photo: Monique Carboni
My friend and I risked the scolding looks of strangers by taking her two twelve year old daughters and their schoolfriend to Spring Awakening. Fifteen minutes in, the first question was whispered my way: "When is this supposed to take place, Patrick?" Big thumbs down on the "stupid" on-stage seating. But otherwise, according to the three middleschool gals, it is "a great story" that is "like Rent" and "good for teenagers to see." All three agreed that they liked "the gay guy" (Jonathan B. Wright) and that Jonathan Groff would be cute if he didn't spit so much ("That's SO gross!") At intermission they pronounced the "I can feel your heart beating" lyric "way cheesey". Nonetheless, they had the cast album loaded into their IPods in a matter of days right alongside Fall Out Boy and Blink 182, deciding that "I Don't Do Sadness" and "The Bitch Of Living" were the show's hits, and that the musical is even better than their previous favorites Hairspray and Wicked. Best performance? John Gallagher; even I could agree with that. Critic-approved and tween-tested, Spring Awakening will win the Tony for Best Musical in June. It won't even be close.