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Rialto Chatter: Elena Roger to Lead EVITA on Broadway in 2011-2012 Season?

According to numerous published reports in Spanish media outlets, Olivier Award winning stage star Elena Roger may be bringing her famed Eva Peron to Broadway in Evita in the 2011 - 2012 season.

As previously reported by Juan-Jose Gonzalez for BroadwayWorld, the star tells Argentina's La Nacion (translated from Spanish): "I'd rather be in Argentina most of year and travel to make a season out. Anyway, at this point in my career, I cannot have much choice. I'm still opening doors. In April, I will debut Piaf in Spain, another market, then go to London to do Passion, and it is also be spoken of to do Evita on Broadway in 2011."

Mentions of Roger's rumored return to the role on Broadway have been reported in palco5.comLaubfal.com, todomusicales.com, and mundotvonline.com.

Evita, which began life as a 1975 concept album, takes a cynical but multifaceted view of the ascent of Eva Peron, Argentina's one-time first lady. The show, which features music by Andrew Lloyd Webber, and lyrics by Tim Rice, originally opened at London's Prince Edward Theatre in 1978 with Elaine Paige as Eva and David Essex as Che. In New York, it ran 1,567 performances starring Patti LuPone as Eva Peron and Mandy Patinkin as Che at the Broadway Theatre, and won the 1980 Tony Award for Best Musical, as well as six others.
Roger famously portrayed Eva in the London revival of Evita, which played the West End's Adelphi Theatre in the 2006 - 2007 season. Roger opened to glowing reviews, after opening on June 21, 2006.

The production starred Elena Roger as Eva Peron, Philip Quast as Juan Peron, and Matt Rawle as Che, and Lorna Want as the Mistress and Gary Milner as Magaldi. Evita was helmed by Donmar Warehouse artistic director Michael Grandage, choreographed by Tony Award-winner Rob Ashford (Thoroughly Modern Millie, Doctor Doolittle, and the upcoming Promises, Promises) and featured Christopher Oram as the main designer. The revival was produced by Lloyd Webber's Very Useful Group.

Roger additionally appeared in the West End in Boeing Boeing. In Argentina, she has appeared in
the original productions of Nine directed by David Leveaux, Beauty and the Beast directed by Keith Batten, Les Misérables directed by Ken Caswell, and Saturday Night Fever directed by Tony Edge.
Additional theater credits include Tango por Dos (in London), the musicals Fiddler on the Roof, Houdini and La Fiaca. In 2003 Roger and director Valeria Ambrosio devised Mina, che cosa sei in which Roger starred. The musical, based on the Italian actress, won five awards including the ACE (Critics' Award) for best actress.

Roger appeared playing Edith Piaf at the Donmar and Vaudeville Theatres in London from August 2008 to January 2009 for which she was awarded the Olivier Award for Best Actress in a Musical.
Roger reprised the role in Argentina last summer and will be taking the performance to Spain in April. Thereafter, she will star in Passion as part of the Donmar Warehouse's Stephen Sondheim celebration this summer.

Photo: Elena Roger as Eva Peron in the London revival of Evita by Nigel Norrington/Camera Press/Retna

 


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