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Classical Musical “West Side Story” Comes to Tibbits

With exuberant dance and memorable score, the poignant musical drama “West Side Story” comes to life July 25-27, 31 and August 1-3 on Tibbits’ stage.

The world’s greatest love story takes to the streets of New York City in this landmark Broadway musical considered one of the theatre’s finest accomplishments. Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet” transforms into 1950s city life as two young, idealistic lovers find themselves caught between warring street gangs, the Jets and the Sharks. Their struggle to survive in a world of hate, violence and prejudice is one of the most innovative, heart-wrenching and relevant musical dramas of our time. With a live orchestra and a company of professional dancers, the poignant story resonates today. Song classics include “Maria,” “America,” “Tonight,” “I Feel Pretty,” and “Somewhere.” 

The show is based on the conception of Jerome Robbins, book by Arthur Laurents, music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. Originally produced on broadway by Robert E. Griffith and Harold S. Prince by arrangement with Roger L. Stevens. “West Side Story” is directed and choreographed by Kevin Halpin with music direction by Cheryl VanDuzen. The cast is comprised of Daniela Delahuerta as Anita, Les Gibbs as Riff, Max Gonzalez as Bernardo, Julia Salatti as Maria, and Rhys Scheibe as Tony. The design staff features David Goldstein as set designer, Laura Holt as costume designer, Aaron Bell as tech director, Catie Blencowe as light designer, props by Cheyenne Glassburn, Joel Pape as sound designer and Nick Alteri as stage manager.

Long-time sponsor Coldwater Board of Public Utilities (CBPU) is sponsoring “West Side Story.” Strong local support and engagement from members of the community has been the cornerstone of success for both CBPU and Tibbits.

CBPU Board Vice President Chris Stevens said, “We are proud to support the Tibbits Opera House Summer Theatre program, celebrating arts, music, and a culture that makes Coldwater unique. It seems only fitting that a landmark musical like West Side Story is being performed in a landmark theatre like Tibbits.” Since its origination in 1891, the CBPU continues to provide safe, reliable, competitive, and efficient utility products and services to Coldwater residents including, electric, water & wastewater, garbage, Skitter TV, high speed internet, and digital phones services.

Tickets for “West Side Story” range from $15-36 including fees. Discounts are available for members, groups and students. Performances run July 25, 26, 27 and August 1, 2, 3 at 7:30pm as well as 2pm matinees on July 25 and 31.

To add to the Tibbits experience, Tibbits’ Ghost Light Bar in the theatre’s elevator lobby is open before the show and at intermission. After the July 27 performance, the public is invited to join the cast and crew for a talkback to discuss the show and ask questions. After the August 2 performance, the public is invited to the lower level art gallery to grab a drink and mingle in an informal setting during “Cocktails with the Cast and Crew.”

Tickets are available online at Tibbits.org, through the Tibbits Box office at the theatre 9 am to 5 pm weekdays or by calling 517-278-6029. All performances are held at the beautiful historic Tibbits Opera House, 14 S. Hanchett Street, in Coldwater. For more information, call or visit Tibbits.org. To learn more about the cast members, go to Tibbits.org/blog.