Nikolai Foster Photography by Ellie Kurttz
Nikolai Foster Photography by Ellie Kurttz

Leicester’s Curve theatre has announced the classic musical West Side Story as its Made at Curve Christmas 2019 production.

The production, runs from 23 Nov 2019 to 11 Jan 2020 and will be directed by Curve’s Artistic Director Nikolai Foster. Ellen Kane, who is currently working on the Universal/Working Title film of Cats, directed by Tom Hooper and whose previous work includes Worldwide Associate Choreography on the RSC’s Matilda the Musical, as well as co-choreography of the Tony and Olivier Award-nominated Groundhog Day, will be creating new choreography for the production. Curve Associate Artist Sarah Travis (Grease, Curve, Scrooge the Musical, Curve and the Tony Award-winning revival of Stephen Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd) will bring the production’s iconic score to life.

The announcement was made at Curve’s latest Season Preview event on 7 Nov, where Chief Executive Chris Stafford and Nikolai Foster also looked forward to the upcoming productions set to take to the theatre’s stages.

New York City, West Side, 1957. In the midst of gang rivalry and racial tensions, love at first sight strikes between Tony, a founding member of the White-American Jets and Maria, the sister of Bernardo, leader of the Puerto Rican Sharks. In the face of danger, the two young lovers continue to meet in secret – but the Jets and the Sharks have one last rumble to fight out.

Inspired by Shakespeare’s classic tragedy Romeo and Juliet and with a timeless score including ‘Tonight’, ‘America’ and ‘I Feel Pretty’, West Side Story represents one of the greatest musicals of all time, filled with romance, charm, aggression and heartbreak.

Speaking about the announcement, Curve’s Chief Executive Chris Stafford and Artistic Director Nikolai Foster said:

“West Side Story blazed a new trail in world theatre and continues to hold its ground today, decades after the Sharks & Jets first exploded on Broadway.

“Curve has developed a reputation for producing revivals of the great musicals in innovative new productions; we couldn’t be more excited to tackle this masterpiece on our stage – a stage designed for emotionally charged, epic plays which explore the human condition.

“Bernstein’s score defies superlatives, matched by the contributions of book writer Arthur Laurents and Sondheim’s astonishing lyrics. Curve is always developing great talent and we are thrilled Ellen Kane has chosen to work with us on this brand new production of West Side Story. Ellen is a choreographer of exceptional talent and we are excited to work alongside her, rediscovering the show for a new generation. With the mighty Sarah Travis in charge of music, a terrific team is assembling to create this brand new production.

“Since we started working together at Curve, West Side Story has been a show we longed to produce. There couldn’t be a better musical to bring people together and introduce new audiences the joy of theatre; regardless of class, culture or age, West Side Story will be the perfect production to celebrate Christmas at Curve.”

Tickets will go on sale for Curve’s production of West Side Story at 12noon on 6 Dec to Curve Friends and Supporters, 7 Dec to Curve Members and Groups and on general sale on 14 Dec. Tickets can be purchased online at www.curveonline.co.uk, over the phone on 0116 242 3595 or in person at Curve’s Ticket Office.

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