Recording Artist and Actress Ana Isabelle to Take on the Title Role in Asolo Rep's EVITA
Asolo Rep proudly announces that acclaimed Puerto Rican recording artist and actress Ana Isabelle will take on the iconic role of Eva Perón in the theatre's highly anticipated production of Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber's EVITA. Directed and choreographed by Josh Rhodes (Asolo Rep: Guys and Dolls ; Broadway: Bright Star , It Shoulda Been You , Rodgers & Hammerstein's Cinderella ), the Tony Award-winning masterpiece previews November 14 - 17, opens November 18 and runs through December 30.
Hailed as "An Artist to Watch" by Billboard magazine, Ana Isabelle shot to stardom as the winner of the popular Univision musical reality show Viva el Sueño, when more than 30 million viewers voted to crown her the next Latin music superstar. She has performed to sold-out stadiums throughout the U.S. and Puerto Rico, including Madison Square Garden. Feature film roles include the upcoming Imprisoned, starring Laurence Fishburne, and the remake of Francis Ford Coppola's Dementia 13. Her Off-Broadway credits include the musical I Like it Like That with Tito Nieves. Her television credits include Big Dogs and Seasons of Love, opposite Taraji P. Henson, Gladys Knight and Method Man.
"When Ana walked into the room, you immediately felt the temperature change. She has an intensity and natural charisma that pulls you in, and I found it instantly alluring. But it was her voice that made my back straighten," said Director/Choreographer Josh Rhodes. "I barely took a breath as she sung one song after another. The talent to sing the role was clearly there, but it was her deep desire to reach us with the lyrics that made her the clear choice for Eva. Her spirit is strong and hungry for the light, yet vulnerable and heartbreakingly honest. She is a brilliant singer, a fearless actress, and a dazzling dancer. It baffles me that so much talent can come from this young woman."
Winner of seven Tony Awards, including best musical and best score, EVITA chronicles the electric rise and fall of Eva Perón, who used her beauty and charisma to climb from her poverty-stricken roots on the outskirts of Buenos Aires to become the powerful and polarizing First Lady of Argentina at the age of 27.
"Taking on the role of Eva Perón, one of the most magnetic and important women of the 20th century, is a treasure," said Ana Isabelle. "She was the definition of resiliency - a strong, driven woman who inspired the masses. Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice's score is tremendously dynamic, beautiful and challenging, and I can't wait to bring it to life at Asolo Rep and become a part of the rich history of this musical."
"Casting Eva Perón is no easy feat - it is arguably one of the most challenging roles in all of musical theatre. Ana Isabelle fully embodied Eva immediately," said Asolo Rep Producing Artistic Director Michael Donald Edwards. "Not only does she have the powerfully breathtaking voice that the score demands, but she also has the same extraordinary, captivating and alluring spirit that catapulted Evita from First Lady of Argentina to a global phenomenon. I can't wait for our audiences to experience her tour de force performance."
ABOUT Ana Isabelle
Ana Isabelle (Eva Perón; EVITA) is a Puerto Rican Actress, Singer/Songwriter and Dancer. She stole the hearts of more than 30 million Latinos who voted for her to become the winner of Univision's Viva el Sueño; a music reality show searching for the next Latin music superstar. Hailed as "An Artist to Watch" by Billboard magazine, she has released three highly successful albums, including "Mi Sueno", which debuted at number three on the Billboard Top Latin Albums Chart. Her song "Por Amarte Asi," with Cristian Castro, reached the Top 5 of the Billboard Pop Charts in the U.S. and Puerto Rico. Feature film roles include the upcoming Imprisoned, starring Laurence Fishburne, and the remake of Francis Ford Coppola's Dementia 13. Her U.S. television credits include Big Dogs, and Seasons of Love, opposite Taraji P. Henson, Gladys Knight and Method Man. Ana became the first Latina Music Artist featured in a TNT NBA All Stars commercial alongside Chazz Palminteri, performing "Power" by Kanye West. She made her New York Off-Broadway debut in the musical I Like it Like That with Tito Nieves. As a solo artist and alongside Plácido Domingo, José Feliciano, and Luis Fonsi, she has performed in sold-out venues throughout Puerto Rico and the U.S., including Madison Square Garden, and Carnegie Hall with "el caballero de la salsa" Gilberto Santa Rosa. She was invited to sing the National Anthem at Citi Field for a New York Mets game and performed the Puerto Rican National Anthem at World Champion Miguel Cotto's fight at the Barclays Center. Ana was named the Best New Artist at Premios Texas in 2010 and was nominated as Best New Artist in Premios Lo Nuestro in 2009. She started her career as a backup dancer/singer for many Latin stars including Menudo.
Season subscriptions for the 2017-18 season are on sale now and available by visiting the Asolo Rep Box Office, located in the lobby of the theatre, 5555 N. Tamiami Trail in Sarasota, by calling 941.351.8000 or 800.361.8388 or online at www.asolorep.org. Single tickets will go on sale online on September 30 and by phone and at the box office on October 2.
Asolo Rep is able to present EVITA because of the generosity of its sponsors. Corporate sponsors for EVITA are Plumbing Today, Sarasota Magazine, Herald Tribune, SNN, and Innovative Dining. Asolo Rep 2017-18 Major Season Sponsors are Florida State University, Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation, Gulf Coast Community Foundation, The Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation, The Shubert Foundation, Designing Women Boutique, Woman's Exchange, Inc., the Huisking Foundation, and Sunset Cadillac of Bradenton. Asolo Rep's artistic programs are paid for in part by Sarasota County Tourist Development Tax revenues. Asolo Rep is sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Council on Arts and Culture.
Photo credit: John Revisky