- Kirstyn Smith
- 27 May 2011
Frank Wedekind's controversial play given the music treatment by theatre company Sell a Door
Frank Wedekind’s original German language play caused a stir throughout the early 1900s due to its hard-hitting themes and liberal attitudes towards the problems teenagers face growing up. The 2006 rock musical adaptation doesn’t stray far from this controversial reputation, having gained a cult following among those who love the darker side of musical theatre. Now Sell a Door theatre company are taking Spring Awakening on its first ever UK tour and musical director David Hutchinson believes it’s a piece for our times.
‘Spring Awakening is special because it still resonates with younger audiences today. I think the following the musical has picked up in its relatively short life is the best indication of the success it has had in defining new musical theatre and generating new audiences.’
The show deals with a number of intense themes, abortion, homosexuality and child abuse among them. Permeating the show is a recurring sense of teenagers against the world, radicalised by a disturbed relationship with their prudish guardians. Hutchinson hopes this too will draw a new audience.
‘The musical demonstrates what happens when people stop listening to teens. We all grew up, we all went through certain challenges. I don’t think there will ever be a time when theatre stops exploring this stage; it will always be relevant and current.’
While the show veers throughout between comedy and pathos it is not for the faint of heart.
‘Expect some surprises. If you were to read the lyrics out of context you’d be shocked at what the cast can get away with!’
Macrobert, Stirling, Thu 26–Sat 28 May.