'Spring Awakening' Returns to Broadway With Deaf and Hearing Cast

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Wednesday, September 30, 2015

The Deaf West Theatre production of 'Spring Awakening.' The Deaf West Theatre production of 'Spring Awakening.' (Joan Marcus)

The Tony-winning musical "Spring Awakening," a coming-of-age musical about teenagers and sex, has returned to Broadway. The original production of the musical by Steven Sater and Duncan Sheik closed only in 2009, and thus might seem to be making an unusually quick return.

However, the new production on stage at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre takes a very novel approach. It’s from the Los Angeles-based company Deaf West Theatre and the cast features a mixture of hearing and deaf actors.

Casting deaf actors in a musical may seem like a challenging prospect. New York Times theater critic Charles Isherwood explains the mechanics of the production and whether or not the show merits its quick return to Broadway.

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