Musical goes beyond its genre



By Judah Taylor | @KyKernel

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Most musicals are, as my brother would call them, “happy go lucky.”

They are filled with the grandeur and embellishment that he would say belong in a Nicholas Sparks novel, and nowhere else.

He has not seen “Spring Awakening,” though. It is, by all accounts, something completely different. “Spring” may be in the title, but the music will not remind you of Julie Andrews.

The sound of this music will actually have fans of any good indie band like Tame Impala or any punk-rock band like Blink-182 fist pumping at the stage.

And it will deal with the sort of things that Mötley Crüe might be doing backstage. There’s a masturbation scene, plenty of sex and even a suicide.

This is not a child’s play, even if it is about them. The play follows a group of “children,” if you can call them that, who are discovering themselves.

The problem is, who they are isn’t exactly regarded as socially acceptable in 1890s Germany.

The show deals with these kids becoming atheists, homosexuals, fornicators and, well, adults.

Because of that, it was banned in Germany for a long time and until recently has been considered controversial.

Covering a lot of risqué and sometimes oversaturated themes, the play manages to do so tastefully and with class.

Even in a way my mother and my brother could enjoy. The original Broadway cast didn’t win almost 30 awards — eight of them being Tony Awards — for no reason.

Performing on an incredibly designed and constructed set, which already says a lot about the industrial German society, UK’s cast delivered a performance that was as good as it gets.

But don’t take my word for it. The original Broadway Melchior, Jonathan Groff, told UK Theatre Chair Nancy Jones that UK’s performers were as good as the ones he worked with on Broadway.

The play is critically acclaimed as one of the best being performed today, and an award-winning Broadway actor said they were as good as he was.

The only controversy here is which night you should go see “Spring Awakening.”

Final performances for “Spring Awakening” are Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. in the Guignol Theatre. Tickets are $10 for students and $15 for the general public.