I don’t care if you’re a Jet or a Shark, a red-stater or a blue-stater, Team Edward or Team Jacob: one thing we can all agree on is that West Side Story is one of the greatest musicals ever written. Well, visionary director Ivo van Hove has somehow made this 60-something-year-old tuner more urgent than ever with his jaw-dropping revival now dazzling audiences at the Broadway Theatre. And those who decry the dearth of real glamour on Broadway these days would have done well to secure themselves access to its opening night!
No opening is complete without a healthy dose of star power, which this evening had in spades. Among the familiar faces trouncing the carpet were Chris Cooper, Andrea Martin, Joshua Henry, Kristine Nielsen, Vanessa Hudgens, Sierra Boggess, Sherie Rene Scott, Kate Baldwin, Debi Mazar, Yara Martinez, Lucas Hedges, John Leguizamo, Fred Weller, Iman, Shubert brass Philip Smith and Robert Wankel, Nederlander honchos Jimmy Nederlander and Nick Scandalios, Cindy Adams, Spike Lee, Alec Baldwin, Laurie Metcalf, Russell Tovey, Arian Moayed, Bob and Lynn Balaban, Frank Rich and Alex Witchel, Jayne Houdyshell, Robert Horn, Steve Kroft, Bill Whitaker, Joe Mantello, Stephen Karam, Daryl and Steve Roth, Julie Taymor, William Ivey Long and Tony Marion, Jerry Zaks, Warren Carlyle, Justin Peck and Patricia Delgado, Sergio Trujillo and Jack Noseworthy, Reed Birney, Rosanna Scotto, Daphne Rubin-Vega, Collier Schorr, Joe Machota, Charlotte St. Martin, Tommy Tune, Tracie Bennett, Michael Arden, David Cromer, Beanie Feldstein, Santino Fontana, Philip Glass, Ethan Hawke, Michael Greif, Celia Keenan-Bolger, Lucas Hnath, Donna Murphy, Sienna Miller, Amber Tamblyn, Sam Rockwell, Dev Hynes, George C. Wolfe, Marisa Tomei, Chris Thile, Liev Schreiber, Adam Sandler, Princess Nokia, Adam Eli, Anna Deavere Smith, Justin Paul, Joaquina Kalukango, Ato Blankson-Wood, John Gallagher Jr, and Tom Sturridge. Stephen Sondheim, the man responsible for the show’s unforgettable lyrics, was there too.
And what’s star power without some bold fashion choices? If you follow #WhatsJordanWearing, you won’t be surprised that theater mogul turned fashion icon Jordan Roth ensured his lewk included reference points to the show. In fact, his Norma Kamali ensemble was a wearable representation of the revival itself: a 1950’s silhouette reimagined in a modern tech fabric, a classic pattern exploded into an extreme close-up, and — of course — an unmistakable “Anita ruffle” at the hem of the skirt. Opera star Harolyn Blackwell dug out her satin show jacket from the 1980 revival, in which she appeared. Britton Smith caused a stir in a mustard-colored suede tunic. And Iman stopped the show in bold polka dots and a flouncy red jacket.
At the after party, held at the IAC building, producer Barry Diller’s palace of stark minimalism on the West Side Highway, the barely legal cast worked the press room, which was as lavish as any I’ve seen. A delighted-looking Sondheim indulged in deep conversation with David Geffen. Ms. Hudgens was briefly stopped by security due to “capacity concerns” before she made her entrance. And everyone boogie oogie oogied to the beats of DJ Shyboy, who had flown in from Los Angeles for the occasion. In fact, the party was still raging after the lights came up, so the rowdiest members of the crowd (including most of the cast) went on to a second venue. I, knowing I’d have a deadline to contend with, went home, took aspirin, and hit the hay.
I woke up with “Somewhere” playing in my head, making the champagne-induced headache utterly bearable.
Tidbits from around town…
Spotted Marie Kondo sitting down to dine with friends at il Buco.
Overheard Lisa Bonet talking politics at Zabars.
Caught Paul Dano drop his iPhone in a puddle on West 8th Street.
As always, a toast of something sparkling to you and yours!