“Spring Awakening” premiered on Thursday, Mar. 15, at the Fullerton College Campus Theatre.
Directed by Timothy Espinosa, this rock musical is based off a German play of the same title by Frank Wedekind.
It explores the estrangement of teenagers growing up in a suppressive society where ideas, knowledge, and sexuality are met with tragic consequences.
Set in 1891, the revolutionary play waited 15 years for its first staged production since it pushes controversial topics such as gun violence, lack of sex education, young pregnancy, homosexuality, suicide, child abuse and abandonment.
“They did a fantastic job. Everything came together exceptional. They really put their heart, mind and soul into it,” Espinosa said.
“Spring Awakening is quite appropriate right now politically and socially as it resonates on so many levels with where we are as a country. Look at gun violence or the me too movement, the musical is necessary for where we are in life.”
In terms of production, the technical side, choreography, music, setup, and lights were mesmerizing.
“Absolutely amazing seeing the process from rehearsals to stage and how it all came together,” said choreographer Haley Izurieta.
“As far as the dances go, there weren’t any difficulties, everything went as planned and was absolutely perfect.”
Cast members felt the music, the dialect and the issues spoke to them.
“It was the best performance up to this point. The crowd added a lot of energy to it,” said Frank Cope who played Hanschen.
“I didn’t know about the musical before but now it’s my favorite since it connects with me personally and with kids nowadays who are feeling trapped. The musical brings awareness and it offers resolution like in the finale ‘The Song of Purple Summer.’”
The musical makes audiences reflect on social taboos and gives space for young people to express how they truly feel rather than oppress their ideas or consider it moral corruption.
“It is not just a typical musical, it is art that speaks to you,” said Kyle Thurmond, a stage management student.
“The story is something that kids go through every day, a feeling of being trapped in their heads, by school, church or at home.”
“Spring Awakening” will run through March 17 with showtimes starting at 7:30 p.m.
The show will run for about two hours and is reserved seating. Doors will open 30 minutes before the show starts.
Admission is $15 at the door and presale tickets are $12.50.
For more information about this event, visit the Fullerton College Theater Arts Department website.