News: Curve Leicester announces casting for West Side Story

Casting has been announced for the Made at Curve production of West Side Story, running in Leicester this Christmas 23 Nov 2019 – 11 Jan 2020.

The musical will be directed by Curve’s Artistic Director Nikolai Foster, responsible for Curve’s recent hit productions of White Christmas (also at the Dominion Theatre, London), Grease (currently on tour in the UK) and Scrooge, with new choreography from Ellen Kane (Cats, Universal/WorkingTitle film directed by Tom Hooper and Worldwide Associate Choreography on Matilda the Musical, RSC).

Adriana Ivelisse and Carly Mercedes-Dyer will play trailblazing women Maria and Anita, who arrive in the United States from Puerto Rico looking for a new life. Adriana, a Puerto Rican native and 2019 Spotlight Prize Finalist, will make her professional UK debut as Maria while Carly will play Anita, Maria’s closest friend.

Jamie Muscato (Bend it Like Beckham, Phoenix Theatre, Lazarus, Kings Cross Theatre, Heathers, Theatre Royal Haymarket and The Light Princess, National Theatre) will play Maria’s lover Tony.

Jonathan Hermosa-Lopez (Grease, UK and Ireland tour) and Ronan Burns (Kiss Me Kate, Sheffield Crucible Theatre) will play rival gang leaders Bernardo and Riff.

Darren Bennett, who has appeared in numerous Made at Curve productions including Grease as Vince Fontaine (2016 and 2019 UK and Ireland tour), Scrooge the Musical (2017) as Mr Fezziwig and cover for Scrooge, will play Police Detective Lieutenant Schrank.

The cast also includes Ryan Anderson (Grease, UK and Ireland tour) as A-Rab, Damian Buhagiar (Grease, UK and Ireland tour) as Chino, Thea Bunting (Grease, UK and Ireland tour) as Graziella, Alex Christian (Oklahoma!, Chichester Festival Theatre) as Baby John, Abigail Climer (Grease, UK and Ireland tour) as Consuelo, Isaac Gryn (Oklahoma!, Chichester Festival Theatre) as Action, Beth Hinton-Lever (Hadestown, National Theatre) as Anybodys, Katie Lee (Matilda, Royal Shakespeare Company) as Velma, Mireia Mambo (Evita, Regents Park Open Air Theatre) as Rosalia, Michael O’Reilly (Dirty Dancing, UK and Ireland tour) as Diesel, Dominic Sibanda (Aladdin, Prince Edward Theatre) as Indio, Dale White (Grease, UK and Ireland tour) as Big Deal and Christopher Wright (The Ladykillers, Oldham Coliseum) as Officer Krupke and Doc.

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

“West side story really is one of the greatest musicals ever written theatre. To bring to life any piece of theatre you need an astonishing group of collaborators and we are proud to have assembled such a talented, imaginative and quintessentially 21st century group of actors, who will celebrate the heritage of this play, whilst rediscovering it for an entirely new generation. Adriana, Carly, Jamie, Jonathan and Ronan lead an outstanding company of actors, who all recognise how important the musical’s message of love and acceptance is in 2019.”

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.

West Side Story is based on a conception of Jerome Robbins, with a book by Arthur Laurents, music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim.

To book tickets visit www.curveonline.co.uk

Photo credit: Ellie Kurttz

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