19-29 March 2014
Reviewed by Emily Crombie
West Side Story is a modern day take on Romeo and Juliet that nearly didn’t make it to the stage as a financial backer could not be found. It is not the tradition upbeat musical with a happy ending. It is an edgy and energetic show with amazing choreography and the vocal range of the singers is extraordinary.
The show is opened by the conductor, opening to a spirited fight scene. The story is set in the 1950’s in New York where two rival gangs The Sharks and The Jets fight over the territory. Maria and Tony meet and fall in love but it is not meant to be. It touches on many issues that we can relate to in today’s society such as racism. Although on the whole it is a fairly heavy musical, there are elements of humour such as the scene where The Jets mock Officer Krupke.
The lead roles of Maria, played Katie Hall and Louis Maskell who played Tony carried the show with their amazing voices, singing Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim’s musical numbers such as Maria, Tonight, America and I Feel Pretty.
The scenery is very cleverly designed as a New York alleyway that is simply transformed into the other settings within the show.
Edinburgh Playhouse is a grand theatre situated at the east end of Princes Street making it very accessible for travelling to Edinburgh by train and bus. Like most city theatre’s on-street parking can be a challenge but there are several multi-storey carparks close by.
The theatre is very clean and the staff the height of efficiency. Though we did find the theatre was rather on the warm side.
All in all it was an enjoyable evening.
Tickets cost from £17.90 to £53.40 (plus £4 transaction fee).
For more information or to book tickets call the Box Office on 0844 871 3014 or book online here.
Edinburgh Playhouse, 18 – 22 Greenside Place, Edinburgh, EH1 3AA