WEST SIDE STORY to open in Brisbane

One of the most celebrated musicals of all time, WEST SIDE STORY will play a limited season at Queensland Performing Arts Centre’s Lyric Theatre from 24 July – Tickets on Sale now!

Opera Australia and GWB Entertainment today announced that the acclaimed BB Group production of WEST SIDE STORY will return to Australia in 2020.

A modern retelling of Romeo and Juliet; this tragic love story tells the tale of two young people whose happiness is destroyed by the hate of two enemy camps in New York City’s urban jungle. The ‘Jets’, sons of previous immigrants to America, battle the new arrivals from Puerto Rico, the ‘Sharks’, for domination of the streets.

The Jets of West Side Story | Photo Jeff Busby

BB Group CEO and Producer Ralf Kokemuller said “We are thrilled to be bringing this production back to Australia in 2020. The dramatic story, spectacular dancing and unforgettable songs have captivated theatregoers for decades and audiences in Brisbane are going to love it!”

When the original West Side Story opened on Broadway in 1957, musical theatre changed forever as the most complex and challenging unity of music, dance, book and lyrics was realised in a way which has been rarely matched since. The genius of its four creators, a remarkable collaboration between Leonard Bernstein, Arthur Laurents, Stephen Sondheim and Jerome Robbins, produced a masterpiece whose artistic quality remains unquestioned to this day.

Now former pupil of Jerome Robbins, Joey McKneely’s vibrant new stage production returns to Australia after wild acclaim world-wide. Since the first world tour in 2003, there have been more than 1500 performances of McKneely’s award-winning production of West Side Story. Joey McKneely is a two-time Tony Award nominated choreographer whose Broadway credits include Smokey Joe’s Café, The Life, Twelfth Night, The Wild Party and The Boy From Oz.

GWB Entertainment’s Torben Brookman said “Musicals like West Side Story only come along once in a lifetime. This piece transformed musical theatre around the world and is as relevant today as it was when first staged. It is a privilege to be working with BB Group, Opera Australia and QPAC to bring this production to Brisbane.”

Opera Australia’s Artistic Director Lyndon Terracini reiterated what a wonderful opportunity this will be for Brisbane audiences.

“West Side Story is one of the greatest pieces of musical theatre ever written, which is evidenced by sold out performances worldwide. Bringing the production back to Australia in 2020 to continue the success of the 2019 international tour was an opportunity that we just couldn’t pass up,” said Terracini.

West Side Story

Lyric Theatre, QPAC From 24 July 2020
Tickets can be booked by calling the Box Office on 136 246 or at qpac.com.au

Gabi Bergman

Gabi Bergman is a Melbourne-based performer and educator, and is the current Deputy Editor-in-Chief of AussieTheatre.com. She holds a Double Arts degree in Theatre Studies and Film/Screen Studies and a Master of Teaching (Secondary Education). Gabi has always been an avid lover of theatre, specifically musicals, and spends way too much money than she’d like to admit on tickets. Her most prized possession is her crate of theatre programs.

Gabi Bergman

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