Dear Evan Hansen Wiki
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Cynthia Murphy is the mother of Connor and Zoe Murphy, and the wife of Larry Murphy. She is the stay-at-home matriarch of the family. Although she loves both of her children, she struggles to connect with them on a personal level.

She was originated by Jennifer Laura-Thompson on the Broadway. She has since been portrayed by Christiane Noll for the US national tour, Claire Rankin in Toronto, and Lauren Ward on West End, along with numerous other actresses[1].


Personality

Cynthia is a resilient woman and a loving mother who cares deeply for her children, even though she does not always know how to relate to and connect with them. She channels her intelligence, energy, and drive into varieties of different, short-lived hobbies and lifestyles: "That's sort of what she does. She gets into different things. For a while it was Pilates, then it was The Secret, then Buddhism. Now it's free-range, Omnivore's Dilemma... whatever."

Though Cynthia loves her children and cares for them, she tends to be a pushover when it comes to Connor, and is said to have "let him do whatever he wanted." She struggled greatly in her attempts to help him and poured lots of time, energy, and money into it, which - in turn - led to Zoe feeling left behind and neglected by her mother.

Throughout Dear Evan Hansen, Cynthia is overwhelmed with the grief of losing her son. Due to this, she is extremely receptive to Evan's lies, willing to believe anything that he tells her. Because of this, she is devastated when she finds out that Evan was lying about his relationship with Connor.

Appearance

Cynthia dresses in a muted, toned-down colour palette, and her fashion is neat and put-together. In "Dear Evan Hansen: Through the Window," costume designer Emily Rebholz describes Cynthia's costuming as "a sense of cashmere and silk and expensive gold jewelry," and also that Cynthia's "dressed like a mom."

Relationships

Larry Murphy

Larry is Cynthia's husband; "Dear Evan Hansen: Through the Window" states that the pair met in college and married soon after. Cynthia and Larry seem to have, at times, a terse relationship with one another - they frequently disagree over how best to manage Connor's behavior. However, despite this tension, the two seem to care for each other deeply and to truly love each other. This love is particularly evident in "You Will Be Found," when Cynthia and Larry share a moment of mutual grief and support over Connor's death and the rapid success of the Connor Project.

Zoe Murphy

Zoe is Cynthia's daughter. The two get along like average mothers and daughters, though Cynthia dislikes how Zoe interacts with Connor: "I don't need you picking at your brother right now. That's not constructive." ("Anybody Have a Map?") Cynthia holds Zoe to a higher standard of behavior than she does Connor, though it's evident that she loves and cares deeply for Zoe.

Connor Murphy

Connor is Cynthia's deceased son. Cynthia loves Connor deeply and was willing to do anything to help him, though she didn't know how to best proceed; at times, she blames herself for his death. In the cut song "A Little Bit of Light", she reminisces on how Connor used to be a happy little boy who loved to tell her jokes, and how he seemed to change abruptly.

Evan Hansen

Cynthia regards Evan as a second son, frequently having him over for meals and allowing him to linger around the Murphy's house. Prior to "You Will Be Found," Cynthia gifts Evan an old tie of Connor's to wear for his speech. "Dear Evan Hansen: Through the Window" states that Cynthia's overwhelming grief over Connor's death motivated Evan to lie about the letter.

Songs

"Anybody Have a Map?"

This song is a duet between Cynthia and Heidi Hansen. Throughout, both women detail the struggles of relating to and connecting with their sons. Cynthia attempts to bargain with Connor in order to convince him to go to school, which goes horribly, and it's evident that she feels she's losing control of her family: "Pour another cup of coffee and watch it all crash and burn."

"Requiem"

Cynthia is the only member of the Murphy family who takes a positive stance in Requiem. She is willing to believe in Evan's emails, as they allow her to feel close to Connor and to remember him as happy and funny and bright. She believes that Connor is still with her in the form of Evan's emails and thus "will sing no requiem," as she still feels Connor near.

"Disappear"

Cynthia only appears briefly in Disappear, and she expresses excitement and gratitude towards Evan, Jared, and Alana for starting the Connor Project. At the end of the song, Cynthia gifts Evan a tie that used to belong to Connor.

"You Will Be Found"

In this song, Cynthia seems to be astounded and deeply moved by the massive success of the Connor Project, and thanks Evan for all the work that he did. Later, Cynthia is one of the distinct voices in the lines "You are not alone." During these lines, Cynthia is seen to be helping Larry up off the ground and embracing him as they mutually grieve over the loss of their son.

Trivia

  • Cynthia originally had two cut songs, "A Little Bit of Light" and "In the Bedroom Down the Hall," wherein she talks more about Connor's childhood and his history of mental health issues. These two songs make her love for Connor, and her willingness to do anything, more evident, but they were cut in order to keep the focus on Evan's growth and story. Even though it was cut, "In the Bedroom Down the Hall" is a track on the deluxe edition of the original cast recording.
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