facebook play-alt chevron-thin-right chevron-thin-left cancel location info chevron-thin-down star-full help-with-circle calendar images mail whatsapp directions_car directions_bike train directions_walk directions_bus close spinner11

Spring Awakening

First Published 27 March 2009, Last Updated 19 March 2010

Already a hit stateside, Spring Awakening is both a new musical and a new kind of musical, a rallying call for teen angst where microphones symbolically give power back to the confused, hormonal, experimental adolescents of a 19th century village rife with parental and religious oppression.

This is not a musical where conversations burst into song, but where songs which have been pent up and burning inside burst from characters who can no longer hold them in.

The musical juxtaposes times and styles. The 19th century story is mixed with a distinctly 21st century score which owes a debt to the American teen rock that grew out of the melange of pop, punk, grunge and indie.

The plot, taken from Frank Wedekind’s play, is an ensemble piece with a trio of characters at its centre: the talented, idealistic Melchior (a Lee Mead-like Aneurin Barnard); the troubled, struggling Moritz (Iwan Rheon) who is haunted by his strange new feelings; and the pure, inquisitive Wendla (Charlotte Wakefield), who simply wants to understand and experience life.

If it didn’t have such popularity among a similar audience demographic, Spring Awakening could almost be seen as the antidote to High School Musical. Where the Disney musical is all cheesy grins, schoolyard troubles and pop, Spring Awakening touches on abuse, sex, abortion, suicide and the darker side of adolescence through rock that is sometimes guitar-thrashing and sometimes contemplative.

This is not to say that it is all gloom and doom; the show comes with light and shade. Show stealing numbers like The B**ch Of Living and Totally F**ked are a fabulous outlet for the anger we have all felt during teenage years, though the seething rage of duet The Dark I Know Well sticks in the mind long after the curtain comes down. There is also humour aplenty in Steven Sater’s book and lyrics, but never at the expense of a story with a satisfying, if tragic, realism.

The fact that it is only on reading the programme that you realise the majority of the young cast are making their professional stage debuts in Spring Awakening speaks volumes for their slickness and success in testing roles. The guiding, experienced hands of the Richard Cordery and Sian Thomas, who play all of the production’s almost universally disagreeable adults, must have helped mould the performances of this next generation of performers with the passion, talent and energy to move from this success to become the future of British musical theatre.



Sign up

Related articles

If you click through to seat selection (where you'll see either best available or a seating plan), you will be seeing the most up-to-date prices. If this differs from what we've written on the calendar, please bear with us, as those prices will update soon.

We now sell our famous TKTS Booth discounts online here at Official London Theatre.

We are now cancelling all performances up until and including 31 May 2020 to help us process existing bookings whilst we wait for further clarity from the government in terms of when we will be able to reopen.

We are so sorry that in these testing and difficult times you are not able to enjoy the show you have booked for and hope the following helps clarify next steps in respect of your tickets .

There is nothing that you need to do if your performance has been cancelled, but we do ask for your patience.

If you have booked directly with the theatre or show website for an affected performance, please be assured that they will contact you directly to arrange an exchange for a later date, a credit note/voucher or a refund. If you have booked via a ticket agent they will also be in contact with you directly.

We are processing in strict date order of performance, so you are likely to be contacted after the date you were due to go to the theatre. However, we want to reassure you that you will be contacted, and your order will be processed, but please do bear with us.

We’d like to thank everyone who has been patient and kind in dealing with their ticket providers so far and we are sorry that we cannot process your order as quickly as we would like.

Please do not contact your credit card company as that will slow the process down and put an additional burden on our box office and ticket agent teams.

In order for us to serve our audiences the best we can, please do not get in touch with your point of sale if you have booked for performances after 31 May. Please be reassured that if we have to cancel future performances you will be directly contacted by your theatre or ticket provider. Our producers continue to plan for all eventualities dependent on the individual needs of their shows and we will provide further updates on specific shows as and when they become available.

We look forward to welcoming you back into our theatres as soon as we are allowed to resume performances. In the meantime stay safe and healthy.

While theatres are currently closed, various venues and productions are making announcements for their individual shows, including cancellations and rescheduled performances. Please check with the individual shows for details.