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West Side Story (Vocal Score) Paperback – February 1, 2002

4.0 out of 5 stars 24 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Bernstein has founded and directed science education programs for gifted students as well as taught science at the elementary and secondary school levels.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Leonard Bernstein Music Publishing Co. (February 1, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0634046780
  • ISBN-13: 978-0634046780
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 0.6 x 12 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,013,954 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By M. Chaerani on April 20, 2006
Format: Paperback
If you're looking for a faithful translation from the full score, this is the one. This score is based on Bernstein latest revision as reflected in the Carreras Te Kanawa recording (1985).

But be warned, this score is only for upper-intermediate/advanced pianist, classically trained. It's not a fakebook, it's not a simplified/reduced piano score for casual use. The arrangement gives two alternatives for playing some part of the song, and you can choose to play it the hard way or the easier way (which is still rather difficult). The hard way is of course the most faithful to the orchestral score.

For example, the dance part in "America" can be played by using single notes of the left hands rather than using full chord, which is great if you're trying to cope with the tempo. The arrangement for the slow pieces such as "one hand one heart", "maria", "tonight", and "somewhere" is really beautiful.

Tip: Listen to the "west side story" conducted by Bernstein himself to get a grasp of the tempo, dynamics and phrasing.
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Format: Paperback
If you want to play/arrange/orchestrate or simply see the genius of Berstein, this is the way to go. As an arranger, I needed reference to orchestrate a West Side Story Medley for a show, and I'm not talking your regular "standard" tunes. This vocal score is also a piano reduction of the orchestrations and was aboslutely what I needed. You can see nearly every instrument line, counter melody, even instrument indications. This was the best $50.00 I may have every spent. Saved me hours and hours of trying to "lift" off the lines. They were all there, even for the dance sections from Cool & The Rumble, which is what I really needed. Don't hestitate if you're looking for the real Berstein stuff!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is perfect. We are rehearsing West Side Story in the Community Theater and this book is excellent for rehearsals. It has everything you need to rehearse each song of the musical. The music is challenging to play, but very helpful to the singers as they can get an idea of what the full orchestra will sound ike.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It was really interesting seeing the raw script instead of the story version. It was hard to find but if you stubble upon a copy I would get it. It was short so a good summer read and full of excitement and adventure which was really fun to read. If you have never se the musical you could kind of come up with your own tune to all of the songs which also made it interesting. It was a fantastic musical/script.
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Format: Paperback
This review is for the book with a red brick wall cover. It is slim (32 pages) and has only 8 songs.
The songs are shortened, as can be expected, and only have the main solo parts. Some songs are transposed to a different key. Most but not all have the chords.
Okay for some fun playing and singing, but look elsewhere for a more complete and correct score.

A note to the seller: Soft cover books should be packed in hard cardboard. Bubble wrap does not protect it at all.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought the paperback book with the black-and-white photo of the Jets on the cover. I was hoping that the book would include the beautiful introduction to Tonight that starts with "Only you, you're the only thing I'll see forever", but this was not the case. I was hoping to avoiding buying a complete score to get that introduction.

Also, I prefer it when Amazon uses plastic to fasten a book to a piece of cardboard larger than the book. This was not packaged that way.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book is medium-it isn't an easy book you only play once and then you're bored, but it isn't very difficult. Some of the arrangements are needlessly crazy, but some are well done. A piano player of about 3-5 years is about the right level.
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Format: Paperback
The piano and vocals are clearly printed which makes for a good quality score. Chords for each harmony are printed in the vocal sections but not in the introductary measures. Difficulty of music depends on the particular song for example, "Somewhere" and "One Hand, One Heart" are easier. I've enjoyed playing this music and would recommend it.
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