West Side Story first opened on Broadway over 60 years ago. Set in the upper west side of New York City, the Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim musical used the classic Shakespearean love story of Romeo and Juliet to tell a powerful story of interracial tension in post-war Manhattan.
The Broadway production ran for 732 performances and was nominated for six Tony awards. Its subsequent film adaptation in 1961 was nominated for 11 Academy Awards and won ten, including Best Picture.
Critical reception to the production suggested that this groundbreaking show would change the musical theatre landscape forevermore. This is indicative in the way this musical has infiltrated the landscape of popular culture.
As an example, we’ve rounded up the top five best pop-culture covers of Sondheim and Bernstein’s ‘I Feel Pretty’.
Jack Nicholson uses some unorthodox methods to help Adam Sandler in Anger Management:
Melissa McCarthy dances and lip-syncs to ‘I Feel Pretty’ while transforming into Sean Spicer for Saturday Night Live:
Homer becomes a food critic after singing a song about all the foods he loves to the tune of ‘I Feel Pretty’:
Chandler and Monica visit Chandler’s dad at his Las Vegas Showcase ‘Viva Las Gaygas’ in this episode of Friends:
Rachel and Quinn sing a mash-up of ‘I Feel Pretty’ and ‘Unpretty’ by TLC to express their lack of confidence in the way they look in this episode of Glee.
If you’re ready to find out what the fuss is all about, West Side Story is headed to the State Theatre at Arts Centre Melbourne from 6-28 April 2019 and the Joan Sutherland Theatre at Sydney Opera House from 16 August – 6 October 2019. Featuring Jerome Robbins original Tony Award-Winning Choreography this is West Side Story in all its ground-breaking glory.