Spring Awakening is a rock’n’roll musical based on the German play by Frank Wederkind of the same name. It is set in Germany in the 1800s, and tells the story of several school-aged teenagers discovering their sexuality within a harshly conservative society.
This production was staged in a three-sided thrust, with the fully exposed orchestra set up in the upstage-center position. No platforms or stairs were employed in the set design. The full ensemble remained visible throughout the show. The space includes catwalks and odd corners as a part of the venue.
Throughout the performance, characters would draw with chalk on the walls, and on the floor. Sometimes this would be during transitions, in reaction to what was just done. Sometimes this was done as a part of the action during a scene.
The projections concept for the show came from this same idea. Every scene in the show included a setting that appeared to have been drawn in detail, by an adolescent hand, on the walls all about the theatre space. We projected white “chalk” lines onto the black walls of the theatre both around the performance area as well as behind the audience seating.
Every shift in setting happened with a softly faded wipe that would sweep around the entire space, changing the scene from a schoolyard, to a classroom, to a street at night, to a hayloft, and more.