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West Side Story in Manila




Four Days to go and the ramble between two worlds will begin on the upper west side streets of New York City. West Side Story is a musical produced by Stages by the initiative of the Executive Producer Audie Gemora who played Riff in the Original Local Production back in 1981 and with the Direction of Menchu Launchengco-Yulo who played the Original Maria.







West Side story retells the classic Shakespearean tale of Romeo and Juliet and transport it to the chaotic streets of 1950s New York City. Lovers Tony (Christian Bautista) and Maria (Karylle and Joanna Ampil) got trapped in rivalry between street gangs separated by cultural and ethnic differences, The American Jets led by Riff (Gian Magdangal) and the Puerto Rican Sharks led by Maria's brother Bernardo (Jake Macapagal and Jeff Singson).







The lovers struggle to continue their romance in a world full of violence, hatred, and prejudice that leads them all to the tragic end of the musical masterpiece originally envisioned for the stage by director and choreographer Jerome Robbins. The musical also features an array of songs and dance numbers created by Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim like “Somewhere,” “Tonight,” “One Hand, One Heart,” “America,” and “Something’s Coming.”





Director Menchu shared to the press that she encourages her actors to give different attacks on their characters thus giving alternate actors different versions of a certain role.



“My actors attack their characters in a more real, more edgy manner as compared to the musical’s movie version. I don’t set rules and tell them what to do during rehearsals. I take it on how they give it,” shares Yulo. “I don’t expect Karylle’s Maria will be like Joanna’s, for instance. I don’t make them copy each other, but I still make sure that there’s not a great disparity in their performances.”



Executive Producer Audie Gemora also shared that Stages spends a Million of pesos just to re stage this magnificent piece of art. But also according to him, it is worth every penny to spend on a high end musical for the next generation of theater enthusiasts.

West Side Story will run at the Meralco Theater on Sept. 5, 6, 7, 12, 13, 14, 19, 20, 21, Oct. 3, 4, 5, 10, 11, and 12, 2008. For tickets, call Ticketworld at 891-9999 or STAGES at 818-1111 loc. 225. Ticketworld is online at www.ticketworld.com.ph. Ticket prices range from PhP 500 to 1,200.



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A blogger, artist, performer and musical lover. Loves discovering new things and making friends.

A web designer by profession. Working on a publishing company and part time Entertainment Blogger. Also once upon a time an actor, singer and creative writer.

Loves reading comicbooks and graphic novels. Enjoys watching movies and stage plays and musicals. Internet "lakwatsero", enjoys discovering new and cool sites to discover new things and most specially meeting new interesting people whom I can share my hobbies and interests.

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