According to Billboard.com, the original Broadway cast recording of Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, and Steven Levenson’s Dear Evan Hansen, which was released digitally February 3, debuted at No. 8 on the Billboard chart—the highest debut by a cast recording since Camelot in 1961. Chart rankings are based on sales, radio play, and online streaming.
Billboard reports that the Dear Evan Hansen album has had the third-largest debut sales for a cast recording in the last 25 years, following the debuts of Hamilton: An American Musical and Rent. The Hamilton cast album debuted at No. 12 and later reached No. 3 on the Billboard chart.
Dear Evan Hansen is also the fourth cast recording to reach the top 10 on the Billboard 200 in the last 50 years. The only cast albums to make the list previously were Hamilton, The Book of Mormon, and Hair.
Dear Evan Hansen began performances at the Music Box Theatre on Broadway November 14, 2016, and opened to critical acclaim December 4. The cast recording is now available online from Atlantic Records, with physical CDs available in stores February 24.
The new musical, about one student's struggle for identity amidst the chaos of high school, features a score by the Tony-, Emmy-, and Oscar-nominated songwriting team of Pasek and Paul (Dogfight, A Christmas Story), a book by Obie Award winner Levenson (Masters of Sex), choreography by Danny Mefford (Fun Home), and direction by three-time Tony nominee Michael Greif (Rent, Next to Normal, If/Then).
The cast of Dear Evan Hansen is made up of Ben Platt, Laura Dreyfuss, Rachel Bay Jones, Jennifer Laura Thompson, Mike Faist, Michael Park, Will Roland, Kristolyn Lloyd, Michael Lee Brown, Garrett Long, Olivia Puckett, Colton Ryan, and Asa Somers.