Reviews – West Side Story

NYMT – West Side Story (click the author for link to full review)

“The 35-strong orchestra delivers Leonard Bernstein’s classic score from the back of the stage exquisitely. Tom Deering conducts his musicians faultlessly the hard work and dedication of this exceptional team is admirable.” – Nikki Cotter, Manchester’s Finest

“The musical direction is frankly superb and the 30+ youth orchestra stunning.” – Richard Vergette, British Theatre Guide

***** “The 35-strong orchestra doesn’t let the side down, delivering Leonard Bernstein’s notoriously complicated score from the back of the stage. Tom Deering conducts, and he and the musicians have clearly worked hard to achieve this fantastic, faultless performance.” – Jo Beggs, The Public Reviews

***** “Bernstein’s elaborate score resonates from the back of the stage, where the young orchestra, some as young as twelve, deliver with vibrancy and flair. There is something truly uplifting about the work of The National Youth Music Theatre – witnessing so many talented youngsters working towards such a grand and high octane production.” – Kirsty Scott, What’s On Stage

“It’s easy to just concentrate on the actors on stage but as the show draws to a close you realise that the orchestra playing the wonderful score all evening is also a youth orchestra which has you even more impressed as the standard of the production. The fact it doesn’t once cross your mind that the youngest member is just 12 years old which is a testament to their professionalism and talent.” – Showbiz Shel

“Musical director Deering has a subtle, restrained, instinctive grasp for what works best. Here he cleverly allows both the phenomenally talented young 32-strong band and the singers to blossom.” – Roderic Dunnett, Musical Theatre Review

***** “Deering (taking time out from MD’ing The Colour Purple) has coaxed the most exquisite sound from his 30 strong youth orchestra. The sound bounces off the steelwork in a way that must have Bernstein smiling approvingly from above and whilst all the musicians are first-rate, the brass section is a special delight whilst Deering’s percussionists make the second act’s Cool, sizzle!” – Jonathan Baz, Jonathan Baz Reviews

***** “Just back from seeing NYMTUk’s WEST SIDE STORY in Manchester. Usual critical language like ‘bold, breathtaking & heartbreaking’ not enough. WEST SIDE STORY Is, quite simply, an astonishment; a complete re-think to a classic show, yet honouring the original staging throughout. I thought that WEST SIDE STORY at Sadlers Wells was a five-star pleasure; the NYMTUk one must get ten stars in that case. If there was any justice, this NYMTUk WEST SIDE STORY would transfer immediately to London; but meanwhile Manchester is lucky indeed.” – Mark Shenton