SF Symphony soars through magnificent West Side Story

Jun 28

SF Symphony soars through magnificent <i>West Side Story</i>

It's hard to imagine but it's true: the music is so glorious you barely even miss the dancing. The San Francisco Symphony concludes its season with the first concert presentation of the full score for West Side Story, and it's simply mind blowing. For the original 1957 production, composer Leonard Bernstein apparently made concessions in the orchestrations based on what was available to him at the Winter Garden Theatre. Then, when the chance came along to re-orchestrate for the movie in 1961, orchestrators Sid Ramin and Irwin Kostal (under Bernstein's supervision) went big but perhaps too big. According to Symphony program notes, Bernstein then worried that the work had become "overblown and unsubtle."

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Odds & ends: Legally Brown, `Spring’ cast blog

Sep 09

You’ve gotta see this hilarious spoof of MTV’s terrible “Legally Blonde the Musical: The Search for the Next Elle Woods.” It’s related to In the Heights, and it’s called “Legally Brown: The Search for the Next Piragua Guy.” Matthew Morrison, Cheyenne Jackson, Hunter Bell and other Broadway folks show up. Also, now that...

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[title of show] heads to broad-WAY!

Apr 05

OK, so that spunky little can-do musical [title of show] won’t be trying out in San Francisco before heading to Broadway. Our loss. But the show is actually heading to Broadway. Tickets go on sale April 21, and performances begin July 5 at the Lyceum Theatre. Those crazy kids with the video cameras have created an enjoyable [title of show] show episode about...

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Xanadu or don’t

Jul 11

The Broadway production of Xanadu actually received some lovely reviews. Critics seemed astonished that they were compelled to write nice things about what is apparently a funny, enjoyable show. Charles Isherwood in the New York Times started off his review: “Can a musical be simultaneously indefensible and irresistible? Why, yes it can.” He goes on to...

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Xanadooo-ooo-ooo (now we are here)

Jul 05

Should we be taking it as an omen that the first big musical of the new theater season is Xanadu? And is that a good omen or not? A Theater Dogs spy who saw an early preview says it’s definitely a bad omen. And judging from the way cast members are literally falling out of the show, we might have to consider this not such an auspicious beginning. Any musical...

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