Back to top
Spring Awakening: Let's Talk About Sex
Based on one of the most banned plays in history for supposedly being "pornographic," the Spring cast tells it's about more than just sex.
By: Laurice Peñamante  |   Published on: Sep 23, 2009 - 9:34am


Back row, L-R: Yanah Laurel as Thea, JC Santos as Hanschen, Miguel Mendoza as Georg, Joaquin Valdes
as Melchior, Nicco Manalo as Moritz, Bea Garcia as Ilse. Front row, L-R: Inno Martin as Otto, Ava Santos
as Anna, Kelly Lati as Wendla, Sitti Navarro as Martha, Nar Cabico as Ernst

It's not about the sex. Not completely.

The cast of Atlantis Productions' staging of Grammy- and Tony-award winning musical Spring Awakening are quick to come to the defense of the rock musical that tackles teenage angst, rebellion and sexual discovery in late 19th century Germany, describing it as more eye-opening than shocking.

Spring is about more than "human sexuality," says director Chari Arespacochaga. It's about the "journey of growing up and finding yourself in whatever time you're living," she adds, and that sexuality is just a part of the trials, the discovery, the challenges of growing up.

Singer Sitti Navarro, who is credited with popularizing bossa nova in the Philippines, sheds her signature singing style to play Marta, a girl sexually abused by her father. Navarro says the play runs the whole "gamut of feelings" that comes with being a teenager: the thrill of first crushes, the confusion and indecision about what to do.

The musical is based on the 1891 play by German dramatist Frank Wedekind. The original play is one of the most banned plays in history and was closed by censors after its opening performances in Berlin (1906) and New York (1912) for supposedly being "pornographic."

With music and lyrics penned by Steven Sater and "Barely Breathing" singer/songwriter Duncan Sheik, the musical resonates among the MTV generation with its rock 'n' roll edge. MTV's John Norris gave his nod to the production in 2007, comparing it to Jonathon Larsons' bohemian-rock Rent. That same year, Spring Awakening walked away with eight Tony awards, including one for Best New Musical.

How do you feel about this article?
Total Votes
We Recommend
Username   * required
Security Code Security Code  * required
NOTE: editors reserve the right to moderate and delete comments, without notice, that contain abusive or threatening behavior, contain advertising, spam, profanity or malicious comments.
  • anonymousâ‘¢
    "Ahhh Ms.Cheska Iñigo,do not forget.".
    May 27 2010 @ 07:08am     Reply  
  • Claudine
    For the record, @ibelieve, Sitti did a great job in playing Martha. Sang "The Dark I Know Well" while crying and still sounding like herself. She nailed the role.
    Oct 21 2009 @ 12:01pm     Reply  
    The Show was great! Mortiz was so good. Two Thumbs Up!
    Oct 09 2009 @ 10:01pm     Reply  
  • felice
    hI! for tickets to the shows on oct 3 and oct 11, pls sms 09178561274. thanks!
    Sep 27 2009 @ 11:49pm     Reply  
  • mardj
    so excited to watch this. I hope Sitti plays an amazing role.. :)
    Sep 25 2009 @ 04:13pm     Reply  
  • laurice.penamante
    @somebody:I share your sentiments.
    @vomit: Although the play and the musical diverged in some points, most of the sentiments echoes and applies for both their generation and ours, especially since many of their conservative institutions still exist today, and these same institutions still confound today's youth and consequently alienate them. By industrialization, do you mean the hastening of technology or of industry? I'm talking about the general sentiment of the musical AND the play, that society aims to teach but holds back information on many things including sex. You can't discount the fact that Wedekind couldn't have written about the children's industrialization without tackling the children's emotions and experiences, ergo, teenage angst and sex. By the way, Gossip girl's not only about sex either, you know, it's also a farce on American high society.
    @mang_nano & iamarayofsunshine: Caught it last night, and except for a few technical glitches, the play lived up to expectations. :)
    @ibelieve: No she's not. It's the capability of the actor/actress that you're supposed to judge, not their age.
    Sep 25 2009 @ 12:07pm     Reply  
  • ibelieve
    sitti is way too old for this
    Sep 24 2009 @ 02:11pm     Reply  
  • iamarayofsunshine
    Will definitely be watching this.
    Sep 24 2009 @ 11:25am     Reply  
  • vomit
    "If you didn’t know any better, you would swear that Wedekind had the current Gossip Girl generation in mind when he wrote the play over a hundred years ago."

    No, not really. No one would think that. Wedekind was aiming to highlight the industrialization of the children more than trying to make a statement about sex. The musical made it appear Wedekind wrote about sex and teenage angst.
    Sep 24 2009 @ 12:11am     Reply  
  • mang_nanno
    i'm gonna watch this.
    Sep 23 2009 @ 11:58pm     Reply  
  • somebody
    i wish pinoy parents are more open to talk to their kids about sex, because doing so is not polluting their minds but educating them.

    i want to watch this play. can’t wait
    Sep 23 2009 @ 08:13pm     Reply  
  • somebody
    i wish pinoy parents are more open to talk to their kids about this, because doing so is not polluting their minds but educating them.

    i want to watch this play. can't wait.
    Sep 23 2009 @ 08:10pm     Reply  
1 to 12 of 12