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on 17 August 2007
I enjoyed the recording but not as much as I thought I would. I bought the CD because of Hayley Westenra but I barely heard her. It sounds likes she disappears when singing duet with a male vocal. Her voice gets overpowered by her male duet when the notes rise. This is the case with Vittorio Griggolo and Andrea Bocelli. I still believe this is a keeper because of the beautiful melodies and fine orchestration.
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on 16 August 2007
I LOVE West Side Story, its one of my favourite musicals, but this recording did nothing for me.

Westenra's voice, although technically excellent, is bland, there was just no 'spark', no real 'ooomph'!

Griggolo has an outstanding voice, and is much better matched to the part of Tony than Westenra is to Maria. But i still couldnt help feeling a little underwhelmed by his performance.

Overall, i just didnt feel the passion in this recording. To my ears, it sounded cold and impersonal, and the voices of Westenra and Griggolo never blended fully. Maybe too many mikes were used - it sounds very much like each performer sang their part in a different location, both to each other and to the orchestra. Not a winner for me im afraid

However, the AMAZING score hasnt aged a day!
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on 16 July 2008
I do like the original, but musically speaking, this recording is far superior. To start with, the two young leads have amazing voices. The first Tony and Maria were adequate, but not excellent. Kiri Te Kawana and Jose Carreras have excellent voices, but they sound too mature for the role of the teenage lovers. Hayley Westenra and Vittorio Grigolo are both young AND accomplished, and they bring such beauty and passion to the roles Tony and Maria.

The rest of the cast is great too. In fact, I wasn't expecting to like "The Jet Song" or "Cool," but Will Martin's compelling tough but strong trained voice brings real life to the Riff character, and I can't imagine anyone else doing a better job of it. Another standout is Connie Fisher's incredible performance of "Somewhere."

The only reason for criticism of this magnificent album would be the international cast. None of the singers are American (Vittorio Grigolo is Italian, Will Martin and Hayley Westenra are from New Zealand and Connie Fisher is Welsh, I believe.) Personally, I don't have a problem with Vittorio's accent, I think it's kind of cute, but the "real" Tony wouldn't have one. Hayley doesn't look or sound Puerto Rican either. Oh well. These singers were chosen for their vocal abilities, not for their nationality.

This is a classy yet accessible version of this famous musical. Everyone did a fantastic job, and I'm sure I'll listen to it again and again in years to come. Of the three major recordings of "West Side Story" that I have heard, this is the one I like best. The main reason I like it best is because Hayley and Vittorio who have such natural yet technically perfect voices; truly a match made in heaven!
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on 14 May 2011
This is an excellent recording which I've listened to many times and sung along with. Well worth the price as it was very reasonable.
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on 3 December 2013
Think this went down well.
Person who I purchased it for is a fan of west end musicals, and H Westenra.
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on 17 April 2015
Very good
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on 8 December 2015
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