‘West Side Story’: A Bilingual Production at the Teatro del Maggio

West Side Story by Leonard Bernstein will take the stage at the Teatro del Maggio (piazzale Vittorio Gui, 1) from December 13 – 22. This year, the American composer and conductor is being celebrated worldwide on the 100th anniversary of his birth.  A new production brings stage direction by Federico Bellone with Francesco Lanzillotta on the podium. The musical debuted in 1957 in Washington D.C. and was made popular by the 1961 film directed by Jerome Robbins.

Loosely based on Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, set in New York City in the mid-1950’s, the West Side Story tells of the tragic love of Tony and Maria, who belong to rival gangs in a climate of hate and intolerance. The Florentine edition will be bilingual:  the dialogue will be in Italian, the songs in English, with the original choreography by Jerome Robbins.  Subtitles in Italian and English will be displayed above the stage.

The 1962 film based on the play of the same name won 10 of the 11 Oscars for which it was nominated, including Best Picture, Best Director (Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins), Best Supporting Actor (George Chakiris) and Best Supporting Actress (Rita Morena).  (anne lokken)