With its presentation of the American Musical classic WEST SIDE STORY, New Bedford Festival Theatre will celebrate the 100th Birthday of its composer, the illimitable Leonard Bernstein.
Born in Lawrence, MA , August 25, 1918, Leonard Bernstein rose to incredible heights as a composer, conductor, and teacher of myriads of theatrical presentations, international orchestras, operas, and television specials. A musical genius on all creative levels, Bernstein swept all major awards and received commendations throughout the world. His beloved figure was astonishing to watch in action as conductor and/or pianist and his able ability as a teacher and raconteur made all who witnessed him in action were left with indelible memories of a powerhouse of creativity.
Bernstein’s collaboration with Jerome Robbins, Stephen Sondheim, and Arthur Laurents on WEST SIDE STORY gave birth to one of the American Musical Theatre’s most enduring and beloved musical tales of young love and tragedy based on Shakespeare’s ROMEO AND JULIET. Setting this story in New York City of the 1950’s instead of Verona, Italy of the 1500’s, this electric work ushered in a new style of music and dance that changed the face of American Theatre. Opening 60 years ago in 1957, WEST SIDE STORY still creates electricity that is rarely felt in other musical presentations.
It is fitting, as the world celebrates Leonard Bernstein’s 100th birthday that Festival Theatre offers WEST SIDE STORY as a tribute to his genius as the composer of one of the finest of Broadway Musicals ever written.
WEST SIDE STORY will be presented for 7 performances only July 20 – 29, 2018 at the Zeiterion Performing Arts Center, 684 Purchase St., New Bedford, MA. Tickets are available by calling 508.994.2900, visiting the Box Office, or on-line at zeiterion.org.