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RNCM Young Company: West Side Story


West_Side_Story2

With soaring, sophisticated and diverse melodies, energetic dance battles and its remarkably salient social message, West Side Story is still one of American musical theatre’s most revolutionary and adored pieces. It is also the perfect showcase for our musical theatre group, RNCM Young Company, and includes stand-out Bernstein/Sondheim classics such as Maria, I Feel Pretty, Tonight, America and Somewhere.

RNCM Young Company was formed following a production of West Side Story staged at the RNCM in 2008. This year we mark the 10th anniversary of this production and are proud to be working in partnership with exciting new theatre company, Future Stages. We’re also proud that members of this original cast, Dominic Biddle and Daniel McDwyer, join us on the creative team as Associate Director and Associate Musical Director, meaning that a new generation of young performers will be mentored by creative talent that came up through the RNCM ranks.

This amateur production is presented by arrangement with Music Theatre International (Europe). All authorised performance materials are also supplied by MTI Europe www.mtishows.co.uk

Based on a Conception of Jerome Robbins
Book by Arthur Laurents
Music by Leonard Bernstein
Lyrics by Stephen Sondheim
Entire Original Production Directed and Choreographed by Jerome Robbins
Originally Produced on Broadway by Robert E Griffith and Harold S Prince by Arrangement with Roger L Stevens

James Bonas director
Dominic Biddle associate director
Gregory Batsleer musical director
Daniel McDwyer associate musical director
Ewan Jones choreographer
Holly Hughes associate choreographer
Tom Paris set designer
Julie Parker lighting designer

Inspired by the timeless story of Romeo and Juliet, West Side Story takes Shakespeare’s star-crossed lovers and places them in the vibrant battleground of 1950s New York. In the midst of the deep-seated rivalry between the warring gangs the Sharks and the Jets, Maria and Tony discover that ancient grudges are no match for true love. However, their warring factions refuse to back down and the rumbles, romance and resentment lead the bloody path to the lovers’ ultimate, tragic conclusion.

With soaring, sophisticated and diverse melodies, energetic dance battles and its remarkably salient social message, West Side Story is still one of American musical theatre’s most revolutionary and adored pieces. It is also the perfect showcase for our musical theatre group, RNCM Young Company, and includes stand-out Bernstein/Sondheim classics such as Maria, I Feel Pretty, Tonight, America and Somewhere.

RNCM Young Company was formed following a production of West Side Story staged at the RNCM in 2008. This year we mark the 10th anniversary of this production and are proud to be working in partnership with exciting new theatre company, Future Stages. We’re also proud that members of this original cast, Dominic Biddle and Daniel McDwyer, join us on the creative team as Associate Director and Associate Musical Director, meaning that a new generation of young performers will be mentored by creative talent that came up through the RNCM ranks.

This amateur production is presented by arrangement with Music Theatre International (Europe). All authorised performance materials are also supplied by MTI Europe www.mtishows.co.uk

Most people know that West Side Story is based on William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. However, did you know Shakespeare based his play on a poem by Arthur Brooke called The Tragic Historye of Romeus and Iuliet, which in turn was based on a poem by the Roman poet Ovid called Pyramus and Thisbe from his masterpiece Metamorphisus?

Two of the actors from the film version of West Side Story would go on to play major roles in David Lynch’s television series Twin Peaks. Richard Beymer (Tony) and Russ Tamblyn (Riff) went on to play Ben Horne and Dr. Lawrence Jacoby in this likewise groundbreaking show.

During the entire production, the actors wore out 200 pairs of shoes, applied more than 100lbs of make-up, split 27 pairs of pants and performed in 30 different recording sessions.