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West Side Story hits the Fisher Theatre

West Side Story Company
West Side Story Company
© Amy Boyle 2013

West Side Story at Fisher Theatre 5-13-14


The tour of the smash hit Broadway revival of West Side Story hit the Fisher Theatre on Tuesday night for a run that ends on Sunday.

The original 1957 Broadway production was inspired by William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet and featured a libretto by Arthur Laurents, music by Leonard Bernstein, lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, and conception and choreography by Jerome Robbins.

The revival of West Side Story on which this tour is based began in 2009 and opened to critical acclaim while breaking box office records. Laurents' direction is recreated for the tour by David Saint and Robbins choreography is reproduced by Tony-Award nominee Joey McKneely.

The new Broadway cast album of West Side Story won the 2010 Grammy Award for Best Musical Show Album on January 31. The score is considered to be one of Broadway's finest featuring songs like "Something's Coming", "Tonight", "America", "I Feel Pretty" and "Somewhere".

The musical tells the story of star-crossed lovers Tony (Jarrad Biron Green) and Maria (Maryjoanna Grisso) as they struggle to rise above the hatred and intolerance that surrounds them.

It is set in the gang ridden streets of the upper west side of Manhattan in the 1950's and features the street feud between the Puerto Ricans (Sharks) and the white boys (Jets).

This current run of the musical goes for a bit more realism as there is quite a bit of Spanish spoken, which gives the musical a more authentic feel.

The cast does a a great job of bringing the characters and their gritty reality alive with Michelle Alves's Anita shining above the rest.

Romance, humor, violence, happiness and sadness are all on display and the audience is taken on a journey through the character's hopes, fears and despair and in the end the story's message of the evils of prejudices is heard loud and clear.

Tickets for the remaining dates at the Fisher Theatre range from $45-$106.