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Leicester's Curve reveals cast for West Side Story

Published: 16 August 2019
Reporter: Steve Orme

Adriana Ivelisse and Carly Mercedes-Dyer will play trailblazing women Maria and Anita in Leicester Curve’s Christmas 2019 production of West Side Story.

Ivelisse, a Puerto Rican native, will make her professional UK debut as Maria while Mercedes-Dyer will play Anita, Maria’s closest friend. They go to the United States from Puerto Rico looking for a new life.

Jamie Muscato, who played JD in Heathers the Musical at the Theatre Royal Haymarket in 2018, will be Maria’s lover Tony. Jonathan Hermosa-Lopez and Ronan Burns will play rival gang leaders Bernardo and Riff.

Darren Bennett, who has appeared in several Curve productions including Grease the Musical as Vince Fontaine in 2016, takes the role of Police Detective Lieutenant Schrank.

The cast also includes Ryan Anderson (A-Rab), Damian Buhagiar (Chino), Thea Bunting (Graziella), Alex Christian (Baby John), Abigail Climer (Consuelo), Isaac Gryn (Action), Beth Hinton-Lever (Anybodys), Katie Lee (Velma), Mireia Mambo (Rosalia), Michael O’Reilly (Diesel), Dominic Sibanda (Indio), Dale White (Big Deal) and Christopher Wright (Officer Krupke and Doc).

Curve’s artistic director Nikolai Foster will direct. Choreography will be by Ellen Kane. Sarah Travis will be musical supervisor.

Foster and Curve chief executive Chris Stafford said, “West Side Story really is one of the greatest musicals ever written. To bring to life any piece of theatre you need an astonishing group of collaborators and we’re proud to have assembled such a talented, imaginative and quintessentially 21st century group of actors.

“They’ll celebrate the heritage of this play while rediscovering it for an entirely new generation. Adriana, Carly, Jamie, Jonathan and Ronan lead an outstanding company of actors who all recognise how important the musical’s message of love and acceptance is in 2019.”

West Side Story runs at Curve from Saturday 23 November until Saturday 11 January 2020.