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Dear Evan Hansen film: who wrote the music and how will it differ to the original Broadway production?

The hit musical is coming to the big screen, with Ben Platt reprising the titular role – six years after he originated the role on the Broadway stage. But who wrote the film's soundtrack and how does it differ from the original production?

Published: September 3, 2021 at 9:16 am

The Broadway phenomenon Dear Evan Hansen has been adapted into a film with Ben Platt reprising the eponymous role, which he originated in 2015. The show's Tony Award-winning playwright Steven Levenson has adapted the show for screen, with music and lyrics by the Oscar, Grammy and Tony Award-winning songwriting team, Benj Pasek and Justin Paul.


What's the film about?

Dear Evan Hansen is a coming-of-age story about Evan, an anxiety-ridden high school student who is trying to find calm within the chaos of being a teenager in the social media generation. The film is semi-autobiographical, based on the death of a fellow student that took place at the school of Benj Pasek, one of the show's composers.

Who wrote the music for the film adaptation of Dear Evan Hansen?

Benj Pasek and Justin Paul – a songwriting duo known collectively as Pasek and Paul – were responsible for the original music for the Broadway show, and have teamed up again to rework the production's soundtrack for screen. Actor Amandla Stenberg, who stars as Alana Beck, has collaborated with Pasek and Paul on a new song for her character titled 'The Anonymous Ones'.

Find out more about other great TV and film soundtracks.

Who are Pasek and Paul?

Together, Pasek and Paul have created music for musical theatre productions, film and TV, including Dogfight and James and the Giant Peach. Their original songs have been featured in films including The Greatest Showman and La La Land, for which they won both the Golden Globe and Academy Award for Best Original Song for their song 'City of Stars'.

Their work on Dear Evan Hansen earned them the 2017 Tony Award for Best Original Score.

The composing pair started working together when they were studying for degrees in musical theatre at the University of Michigan.

Usually, Pasek writes the lyrics and Paul writes the music, but they choose to share the credits for both elements of the songwriting process.

Find out more about the soundtracks to other TV programmes and films here.

Dear Evan Hansen film cast

  • Ben Platt as Evan Hansen
  • Kaitlyn Dever as Zoe Murphy
  • Amandla Stenberg as Alana Beck
  • Nik Dodani as Jared Kalwani
  • Colton Ryan as Connor Murphy
  • Danny Pino as Larry Mora
  • Julianne Moore as Heidi Hansen
  • Amy Adams as Cynthia Murphy
  • DeMarius Copes as Oliver
  • Liz Kate as Gemma
  • Isaac Cole Powell as Rhys
  • Avery Bederman as Isabelle
  • Gerald Caesar as Josh
  • Tommy Kane as Greg
  • Marvin Leon as Skye
  • Hadiya Eshé as Cherise
  • Julia Chen Myers as Naomi
  • Mariana Alvarez as Mrs. G.
  • Swift Rice as Mr. Howard

'You Will Be Found', one of the musical's best-loved songs, is now available for pre-release.

Here, the cast of the Dear Evan Hansen film discuss the impact of the song and its importance in the film and the world at the moment.

Can you buy or stream the soundtrack to Dear Evan Hansen?

The movie soundtrack for Dear Evan Hansen is now available for pre-order, with several tracks already on streaming platforms to listen to.

Listen on Apple Music, Spotify, YouTube Music and Amazon Music.

The original Broadway cast recording of Dear Evan Hansen is available to stream on the various streaming platforms.

You can also buy it from the following outlets:

Dear Evan Hansen film release date

The film adaptation of Dear Evan Hansen will be released in cinemas in the UK on 22 October 2021, following its premiere at the Toronto Film Festival on Thursday 9 September.

Watch the trailer for Dear Evan Hansen


While you're on Netflix, why not check out some of the music-themed films we recommend on Netflix?


Freya ParrDigital Editor and Staff Writer, BBC Music Magazine

Freya Parr is BBC Music Magazine's Digital Editor and Staff Writer. She has also written for titles including the Guardian, Circus Journal, Frankie and Suitcase Magazine, and runs The Noiseletter, a fortnightly arts and culture publication. Freya's main areas of interest and research lie in 20th-century and contemporary music.

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