Spring Awakening [Original Broadway Cast Recording] [Explicit Lyrics]

( 31 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
Lyricist/librettist Steve Sater, who adapted Frank Wedekind's controversial 1891 play Spring Awakening into a musical along with composer Duncan Sheik, cites the shootings at Columbine as an inspiration to take on the story of adolescent explorations into sex and identity at a German secondary school. It's a telling corollary, since he and Sheik have created a work that exists in a fantasy world containing elements of both the late 19th century and the early 21st. In his liner notes to the original Broadway cast album, Sater reveals that Sheik, a pop
ock singer/songwriter, had problems with the standard conceit in musicals in which ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
Lyricist/librettist Steve Sater, who adapted Frank Wedekind's controversial 1891 play Spring Awakening into a musical along with composer Duncan Sheik, cites the shootings at Columbine as an inspiration to take on the story of adolescent explorations into sex and identity at a German secondary school. It's a telling corollary, since he and Sheik have created a work that exists in a fantasy world containing elements of both the late 19th century and the early 21st. In his liner notes to the original Broadway cast album, Sater reveals that Sheik, a pop
ock singer/songwriter, had problems with the standard conceit in musicals in which characters burst into song in the middle of scenes; Sater's solution was to suggest that the songs could "[function] as interior monologues." This compromise makes for a score unlike most others in musical theater. Although the songs are still to a certain extent imbedded in dramatic scenes and are expressive of character, they also stand apart from the story and complement it. Sater's fearless use of anachronism makes no requirement that the music sound anything like Germany in the 1890s or that the lyrics reflect that era. On the contrary, this is rock-based music with lyrics written in the vernacular of American high school students of the 2000s. ."..I cried out -- like, in Latin: 'This is so not life at all," goes a line in the hard rocking "The Bitch of Living," and there are enough obscenities, some even in the song titles, to get the album a "parental advisory/explicit content" sticker. But there is more going on here than just Goethe-meets-Green Day (or, to be more precise, Wedekind-meets-Weezer). The play, which Sater calls a "Symbolist masterpiece," was not produced for 18 years due to its sexual content, and Sater has retained that in a tale full of hormonal torment, suicidal urges, and adult repression. Meanwhile, much of the symbolism survives in the songs, which can be highly poetic in describing the characters' feelings. "From the beginning, we conceived Spring Awakening as both a piece of musical theater and a pop
ock album," Sater notes, and the cast album is, as a result, in some ways a sequel to the 2001 Sheik album Phantom Moon, on which Sater also collaborated, with a bunch of talented, expressive young singers substituting for Sheik. As such, the rock songs never really rock all the way through, and the ballads have a quality of recitative -- if these are interior monologues, they also indulge in a rambling stream-of-consciousness. As such, Spring Awakening does not work as well as a rock musical as Rent because it is not committed to rock as a form. At the same time, it will read as "rock" by musical theater fans who will need only the sound of an electric guitar and the sight of performers holding microphones to classify it as such. The best audience for it may well be the real-life counterparts of the teenagers making their first discoveries about life and love on the stage, an audience largely lost to Broadway as of 2006 (except for Wicked) who could respond to Spring Awakening for the same reason audiences always respond to a piece of popular entertainment, because it reflects back at them something of themselves.
San Francisco Chronicle - Robert Hurwitt
Adolescent sexual longings, rebellion and angst surge from almost every track.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 12/12/2006
  • Label: Decca Broadway
  • UPC: 602517131491
  • Catalog Number: 000802002
  • Sales rank: 12,672

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Duncan Sheik Indexed Contributor, Guitar
Kimberly Grigsby Harmonium, Keyboards
Krysta Rodriguez cast
Hiroko Taguchi Viola
Danielle Farina Viola
Olivier Manchon Violin
Jonathan Groff cast
Tom Deckman Vocals, cast
Jonathan B. Wright Vocals, cast
George Farmer Bass
Ben Kalb Cello
Lea Michele Vocals, cast
Skylar Astin cast
Lauren Pritchard Vocals, cast
Phoebe Strole cast
John Gallagher Jr. Vocals
Trey Files Drums
Simone Hale Harmonium
Gideon Glick Vocals
Jennifer Damiano cast
Thad DeBrock Guitar
Technical Credits
Greg Calbi Mastering
Duncan Sheik Composer, Programming, Producer, Orchestration, Audio Production
Simon Hale Arranger, Orchestration
Mike Tudor Engineer
Kimberly Grigsby Musical Director, Music Direction
Steve Sater Lyricist, Liner Notes, Book
AnnMarie Milazzo Vocal Arrangements
Chris Roberts Executive Producer
Michael Tudor Engineer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 31 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(22)

4 Star

(5)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(2)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 31 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    GREAT AWAKENING

    This show is a great example of a great modern musical. I can see why older people may not like it very much but i find it amazing. The young voices are beautiful and the score is electrifying, in some songs like "the darkness i know well" your hart is literally ponding with the drums. This has to be one of the greatest musicals currently on Broadway. This is the NEW Broadway Musical, not that the old way wasn't great but the new way is just as good. My advise is to listen to it with an open mind.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 25, 2014

    This entire soundtrack is perfect. I first discovered and fell i

    This entire soundtrack is perfect. I first discovered and fell in love with Mama Who Bore Me Reprise and Those You've Known and as I quickly began to love more and more of the songs I decided to purchase this. Lea Michele has the voice of an angel and Whispering and Mama Who Bore Me quietly ring with the quality of her singing. The instrumentation is pretty subtle but always fits perfectly. Those You've Known is one of my favorite songs of all time.

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Spring Awakening breaks new ground in musical theatre!

    This musical that is based on a late-nineteenth century play by Frank Wedekind. The material is eternal. As we are in that turbulant time between childhood and adulthood, we are only beginning to learn not only who we are but what we are. We all try to be ourselves but also try to fit into what we know as the "social norms". No one wants to be the "outcast" as a teenager. The music, written by Duncan Sheik, is both haunting and powerful. The lyrics, written by Steve Sater, speak to us at any age. As a teen, you identify with at least on of these characters and it gives you hope that something is better on the other side of adolesence. As an adult, you remember the hell of your teenage days and might just aid you in guiding your teen through these tough times. It also does not shy away from the topic of gay relationships or sexual abuse. I send out cheers for any art that brings these subjects to light and deals with them honestly. The performances from the cast on these songs are amazing. They show depth and range of emotion as well as vocal talent. There is something to be said when you can be told an entire story by the songs alone. All in all, I found this recording amazing and I have to thank my friend for recommending it to me and I hope that I get to see this musical sometime soon.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Wow!

    I saw the show last night in Pittsburgh and was it amazing! I went in thinking i would just like it but as soon as it started my heart was pounding. The music was so intense and by intermission it had past up wicked as my favorite musical! I am so sick of people saying it is not as good a Rent. If you want to get technically this show "totally f***ed" Rent. It was so much better than rent and that is why people say its not as good the are jealous of this theatrical masterpiece and don't want to admit it's better. Spring Awakening is the best musical in the world!

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Hate the story, love the music

    I hated the premise of this show and thought it was a waste of time - when it came to the story. HOWEVER, the music is fantastic! Duncan Sheik is really great and delivers some amazing stuff here. I highly recommend the music to anyone is 'barely breathing' . . .<BR/><BR/>I've also recommended some other great cast albums if that's what you're looking for!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    My favorite musical, EVER

    As an actress who has had the privilege of actually working on Broadway, I am a very tough critic. And some of these reviews are really funny. I like the first guy, who wrote, "I hope this show fails on Broadway." Too bad it swept the Tonys last year! This show was destined to succeed from the very beginning because it is a show that is able to speak to the next generation of theater lovers on a level never reached before. It is a beautifully written play that was only made better by Stephen Sater and Duncan Sheik. I was blown away the first time I saw it, while still in previews and unknown to all. And I continue to be blown away each and every time I see it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Besty Show Ever!

    I am going to start this out by saying that even though the songs are the same songs as the ones in the show, they are actually quite different on the CD. (there were many changes to the lyrics once it hit broadway) With that being said, The music to this show is the work of two amazing musicians. Sheik and Sater scored this soundtrack to a pre existing play. There are some thigs that are "adult content" but that make the show what it is! Both the show and music are for a mature audience! The vocal talent from this young cast is overwelming! the characters are supposed to be young teens, so the under 24 cast fits the show to perfection! This musical is truely different and is changing broadway as we know it forever! Broadway is no longer for "our parents" generation and it starts to test the boundries! RENT trys to do what Spring Awakening does! This show has already recieves MANY awards (some consist of 8 tonys and most recently a Grammy for this soundtrack!) and will only continue to recieve more! This show is NOT for everybody, but I highly recomend it!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    a reviewer

    To start with, I would like to say that I am not some stodgy, old Broadway fan who needs glitz, glitter, and huge orchestral, "showtune-y" songs. I'm all for new Broadway. I like classics, but I also like the contemporary. That being said, I was not blown away by "Spring Awakening". I've heard a lot of comparisons to "RENT", and have to respectfully disagree. While "RENT's" biggest strength was its heart and emotions, "Spring Awakening" was sadly lacking in that area. It is much better live. When you actually see it, you are forced, just as in other plays/musicals, to connect with the characters. However, the album is underwhelming, emotionally. After "Whispering", I thought, Okay, here's a gorgeous girl, with a gorgeous voice, singing a gorgeous song...who cares? Lea Michele is beautiful her voice is sweet and pure, and the song in question has lovely, poetic lyrics and a flowing score, but I honestly didn't care. The actors were not acting their songs. I definitely enjoyed some songs though don't get me wrong. "Don't Do Sadness" made me...well...sad, and I enjoyed "The Bit-ooh, better not say that here-of Living". However, these stood out to me as being expressive. I realize that the under-stated style is some people's taste, and I understand the appeal of "Spring Awakening", but I was unimpressed. This is not to say that I thought that it was a bad musical, that it was underserving of its Tony, or that you will dislike it it just wasn't my cup of tea. Okay, all of my semicolons were deleted, so if you find an empty space in which a semicolon should go, it probably was there, but it got deleted. I tried to go back and fix them all, but I might have missed some.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The Newest Form of Broadway Musical

    This is an outstanding cast recording, and it is even more amazing to see live. The music is different from many of the musicals popular today, it has a much more pop feel. Spring Awakening could be considered in the same category as RENT. The young cast, all members are under the age of 24, gives an amazing performance. Jonathan Gallagher Jr. stands out with his memorable "Don't Do Sadness" while the whole cast wows throughout the soundtrack. Every member of this troupe is very talented and deserves a listen. The music is amazing and the story beautiful, but it is not for very young children. I would not recommend this for anyone under 13 due to some explicit language (in two song titles) and the intensity of the material. However, this is a Musical not to be missed.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A reviewer

    I saw this musical in April, with no idea what it was about -- I literally knew nothing about it. And I was utterly blown away. The power and energy of the music and the cast was so incredible that I couldn't stop thinking about it for days. I bought the soundtrack as soon as I could and listen to it very frequently. It saw it again the night after the Tony awards and was blown away all over again. I should note that the soundtrack doesn't compare to a live performance, but I suppose that isn't unusual. Most of the songs are better live, but a few I like better on the soundtrack, like "Touch Me". Highly recommended!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    This musical is in poor taste.

    I think the lyrics are horrible and stupid. I think the voices sound amateurish. The music is sometimes tolerable, but often it is terrible.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    One of the Best

    This musical is one of the best, most fresh and original in years! Highly recommended!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A Defining New Show

    A show I would be proud to be a part of. I've never been taken by a new musical so quickly. Spring Awakening grabbed me the first time I saw a video sample of it. It is by no means a typical Broadway musical, and why should it be? I'm a Broadway fan, and having said that, I think this is the best show out there right now. The music is brilliant and will win the show great respect. Pay attention come Tony time. This show will sweep.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Finally...a musical without "showtunes"

    As another "real" theater lover, I have to disagree with the previous review and say that Spring Awakening is a must-see. The hauntingly beatiful score perfectly captures the universal passion and angst of the teenage years. Also, the young cast-particularly Jonathan Groff as Melchior-radiates talent. Broadway has never before been host to a show so bold, true, and completely captivating.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    WORST EXCUSE FOR A BROADWAY MUSICAL SCORE!

    I never heard such a load of crap for music and lyrics written for a Broadway musical in my life! Absolutely atonal, repetitive horrible excuse for music that sounds like it was recorded in the depths of hell! I hope this show fails on Broadway, because if this is what most of the NY critics think is a brilliant piece of work, then Broadway theater must be going down the drain. Pathetic!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The best Rock Musical...Ever!

    This truly is a personal show. I just saw it In NYC and it was breathtaking. The album is the best rock musical I've heard since RENT. It was actaully better than RENT. Rent is a great album, but terrible production. It has a dark grey set. The message it sends is wonderful. But honestly, how many of you and your 7 closest friends are dying of aids! The set for Spring Awakening comes to life each night with color and power that will blow you away! Spring Awakening is in tune to all people. Sex, grades, abuse, the need to fit in...all true. I was sitting front center and cried at one part. Theatre has never made me do that! This album is a MUST for any theatre lover. If you, like some, only like the classics and expect a fabulous set and huge orchestra music...don't buy. But if you have ever been ALIVE...truly alive, than by this album. The Best Rock Musical Ever!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Umm...

    I'm kind of conflicted. I agree that many of the songs are repetitive, but I must admit that there are a few that I really enjoyed. And the thing that gets me through those not-so-good songs are the performers' voices. Especially that guy who plays Melchior he ROCKS!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Breathtaking

    See, in my opinion, Broadway these days is lacking. It consists of revivals, rip-offs of movies and such, or plain crap. Things like 'The Drowsy Chaperone' and 'Grey Gardens' all have that corny, old sound to them. Why can't we be introduced to something fresh and inspired? Something that we have never heard before. Enter 'Spring Awakening'. A vibrant combination of old and new. The voices are lovely (Jonathon Graff and Lea Michele are awesome) and the score is brilliant (while it has its rock moments, it also has subtle, heartfelt ballads). Even if you object to it at first because it doesn't seem to be 'your style', I recommend that you at least try this recording. A little taste of something new never hurt anybody. This was an innovative, exciting, new look at the play 'Spring Awakening' that all should be able to enjoy.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 26, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 31 Customer Reviews