West Side Story is a musical with a book by Arthur Laurents, music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. It was inspired by William Shakespeare's play Romeo and Juliet.
The story is set in the mid 1950s in the Upper West Side of New York City, then a multiracial, blue-collar neighborhood. The musical explores the rivalry between the Jets and the Sharks, two teenage street gangs of different ethnic backgrounds. The members of the Sharks, from Puerto Rico, are taunted by the Jets, a white gang. The young protagonist, Tony, a former member of the Jets and best friend of the gang's leader, Riff, falls in love with Maria, the sister of Bernardo, the leader of the Sharks. The dark theme, sophisticated music, extended dance scenes, and focus on social problems marked a turning point in musical theatre. Bernstein's score for the musical includes "Jet Song", "Something's Coming", "Maria", "Tonight", "America", "Cool", "One Hand, One Heart", "I Feel Pretty", "Somewhere", "Gee, Officer Krupke" and "A Boy Like That".
The original 1957 Broadway production, conceived, directed and choreographed by Jerome Robbins and produced by Robert E. Griffith and Harold Prince, marked Sondheim's Broadway debut. It ran for 732 performances before going on tour. The production was nominated for six Tony Awards including Best Musical in 1958, but the award for Best Musical went to Meredith Willson's The Music Man; Robbins won the Tony Award for his choreography and Oliver Smith won for his scenic designs. The show had an even longer-running London production, a number of revivals, and international productions. A 1961 musical film adaptation, co-directed by Robert Wise and Robbins, starred Natalie Wood and Richard Beymer. The film was nominated for eleven Academy Awards and won ten, including Best Picture.
This almost 5′ tall STB poster has fantastic artwork. The tatekan STB format had much lower print numbers compared to regular Japanese B2s. They are very rare, especially for more popular film titles, and are highly sought after by collectors today.
This poster is in a very good condition. It has some small tears and edge wear. Once framed this poster will display excellently. Please refer to the imagery as this is the exact poster that is for sale.
It is 52 years old!
It is not a reproduction or a reprint.
Certificate of Authenticity included.
STB 20x57" (51x145cm)