West Side Story Tickets
|Latest West Side Story Tickets|
West Side Story
Schermerhorn Symphony Center
Jun 3 2016
Los Angeles Philharmonic: Gustavo Dudamel - West Side Story
Jul 14 2016
West Side Story
Ordway Center For Performing Arts
Apr 4 2017
Details of West Side Story and the Ticket Luck value
Originally directed and choreographed by Jerome Robbins, West Side Story is a musical by Arthur Laurents (book), Leonard Bernstein (music), and Stephen Sondheim (lyrics). It was produced by Griffith and Harold Prince, and was debuted on Broadway at the Winter Garden Theater on September 26, 1957 and played 732 performances. It has also been nominated for Best Musical in 1957.
Based loosely on Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, it was set in Manhattan's upper-Westside and explores the hostility between two rival gangs of different ethnic and cultural backgrounds. The innocent young hero, Anton ("Tony") belongs to a conventional local gang, the Jets, falls in love with Maria, the sister of the leader of the rival gang, the Sharks.
In 1949, Arthur Laurents and Jerome Robbins planned a story for a new musical called Gangway (East Side Story). The plot was to focus on the east side of Manhattan, in which a young Italian-American Catholic boy falling in love with a Jewish girl, who had emigrated from Israel to America. It was to be set during the Easter-Passover weekend celebration. It would be based upon the conflict around anti-Semitism from the "Jets" and feelings of animosity from the Jews or "Emeralds," over their lack of tolerance. However, in 1954, colonization from Puerto Rico, Laurents changed the characters' background: the lead Anton went from a Catholic to a Polish-American and Maria from a Jew to Puerto Rican. Originally, before the musical went into pre-production, he wanted James Dean for the lead role of Tony. By late 1955, Robbins and Laurents teamed up with lyricist Stephen Sondheim, who wrote the songs and lyrics to the show, now titled West Side Story. It was Sondheim who was responsible for finding Larry Kert, who became Tony, and Chita Rivera for Anita.
The original 1957 stage production at the Winter Garden Theatre starred Larry Kert as Tony and Carol Lawrence as Maria.
An Academy Award winner as Bernardo in the 1961 film version of West Side Story, George Chakiris created the role of Riff in the 1958 European premiere at the Manchester Opera House. It was then transferred to London where it opened at Her Majestys Theatre in December 1958 and ran until 1961 with 1039 performances.
Generally known as the "operatic version" of West Side Story, Bernstein decided to re-record the musical, performing his own music for the first time in 1984. It stars Kiri Te Kanawa as Maria, Jos Carreras as Tony, Tatiana Troyanos as Anita, Kurt Ollman as Riff, and Marilyn Horne as the offstage voice sings "Somewhere". It won a Grammy Award for Best Cast Show Album in 1985 and the recording process was filmed as a documentary.
A major UK national tour of the musical began in 1997 and starred David Habbin as Tony, Katie Knight Adams as Maria and Anna Jane Casey as Anita. The production was very well received and transferred to London's West End opening at the Prince Edward Theatre in October 1998 later transferring to the Prince of Wales Theatre, closing in January 2000. The production, now with a new cast, went on to another successful tour of the UK.
In May of 2007, the North Carolina School of the Arts staged a revival of West Side Story in celebration of the 50th anniversary of the show. Chancellor John Mauceri, an associate for 18 years with West Side composer Leonard Bernstein, conducted the NCSA orchestra for the production beside company director Gerald Freedman, the assistant director for the original stage production of West Side Story in 1957.
In June November 2007 the West Side Story commissioner John Bravlaski said that Barker College will do "the best performance of West Side Story ever!".
References in popular culture
The Buddy Rich Big Band arranged and recorded "West Side Story Medley" on the 1966 album Buddy Rich's Swingin' New Big Band. The Stan Kenton Orchestra recorded Johnny Richards' "West Side Story", an entire album of jazz orchestrations based on the Bernstein scores, in 1961. The producers of the motion picture previewed it. The Kenton version won the 1962 Grammy award for Best Jazz Recording by a Large Group.
The video for the Michael Jackson 1983 song "Beat It" was inspired by "The Rumble."
An ESPN ad in the 1990s featured many of the sportscasters divided into two "gangs," due to a fictitious "dispute" at ESPN, facing each other and rhythmically snapping fingers, parodying the opening number and the "rumble" scene in West Side Story.Selena, the Tejano singer, recorded the song "A Boy Like That" in March, 1995, just seven days before her death, so this song turned out to be her last recording. In early 1996, that song was released as the first single from the album The Songs Of West Side Story.
The mid-1990s Animaniacs segment "Goodfeathers" spoofed the musical, going so far as to parody nearly every song from "Maria" (as "Carluta") to "America".
In comedian Robin Williams' stand-up show, "Live on Broadway," he talks about the fact that before the 9/11 attacks, one was allowed to take a four-inch blade onto an airplane. He says, "What, are they afraid you're gonna do a little West Side Story? "Going down the aisle! Crazy aisle!" This was edited out of the U.S. release of the filmed version of the performance.
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