Something’s coming December 10 when the Spielberg-directed film adaptation of West Side Story hits movie theaters, but something else will come right before. The film’s soundtrack will be released on December 3, a week ahead of the film’s debut.
Directed by Academy Award winner Steven Spielberg, from a screenplay by Pulitzer Prize and Tony Award winner Tony Kushner, West Side Story tells the classic tale of fierce rivalries and young love in 1957 New York City. West Side Story has been adapted for the screen from the original 1957 Broadway show which featured a book by Arthur Laurents, music by Leonard Bernstein, lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, and direction and choreography by Jerome Robbins.
Spielberg said, “I dedicated this movie to my father, but it was my mother’s love of music, combined with my insatiable appetite to understand everything about movie-making, that led me to start collecting motion picture soundtrack albums when I was young. I loved the West Side Story cast album from the first time I listened to it. As a kid, I could sing every one of its songs by heart – and I did sing them until I wore out the patience of my entire family. The score feels like it’s always been part of me, and I believe that this is the greatest music ever written for musical theater. My sincere hope is that young people out there find this album and fall in love with it as hard as I did.”
The West Side Story Original Motion Picture Soundtrack features 21 songs from the film and will be released in both standard digital and physical (CD and vinyl) configurations, as well as a digital release in Dolby Atmos Music – a new technology placing the listener inside the song in a spatial way, revealing every detail of the music with unparalleled clarity and depth. Both digital versions are set for release on December 3. The CD will be available on December 10 and can be pre-ordered here; the vinyl will be available in early 2022. Both physical versions will include liner notes by West Side Story Music Consultant, Oscar-winning composer John Williams (Schindler’s List, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Star Wars, Jaws, Fiddler on the Roof).
This reimagining of the beloved musical stars Ansel Elgort (Tony), Ariana DeBose (Anita), David Alvarez (Bernardo), Mike Faist (Riff), Brian d’Arcy James (Officer Krupke), Corey Stoll (Lieutenant Schrank), Josh Andrés Rivera (Chino), with Rita Moreno (as Valentina, who owns the corner store in which Tony works) and introducing Rachel Zegler (María). Moreno – one of only three artists to be honored with Academy, Emmy, Grammy, Tony, and Peabody Awards – also serves as one of the film’s executive producers.
Bringing together the best of both Broadway and Hollywood, the film’s creative team includes Kushner, who also served as an executive producer, Tony Award winner Justin Peck, who choreographed the musical numbers in the film, renowned Los Angeles Philharmonic conductor and Grammy Award winner Gustavo Dudamel, who helmed the recording of the iconic score, Academy Award-nominated composer and conductor David Newman (Anastasia), who arranged the score, Tony Award-winning composer Jeanine Tesori (Fun Home, Thoroughly Modern Millie), who supervised the cast on vocals, and Grammy-nominated music supervisor Matt Sullivan (Beauty and the Beast, Chicago, Hairspray), who serves as executive music producer.
Gustavo Dudamel—renowned music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, the National Youth Orchestra of Venezuela and the Paris Opéra—was engaged to conduct the orchestra for music recordings. The music was performed by the New York Philharmonic with additional music performed by the Los Angeles Philharmonic. David Newman, a celebrated arranger and conductor who has worked on more than 100 movies, handles both arrangements, as well as some conducting. Dudamel said, “West Side Story, for me, as for all of us in the music world, is part of my DNA. Every single melody in it is so natural and easy for anyone to process. Naturally, it felt right to work with the New York Philharmonic, Bernstein’s own orchestra, and have the musicians be part of the new chapter of this masterpiece.”
The West Side Story Original Motion Picture Soundtrack track list is as follows:
2. La Borinqueña (Sharks Version) – Performed by David Alvarez, Sharks
3. Jet Song – Performed by Mike Faist, Kyle Coffman, Kevin Csolak, John Michael Fiumara, Patrick Higgins, Jets
4. Something’s Coming – Performed by Ansel Elgort
5. The Dance at the Gym: Blues, Promenade
6. The Dance at the Gym: Mambo
7. The Dance at the Gym: Cha-Cha, Meeting Scene, Jump
8. Maria – Performed by Ansel Elgort
9. Balcony Scene (Tonight) – Performed by Rachel Zegler, Ansel Elgort
10. Transition to Scherzo / Scherzo
11. America – Performed by Ariana DeBose, David Alvarez, Ana Isabelle, Jennifer Florentino, Natalie Toro, Arianna Rosario, Ilda Mason, Jeanette Delgado, Annelise Cepero, Tanairi Sade Vazquez, Jamila Velazquez, Edriz E. Rosa Pérez, Melody Martí, Gaby Diaz, Juliette Feliciano, Isabella Ward, Maria Alexis Rodriguez, Yesenia Ayala, Gabriela M. Soto, Sebastian Serra, Julius Anthony Rubio, Ricardo A. Zayas, Yurel Echezarreta, Kelvin Delgado, Ricky Ubeda, Carlos Sánchez Falú, Adriel Flete, Jacob Guzman, Carlos E. Gonzalez, David Avilés Morales, Andrei Chagas, David Guzman
12. Gee, Officer Krupke – Performed by Kevin Csolak, John Michael Fiumara, Jess LeProtto, Ben Cook, Kyle Allen, Myles Erlick, Patrick Higgins
13. One Hand, One Heart – Performed by Ansel Elgort, Rachel Zegler
14. Cool – Performed by Ansel Elgort, Mike Faist
15. Tonight (Quintet) – Performed by Mike Faist, David Alvarez, Ariana DeBose, Ansel Elgort, Rachel Zegler, Jets, Sharks
16. The Rumble
17. I Feel Pretty – Performed by Rachel Zegler, Ana Isabelle, Ilda Mason, Annelise Cepero, Jamila Velazquez, Andréa Burns, Tanairi Sade Vazquez, Yassmin Alers
18. Somewhere – Performed by Rita Moreno
19. A Boy Like That / I Have a Love – Performed by Ariana DeBose, Rachel Zegler
21. End Credits
West Side Story hits theaters December 10. Watch the trailer here.
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