When "West Side Story" opened in London a critic wrote "This show begins a new age in theatre." Join Jeffrey Engel as he discusses the creation of "West Side Story" and plays excerpts from the West Side Story CD and DVD. Bernstein's fourth musical certainly was ground-breaking. This modern version of "Romeo and Juliet" was no musical comedy fantasy, but rather a realistic tragedy with major characters killed at the end of each act. Never had a musical integrated so much dance which was also crucial to the story-line. Add to that a rhythmically and harmonically rich score and the team of Sondheim Robbins and Bernstein produced a revolutionary work for Broadway.
Mr. Engel is a graduate of Ithaca College where he majored in cello and music history. He continued musicological studies at the University of Connecticut. Mr. Engel lived in Paris for fourteen years where he played with the Paris Opera and other orchestras. He is a contributor to "The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians". Presently, he is a cello instructor and presents music lectures throughout Connecticut.