The New York Philharmonic has planned an unusual event combining music and film: On September 7 and 8, the orchestra will screen the 1961 movie version of West Side Story and perform Leonard Bernstein’s complete score live, conducted by David Newman. A newly perfected sound technology will isolates the dialogue and vocal tracks, allowing the Philharmonic to accompany the film in real time.
The West Side Story film, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary, starred Natalie Wood as Maria, Richard Beymer as Tony, Rita Moreno as Anita and George Chakiris as Bernardo. Winner of 10 Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Director (Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins), the movie features Bernstein’s score, lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and a screenplay by Ernest Lehman adapted from Arthur Laurents’ book.
The Philharmonic’s screening will feature a newly restored print of the movie from MGM HD.