'West Side Story' comes to the Aladdin Theater for the Performing Arts

July 01, 2002 4:20 AM
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An all-new production of West Side Story, one of the most compelling musicals of all time will appear, at the Aladdin Theatre for the Performing Arts from Tuesday through Sunday. This exciting new production of the timeless tragedy is as relevant in today’s society as it was when it was written.

The poignant tale recounts the courtship and doomed love story between Tony (one of The Jets) and Maria (the sister of the one of The Sharks). The musical is filled with electrifying dance numbers based on Jerome Robbins’ original ground-breaking choreography. The incredible score written by Leonard Bernstein, Stephen Sondheim and Arthur Laurents features some of the most exuberant and romantic songs ever written, including Somewhere (There’s a Place for Us), Maria, Tonight, I Feel Pretty and America.

Starring in this new production of West Side Story as Maria is Natasha Harper. Harper was recently honored to become the last "Luisa" in the record-breaking off Broadway production of The Fantastiks. She starred in the national tour of Musicals Tonight!, and as Maria in a recent European tour of West Side Story. Drew Niles is performing in the role of Tony. Most recently Niles portrayed "Kenickie" in Grease at the prestigious Olney Theatre Center in Maryland. Lynn Sterling, who will portray Anita, has performed principal and featured roles in Ain’t Misbehavin,’ Anything Goes, Can-Can, Evita, Sophisticated Ladies, Sweet Charity and Fosse. She will appear in The Boy from Oz on Broadway in 2003. Andy Blankenbuehler stars as Riff in West Side Story. His Broadway credits include Contact, Fosse, Saturday Night Fever, Big, Parade and Guys and Dolls.

Alan Johnson is handling direction and choreography for the current production. During the past thirty years, Johnson has recreated numerous acclaimed productions of Jerome Robbins’ original West Side Story all over the world. He is also known for his many collaborative efforts with Mel Brooks beginning with the famous (or infamous) Springtime for Hitler number in The Producers.

Donald Chan serves as musical director for the 2002 production. A musician of diverse and accomplished talents, Chan has worked with luminaries such as Gene Kelly, Ethel Merman, Chita Rivera, Carol Lawrence, Joel Grey and Sid Caesar. On Broadway his credits include Kiss of the Spiderwoman, The Pirates of Penzance, Cabaret, and Phantom of the Opera.

The performance schedule is as follows: Tuesday through Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday evening performance ticket prices are $35, $55 and $75. Sunday evening performance ticket prices are $25, $35 and $55. Additional matinee performances on Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m. Matinee performance ticket prices are $25, $35 and $55. For ticket information, call (702) 785-5000 or toll-free at (866) 477-5267