The American musical about life and the way we live it. Dear Evan Hansen, now playing at the Murat Theatre at Old National Centre, is a letter that was never meant to be seen, a lie that was never meant to be told, a life he never dreamed he could have. Winner of a Grammy Award, three Olivier Awards, and six Tony Awards including the very desirable, Best Musical. It is a deeply personal and profoundly contemporary musical about growing up in a modern connected America.
“TERRIFIC. GRIPPING. HEARTFELT.” — Vogue
“A gut-punching, breathtaking knockout of a musical.” – The New York Times
“One of the most remarkable shows in musical theater history.” — The Washington Post
The socially awkward and anxious seventeen-year-old, Even Hansen is so desperate to make a connection with friends that he fabricates a story about being best friends with Connor, a classmate who has committed suicide. Everything spirals out of control as Evan must keep making up more and more elaborate plots, culminating with a speech at the memorial service and the opening of “The Conor Project.” How long can Evan keep up this charade, and surely someone will notice that Connor never even liked Evan, and what will happen between Evan and the girl of his dreams, Zoe who was Connors sister, now that she finally sees him? Will he give himself over to the fantasy he’s created, or will he bite the bullet and risk losing everything he’s ever wanted?
“Dear Evan Hansen ingeniously reveals new truths and new charms with each viewing.” — The New York Times
The coming-of-age stage musical, Dear Evan Hansen, has music and lyrics by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, and book by Steven Levenson. The musical had its premiere off-Broadway at the Arena Stage in Washington, D.C., in 2015, where it won three Helen Hayes Awards, two Outer Critics Circle Awards, one Drama Desk Award, and two Obie Awards. Moving onto Broadway at the Music Box Theatre in 2016, and at the 71st Tony Awards in 2017, it was nominated for nine awards, winning six, including Best Actor in a Leading Role in a Musical for Ben Platt, Best Featured Actress in a Musical for Rachel Bay Jones, Best Musical, and Best Score. In 2018 the album of music from the show won the Grammy Award for Best Musical Theatre Album as well as a Daytime Emmy Award. The West End production opened at the Noël Coward Theatre from 2019, winning three Laurence Olivier Awards from seven nominations. The musical was adapted into a young adult novel by actor and singer-songwriter Val Emmich who flesh out and expand upon the story, in collaboration with Pasek, Paul, and Levenson, and a film adaptation was co-produced by Marc Platt, the father of Ben Platt who reprised his performance in the title role. The film is directed by Stephen Chbosky and was released in September 2021.
“Platt seems more to inhabit Evan than to merely portray him. The halting delivery of soulful lines, the arms that flutter out in birdlike spasms as if grasping for logic or reason and, most of all, with a voice that rises from assured tenor to plaintive falsetto all conspire to bring this character to life. Evan could be cousin to The Glass Menagerie’s Laura Wingfield.”Review by Jeremy Gerard for Deadline