon Melchior. The two reminisce on the friendship they once shared as children and share a moment while sitting together in front of a tree. Each of them considers what it would be like to give in to their physical desires for one another, but they do not do so ("The Word of Your Body"). Meanwhile, at school, Moritz sneaks a look at his test results and is thrilled to learn that he has passed his midterm examinations. However, the teacher and schoolmaster, who claim they cannot pass everyone, decide to fail Moritz anyway, deeming his passing grade still not up to the school's lofty standards.

Martha, one of the teenage girls, accidentally admits to her friends that her father abuses her physically (including sexual abuse) and that her mother is either oblivious or uncaring. The other girls are horrified to hear this, but Martha makes them promise not to tell anyone, lest she end up like Ilse, a friend from childhood who now wanders homeless and aimless after her similarly-abusive parents kicked her out of the house ("The Dark I Know Well"). Later, Wendla finds Melchior again at his spot in the woods and tells him about Martha's abuse. Melchior is appalled to hear this, but Wendla convinces him to hit her with a switch, so that she can try to understand her friend’s pain. At first Melchior is determined to do nothing of the sort, but reluctantly complies. He gets carried away in the beating, taking his own frustrations out on Wendla and throws her to the ground. Disgusted with himself, Melchior runs off as Wendla is left lying on the ground, weeping. Alone, Wendla finds that Melchior has left his journal on the ground. She picks it up and takes it with her.

Moritz is told he has failed his final examination, and his father reacts with disdain and contempt when Moritz tells him that he will not progress in school; rather than attempting to understand his son's pain, Moritz's father is only concerned with how the others in town will react when they see 'the man with the son who failed'. Moritz writes to Melchior’s mother, his only adult friend, for money to flee to America; she tenderly but firmly denies his request and promises to write his parents to discourage them from being too hard on him ("And Then There Were None"). Devastated by the refusal and feeling he has few choices left, Moritz begins to contemplate suicide.

In a stuffy hayloft during a storm, Melchior cries out in his frustration at being caught between childhood and adulthood (“The Mirror-Blue Night”). Wendla finds him once again, telling him she wants to return his journal, and each apologizes for what happened in the forest. Before long, they begin to kiss. Wendla resists his advances at first; she doesn't really understand what's going on between them and is reluctant to partake, sensing that what they are doing is something very powerful and unlike anything that she has known before. As Melchior becomes more insistent, he overpowers her objections with a combination of affection and sheer force. They continue, and they have sex in the hayloft ("I Believe"). At the very moment Melchior commits the act, Wendla cries out against it, and the darkness falls. (Note: This scene was slightly softened from the show's Off-Broadway run, when the act as a rape without Wendla's consent was more straightforward. Later, as staged by the Broadway show, Wendla still objects to Melchior, but gives in without understanding what he is actually trying to do, leaving the question of consent still ambiguous on many levels.)[1]

Act II[edit]

Wendla and Melchior are finishing their moment of confused intimacy in the hayloft; they reflect on and discuss what has just happened (“The Guilty Ones”; in the Off-Broadway production, Act II began with "There Once Was A Pirate.")

Moritz, having been thrown out of his home, wanders the town at dusk, carrying a pistol ("Don't Do Sadness") when he comes across Ilse, an old childhood friend of his. Ilse, who is secretly in love with Moritz, tells him she has found refuge at an artists' colony, and they reminisce in some childhood memories and "remarkable times" ("Blue Wind"). She invites him to come home with her and join her in sharing some more childhood memories and maybe something more. Moritz refuses and Ilse does everything she can to change his mind ("Don't Do Sadness/ Blue Wind"). After coming close to kissing and admitting their mutual feelings, Moritz refuses and Ilse leaves, distraught and upset. Realizing his true feelings for her, he quickly changes his mind and calls after her, but it is too late; she is gone. Alone and believing that he has nowhere to turn, Moritz shoots himself.

"Don't Do Sadness" from Carnegie Mellon University's 2013 production of Spring Awakening

At Moritz's funeral, each of the children (including Ilse) drops a flower into his grave as Melchior laments the passing of his friend while touching on the factors that led to his death, including Moritz's treatment by his parents ("Left Behind"). Back at school, the schoolmaster and teacher feel the need to call attention away from Moritz, whose death was a direct result of their actions. They search through Moritz's belongings and find the essay on sex which Melchior wrote for him. They seize the opportunity to lay the blame of Moritz's death on Melchior, and although Melchior knows that he is not to blame, he knows there is nothing he can do to fight them and is expelled ("Totally Fucked"). Elsewhere that night, Hanschen meets up with his shy and delicate classmate Ernst. Hanschen shares his pragmatic outlook on life with his classmate before seducing him ("The Word of Your Body (Reprise)").

University of Birmingham's Guild of Students GMTG production."Totally Fucked"

Wendla has become ill, and her mother takes her to visit a doctor. He gives her some medication and assures them both that Wendla is suffering from anemia and will be fine, but takes Wendla's mother aside and tells her that Wendla is pregnant. When her mother confronts her with this information, Wendla is completely shocked, not understanding how this could have happened. She realizes that her mother lied to her about how babies are made. Although she berates her mother for leaving her ignorant ("Why didn't you tell me?"), her mother rejects the guilt and insists Wendla tell her who the father is. Wendla reluctantly surrenders a passionate note Melchior sent her after they consummated their relationship. She reflects somberly on her current condition and the circumstances that led her to this difficult position, but resolves with optimism about her future child ("Whispering"). Meanwhile, Melchior's parents argue about their son's fate; his mother does not believe that the essay he wrote for Moritz is sufficient reason to send him away to reform school. When Melchior's father tells his wife about Wendla's pregnancy, she finally agrees that they must send Melchior away, which they do without telling him that Wendla is pregnant.

During this time, Melchior and Wendla keep contact through the use of letters, with Ilse delivering them back and forth. At the reform school, Melchior gets into a fight with some boys who grab a letter he has just received from Wendla and use it in a masturbation game. As one of the boys reads from the letter, Melchior finally learns about Wendla and their child, and he escapes from the institution to find her. When Melchior reaches town, he sends a message to Ilse to have her get Wendla to meet him at the cemetery at midnight, but she can take no action as Melchior "hasn't heard" about Wendla. At the cemetery, Melchior stumbles across Moritz's grave and swears to himself that he and Wendla will raise their child in a compassionate and open environment. When Wendla is late to the meeting, Melchior begins to feel a little uneasy. Looking around, Melchior sees a grave he hadn't noticed before. He reads the name on the stone – Wendla's – and realizes that Wendla has died from a botched abortion. Overwhelmed by shock and grief, he takes out a razor with the intention of killing himself. Moritz's and Wendla's spirits rise from their graves to offer him their strength. They persuade him to journey on, and he resolves to live and to carry their memories with him forever ("Those You've Known").

Led by Ilse, everyone assembles onstage—now, in some stagings, in modern dress—to sing about how although the adults may still call the shots with their upright, conservative views, they won't last forever, and the seeds are already being planted for a new, liberal minded, progressive generation ("The Song of Purple Summer").


The Children

The Adults

Musical numbers[edit]

++Note: "The Guilty Ones" replaced off-Broadway version's Act II opening, "There Once Was a Pirate"; the latter is available as a bonus track sung by composer Duncan Sheik on the iTunes version of the original cast recording. A reprise of "Touch Me," sung by Melchior, appeared in "Whispering" during the Chicago, Vienna, London runs, was added to the tour, and is part of the amateur rental materials.


The original casts of the major productions of Spring Awakening.

CharacterOriginal Broadway Cast[2]Original National Tour CastOriginal London Cast[3]Second National Tour Cast
MelchiorJonathan GroffKyle RiabkoAneurin BarnardChristopher Wood
WendlaLea MicheleChristy AltomareCharlotte WakefieldElizabeth Judd
MoritzJohn Gallagher, Jr.Blake BashoffIwan RheonCoby Getzug
IlseLauren PritchardSteffi DiDomenicantonioLucy May BarkerCourtney Markowitz
Adult MenStephen SpinellaHenry StramRichard CorderyMark Poppleton
Adult WomenChristine EstabrookAngela ReedSian ThomasSarah Kleeman
HanschenJonathan B. WrightAndy MientusJamie BlackleyDevon Stone
GeorgSkylar AstinMatt ShingledeckerJos SlovickJim Hogan
MarthaLilli CooperSarah HuntHayley GallivanAliya Bowles
ErnstGideon GlickBen FankhauserHarry McEntireDaniel Plimpton
OttoBrian Charles JohnsonAnthony Lee MedinaEdd JudgeGeorge Salazar
AnnaPhoebe StroleGabrielle GarzaNatasha BarnesRachel Geisler
TheaRemy ZakenKimiko GlennEvelyn HoskinsEmily Mest
Notable Broadway replacements
Original London Cast Swings

Gemma O'Duffy, Mona Goodwin, Natalie Garner, Chris Barton, Jamie Muscato and Richard Southgate.

Original concept[edit]

Before opening the show off-Broadway, Duncan Sheik had composed an arrangement of song demos for the original concept of Spring Awakening. Back then the musical's plot adhered more closely to the original play's plot. Steven Sater and Duncan Sheik had originally intended for Melchior actually to rape Wendla at the end of "I Believe," but decided to change that plot because he wanted the scene to be more loving between the two characters. In workshops, "I Believe" ended with Wendla's scream while being raped. "All That's Known" replaced a song titled "All Numb". Both songs had the same theme, but because the directors had to reduce time for the show, "All Numb" was cut and replaced with "All That's Known".

A song called "A Comet on Its Way" was replaced by "The Bitch of Living". Although both songs followed the same basic theme, Sheik thought that "The Bitch of Living", being more upbeat, fit the show better. "Those You've Known" replaced a song called "The Clouds Will Drift Away", which was cut because Sheik wanted the song between the three main characters to stay close to the "All That's Known" theme. "Mama Who Bore Me (Reprise)" was originally intended to be performed after "Touch Me". Another song, entitled "Great Sex" (which was intended to be performed after "Mama Who Bore Me (Reprise)"), was also cut from the show because the directors thought the song pointed out the theme of the show too specifically. It was intended to be performed during Hanschen's masturbation scene, but the song was removed and the scene moved into the middle of "My Junk". Finally, songs such as "Touch Me" and "The Mirror-Blue Night" each had a reprise, and "Mama Who Bore Me" had a second reprise. Even "There Once Was a Pirate", which was cut, also had a reprise.

Production history[edit]

Spring Awakening had a number of workshops, concerts and rewrites over a seven-year period, including workshops at La Jolla Playhouse, San Diego, California, and the Roundabout Theatre Company, and a concert at Lincoln Center in February 2005, under the auspices of actor/producer Tom Hulce.[4] It premiered Off-Broadway at the Atlantic Theatre Company on May 19, 2006 and ran through August 5, 2006.[5]


The musical opened on Broadway at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre on December 10, 2006[5] and closed on January 18, 2009, after 859 performances and 29 previews. Directed by Michael Mayer with choreography by Bill T. Jones, the costume designer is Susan Hilferty, set designer Christine Jones and lighting designer Kevin Adams.[6] It received nearly unanimous favorable reviews,[7][8] and easily recouped its initial $6 million capitalization, breaking even on August 27, 2007.[9]

Decca Broadway released the original cast recording on December 12, 2006, which won the Grammy Award for Best Musical Show Album in 2008.[10] The guitar Sheik used to compose songs for Spring Awakening was included in the 2008 exhibition "Writing to Character: Songwriters & the Tony Awards" at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.[11]

United States tours[edit]

A U.S. national tour (with one stop in Toronto, Canada) opened on August 15, 2008 at The Balboa Theatre in San Diego, California. The national tour ended on May 23, 2010 in Orlando, Florida.[12] A non-equity US tour began at Shryock Auditorium on October 14, 2010 in Carbondale, Illinois.[13] The non-equity US tour ended its run on May 15, 2011 in Ottawa, Canada at the Centrepointe Theatre.[14]

Original London production[edit]

Spring Awakening at London's Novello Theatre, spring 2009

The London production began January 23, 2009 at the Lyric Hammersmith, transferred to the Novello Theatre on March 21, 2009, and closed on May 30, 2009.[15][16] The London production won four Laurence Olivier Awards, including Best New Musical.[17]

Subsequent productions[edit]


The European premiere took place on August 30, 2008, at Värmlandsoperan in Karlstad, Sweden. The production is directed by Per Eltvik and choreographed by Åsa Thegerström. The Swedish text is by Fredrik Fischer and Linnea Sjunnesson. It stars Joán Alderman (Melchior), Mari Haugen Smistad (Wendla) and Ole Aleksander Bang (Moritz). This production closed in March 2009.


The Finnish production opened in Helsinki on 5 February 2009 and closed in November 2009.[18] The first Hungarian-language (first non-replica) production premiered on February 7, 2009 in Budapest at the Nyugati Teátrum as a co-production of the Budapest Operetta and Musical Theatre and the Nyugati Teátrum, with the title Tavaszébredés. This production ran until May 26, 2009.[19] A new production opened on November 21, 2009 at the Budapest Operetta and Musical Theatre, with all the roles played by the students of the Pesti Broadway Stúdio, the acting school of the theatre. This is also a non-replica production but differs from the previous Hungarian version, and is staged as a modern school class performing the musical.[20]

International productions in 2009 included the second Swedish-language production, which opened in Helsingborg, Sweden on March 20, 2009.[21] The German-language premiere opened in Vienna, Austria in a limited run at the Ronacher Theatre on March 21, 2009, and closed on May 30, 2009.[22] A live cast recording was released. There was also Slovenian production in the Ljubljana City Theatre in 2009, directed by Sebastijan Horvat.[23]

An English-language production opened in Valletta, Malta at the St. James Cavalier Theatre on April 17, 2009, directed by Wesley Ellul and choreographed by Fiona Barthet. This was produced by the MADC and staged to rave reviews. The run was extended after it sold out.[24][25]

The Japanese-language production opened in Tokyo at the Shiki Theatre Jiyu May 2, 2009.[26] The Brazilian production in Rio de Janeiro ran with the title O Despertar da Primavera from August 21, 2009 to January 31, 2010. Transferred to São Paulo where ran from March 13, 2010 until May 2, 2010; re-opened on July 10 and closed on August 15. A cast recording was released in January.[27] The Philippine production opened in Manila in the Carlos P. Roumolo Auditorium, RCBC Plaza, on September 25 until the October 17, 2009. It was performed in English and was directed by Chari Arespachochaga.[28] The Czech-language premiere opened in Brno, Czech Republic at the City Theatre Brno on November 21, 2009.[29] The South Korean production opened in Seoul in 2009.


In January 2010, the Norwegian production opened in Oslo.[30] Sydney Theatre Company staged the first Australian non-replica production, which opened on 4 February 2010 and closed on 7 March. Actress Cate Blanchett was the co-artistic director.[31] The Argentine production with the Spanish title Despertar de Primavera – Un Musical Diferente opened in Buenos Aires on March 19, 2010. This is the second production made in South America, after the Brazilian production.[32] A Hebrew production opened in Tel Aviv, Israel in April 2010. The Scottish premiere involving students from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama took place during the Edinburgh Fringe Festival on 4 August 2010, and closed on 30 August. The Irish premiere was performed at The Helix, Dublin in September 2010, produced by NYMT[33] (National Youth Musical Theatre) Ireland. The English Theatre in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, being the largest English language theatre on the "continent", produced the musical in November 2010. Director was Ryan McBryde.[34] The South Australian premiere of Spring Awakening went on stage in December 2010, produced by Film and Theatre Company Gin & Vodka Productions and co-directed by Joshua Penley and Vince Fusco, with Musical Direction by Jonathan Bligh – performed at Adelaide University's Little Theatre.[35] The Serbian production opened in December 2010 at Belgrade Drama Theatre.[36]


In Chicago, the first Chicago-produced version of the play opened at the Griffin Theatre, running from December 4 to January 8, 2011. It was directed by Jonathan Berry.[37]

In the Netherlands, the musical opened in March 2011 and closed on 3 April. It was a co-production between Joop van den Ende/Stage Entertainment and M-Lab. This production was directed by Paul Eenens and featured students of different conservatoires and musical academies from all over the Netherlands.

The Victorian premiere of Spring Awakening opened on January 27, 2011 at the National Theatre in Melbourne. It was produced by the Young Australian Broadway Chorus and directed by Robert Coates.

The first Australian touring production opened on March 30 and concluded performances in the Reginald Theatre at Sydney's Seymour Centre in April. It featured Stephen Madsen as Melchior and Sarah Blackstone as Wendla. The non-replica production was also the first in Australia to utilise the 'Whispering' duet arrangement as performed on London's West End.[38][39]

A Welsh language production toured Wales from the beginning of March 2011 visiting 8 different locations, with Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru (Welsh National Theatre).[40]

The first UK national tour of Spring Awakening took place in May and June 2011, produced by Sell a Door Theatre Company, directed by Pete Gallagher and choreographed by Cressida Carre. The tour will visit Exeter Northcott Theatre, Pleasance Edinburgh, MacRoberts Arts Centre Stirling, Lowry Manchester, Norwich Playhouse & Greenwich Theatre, London.[41][42]


In February 2012 the Galway University Musical Society (GUMS) brought Spring Awakening to Galway for the first time in the Town Hall Theatre, under a production team made up entirely of students of the University. The show ran for 5 nights, received rave reviews, and was a storming success. Also in February 2012, the musical was performed at Bernhard-Riemann-Gymnasium in Scharnebeck,[43] being the last of more than ten productions directed by Mary Ellen Petersen.


On 23 February 2013 Spring Awakening was performed in New Zealand for the first time by Auckland Music Theatre Incorporated as part of the Auckland Fringe festival. On 13 June 2013 "Spring Awakening" was performed in Portugal for the first time in Casa da Criatividade. Spring Awakening was also performed by students at Interlochen Arts Academy on 7 December 2013. An Italian licensed version of Spring Awakening (with English lyrics mixed with an Italian libretto) is planned to start on October, staged by TodoModo MusicAll.[44]

In October 2013, the musical was shown in Russian theatre Gogol-center. The Russian version was directed by Kirill Serebrennikov, translated by Zhenya Berkovich and performed by the "7th Studio" during season 2013-2014. It was highly appreciated by critics due to its unusual set and decorations, slightly updated musical arrangement and outstanding direction.

In late November 2013, "Spring Awakening" was staged in the UK by the University of Birmingham's Guild Musical Theatre Group. Director, Jacob Dorrell, completely reinterpreted the script, drawing inspiration from the artistic style of German Expressionism. This resulted in a dark and visually immersive production, emphasising the oppressed feelings of the children. The production ran for five nights and was met with great critical acclaim.[45][46]

GMTG's 'Spring Awakening' "Touch Me"

Assembled Junk gave Spring Awakening its UK northern fringe debut at The Kings Arms Theatre, Greater Manchester, in April 2013. Director James Baker decided to set it in 1935, pre-World War 2 against the fascist uprising, with the intention to give the musical a backdrop audiences could recognise and relate too. It was Bakers feeling that Wedekind wrote a prediction and one that had greater resonance with a British audience and one that illuminated the central themes when set in 1935. The production was highly commended by critics and the production enjoyed triple 5 star success.

Amateur rights[edit]

Amateur performances of Spring Awakening are now being licensed.[47] Depending on the locale, there is often a higher age limit to participants to avoid infringement of child protection laws, as performances involving the underage could be considered child pornography.[citation needed]

In other media[edit]

In the new television series 90210, the first few episodes contain the school and some of the characters as they prepare, and eventually perform in Spring Awakening, though in reality the amateur production rights were not available at the time. Parts of some songs and scenes are performed through the episodes, such as "Mama Who Bore Me" and "The Bitch of Living". Annie and Ty played the principal roles.

In 2008 episodes of the Australian Soap Opera Home and Away, the play is on the syllabus at Summer Bay High for Year 12 students and causes some controversy.

Apple's Keynote presentation application uses the lyrics of "The Bitch of Living" on its icon.[48]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Original Broadway production[edit]

YearAward CeremonyCategoryNomineeResult
2007Tony Award[49]Best MusicalWon
Best Book of a MusicalSteven SaterWon
Best Original ScoreDuncan Sheik and Steven SaterWon
Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a MusicalJonathan GroffNominated
Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a MusicalJohn Gallagher, Jr.Won
Best Direction of a MusicalMichael MayerWon
Best ChoreographyBill T. JonesWon
Best OrchestrationsDuncan SheikWon
Best Scenic DesignChristine JonesNominated
Best Costume DesignSusan HilfertyNominated
Best Lighting DesignKevin AdamsWon
Drama Desk Award[50]Outstanding MusicalWon
Outstanding Book of a MusicalSteven SaterNominated
Outstanding Actor in a MusicalJohn Gallagher, Jr.Nominated
Jonathan GroffNominated
Outstanding Actress in a MusicalLea MicheleNominated
Outstanding Director of a MusicalMichael MayerWon
Outstanding ChoreographyBill T. JonesNominated
Outstanding OrchestrationsDuncan SheikNominated
Outstanding MusicDuncan SheikWon
Outstanding LyricsSteven SaterWon
Lucille Lortel Award[51]Outstanding Musical (tie with In the Heights)Won
Outstanding DirectorMichael MayerNominated
Outstanding ChoreographerBill T. JonesNominated
Outstanding Costume DesignSusan HilfertyNominated
Outstanding Lighting DesignKevin AdamsWon
Outstanding Sound DesignBrian RonanNominated
Drama League Award[52][53]Distinguished Production of a MusicalWon
The Julia Hansen Award for Excellence in DirectingMichael MayerWon
Distinguished PerformanceJohn Gallagher, Jr.Nominated
Jonathan GroffNominated
Theatre World Award[54]Jonathan GroffWon
New York Drama Critics' Circle[55]Best MusicalWon
Outer Critics Circle Award[56]Outstanding New Broadway MusicalWon
Outstanding New ScoreWon
Outstanding Director of a MusicalMichael MayerWon
Obie Award[57]Music and ChoreographyBill T. JonesWon
Broadway.com Audience Choice Award[58]Favorite New Broadway MusicalWon
Favorite Ensemble CastWon
Favorite Leading Actor in a Broadway MusicalJonathan GroffWon
Favorite Featured Actor in a Broadway MusicalJohn Gallagher, Jr.Won
Favorite Onstage PairJonathan Groff and Lea MicheleWon
Favorite Breakthrough Performance (Male)Jonathan GroffWon
Favorite Breakthrough Performance (Female)Lea MicheleWon
2008Grammy Award[59]Best Musical Show AlbumWon

Original London production[edit]

YearAward CeremonyCategoryNomineeResult
2010Laurence Olivier AwardBest New MusicalWon
Best Actor in a MusicalAneurin BarnardWon
Best Actress in a MusicalCharlotte WakefieldNominated
Best Performance in a Supporting Role in a MusicalIwan RheonWon
Best Theatre ChoreographerBill T. JonesNominated
Best Lighting DesignKevin AdamsNominated
Best Sound DesignBrian RonanWon

Proposed film adaptations[edit]

In 2010, lyricist-librettist Steven Sater told Playbill.com that a film version of Spring Awakening could begin production in Europe in the Spring of 2013.[60] In 2012, Duncan Shiek told Broadwayworld.com that the movie was in development, but not everything was in place yet. In March 2014, it was announced that a producer and director, with Playtone as the production company, was chosen and the movie will include a new song.[61]


  1. ^ Isherwood, Charles (11 December 2006). "Sex and Rock? What would the Kaiser think?". The New York Times. Retrieved 16 September 2012. 
  2. ^ "Spring Awakening". Ibdb.com. Retrieved July 24, 2010. 
  3. ^ "London Theatre News, Reviews, Interviews and more". WhatsOnStage. Retrieved 2014-03-10. 
  4. ^ Estvanik, Nicole "The Outside Man" Theatre Communications Group, retrieved January 15, 2010
  5. ^ a b Pincus-Roth, Zachary."'Spring Awakening' Advance Approaches $2 Million" playbill.com, December 12, 2006
  6. ^ Gans, Andrew and Jones, Kenneth."Spring Is Here: 'Spring Awakening' Debuts on Broadway Nov. 16" playbill.com, November 16, 2006
  7. ^ "Spring Awakening Review Roundup". BroadwayWorld.com. Retrieved 2014-03-10. 
  8. ^ Pincus-Roth, Zachary.Spring Awakening Advance Approaches $2 Million" playbill.com, December 12, 2006
  9. ^ Gans, Andrew and Hetrick, Adam."'Spring Awakening' Recoups on Broadway" playbill.com, August 28, 2007
  10. ^ [1][dead link]
  11. ^ Anthony, Ellen. "Hidden Broadway Treasures Revealed". Broadway Magazine. Retrieved April 7, 2012. 
  12. ^ Hetrick, Adam."Spring Awakening National Tour Ends Run in Orlando May 23" playbill.com, May 23, 2010
  13. ^ Gans, Andrew."Christopher Wood and Elizabeth Judd to Head New Tour of Spring Awakening'" playbill.com, July 21, 2010
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External links[edit]