In an interview with The New York Times, Dear Evan Hansen’s Ben Platt revealed that in the show’s earliest developmental stages, he was initially considered for the part of Jared, not the title character, the role that brought him his first Tony nomination May 2.
Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, and Steven Levenson’s musical tells the story of a high school student—Evan Hansen—who becomes embroiled in a lie so big, it changes the course of his life. Jared, played on Broadway by Will Roland, is his wisecracking friend, and also in on the lie.
Platt has been attached to the musical—and the role of Evan Hansen—since its first developmental workshop. The actor told the NYT, however, that prior to the first reading, he was tapped to play Jared. He said that it was songwriter Pasek who convinced the rest of the creative team to have him read for the title role instead. Following the workshop, the team, including director Michael Greif, knew that Platt was right for the title role.
Flip through photos of Platt in the Broadway production below: