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be a dentist. Chase was a
Radio City Music Hall
usher and made 'TV
commercials before get-
The production of West Side Story that opens Sept.
ting into various produc-
3 at Detroit's Fox Theatre has. 14 producers, one
tions of West Side Story
from each site on its 14-city cross-country tour.
and Chorus Line, eventu-
Olympia Entertainment, which operates the Fox,
ally winning the support
joined theater companies in the other 13 locations
of his parents.
v,,,ith "up front" money to fund the production.
The two gangs
"It's a new way of mounting theater productions,
Side Story express their
which have become enormously expensive,"
anger, passion and strong
explained Karen Hatchett, the show's tour publi-
feelings through the rig-
cist. "The 14 producer companies share the total
orous and exhausting
production and rehearsal costs and take the show
dances, he said. "It's a
on tour. They then promote the show in their city
brilliant and powerful
and benefit from the ticket sales."
piece that has withstood
Unlike The Music Man, which played at the Fox
the test of time."
earlier this year, West Side Story is a "full Equity
When Michael Raine's
show," meaning the entire cast belongs to the
mother heard he had
Actors Equity union.
given up his pursuit of a
— Bill Carroll
medical career to enter
show business, she made
Green State University, Arnold taught
an unusual statement for a Jewish moth- costuming at the University of
er: "Good! I was wondering when you
Maryland, then started auditioning.
would get over that doctor thing."
The actor, who has been in produc-
Raine, now 27, grew up near Boston
tions of West Side Story around the
and obtained a bachelor of fine
world, plays one of the few
arts degree at New York
adults in the show, Mr. Glad
University before hitting the
Hand, who directs the gym
Broadway audition trail, landing
dance. He also is the under-
the role of Jet gang member
study for druggist Doc and
Baby John in West Side Story.
"The dancing is hard work
"Although West Side Story is
but a lot of fun, and [director]
45 years old, it still seems to
Alan Johnson expects and
reach out and speak to the
demands perfection," he said.
youth of today," he said. "It
Rachel Bress, 25, another
has immense realism and
Massachusetts native, plays Jet
takes the role
girlfriend Clarice. Bress, who
The four leads in the Fox's
earned a bachelor's degree in
West Side Story have strong
TV/film studies at Northwestern directs the gym
University, has been both a
including roles in Anything
dancer and choreographer. "I've
also is the
Goes, Guys and Dolls, Fiddler
been in Music Man and West
understudy for on the Roof Miss Saigon and
Side Story and now I want to
others. Natasha Harper is
stick to performing," she said.
Maria; Drew Niles, a
"The four Jewish cast mem-
University of Michigan
bers hang out together a lot, and
graduate, is Tony; Lynn
share that unique Jewish
Sterling is Anita; and Andy
humor," she said, "but I miss my
Blankenbuehler plays Riff.
boyfriend in New York."
The other Jewish cast member is
Clevelander Bob Arnold, 53, whose
The Jets and the Sharks square off
entire family — parents, grandparents,
in West Side Story for eight per-
aunts and uncles — were musicians and
formances at the Fox Theatre in
downtown Detroit Tuesday-
Arnold's show business career started
Sunday, Sept. 3-8. Show times are
with trumpet lessons and performing on
8 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, with
TV at age 4.
additional performances 3 p.m.
"Although I'm half Jewish, it was really
Saturday and 3 and 7:30 p.m.
my Italian mother who pushed for me
Sunday. (Friday-Sunday perform-
to complete five years of Hebrew school
ances fall on Rosh Hashanah.)
and have a bar mitzvah," he said. "She
$28-$66. Call the box office,
said it gave her a lot of nachas."
(313) 471-6611, or Ticketmaster,
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