Sierra Boggess Withdraws From Proms West Side Story

Sierra Boggess withdraws from playing Maria in the BBC Proms concert version of West Side Story.

Sierra Boggess withdraws from BBC Proms concert version of West Side Story
Sierra Boggess

Sierra Boggess has announced her withdrawal from the BBC Proms concert version of West Side Story by Leonard Bernstein. Sierra was due to have played Maria in the one-off concert event at the Royal Albert Hall this summer.

The evening is to feature Ross Lekites as Tony and be conducted by John Wilson leading the John Wilson Orchestra, together with students from the Mountview Academy and Arts Ed Theatre School.

In a statement, Sierra said: “Last week, it was announced that I will be singing in a concert of West Side Story at Royal Albert Hall for the BBC Proms in London. Because it was a concert presentation and not the show proper — I had signed on to lend my voice to honor Leonard Bernstein in his centennial this year, with an orchestra I have loved singing with for years, following in the long list of sopranos who have all sung the score before me.

After much reflection, I’ve realized that if I were to do this concert, it would once again deny Latinas the opportunity to sing this score, as well as deny the IMPORTANCE of seeing themselves represented onstage. And that would be a huge mistake. Since the announcement of this concert, I have had many conversations about why this is a crucial time, now more than ever, to not perpetuate the miscasting of this show. I apologize for not coming to this realization sooner and as an artist, I must ask myself how I can best serve the world, and in this case my choice is clearer than ever: to step aside and allow an opportunity to correct a wrong that has been done for years with this show in particular. I have therefore withdrawn myself from this concert and I look forward to continuing to be a voice for change in our community and our world!

No further casting or information is available at this stage.



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