Westside story, form and structure

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Form and Structure- Westside Story

Westside story takes the form of a musical. The plot works itself around the songs which are structured in each scene. There are two acts and within the acts are scenes which help to create the storyline and structure the play.

As there are two scenes we could say there are two episodes, because the first act builds up the story and develops the key roles of the characters so the audience gets to know what they are like. In the first scene in act one we are immediately introduced to the two gangs. The audience find out what is happening between both gangs and the reasons why these events are happening. The first scene is structured so that it builds into both gangs having a ‘rumble’. After this scene the rest of the play is set out to revel the build up tension before a big climax at the end of both acts.

There are a number of scenes within both acts. It is set in chronological order; however act two has fewer and shorter scenes compared to act one. This could be in order to build up tension and the last scene of the whole play releases this for the big final. This is shown in the scene involving Tony and Doc at the drugstore and Doc reveals to Tony that Chino has shot and killed Maria. This is a very short scene; it has created an effect on the audience because it straight to the point and it leaves the audience thinking what is Tony going to do next?

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As the play has taken the form of a musical. Songs and dance has obviously been included. These are used within the play and must work well to have the desired effect with the storyline for the play to work as a whole. This is shown in act one scene five when Tony is outside Maria’s window and they both sing, ‘Tonight, Tonight’. They are showing their true love for each other and nothing can stop them from being together. This song has been structured so that it finishes towards the end of the first act and the eventual ...

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