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April 05, 2009

West Side Story

Source for the picture: http://www.myparkmag.co.uk/images/west-side-story.jpg

West Side Story first appeared on September 26, 1957 (Sheward, 143). West side story is a musical about 2 rival gangs known as the Jets and Sharks who are fighting to claim a piece of territory in New York. It is kind of a modern take on Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet where "Shakespeare's star-crossed lovers became Polish-American Tony and Puerto Rican-born Maria, whose romance sets off a deadly confrontation between the two bands of youths" (Sheward, 143). Tony is from the Jets gang and Maria is the sister of Riff, who is the leader of the gang known as the Sharks. That is why the theme of forbidden love is the main focus of the musical.

The theme of forbidden love is expressed in a number of the songs. The song "A Boy Like That" says that Maria shouldn't love Tony because he will kill her brother because they belong to different gangs, who happen to be rivals. The song "Somewhere" is a song with Maria and Tony singing that some place they will be able to be together. The song "Maria" is where Tony sings about how in love he is with Maria.

(Please remember to copy and paste the links to listen to the songs)
Theme of Forbidden Love:

One Hand One Heart


A Boy Like That

Posted by kimchau at April 5, 2009 03:05 PM


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