July 16th, 2014

petzi great lakes by dhamphir

(no subject)

BWW REVIEWS: Riverside's WEST SIDE STORY Enthralls

by Jeffrey Walker

WEST SIDE STORY, now playing through August 3 at Riverside Center, still has the power to enthrall audiences with Leonard Bernstein's symphonic jazz score and Stephen Sondheim's young lyrics.

This production frames the storytelling with a magnificent set design by J.D. Madsen. I am usually reluctant to start with the scenic design, but upon entering Riverside's theatre space, the sight of a section of New York City street corner, reaching to the sky and bathed in an amber glow strikes the senses. Central to the design is a remnant of the "El," or elevated rail tracks. The steel girders of the train tracks are incomplete and are pinned in by the close quarters of the buildings. Madsen's scenic design - aided by the atmospheric lighting by Catherine Girardi - makes a fitting crucible for the hot-tempers and passionate young love presented in this landmark of 1950s musical theatre.
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