Dear Evan Hansen is a musical about a teenage boy, Evan Hansen, who is finding life difficult, balancing his anxiety, social media, and family problems. Hansen was told by his psychiatrist to write letters to himself in an attempt to change his mindset on living. While printing his letter for the day, one of Evan’s classmates, Connor Murphy steals it and becomes angry with the mention of his sister, so he doesn’t return the paper. After three days of Connor not attending school, Hansen is called to the office and Connor’s parents inform him that Connor committed suicide. The only thing they have left of him is a letter that he supposedly wrote to Evan, which is actually the letter that Evan wrote to himself. After debating with himself, Hansen decides to try to convince everyone, including himself, that he was best friends with Connor
The musical was amazing. I dare say that Dear Evan Hansen was better than the musical, Hamilton. The performers did an incredible job capturing the audience’s hearts with their on-stage relationships and their commitment to their characters. The songs and dialogue had a variety of emotions which kept any watcher engaged and anxiously waiting for the next scene.
One concern I had throughout the musical was the positive reinforcement that Evan was receiving for lying about his relationship with Connor. Evan gained popularity, parent-figures, and girlfriend. The first act was focused on Hansen’s successful strategy to convince everyone that his friendship was true even though no one had seen the two boys together. Once the second act starts, you know that things are going to go downhill for Evan. The music mirrors this intensity by isolating singers during their pieces.
If you have the opportunity, I highly recommend you take the opportunity to watch Dear Evan Hansen on screen, with the possibility of the story being adapted into a movie, or on the stage. The plot made me ask myself what I was willing to do for happiness and if I was willing to hurt those around me for my own personal gain. While this may sound cheesy, Dear Evan Hansen changed my perspective of life.