Jake Epstein Media Mentions in Detriot and Dallas

Rites of spring: Teens discover new world in rock musical
By Andrea Blum for thenewsherald.com

Jake Epstein hasn’t shied away from controversial roles during his acting career, and his latest follows that trend.

The 22-year-old from Toronto took over the role of Melchior Gabor in the first national tour of the sexually charged “Spring Awakening” in July 2009.

A fusion of morality, sexuality and rock ’n’ roll, the show won eight Tony awards in 2007 and sparked much talk in the Broadway community.

Set against the backdrop of a repressive and provincial late 19th-century Germany, the show tells a timeless story of teenage self-discovery and budding sexuality.

The alternative rock musical adaptation of the controversial 1891 German play by Frank Wedekind features music by rocker Duncan Sheik.

The original play was banned for nearly a century and still sparks controversy with themes ranging from masturbation and rape to abortion and child abuse.

“The whole show is about teenagers discovering their sexuality, but it’s portrayed in a really honest way,” he said. “We don’t just allude to it.”

The groundbreaking show comes to Detroit’s Fisher Theatre April 20 to May 9 for its first Michigan run.

“I’m from Toronto and Detroit is the city closest to that, so it’s exciting for me,” he said. “I have a busload of friends coming.”

Epstein, 22, was born in Toronto and has spent half his life working in theater, film and television.

He’s best known for his role as Craig Manning on the Canadian TV series “Degrassi: The Next Generation,” which helped establish him as a teen heartthrob.

After spending four seasons on the show, he decided to change his career’s course.

Epstein bowed out of his role on the hit TV show to go to college.

He recently graduated from the National Theatre School of Canada, where he had the opportunity to work with Canada’s leading directors and artists.

“I sort of did it backwards,” he said. “I was a lead on ‘Degrassi’ and that was going really well. But in the sixth season, I felt like it started repeating things.

“As a young actor, I wasn’t being challenged.”

read more at the source.

Reviews from Dallas:
Theater review: Too bad there's no encore in 'Spring Awakening'
Theater review: Spring Awakening at Winspear Opera House in Dallas
Spring Awakening Puts Teen Angst to a Driving Rock Beat and Lets It Go Buck Wild.
Posted on 05 Apr 2010 by Nicole
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