Members say: Great acting, Absorbing, Great singing, Must see, Relevant

About the show

'Dear Evan Hansen' is about how we share, like, and friend, love, feel, and survive in the modern world. Winner of six 2017 Tony Awards, including Best Musical.

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A letter that was never meant to be seen, a lie that was never meant to be told, a life he never dreamed he could have. Evan Hansen is about to get the one thing he’s always wanted: a chance to finally fit in. Created by three-time Tony-nominated director Michael Greif ('Rent,' 'Next to Normal,' 'Grey Gardens'), Tony-nominated songwriters Benj Pasek and Justin Paul ('A Christmas Story,' NBC’s 'Smash'), and playwright Steven Levenson, 'Dear Evan Hansen' is a new American musical about life and the way we live it.

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See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews

The New York Times

"The marvelous young actor Ben Platt is giving a performance that’s not likely to be bettered on Broadway this season. What’s more, this gorgeous heartbreaker of a musical has grown in emotional potency during its journey to the big leagues...The musical finds endless nuances in the relationships among its characters...Under the superb direction of the veteran Michael Greif, the show has been subtly refined, its brasher comedy softened, and the performances have grown in delicacy." Full Review


"Not since 'Next to Normal' has a score tapped so deeply into the troubled psyche of its needy protagonist...The lyrics go beyond the spoken thought and reach for the unspoken feelings hiding behind the words. Better yet, there’s not a hint of sentimentality...Under the thoughtful direction of Greif, Platt goes beyond physical specificity to get under Evan’s skin and into his unsettled mind. And the introspective, gentle score becomes the language of his troubled thoughts and yearnings." Full Review

Time Out New York

"Platt is giving one of the greatest leading male performances I’ve ever seen in a musical, and the thrillingly modern and moving 'Dear Evan Hansen' is worthy of it...The musical benefits mightily from Greif’s dynamic direction, Korins’s vivid set design, Nigrini's cascading projections and an excellent cast...Benj Pasek and Justin Paul’s score brims with tuneful and thoughtful songs...And Levenson’s book is unfailingly smart...'Dear Evan Hansen' must be seen to be believed." Full Review

New York Magazine / Vulture

"So fine in its craft and rich in its gathering of themes that it rewards being seen again—and again...Platt imbues the character with so much pathos and lively detail that he succeeds as the story’s engine despite being almost pathologically passive...That Levenson has been able to find spots for humor at all in this grippingly sad story, and that Pasek and Paul have been able to turn those opportunities into songs of comic relief is a sign of the size of the ideas in play." Full Review


"Ben Platt is stripped down to his emotional skivvies for us voyeurs to judge, gawk at, and pity. His breathtaking performance in the show's title role is just one of the reasons Pasek, Paul, and Levenson's new musical moves audiences to their feet before the lights even come down...This musical offers a truly 21st-century story...The composers strike a balance between substance and popular appeal with memorable melodies and character-driven lyrics." Full Review

Lighting & Sound America

"The whole sorry story is treated by the authors with a remarkable double vision, keeping us engaged with Evan as he careens ever closer to disaster...The songs similarly combine real feeling with sharp-eyed observation as they briskly move the story along...Greif's staging is both well-paced and nuanced, never losing sight of the heartbreak at the story's center; he has also assembled a cast of performers who wear their characters like old clothes." Full Review

DC Theatre Scene

"'Dear Evan Hansen' has changed now that it’s on Broadway, in ways that make it an even more affecting musical. Ben Platt’s performance, impressive from the get-go, is even better...The transfer feels seamless. The unchanged score holds up, comprised of the same tuneful and moving songs...All give superb performances. Platt has toned down his nervousness – he fidgets less – which makes his performance all the more credible, all the more heartbreaking." Full Review

The Hollywood Reporter

"What's perhaps most distinctive about Pasek and Paul's melodic emo-pop score is how beautifully it captures the peaks and valleys of adolescence, in the thoughtful lyrics and in the music itself...Playwright Steven Levenson matches the musical components beat for beat in his terrific book, which sets up with persuasive conviction what could easily have been a contrived premise...Across the board, the ensemble is superb, each of them registering rich moments of emotional complexity." Full Review

The Wall Street Journal

"It’s smartly crafted, emotionally open-hearted and ideally cast. What’s more, it’s pitched to and has been embraced by millennials...yet its appeal is universal...Michael Greif has staged 'Dear Evan Hansen' with fluid, fast-moving simplicity...The score is not quite as strong as Steven Levenson’s ingenious book...Still, the songs work on their own terms, and the book is strong enough that it could be done on its own as a play...The best musical to open on Broadway since 'Hamilton.'" Full Review

AM New York

"A smart, deeply felt and altogether extraordinary new musical...Pasek and Paul have crafted a haunting soft rock score that is neatly integrated into Levenson’s captivating book. Greif presents a tight and compelling production built around finely-textured ensemble acting and a seamless visual design of shifting panels and floating video imagery. Platt is giving one of the most vulnerable and shaded performances you’ve ever seen." Full Review

The Clyde Fitch Report

"It’s a shame that a late and sizable script shortcoming lowers the rank of this tuner from surpassing musical treat to compromised excellence...The fair approach is to rave about 'Dear Evan Hansen‘s' outstanding elements, starting with Platt’s star-making performance. Surely, too, the place to start is with Levenson’s original book...Bolstered by Pasek and Paul’s energetic music...They all lack the courage of their dramatic convictions, and thus contrive for Evan an unearned redemption." Full Review

Talkin' Broadway

"If I'm not quite prepared to say that Platt is giving the best performance I've ever seen a male actor give in a musical, it's darn close—undoubtedly in the top five. Alas, too much of the rest of 'Evan Hansen' fails to ascend to Platt's exalted level...Fancy staging can't easily conjure electricity from no component materials, and, compelling though Levenson's writing may be, it cries out for a charge Pasek and Paul simply do not provide...Platt, though, provides all he can and then some." Full Review

Chicago Tribune

"Platt's as profound and heartbreaking a portrayal of a 17-year-old as one might ever hope to see. It is the heart of a superbly crafted and performed show that is unafraid of complexity and ambiguity...This plot, which rarely strains credulity, brings up a veritable plethora of people in pain, and Pasek and Paul have penned a banquet of ballads of anguish and confusion, but they somehow avoid sentimental exploitation." Full Review

Times Square Chronicles

"With its near perfect score by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul...Subtle direction by Michael Grief, combined with a layered and truthful book by Steven Levenson, it has Tony Awards written all over it. Add to that the winning performances by the cast, especially Ben Platt, this musical will get under your skin and speak to you in so many ways...Here is an original musical that didn’t skip any steps, wraps its audience in its arms and allows the music, the story and the characters to do their jobs." Full Review


"The score by Pasek and Paul is packed with engaging tunes and insightful lyrics. The book by Levenson portrays teen angst taken beyond the normal boundaries with compelling dignity...Platt plays the title role in a movingly sensitive, career-making performance...Platt seems more to inhabit Evan than to merely portray him...The score soars, bringing us along with it. 'Dear Evan Hansen' is an intimate show with a gigantic heart." Full Review

New York Daily News

"Platt nails each shifting mood and tone as a socially inept outcast. Original and up-to-the-minute, the musical has a lot to say—about parents and children, social media, and more...Stirring ballads and rousing group songs in the vibrant, varied score by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul ooze emotions. Director Michael Greif excels at guiding actors through complex stories—and his work has never been better...The show's so satisfying it deserves a thank-you note." Full Review

Front Mezz Junkies

"'Dear Evan Hansen' has not lost any of its power and tension. It soars with an intense beauty that still captures our hearts and plays havoc with it all at the same time...Not much has changed with 'Dear Evan Hansen' beyond a tightening of its components. Visually it’s as perfect and awe-inspiring as it was Off-Broadway. Maybe even more so...I’m not sure if I will ever feel completely content with the final moments, but all in all, 'Dear Evan Hansen' delivers us a deeply felt rich story." Full Review

The Huffington Post

"An exuberant, fresh, musical…The play gives a clear image of how humans can occupy center stage, even in a fast-changing and not altogether truth-speaking virtual world…The number that everyone will be humming is the show’s anthem, ‘You Will Be Found.’ When the crowded images disappear at an apple orchard that has become a memorial to the dead boy, the peaceful vision inspires hope, especially for the vibrant genre of musicals." Full Review


"With its original team back for the move, it's settled very nicely into the Music Box. The staging has been expanded to fit the larger stage and theater, happily without succumbing to the over amplification, an all-too-common feature of big Broadway musicals. Ben Platt, who was such a terrific Evan last spring, is even better...The rest of the cast is again excellent...Given all of the above, everything I said when I reviewed the show last May still holds." Full Review


"Heart-stirring and often shattering. But it’s not just the show’s universal and topical subject matter, smarty explored by Steven Levenson’s mostly well-written book or Benj Pasek and Justin Paul’s lovely, deeply felt score, that lends the work such pathos. What makes 'Evan Hansen' so special, and oddly lovable, is the brave and extraordinarily raw performance by Ben Platt...In the end, 'Dear Evan Hansen' is both a must-see musical and a tribute to the singular talents of its rising star." Full Review


"The show is superb—original, sensitive, provocative, endearing—about so many other knowing and loving things that it’s even possible to overlook the unearned happy ending...Everyone is a fully developed person in Levenson’s smart book, and the clever, sympathetic songs by Pasek and Paul have a pop intimacy that challenges expansive vocal ranges without seeming to show off. The production by director Greif brings out the real-life depth in the eight exhilarating actors." Full Review

Front Row Center

"‘Dear Evan Hansen’ is a show that holds you tight with its honesty of story told in a way that delights you to your very toes. Every aspect of what you see, hear and feel hums in perfect harmony throughout the piece…Writer Steven Levenson has given us a story that could be told around a dinner table right now...Two hours and twenty-five minutes fly by and this musical poo-pooer wished there had been more." Full Review

Wolf Entertainment Guide

"A major musical on Broadway that deserves to find a new audience...The entire show is marked by creativity both in staging and performance. Platt is outstanding throughout in the title role of the production, which has a clever book by Levenson and involving music and lyrics by Pasek and Paul...Grief has directed with expert meshing of the show’s many ingredients...Not only an enjoyable show, but an admirable one that bears repeat viewing to absorb all of its energy and imagination." Full Review


"The script ultimately backs off the issues it raises in the service of a happy ending...The evening is seldom lifted by the songs, which, with several notable exceptions, tend to a bland sameness, especially lyrically. And the direction, by Michael Greif, seems at times wrongheaded, better suited to a bigger story...When 'Dear Evan Hansen' is involving, as it certainly is at times, the great share of the credit goes to Platt and his prize-worthy performance." Full Review

Financial Times (UK)

"While maintaining that improbable balance between pathos and audacious irreverence for over two hours, director Michael Greif expertly sets forth an intricately crafted plot...Benj Pasek and Justin Paul also make the familiar sound fresh by blending rock, country and folk rhythms...More remarkable still is the philosophical depth of Levenson’s book, which provocatively suggests a comforting illusion might be preferable to grim reality in the internet age." Full Review

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews

Delightful, Edgy, Great acting, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if just see it. great story. may help a life

Don't see it if you want to miss out on a good show

Absorbing, Ambitious, Dizzying, Intense, Relevant

See it if you can afford it! If you want to see the hottest show outside of Hamilton, if you like the songwriters, if you want to see teen-aged angst.

Don't see it if you don't like new musicals, if you aren't interested in the effects of social media or being bombarded by social media messages on screens.

Absorbing, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Resonant, Great singing

See it if you can relate to being young, confused and desperate for a feeling of importance. And if you can appreciate a well-conceived project

Don't see it if you cannot relate to or empathize with those who are isolated and depressed. or if you do not want your emotions hammered.

Brilliant, Absorbing, Great acting, Must see, Relevant

See it if You have ever felt invisible or alone. Superb play and performance.

Don't see it if You are looking for a light hearted musical.

Overrated, Maudlin

See it if you liked "Next to Normal."

Don't see it if you're not interested in a musical about a teenage misfit.

Disappointing, Cliched, Overrated, Great staging, Bland

See it if your desires begin and end with "story about kids with problems"

Don't see it if you need the narrative to actually resolve the characters' problems, or you require more than 4 songs to be worthwhile

Also I don't get the hype behind this show. It's dazzling to look at, the p... Read more Read less

Disappointing, Insipid, Overrated

See it if You want to see what the buzz is about. We saw it in Washington before NY and can't understand why it is doing well. Did it get rewritten?

Don't see it if You're not into teenage angst and you have no sympathy for the hero getting into trouble through his own stupidity.

Absorbing, Enchanting, Great acting, Great singing, Touching

See it if What can one say about DEH? Simply the best show I've seen bare none. Score and book are superb. Cast was amazing. Run to see this!

Don't see it if Can't think of a reason not to! The story deals with suicide, so be advised. But it is still a feel good and heartfelt experience.

Also I saw this with Noah Galvin. I was hoping to see Ben Platt, but after ... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Great acting, Relevant, Great singing, Great staging

See it if will be one of the best shows you will see all year! Get acting, singing and staging. This is what I call a big time show that is must see.

Don't see it if Based on the topic and subject, some may be heart broken on the subject or have a bad remembrance .

Great acting, Quirky, Great staging

See it if You want to see meaningful songs staged excellently

Don't see it if you are uncomfortable talking about suicide, depression and anxiety

Also The individual parts (acting, singing, staging, music) were stronger t... Read more Read less

Funny, Clever, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Entertaining

See it if You want to see a thoroughly modern musical.

Don't see it if You're expecting another Hamilton.

Also Finally got to see this after a year of entering the ticket lottery so... Read more Read less

Refreshing, Entertaining, Great singing, Fluffy

See it if you like musicals and want to experience a fresh story with a nice arc done well.

Don't see it if musicals ain't your bag.

Ambitious, Great acting, Cliched, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if you want to be part of the hype

Don't see it if you don't like pop music

Great acting, Resonant, Great singing, Ben platt outdoes himself

See it if you can. Ben Platt gives 110% to the show, I don't know how he does it day after day. Other actors fine, music lovely, writing strong

Don't see it if you don't want to be manipulated a bit (yeah I cried) or if you've lost someone to suicide, as it could be tough to watch

Absorbing, Great acting, Must see, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if You want to see wonderful music and singing. Emotional and current topic

Don't see it if No reason to miss this show

Funny, Absorbing, Great acting, Great writing, Entertaining

See it if You are looking for a realistic and touching story on the challenges of being a socially awkward teen. So beautifully done, bravo!

Don't see it if You don't enjoy musicals, stories that touch on difficult, real life situations, F bombs.

Absorbing, Great acting, Thought-provoking, Masterful, Great singing

See it if The reason for the success of the show is Tony Winner Ben Platt. He owns the stage and the audience. His acting and singing are outstanding.

Don't see it if Like "Once", I wished the show would be one act and I found the length a bit unnecessary. I think I would like it without an intermission.

Absorbing, Great acting, Must see, Relevant, Great singing

See it if you want to see great acting/singing. Ben Platt, Rachel Bay Jones, and the rest of the cast are amazing! Theme is heavy, get ready to cry.

Don't see it if you want a night of light fun. As entertaining as this is, the subject matter is heavy.

Also The story resonates with both teenagers and parents. The story is not ... Read more Read less

Must see, Resonant, Cliched, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if Ben Platt is phenomenal. See it for him. See it if you’ve ever felt alone or bullied or suffer/ed from suicidal thoughts.

Don't see it if You hate contemporary musical theatre. But even then, see it.

Exquisite, Great acting, Masterful, Must see, Relevant

See it if you want to see Ben Platt give one of the best performances in modern musical theater; you enjoy musicals with a purpose.

Don't see it if you can't stand pop/rock musical theater sound, no matter how well-performed.

Great acting, Intense, Relevant, Overrated, Stressful

See it if you're okay with Ben Platt being a better actor than singer; you can do it without breaking the bank; you like contemporary musicals.

Don't see it if you don't like cringy/awkward comedy, stressful situations, or discussion of suicide.

Also I think my hopes were too high. I thought it was very good, but not wo... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Ambitious, Intense, Relevant, Great singing

See it if you want to see this giant hit. Ben Platt gives a unique and memorable performance. All the actors were excellent.

Don't see it if You want a light musical. This one is very intense and deals with many serious issues. Stressful to watch at times! Really a strange story

Great acting, Intelligent, Relevant, Resonant, Great singing

See it if You have an interest in an somewhat heavy show dealing with themes of depression and suicide in teenagers. Incredibly acted and staged.

Don't see it if You want something more light hearted or a mega Broadway musical with big numbers.

Absorbing, Masterful, Must see, Fabulous, Heart breaking

See it if You want to see the best of the best on Broadway. Ben Platt is amazing and is leaving in November.

Don't see it if I honestly can't imagine why anyone wouldn't like this show.

Also I wondered due to the hype if it was worth it. It is. This is a fantas... Read more Read less

Great acting, Intelligent, Relevant, Great singing

See it if Extraordinary show even with understudy for Evan. Relevant

Don't see it if looking for old style big musical or great dancing

Cast & Creatives (26)