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'West Side Story' speaks to young theater-goers Maria Patrice Amon | Thu, Jan 13 2011 10:13 PM


The revival of the popular 1957 Broadway musical “West Side Story” coolly glided onto the stage at the Civic Theatre Jan. 4-9. Featuring the original stunning Jerome Robbins choreography, “West Side Story” is the beautifully touching love story between Maria, a Puerto Rican immigrant, and Tony, a Caucasian boy living in the same urban neighborhood.

Maria and Tony share a love that can never be because of the explosive racial tensions swirling and entangling them. The story themes of struggle and explosive friction that can often arise when cultures mingle is especially apt in a border town like San Diego. The show’s lessons can speak to youth in a culture where differences often outweigh similarities.

With songs by Tony and Grammy Award winners Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim, “West Side Story” offered theater-goers the opportunity to witness Broadway at its finest. Even audience members who did not know the story felt a sense of familiarity when they heard the play’s unforgettable songs. The dancing in the show was imbued with an infectious energy and was matched with precise excellence to the songs.

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