East County Theatre Company to Stage 'West Side Story' at Lyceum Theatre

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 Lyceum Theatre, 79 Broadway Cir, San Diego, California 92101  See map

Young Actors’ Theatre is pleased to announce the stage version of the classic West Side Story under the direction of Jean Isaac and choreographed by Perry Lee.  The world's greatest love story takes to the streets in this landmark Broadway musical that is one of theatre's finest accomplishments.

Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet is transported to mid-century New York City, as two young idealistic lovers find themselves caught between warring street gangs, the "American" Jets and the Puerto Rican Sharks. Their struggle to survive in a world of hate, violence and prejudice is one of the most innovative, heart-wrenching and relevant musical dramas of our time.   Starring in the role of Tony, the leader of the Sharks, is Anthony Vacio, a student at Valhalla High School.  Maria is played by the talented Katee Drysdale, a Steele Canyon High School senior.  The entire cast is made up of local students ages 13-18.   

In fact, many of the cast members of West Side Story have been a performing gang themselves.  West Side cast members such as Isabella Lenhoff, Katee Drysdale, Brooke Laver, Meagan Newell, Chris Pleman, and Maya Colorado among many others have performed in numerous YAT productions together over the past 10 years. West Side Story will likely be a grand finale of sorts as they begin to graduate and disperse to college.  

“To be able to have made and sustain the friendships I have had through YAT is so special to me,” said Isabella Lenhoff.  “I can’t imagine a better group of people to

have come through the theatre experience with, and now that we are together as part

of West Side Story performing at the Lyceum Theatre is just perfect.” 

“Watching these kids grow up to become the amazing young men and women that they are has been the most rewarding part of directing youth theater,” stated Jean Isaac, executive director of Young Actors’ Theatre.  “I am so incredibly proud of them and directing them in their likely final ‘gang’ performance is a fitting close.”  Starting out as 8 and 9 year-olds themselves in such productions as Tom Sawyer and Aladdin, these teenagers are now the mentors to the up-and-coming elementary aged performers.  “Looking at these young kids performing now in their junior shows reminds us of when we started out,” reminisced Brooke Laver.  “YAT is a special place to do youth theatre – we always knew it was a safe place to be and the friendships made would be life-long.”  

West Side Story will be presented at the Lyceum Theatre located at 79 Broadway Circle, San Diego, California 92101.  Performances dates are March 1, 2, 5, 6, 7at 7 p.m. and March 8-9 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Ticket prices are $15 for students and seniors and $18 for adults for advance purchase and $25 at the door.  Ticketing fees apply.  For group prices please call the box office. For tickets please visit www.lyceumevents.org.


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