Carol Lawrence created the role of Maria in the original Broadway production of West Side Story in 1957, for which she received a Tony Award nomination. She played the role for two years, and returned to West Side Story for its 1960 season. Among her other major Broadway successes are Kiss of the Spider Woman from 1993 until 1995, as well as Subways Are For Sleeping and I Do! I Do!. Lawrence received the Los Angeles Drama Critics Award for Best Lead Actress in Amy’s View, and has also made numerous appearances on television, including “General Hospital,” “Touched By an Angel,” “Sex and the City,” and “Lois and Clark.” She is also an author and has appeared as a vocalist with symphony orchestras throughout the U.S. and Canada.
In this interview of October 13, 2006, Lawrence describes her training and early experiences in theater. She talks about the audition and rehearsal processes of West Side Story, including the contrasting figures of Jerome Robbins and Leonard Bernstein and their significance in her life and work. Additionally, she discusses her favorite and most challenging of the show’s musical numbers.
This interview and transcript are available for in-library use. To arrange for access, contact Kerry Masteller.
[Biographical information from the "Leonard Bernstein: Boston to Broadway" Festival Program Book]