The Palestine Herald, Palestine, Texas

Local News

January 17, 2013

UT Tyler to present "West Side Story"

BETHEL — The University of Texas at Tyler R. Don Cowan Fine and Performing Arts Center will feature the hit Broadway musical “West Side Story” as its first performance of the Broadway Series, Susan Thomae-Morphew, executive director, announced.

Sponsored by Jenny King, the musical will take the stage at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in the Cowan Center Vaughn Auditorium.

“This musical changed the theatre when it debuted more than 50 years ago, and we’re thrilled to be a part of the revival tour,” Thomae-Morphew said. “This love story, based on Romeo and Juliet, is filled with amazing singing and dancing.”

“West Side Story” tells the story of star-crossed lovers Tony and Maria as they struggle to rise above the hatred and intolerance that surrounds them.

The Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim score is considered to be one of Broadway’s finest and features such classics of the American musical theatre as “Something’s Coming,” “Tonight,” “America,” “I Feel Pretty,” “Maria” and “Somewhere.”

According to The Associated Press, West Side Story is the “best dance-driven musical. Five decades have not dimmed the extraordinary choreography or the score that pulsates throughout.”

Variety says, “The true stars of ‘West Side Story’ are Jerome Robbins’ graceful, endlessly expressive choreography and Leonard Bernstein’s score, which still sounds bracingly modern a half-century after it was first heard. The music is a primal force.”

This tour, based on Arthur Laurents’ groundbreaking 2009 Broadway direction, offers a bold new design that builds on the show’s raw power and emotion to create a fresh experience unlike any that came before it.

Communications and media sponsors are AT&T, East Texas Radio Group, KLTV and Lamar Advertising.

The performance includes adult situations.

Tickets still available are $52 and $37 and can be purchased online at, by phone at 903-566-7424 or at the box office. Box office hours are 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and one hour prior to the performance.

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