Unlike other 1950s musicals, West Side Story’s original performers were unknowns, not stars. They were also appearing in an atypically gritty show, colored by both the cruelty and the ecstasy of young people living and loving in a vibrant but dangerous urban setting.
Welcome to Lyric Notes, Lyric Opera of Chicago's eNewsletter
Spring is here and at Lyric, we're celebrating another successful season of opera, thanks in no small part to you. But still, "Something's Coming!" In just 2 weeks, we begin rehearsals for the beloved Broadway musical, West Side Story. In this edition of Lyric Notes, you can read notes from director Francesca Zambello, and get a glimpse what goes into creating this iconic show for the Lyric stage.
Also in this issue — we preview this weekend's Ryan Opera Center Rising Stars in Concert event; we invite you to learn more about the highly-anticipated Lyric premiere of Dead Man Walking, part of the newly announced 2019/20 Season; and we share what's in store for Family Day at the Opera on April 6.
We hope you enjoy this issue and look forward to seeing you at Lyric soon!
What an amazing season it has been for the artists of The Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center! The dozen singers and one pianist of the 2018/19 Ensemble have learned and performed reams of music, been coached and guided by top professionals, and delivered a wide range of polished performances in a variety of venues throughout the Chicago area and beyond.
For an opera that premiered at the start of the new millennium, Dead Man Walking is surprisingly traditional in many ways. That should be encouraging news to anyone who’s wary of contemporary opera.
You can count on West Side Story at Lyric being one of your most memorable musicals you’ve ever seen. The production by Francesca Zambello comes to Chicago after triumphs at four major American companies. It’s a totally fresh look at this iconic show, performed by a cast bursting with talent.
Lyric Notes is part of the Innovation Initiative made possible by Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan.