In celebration of composer Leonard Bernstein’s 100th birthday, West Side Story will be performed at The Morrison Center in a full performance of the concert version. This seminal work in American musical theatre explores the rivalry between the Jets and the Sharks, two teenage street gangs of different ethnic backgrounds as they vie for territory in 1950’s Upper West Side New York City. The dark theme, sophisticated music, extended dance scenes, and focus on social problems marked a turning point in American musical theatre.
Former Boise Philharmonic Music Director Robert Franz conducts, returning to The Morrison Center stage for the first time since 2016. Bernstein’s score for the musical includes “Something’s Coming”, “Maria”, “America”, “Somewhere”, “Tonight”, “Jet Song”, “I Feel Pretty”, “A Boy Like That”, “One Hand, One Heart”, “Gee, Officer Krupke”, and “Cool”. After its 1957 premiere on Broadway, West Side Story was made into a feature film starring Natalie Wood – the film was nominated for 11 Academy Awards and won 10, including Best Picture (as well as a special award for Robbins), becoming the record holder for the most wins for a movie musical.