Auditions and Show Dates coming soon.
Spring Awakening is based on the German play of the same name, written by Frank Wedekind in 1891. Upon its publication, it faced controversy for its criticism of the sexual and cultural oppression of 19th century Europe. It has been banned as recently as the 1960’s for its unashamed portrayal of desire, homosexuality, rape, abuse, abortion and suicide.
The play centres on Melchior, a highly intelligent free thinker, who sees how this oppressive society affects his close friends. Cynical and frustrated, he resents how his peers are being controlled by religion and traditional thinking. His best friend Moritz, a frazzled and nervous boy, threatened with expulsion if he fails his exams and fearful of being a disappointment to his parents is haunted by erotic dreams that he doesn’t understand.
Similarly Wendla, a kind and curious girl, begs for her mother to explain conception to her as her body matures and her desires change. The story very much follows these three as they interact with their classmates, all facing similar problems. Martha faces physical and sexual abuse from her father but cannot confront him for fear of being left on the streets. An old classmate Ilse, faced similar abuse from her father and ran away from home, living in an artist’s colony. The whole lot of them are trapped in this world, unable to express themselves or show weakness or feel alive. Here is where the musical differs from the play. When a song begins, it is almost a separate world. The children abandon their 19th century confines and become contemporary rock stars, full of passion, anger and longing. We want cast members interacting with our band, just as crucial to the story as they are.
It is really only in these songs that the characters’ true emotions are felt, so it is crucial that actors can portray emotions through song. After Melchior discovers that Moritz will be expelled from school, he seeks comfort in Wendla, who happens upon him. They share an intimate kiss which leads to intercourse, which of course, Wendla doesn’t understand. Moritz, driven to madness by his parents’ expectation commits suicide and Wendla discovers later that she is pregnant, unaware of how it is possible. The blame for these events goes on Melchior who sent away to reform school and faces bullying. Upon hearing of Wendla’s pregnancy, Melchior escapes the school to rush to her aid. His letter to her asks her to meet him in the graveyard, to run away. As he waits, he stumbles on Moritz’s grave saddened, almost missing the fresh grave next 12 to it. He discovers that Wendla is buried there, dead from a botched abortion. He pulls a razor out, intending to kill himself where the ghosts of Moritz and Wendla come out to comfort him. They urge him to go on living, to change the world, knowing that their memory will live on with him. Ending our sad story on a hopeful note.
As you can tell from this brief synopsis, these are some heavy themes. Switching between private worlds of desire and grief, to 19th century Germany will require lots of rehearsal time and workshopping.
Apart from being a challenging musical vocally, we want you to prove your skills as an actor and show that you leave nothing back. We’re looking for a cast of enthusiastic and open-minded people, willing to do ensemble work, throw away inhibitions and completely embody a character. Don’t be shy – we’re the friendliest production team on the planet, come show off your talents and register today.
Bishops Stortford Academy of Performing Arts are a company professionally staging West End & Broadway Shows for young people at Rhodes Arts Complex whilst also providing a broad spectrum of the performing arts including Drama, Plays, Dance Shows and Workshops.
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We provide opportunities for students to develop singing, acting and dancing, whilst building their confidence and learning life changing skills, all whilst having fun. Sign up today and enjoy the benefits of membership and take part in our productions at South Mill Arts.