Rocky Fork Enterprise

GLHS to present 'West Side Story'

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Amanda Weiss performs as Maria in Gahanna Lincoln High School's performance of West Side Story during dress rehearsal April 29. Other cast members in the scene are Sydni Randle, Sana Selemon, Beth Collier, Tara Smith, Desiree Adams and Hannah Rossio..

The Gahanna Lincoln High School Theatre Department will bring West Side Story to the stage May 9-12 for the first time in 20 years.

Performances will be at 7:30 p.m. May 9-11 and at 2 p.m. May 12 at the high school, 140 S. Hamilton Road.

"We chose this show because it is such a great balance of scene work, dance and music," said Cindi Macioce, director. "All three musical theater elements balance each other, and we wanted the challenge of making all three things equally important."

She said Gahanna last produced the show 20 years ago, and the story and message remain as relevant as they were then.

West Side Story 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 Polish-American working-class group.

The young protagonist, Tony, one of the Jets, falls in love with Maria, the sister of the Sharks' leader.

"I think if we, the production staff, cast, crews and musicians, do our jobs correctly, we will be able to give the audience a beautiful story," Macioce said. The show is also such a great vehicle with which to showcase all of the GLHS talent."

A total of 68 students are in the cast, with another 30 working backstage. In addition, 25 high school and professional musicians will perform in the pit. Principal roles include Eric Batke as Tony, Amanda Weiss as Maria, Carly Haberman as Anita, Jacob Lisek as Riff, Alvaro Pareja as Bernardo and Christian Schaefer as Chino.

Stage manager is Zac Binns, and assistant stage manager is Alix Flint.

Tickets go on sale beginning Monday, May 6, and may be purchased in the front high school office from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Tickets also will be sold in the concession stands in the front lobby during school lunches from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday.

All general-seating tickets cost $10 and will be available at the door.