Romeo and Juliet West Side Story Author:Wm. Shakespeare Arthur Laurents The tragedy of love thwarted by fate has always intrigued writers. In the sixteenth century, William Shakespeare took this theme and fashioned one of the world's great plays: ROMEO AND JULIET. In our own time, Shakespeare drama has been used as a basis for the overwhelmingly successful musical play, WEST SIDE STORY. Though one of these works ... more »is set in among the nobility of Verona, and the other among immigant families of New York's West Side, both tell the story of the plight of young "star-crossed" lovers.
As Norris Houghton writes in his introduction: "What we see is that all four young people strive to consuumate the happiness at the threshold on which they stand and which they have tasted so briefly. All four are deprived of the opportunity to do so, the Reinaissance couple by the caprice of fate, today's youngsters by the prejudice and hatred engendered around them.
"Poets and playwrites will continue to write of youthful lovers whom fate drives into and out of each other's lives. The spectacle will always trouble and move us, even as the two dramas in this volumn do today."« less