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Suburban theatergoers get edgier fare

Cast members in “Spring Awakening,” a play with a controversial theme that opens at the Company Theatre in Norwell on Feb. 21.
Cast members in “Spring Awakening,” a play with a controversial theme that opens at the Company Theatre in Norwell on Feb. 21.Photos by Zoe Bradford

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For staff at The Company Theatre box office in Norwell, the complaint call was one of possibly many they were anticipating.

The woman on the other end thought it highly offensive that the controversial rock musical “Spring Awakening,” about adolescent sexuality in 19th-century Germany, would be playing at the community theater.

When a box office staffer suggested she go to another show, the woman replied: “Oh, I’m coming. I may walk out, but I’m coming,” said Zoe Bradford, artistic director.

That the woman purchased a ticket despite her objections to the content is a reflection of the shifting attitudes among some theatergoers, who have shown a willingness to give edgier, and even controversial, material a chance in suburbs south of Boston.

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