This is a simple thread. Recommend to the dope in general ONE (only one) book/movie/TV show/play/poem/album/band whatever. There are two rules:
(1) It has to be something that is rarely mentioned on the dope one way or the other (so while I think The Wire is the best TV show ever, it already gets plenty of discussion, so people who might be tempted by it presumably are)
(2) You must give a verbose explanation as to what makes it so good.
My recommendation: Broadway musical Spring Awakening, and its original cast recording.
Spring Awakening is a Tony Award-winning rock musical adaptation of the controversial 1891 German play of the same title by Frank Wedekind. It features music by Duncan Sheik and a book and lyrics by Steven Sater. Set in late-nineteenth century Germany, it concerns teenagers who are discovering the inner and outer tumult of sexuality. The original play was banned in Germany due to its portrayal of masturbation, abortion, rape, bondage, child abuse and suicide. In the musical, alternative rock is employed as part of the folk-infused rock score.
Why I’m recommending it:
While there are definite characters and a clear storyline (unlike something like Cats), what the show is really about (imho) is a mood. The show is about teenage adolescence and rebellion, and everything about the staging, choreography, acting and music is designed to evoke those feelings. The show is about rage and anger and lust and longing and frustration and hating school and not trusting your parents; and it lays the characters emotions out rawly in a way that I’ve never seen in another musical. Plus, the music is absolutely fantastic. It mixes the energy and passion of rock music with beautiful harmonic arrangements performed by talented and energetic singers. (Fans of Glee will recognize Lea Michelle on the original cast recording.)
Overall, it’s a musical experience unlike any other… it takes the young energy and sensibility of a show like Rent but makes it about a stage of life rather than about a particular time or place or issue.