Press: The Fugard Theatre's ‘memorable masterpiece’ West Side Story returns March 2018, one final time!

November 2, 2017

The Fugard Theatre's timeless musical production of West Side Story returns to the Artscape Opera House in 2018 following two tremendously successful seasons in Cape Town and Johannesburg.


West Side Story, a production by Eric Abraham and the Fugard Theatre, exploded on to the Cape Town stage in the winter of 2015 and due to overwhelming demand, will return to the Artscape Opera House stage for one final season in South Africa, opening in March 2018.


This glorious multiple award-winning musical, regarded by many as the “best ever written” when it first premiered on Broadway in 1957, is based on an original conception of Jerome Robbins with the book by Arthur Laurents, music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. 


The Fugard Theatre has worked with the finest South African creative talent on this production, bringing together the same award-winning core creative team behind their productions of The Rocky Horror Show, Cabaret and Funny Girl; Matthew Wild is director, Charl-Johan Lingenfelder is musical director and conductor and Louisa Talbot is the choreographer. With a full orchestra in the pit and an outstanding cast of 40, West Side Story is going to sweep Capetonians off their feet once again in 2018. The extended dynamic dance scenes and iconic songs, such as "Something's Coming", "Maria", "I Feel Pretty" and “Tonight”, all set to Bernstein’s magnificent score, makes for riveting theatre.

West Side Story is set on the harsh streets of the Upper West Side neighbourhood of New York City in the mid-1950s and is inspired by William Shakespeare’s tragic, ageless tale of Romeo and Juliet. Rival gangs, the Sharks and the Jets, battle in a turf-war to gain control of the neighbourhood. It gets complicated and tensions rise when Tony, a former member of the Jets and best friend of the gang leader, Riff, falls in love with Maria, the sister of Bernardo who is the leader of the Sharks. 


When this grand-scale masterpiece first premiered in the Mother City and Johannesburg it astounded audiences and sold out quickly.  It is clearly a production that is not to be missed and advance booking is highly recommended. 


West Side Story runs at the Artscape Opera House from 7 March to 1 April 2018 for a limited season. Tickets are available through Computicket, Artscape Dial-a-Seat 0214217695 or the Fugard Theatre Box Office 0214614554. Advance booking is recommended.


Here is what the Cape Town and Joburg media had to say:


★★★★★ Flawless

- City Press

★★★★★ Magic “West Side” slays the genre for SA

- The Star Tonight

★★★★ A SA success story

- The Cape Argus


- Die Burger

Sets new standards for local grand-scale musicals

- Die Beeld

It’s up there among the best theatre experiences in this city, of the decade

- What's on in Joburg

A theatrical masterpiece

- Stage and Screen

West Side Story is as good as musicals get

- The Next 48 Hours

...raises the bar for musical theatre internationally.

- Bizcommunity

…every bit as brilliant as any international production, if not better

- Daily Maverick

Whimsical, breathtaking, visually explosive … an overwhelming, heart-thudding theatrical performance you simply have to experience.

- Theatre Scene Cape Town

The Fugard Theatre's production of West Side Story is a tour-de-force

- LitNet

West Side Story has to be the hottest ticket in town. It sizzles

- Artslink



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