The Spring Awakening Project
While Wedekind harshly indicts the older generation, these artists have a more generous attitude. In the Wedekind play, a father disowns his dead son while a headmaster assures him the boy wouldn't have been promoted anyhow; in the Sebacher version, parents are more ignorant than cruel, but parental pressure and rejection of sexuality precipitates suicide, rape, and a botched abortion nonetheless.
Caleb Kruzel's music, evocative and sometimes ominous, underscores this dark story. The strong lyrics are by Kruzel, Austin Michael Tracy, and Steve Dudas.
TSAP began in space provided at the Performance Network Theater (PNT) in June and has reopened at Pot and Box, a flower store on Felch, where it plays through August 2 (see calendar listing). Scenic designer Janine Woods Thoma suggests both an outdoor landscape, with trees and leaves cut from journal pages and indoor areas in a tiny space. In this frankly theatrical production, lack of realistic detail is a plus. At the start, actors dressed in street clothes offer fruit to spectators, then change into costumes before the audience.
This is the first offering of the New Theater Project, founded and directed by Medelis, the latest entrant to a thriving off-PNT scene. Some scenes soar, and though the production is rough-hewn in a couple of spots, in all, it is well worth seeing.