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Dear Evan Hansen: A musical with powerful messages and strong emotion

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Dear Evan Hansen Playbill at the Music Box Theatre, New York City on November 4.

Dear Evan Hansen Playbill at the Music Box Theatre, New York City on November 4.

Sophie Ralph

Sophie Ralph

Dear Evan Hansen Playbill at the Music Box Theatre, New York City on November 4.

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The hit new musical Dear Evan Hansen has been a huge success for several reasons. The musical appeals to students by addressing the themes of loneliness and suicide in a high school setting, and it strikes a chord with its audience.

 

Dear Evan Hansen focuses on high school senior and outsider Evan Hansen, who struggles heavily with social anxiety and is further isolated by the prevalence of social media. He feels invisible, and all he wants is to be seen. A misinterpreted note written to himself falls into the hands of another student, Connor Murphy, who commits suicide with the note in his possession. Connor Murphy is an outcast like Evan, only he struggles with depression and drug addiction. After Connor’s death, a rumor quickly spreads that the two were friends. Since the Murphy family are struggling to cope with Connor’s death, Evan tries to console the family by saying he was friends with their son and brother. The lie continues to spiral once Evan creates fake emails between him and Connor. When he gives a speech at Connor’s memorial, he inadvertently becomes an inspirational internet sensation. 

 

Dear Evan Hansen is a heart-wrenching, beautiful musical that every high school student can relate to in some way. Students who struggle with anxiety or depression can associate themselves with these imperfect characters. In addition to showing how difficult teenage years can be, Dear Evan Hansen also sheds light on the parents’ perspective and displays how demanding it can be for them as well as their teenagers.

 

The musical grew in popularity after winning several awards at the 2017 Tony Awards. The Tony Awards are accolades that recognize the excellence of Broadway musicals and plays. According to Playbill.com, Dear Evan Hansen won the following awards: “Best Musical”, “Best Book of a Musical” (Dear Evan Hansen: Through a Window by Steven Levenson), and “Best Score”. Individually, actor Ben Platt won “Best Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical” and Rachel Bay Jones won “Best Performance by an Actress in Featured Role a Musical”. In addition, the musical received 9 Tony nominations. The musical won “Best Score” due to the efforts and talents of composers Benj Pasek and Justin Paul along with the orchestrator Alex Lacamoire.

 

Dear Evan Hansen is currently only performed in the Music Box Theater located in New York City. The cast begins their United States Tour in 2018. People can still experience the musical by listening to the album in Spotify, on YouTube, and other music streaming services.

 

Ben Platt, the lead actor who played character Evan Hansen, took his last bow on November 19, and Noah Galvin replaced him on November 21. Galvin performed with the rest of the original cast at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. The group presented the song “You Will be Found” from the musical during the parade last Thursday.

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Dear Evan Hansen: A musical with powerful messages and strong emotion