Spring Awakening - March 15 - March 23, 2019

Harrington Theatre Arts Company

 Director's Note 


“All shall know the wonder of Purple Summer.”

                                    --Spring Awakening



College leaves each of us with experiences, lessons, and memories. But what do we leave for our college? Last summer, as I realized that my college career was soon coming to an end, I pondered what impact I could make before I go. Directing is something that I have never done before, but I knew it was what I was meant to do after deciding on Spring Awakening.


I chose Spring Awakening because of three things: what the play is about, the story I want to tell to audiences, and the relevance of the play to modern audiences. Spring Awakening tells the story how a group of nineteenth century students navigate adolescent self-discovery and coming of age anxiety. It is a celebration of youth and rebellion in a world where the grown-ups hold all the cards. I think many times people are too afraid to acknowledge and bring to light things that make us uncomfortable. But these topics and issues aren't fantasy or made up. They are real, they've happened for decades, and they continue to happen every day.


Putting together this type of thought-provoking and emotional production is not a small feat. The casting process involved constant communication with the actors as to what we expected of them professionally and what they should expect from us in regards to safe space standards. The exploration of certain emotions within the actors during rehearsals constantly reminded me why I am so passionate about this production and how important these scenes will be to those who watch them.


One of my favorite songs in the show is the final, "The Song of Purple Summer." To me and the original directors, “purple summer” signifies the time when the painful spring of adolescence reaches the maturity of summer.  The characters in the show clearly go through this transformation. However, I believe that each member of my cast, production staff, as well as myself, went through similar transformations. I saw younger students, who have never played such influential roles, reach their acting potentials I originally saw in them. New members took over leadership positions they were not familiar with and executed their responsibilities with ease. Within myself, I have felt my professionalism and sense of adulthood grow to a place where I feel ready to leave HTAC knowing I will succeed in anything.


This play will ignite a new way of thinking with those who see it. I hope that when you leave today, you recognize the importance and reality of issues such as rape, mental illness, consent, abortion, suicide, and sexuality.



Amanda DeFilippis, Artistic Director

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