A THEATRE group is in its last week of rehearsing one of the best-loved musicals of all time. Tring Festival Company presents West Side Story, which has enjoyed success around the world both on stage and as an Oscar-winning film.
The Tring production involves 55 performers, aged between 10 and 25.
The story draws on the classic tale of Romeo and Juliet but is set in 1950s New York City, where two rival gangs, Jets and Sharks, are doing battle.
When a member of the Jets, Tony, meets and falls in love with Maria, sister of the leader of the Sharks, it creates even more division between the two gangs, leading to an almighty turf war.
The show was premiered on Broadway in 1957 and was said to have changed musical theatre forever, with its energetic dance routines, music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. It has some of the best songs ever written for a musical, including Somewhere, America, I Feel Pretty and Tonight.
Director Amy Dunstall says: “We are very excited to take up the challenge this show presents. The cast have worked so hard and have been so committed, rehearsing twice a week since March.”
■ The company is performing at The Grass Roots Court Theatre, in Tring, from Tuesday, September 4 until Saturday, September 8 at 8pm, with an additional matinee performance on Saturday, September 8 at 2.30pm.
Tickets cost between £8 and £15 from the box office (concessions are available) – call 07543 560 478.
For a sneak preview of the show, go to www.deetv.tv.