MUSICAL/West Side Story
Teatro del Maggio Musicale, piazza Vittorio Gui 1, Florence
One hundred years after the birth of composer-conductor-musical giant Leonard Bernstein, revival shows and remembrance initiatives are taking place. Florence gets in on the fun with a week-plus of West Side Story, the classic musical inspired by Romeo and Juliet: filled with star-crossed love, feuds and, naturally, plenty of finger-snapping and dancing from New York’s gangsters (the Jets and Sharks) as they fight for their turf. In Federico Bellone’s adapted version, dialogue will be performed in Italian but all of the Stephen Sondheim-authored lyrics will be sung in their original English. As for the finger-snapping, expect to see all of the original choreography by Jerome Robbins, reproduced for today’s stage by Fabrizio Angelini. For more information and tickets, see www.maggiofiorentino.com.
Just before Christmas on December 22, the St. Petersburg Ballet lands in Florence once again, touching down at La Pergola theatre for two colorful and mood-lifting performances of Lo Schiaccianoci (The Nutcracker), a beloved Christmas classic with all the trimmings: fine costumes, familiar Tchaikovsky tunes and sugar plum fairies. Get tickets at via della Pergola 24, Monday-Saturday 9.30am-6.30pm, or on www.boxofficetoscana.it.
This week the Odeon is hosting numerous encore screenings of the widely acclaimed Queen-Freddie Mercury biopic Bohemian Rhapsody. Beginning December 27, the theatre will screen what's said to be Robert Redford's final film, The Old Man and the Gun, a heist flick about the real-life exploits of career bank robber Forrest Tucker, who escaped from San Quentin at the age of 70. See www.odeonfirenze.com for showtimes.
Check out our full guide to the festivities here.