Alexandra Mendes '13 and Luke Martin '14 rehearse for the peformances of "Spring Awakening," Jan. 19 to 21 in Wadsworth Auditorium. /PHOTO BY PROFESSOR MELANIE BLOOD
Geneseo's Vocal Miscellany performers kick off spring arts events this week with the first local production of the 2006 Broadway rock musical hit "Spring Awakening" on Thursday, Jan. 19, through Saturday, Jan. 21, at 8 p.m. in Wadsworth Auditorium.
English Professor Melanie Blood is directing the production with musical direction by vocal coach and accompanist Alan Case.
The musical swept the 2007 Tony Awards for Best Musical, Best Original Score, Best Book of a Musical, Best Director, and Best Choreography, and many other awards.
"So many college students feel a connection to this musical, which demands that the problems of youth are real and that they be taken seriously," says Blood. "I can't remember the last time I saw so many students audition for a show, and they all knew the music before we started."
Geneseo's cast features musical theater major Alexandra Mendes '13 as Wendla, whose ignorance of her own sexuality leads to her pregnancy, and musical theater major Elyssa Ramirez '14 as Ilse, a girl who runs away from an abusive family situation. Psychology and mathematics major Luke Martin '14 portrays Melchior, a teenager rebelling against the educational and religious restrictions of his 1890s provincial German town, and history major Josh Horowitz '13 portrays Moritz, whose failure at school and unsupportive family lead him to suicide.
In spite of the darkly emotional subject matter, the musical provides fun and uplifting moments as cast members break into songs about handling their emerging sexuality, idolizing their crushes, or rebelling against their restrictive schoolmaster.