August 27, 2009

‘A Boy Like That’ is again in English

A key scene in West Side Story, sung in Spanish in the new Broadway revival, will once again be sung in English, The New York Times reported.

A Boy Like That was sung by Puerto Rican character Anita in English in the original version of the gang-themed stage musical and the classic movie it inspired.

In an effort to make the revival more authentic, the creative team decided to have Anita sing the song -- about how Latina Maria should end her relationship with her Polish-American beau Tony because he killed her brother, Anita's lover -- in her native Spanish.

However, the Times said the choice didn't have the intended effect and the lyrics were returned to English last week.

Audiences were getting the general idea of 'A Boy Like That,' but they weren't getting hammered by it, director Arthur Laurents told the newspaper. "The sheer power of 'A boy like that who'd kill your brother'

has no real equivalent, and for people who don't understand Spanish, the impact was diluted."