CAPEZIO FOR WEST SIDE STORY




CA. 1949 | Capezio | Theatrical Shoes
Photograph: Lisa Larsen
Source: The Red List

FIRST NIGHTER
COLORFUL GANG DRAMA PROVES DISAPPOINTING 
Much of Leonard Bernstein's music is hauntingly beautiful; some of it, as in the case of 'Gee, Officer Krupke”, is charmingly light, and a lot of it has the wail of the Juke box. 
I suppose that my sharp disappointment in "West Side Story” lies within the basic material itself. For all of the art that has gone into the creation of this new musical play, any dramatization of juvenile delinquency is on the grim side and for most of the evening the Winter Garden’s play failed to hold me in its spell. 
"West Side Story" comes to Broadway with a big out-of-town buildup and with an impressive advance sale. It will probably pack the big playhouse for some time, but I have grave doubts as to its chances for sustained popular appeal. 
Ward Morehouse
Long Island Star Journal | September 27, 1957

1958 | Capezio's Jazz Oxford
Source: The Bridgeport Post | May 28, 1958


Lack of the critic’s long-sightedness aside, we just care to point out that Capezio provided the footwear for this soon-to-be legendary play.

Known as the dancer’s “cobbler” since 1887, this season Capezio brings out the “Jazz” Oxford, a direct descendant of the ballet Oxford the male dancers wear in the Broadway musical hit “West Side Story” 
Schenectady GazetteAugust 23, 1958


1958 | Capezio's Jazz Oxford
Source: Rochester NY Democrat Chronicle | May 27, 1958

A Sensational Hit
WEST SIDE STORY
Source: Long Island Journal | November 6, 1957



FOOTNOTES

[1] According to the Vintage Fashion Guild

“Joe Famolare designs and selections also most notably appeared in the original Broadway Production of West Side Story. The “Dance Oxford” created by Joe especially for West Side Story is still in use on stage to this very day.”

That would have been a nice touch to Famolare’s spectacular career, unfortunately they also stated that Famolare was hired by Capezio in 1960, meaning almost three years after West Side Story’s opening.

[2] Also the female dancers were shod in Capezios.


1949 | CAPEZIO
SQUARE TOED GHILLIES AND THONG SANDALS

1975 | TAPPING THROUGH MAGIC
JOHN 'DRUMBO' FRENCH & SALVATORE CAPEZIO



Capezio's Carrol Lawrence (Maria) ballet slippers
Courtesy of Doug Wilson


 

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