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Spring Awakening: A New Musical Explicit Lyrics, Cast Recording

171 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Explicit Lyrics, Cast Recording, December 12, 2006
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Decca Broadway presents the cast recording for the acclaimed new Broadway production, SPRING AWAKENING. Written by pop music composer Duncan Sheik and playwright/lyricist Steven Sater, the musical explores emotional earthquakes in the lives of teenagers.

SPRING AWAKENING is based on Frank Wedekind's controversial 1891 drama, which was scandalous in its day for addressing sex violence and suicide. The story, dialogue and costumes suggest the 19th Century, and are perfectly wedded to a beautiful alternative pop music score by Grammy® nominated singer/songwriter Duncan Sheik. The creative team also includes Tony® Award Winning director Michael Mayer (Thoroughly Modern Millie) and legendary choreographer Bill T. Jones.

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Who would have thought that Duncan Sheik would succeed where Paul Simon and Randy Newman failed, successfully transitioning from the pop-rock world to the Broadway stage? With Spring Awakening, Sheik and book writer/lyricist Steven Slater (who had already worked on Sheik's 2001 album Phantom Moon) have created a thoroughly exciting show that incorporates a contemporary art-indie idiom (including a small rock band instead of an orchestra) into a dramatic musical-theater context. The unlikely setting is that of a Frank Wedekind adaptation, but as it turns out, teenage angst is perennial, whether it's in contemporary America or in a 1891 German boarding school. Songs such as "The Bitch of Living" ("with nothing going on, asking just what went wrong"), "The Word of Your Body," "I Don't Do Sadness," and "Totally Fucked" ("You're fucked if you speak your mind and you know you will") resonate with the rage, frustration, confusion, excitement, joy, anger, and of course budding lust of those hormone-driven years. The show is greatly enhanced by its youthful cast members (they're all pretty close in age to their characters), who sing their hearts out. --Elisabeth Vincentelli

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (December 12, 2006)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Explicit Lyrics, Cast Recording
  • Label: Verve
  • ASIN: B000J3FBFC
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (171 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #15,559 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

42 of 48 people found the following review helpful By I. Sondel VINE VOICE on March 25, 2007
Format: Audio CD
I saw this on Broadway without having heard this recording. In this particular case I'm glad I didn't as my experience of total shock and surprise and wonderment may somehow have been diminished. As I sat in my seat at The Eugene O'Neill Theatre I was held spellbound by the energy, talent and beauty of this cast (which features multiple Tony winner Stephen Spinella). However, as great as the cast is (and they are indeed great), the stars of the night were director Michael Mayer, choreographer Bill Jones and the composing team of Duncan Sheik and Steven Sater.

A teenage angst musical set in Germany circa 1890 and featuring a rock n roll score didn't actually sound like something that would interest me. Yet, in the hands of these grossly talented people, this material has been reanimated into a work of fabulous art, rooted in tradition and yet wholly original.

I picked up this CD after I returned home and have listened to it several times - and still cry. The music and lyrics are top drawer. The cast in dynamic. This is quality rock and roll - the high energy numbers are terrific, but the ballads (and they are plentiful) are what keep me listening again and again. Buy this CD (see this show).
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26 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Miles Teg on December 30, 2006
Format: Audio CD
I saw this show at the Eugene O'Neill Theater just after Christmas and about 30 seconds into Lea Michele's hauntingly beautiful opening solo number, "Mamma Who Bore Me", I knew I was witnessing something special. I'm old enough to remember when groundbreaking shows/albums such as "Hair", "Tommy", and "Jesus Christ Superstar" burst onto the scene and I got the same feeling while watching Act I of "Spring Awakening", that this was something new and vital.

Now before I get flamed, I don't think "Spring Awakening" is on the same level, either in terms of quality or originality, as those classics from the late-60's musical revolution. But I've become bored to tears with, as one reviewer aptly described it, "the era of jukebox and made-by-corporate committee film-to-musical shows". "Spring Awakening" is a wake up call for the Broadway musical genre, something fresh and alive. It's youthful energy, creativity, and hormones splashed all over the stage. As some critics have noted, it's uneven in places but the best part of the show is the part being reviewed here, i.e. the soundtrack.

The score is terrific and the performances are outstanding. The lyrics are a bit obscure at times, but are spot on in most songs (e.g. "Totally F*cked").

Highly recommended.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Justin on January 2, 2007
Format: Audio CD
I saw the play version of this about 3 years ago and found it both deeply moving and very engaging. I always thought it would make a good musical, I just never thought it could be done as a pop/rock musical, but it CAN. "Spring Awakening" is the most amazing thing I have ever seen on stage. The cast and direction were incredible. The story of teenagers coming of age in 19th century repression may seem like a far off topic for a Broadway musical, but the music (which is both poetic and emotional) connects it to contemporary audiences. It transports you back to the memories of when you were 13 and discovering who you are and how things work. It's both frightening and rewarding. And it's interesting to watch teenagers who either know absolutely nothing about sex (the character Wendla believes babies come from Storks) or feel that sexuality is so evil it will send them to hell, experience feelings of eroticism, pleasure, attraction, and puberty and all the confusion and mystery that goes with it. Many people may find this subject matter offensive, in fact many audiences members left during intermission, but the same thing happened when "West Side Story", "Sweeny Todd", and "Rent" first opened and now they are classics.

This musical takes risks, breaks conventional musical rules, and it proves that Musical theatre is changing. It has to. How can anyone expect a living art form to remain stagnant when the world is changing around it? For years I've been hearing about the death of Broadway. And it's true that Broadway has been caught in a time warp of shallow, commercial safety, with big-budget producers and uninspired "non-risk" fluff, I mean just look at "Tarzan", "Mamma Mia", and all the revivals that keep getting redone over and over. This show gives me hope for the future of Broadway and of Musical Theatre.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Robert G Yokoyama VINE VOICE on June 11, 2007
Format: Audio CD
This is a cast recording of a musical about teenage sexuality. This is also a musical about what can happen when parents do not communicate with their children. It is a sad show with a serious tone, but the music is great. Duncan Sheik did an excellent job composing these songs. There are so many strong performances here. Lea Michelle has a beautiful singing voice on track "Mama Who Bore Me" She plays the female lead Wendela. Lea Michelle is also superb on the track "Whispering" My other favorite track is "The Bitch Of Living" John Gallagher Jr. is so good singing lead vocals with the cast. This rock song really pumps me up. "I Believe is a such a pretty track, and so is the track Song Of The Purple Summer" These songs are so optimistic and hopeful. I really liked it. Lauren Pitchard shines in her role as IIse. She is a victim of child abuse. She sings the very moving song "The Dark I Know" This song is very powerful and it is one of my favorites on this recording. Jonathan Groff performs the track "The Mirror Blue Night" beautifully. This is a great song about the passage of time. I enjoyed every track on this recording, and I hope to see the show someday.
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Spring Awakening: A New Musical
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