Dothée, Hanson, Aspiras, Cao, Shaw and Sheridan Set for West Virginia West Side Story

News   Dothée, Hanson, Aspiras, Cao, Shaw and Sheridan Set for West Virginia West Side Story
 
Principal casting has been announced for the West Virginia Public Theatre's upcoming production of the classic Leonard Bernstein-Stephen Sondheim-Arthur Laurents musical West Side Story.
Julie Hanson stars as Maria
Julie Hanson stars as Maria

Directed by Michael Licata and choreographed by Vic DiMonda, West Side Story will play the Lyell B. Clay Concert Theatre at the West Virginia University Creative Arts Center July 8-13. The cast will feature Nick Dothée as Tony, Julie Hanson (The Phantom of the Opera) as Maria, Angelica-Lee Aspiras (The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee) as Anita, Andrew Cao (50th anniversary tour of West Side Story) as Riff and Rob Sheridan (Jolson: The Musical) as Lt. Shrank.

West Side Story, according to WVPT, "explores the love of its two protagonists, Tony and Maria, as the rivalry between their two teenage gangs of different ethnic and cultural backgrounds keeps them apart."

West Side Story features a score by Leonard Bernstein (music) and Stephen Sondheim (lyrics) and a book by Laurents. The musical opened on Broadway at the Winter Garden Theatre Sept. 26, 1957. It played 732 performances before closing June 27, 1959. Conceived, directed and choreographed by Jerome Robbins, the original cast included Larry Kert as Tony, Carol Lawrence as Maria and Chita Rivera as Anita. The classic Bernstein-Sondheim score boasts such tunes as "Tonight," "America," "Maria," "I Feel Pretty" and "Somewhere."

Subsequent revivals were presented at the Winter Garden Theatre (1960), City Center (1964) and the Minskoff Theatre (1980). The latter featured Josie de Guzman as Maria, Debbie Allen as Anita and Ken Marshall as Tony.

The season WVPT will continue with A Streetcar Named Desire (July 15-20), Urban Cowboy (July 22-27) and The Producers (July 29-Aug. 3).

For tickets call (304) 291-4122 or visit the WVPT box office in the West Virginia University Creative Arts Center. For more information go to www.wvpublictheatre.com.

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