Young people dance up a storm in cautionary tale

NDET 95094'West Side Story Dress Rehearsal - Maria played by Chloe Gibbions and Tony played by Daniel Woolley.
NDET 95094'West Side Story Dress Rehearsal - Maria played by Chloe Gibbions and Tony played by Daniel Woolley.
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UNTIL last week I never viewed West Side Story as a cautionary tale, but of course that’s what it is. The show is more than half a century old, but the story of disaffected youth, racial conflict and knife fights is more relevant now than ever, especially in the light of recent events in France.

UNTIL this week I never viewed West Side Story as a cautionary tale, but of course that’s what it is. The show is more than half a century old, but the story of disaffected youth, racial conflict and knife fights is more relevant now than ever, especially in the light of recent events in France.

It’s very much a young people’s show, and at the Pomegranate this week the up and coming performers of Dot Clarke’s Young Inspirations Theatre Company make it their own.

Colour-coded into Jets (blue and yellow) and Sharks (red, black and purple), girls and boys alike dance up a storm in the punchy, high-energy company numbers. The entire cast, not one of them over 20, attackLeonard Bernstein’s complex music and Stephen Sondheim’s tricksy lyrics like veterans.

West Side Story runs at the Pomegranate until Saturday, March 24

For the full review, see the Derbyshire Times, publication date March 29.

LYNNE PATRICK