West Side Story

June 13, 2012

When “West Side Story” debuted on Broadway in 1957, its story of warring New York City youth gangs had a ripped-from-the-headlines relevance. Juvenile delinquency was a major social issue, and audiences were shocked by the overt references to switchblades, rumbles and marijuana.

Such concerns feel quaint today. The national tour of the musical’s most recent Broadway revival – in town through Sunday at the Durham Performing Arts Center – attempts to evoke the edginess of the original by heightening the language, violence and sexuality.

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