Open run

Dear Evan Hansen

Members say: Great acting, Absorbing, Must see, Relevant, Great singing
99 reviews
871 reviews

The smash Off-Broadway musical about how we share, like, and friend, love, feel, and survive in the modern world transfers to the Main Stem.... Read more

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. 'Dear Even Hansen' is a new American musical about life and the way we live it. 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, it stars Ben Platt in the breakout title role.

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Reviews (970)

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews
Avg Score

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


"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

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 Huffington Post

"One of the strongest scores in years. The songs are not merely tuneful and funny and touching; Pasek and Paul can plumb the inner depths of their characters and rip through emotions in words and music...Levenson has given us an impressive book which tackles a difficult subject with warmth and humor...Platt is altogether extraordinary...The actors around him are universally excellent...The show continues the progression of astonishing musicals on Broadway." 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

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

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 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

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

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

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

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


"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


"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


"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


"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

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


"Deeply universal and utterly compelling...It's told utilizing the language of social-media, which director Michael Grief has employed to stunning effect. Pasek and Paul's score, so seamlessly woven into the story line, captures character nuances with the emotional eloquence of our finest dramatic plays, inducing tears and laughter in equal measure. And it is performed by a superlative cast...Platt gives an incomparable performance that ranks among the finest in years." 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

Theater Pizzazz

"This isn’t your usual Broadway musical–it’s better! It’s funny, sad, tragic and filled with great heart. This is a powerful story of a young, high-school misfit played by the remarkable Ben Platt, whose physical and emotionally nuanced performance is so compelling and sensitive that one is in awe...Michael Greif helms the cast with a magical directorial hand...Many Tony nominations and expected awards for this one!!" Full Review

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews
Avg Score

Relevant, Resonant, Overrated, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if you are of the generation of people feeling like an outsider. See it if you like Ben Platt.

Don't see it if you don't want to listen to 2.5 hours of complaining teenagers or you think lying is wrong. Don't se if u like more traditional shows

Also This is a crowd pleaser, no disputing that. I had a problem with the o... Read more Read less

Ambitious, Edgy, Intense, Profound, Great writing

See it if You are interested in whether there is nuance in what the truth is or if a deception is justified and how social media effects this

Don't see it if If you want a light hearted musical comedy that is not emotionally moving.

Absorbing, Great acting, Must see

See it if you want to see something unique. Great acting and music. Perfect combination of humor and drama.

Don't see it if you want a classic fluffy fun musical.

Cliched, Great staging, Overhyped, Annoying and too long, Mostly window dressing

See it if Are an out of owner looking for spectacle and broad acting.

Don't see it if You're used to really intelligent musicals with something interesting to say.

Absorbing, Great acting, Great singing, Fresh, Utterly credible

See it if We've all seen plays about teenage angst, but this one shares so generously. A cast who feel thoroughly committed to their stories and sing.

Don't see it if well, relatable and modern themes that are compelling, result in a production where the audience of all ages cries with the actors.

Gripping, Memorable, Soulful, Pathos-invoking performances, Relevant, timely, timeless

See it if you like musicals that blend timeless morals and modern settings. Screens highlighting digital media are juxtaposed with domestic scenes.

Don't see it if you don't want to be moved, dislike contemporary musicals, prefer a show with a lot of bells and whistles in choreography, or lack a heart.

Also I'd purchased a Dear Evan Hansen ticket months ago, mostly out of curi... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Great acting, Relevant, Beautiful music

See it if you want to see some of the best acting of the year tied to the best music of the year

Don't see it if you're interested in a show that is happy/funny/light-hearted.

Great acting, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Resonant, Heartfelt

See it if you want to see a Tony-worthy performance from Ben Platt in an original, heartfelt tale. Even if the music felt a bit over the top at times.

Don't see it if the topics of social anxiety, depression, and teen suicide frighten you.

Also I saw the off-Broadway production at 2nd Stage -- haven't seen the tra... Read more Read less

Delightful, Great acting, Great singing

See it if Ben Platt was phenomenal and the key reason to see this show. Beautiful and catchy pop score. Slick set design and staging. Topical themes.

Don't see it if Was initially skeptical of the premise in Act I, but the show managed to come together and wrap up beautifully in Act II.

Also Wonderful view from Standing Room.

Ambitious, Edgy, Resonant, Great singing, Great staging

See it if you seek message musicals.... if you are or have teens/ 20 somethings. Fabulous lead actor on powerful subject (albeit implausible setup).

Don't see it if you are sensitive to end of life drama.. it will traumatize you (take tissues). If you're annoyed by emotional manipulation- it might annoy

Absorbing, Exquisite, Resonant, Riveting, Great singing

See it if Ben Platt gives an awe-inspiring performance! Knocks-it-outta-the-park-good! This production was raw & incredibly moving! Get a ticket now!

Don't see it if You'd be a fool not to catch this musical. You must see Ben Platt in this role. Be ready to cry and have your emotions stirred. Perfection.

Absorbing, Great acting, Profound, Great writing, Great singing

See it if Want to have a good cry & laugh while being moved. A must see if you are in high school or a parent. But should be seen by all.

Don't see it if Don't like dark themes. Want big cast and fancy sets. This is small but oh so powerful show.

Must see, Miraculous, Redefines when you can no longer express it in words, sing, Hard to be better, cast, direction, book, lyrics, music, Ben platt = evan hansen

See it if want to experience the next step in musical storytelling post-Hamilton, & shouldn't miss Ben Platt's perfect performance as Evan Hansen

Don't see it if social issue theatre makes you squirm in your seat, teen suicide, broken families, or pop rock are not your jam, jelly or preserves

Great acting, Thought-provoking, Must see, Great writing, Timely

See it if you like musicals that are meaningful and reflective of the world we live in today.

Don't see it if you like your musicals light and fluffy and full of happy songs about happy people.

Intelligent, Thought-provoking, Moving, Timely, Great staging

See it if you want to see an intelligent musical whose subtitle could be "What a tangled web we weave!".

Don't see it if modern set design and lighting irritate you (think Curious Incident).

Also I found this piece more appealing intellectually than viscerally, and ... Read more Read less

Awesome pop musical

See it if Lots of teen themes but the primary plot focuses on the actions of a sweet and well intentioned kid that create a "sitch" beyond his control

Don't see it if Score is more pop than show tune & no song stuck out as particularly memorable. Heavy themes like teen suicide may not be for everyone.

Also The use of technology and plot points focused on social media are pret... Read more Read less

Ambitious, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Great singing

See it if you enjoy the work of Pasek and Paul, and want to see an amazing breakthrough performance from Ben Platt.

Don't see it if you want to see a show with more musical variety, as well as a show that directly speaks about the socially relevant issue at hand.

Absorbing, Ambitious, Profound

See it if Liked "Next To Normal" or enjoy a musical with a message

Don't see it if Prefer typical Broadway fare

Absorbing, Great acting, Relevant, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if You want to see a show with great dancing, singing, acting about suicide

Don't see it if You don't want to see a show that's about such a serious matter

Absorbing, Edgy, Profound, Great singing, This show will save lives

See it if You are ready to ugly cry in public. This is moving, beautifully written, and superbly acted. Ben Platt is simply outstanding

Don't see it if You want traditional musical with dance breaks or are unprepared for being taken on an emotional journey

Also Suicide and being socially outcast/feeling isolated are central to thi... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Ambitious, Great acting, Relevant, Great singing

See it if It is wonderful for all but students will truly be effected by it. Speaks to many people on many levels.

Don't see it if You've never had a bad day or experience in your life

Absorbing, Edgy, Intense, Thought-provoking, Masterful

See it if you're looking for a dramatic musical with an original plot and contemporary music, beautifully and poignantly performed. I predict Tonys!

Don't see it if you have young children, or you want a light, dance heavy musical. The material is dark but important!

Overrated, Great singing

See it if You want to see a well done hopelessly newfangled musical with a star turn ben platt. More of an after school special than bway musicalF

Don't see it if you have no patience for what has become of Broadway music… Banal pop music

Also This is one of those heartfelt musicals that you're supposed to feel m... Read more Read less

Funny, Absorbing, Clever, Entertaining, Great singing

See it if You have a heart and sole and enjoy a show that makes you gasp one minute, laugh the next, and then cry. It really grabs you in!

Don't see it if Are overly sensitive or opinionated with someone emulating someone with a disability....but if you are, you should still see it 👍

Absorbing, Great acting, Profound, Relevant, Great singing

See it if you have ever been or know someone who was an outsider...or if you want to see how Social Media can be corrupted in a click

Don't see it if you don't want to be challenged by 21st technology overplayed with age old issues.