AODS proudly presents the powerful musical EVITA.
The story begins on 26 July 1952, in Buenos Aires, Argentina in a cinema. As the audience watches a film, it is interrupted by an announcement that Eva Perón, spiritual leader of the nation, entered immortality at 20:25 today. A “Lament” begins and we see how the people of Argentina react to the news. The narrator, Che, looks on unimpressed, commenting on what is happening within a city mourning the death of their celebrity (“Oh What a Circus”).
We go back in time to see Eva at the age of 15 in 1934. Her first love affair is with a tango singer, Agustin Magaldi (“On The Night of a Thousand Stars”), whom she begs to be taken to Buenos Aires. She is warned by Magaldi not to go (“Eva Beware of the City”) but, ignoring his advice, Eva sings about her ambitions whilst in the capital city (“Buenos Aires”). She leaves Magaldi when she realises that he is already married and begins sleeping her way to the top, with whoever will help her fulfill her goal as an actress (“Goodnight and Thank You”). We move forward to Che in 1943, where Che tells about the changing political face of Argentina and the right-wing coup. We see Colonel Perón climb the political ladder (“The Art of the Possible”)
At a charity concert in Luna Park, Eva meets Perón (“Charity Concert”) and the two realise they can help each other to achieve their ambitions (“I’d Be Surprisingly Good for You”). She quickly dismisses Perón’s mistress, who is left abandoned with no place to go (“Another Suitcase in Another Hall”).
As it becomes public knowledge that Perón and Eva are together, she is met with disdain from the upper classes and from the Army, who are nervous about a lower-class girl so close to power (“Perón’s Latest Flame”). Forward onto 1946, we see Perón begin his election race, which Eva assures him will be successful. Together they fight for “A New Argentina” threatening to take down anyone who stands in their way.
In 1946 Perón is elected as President, standing on the “Balcony of the Casa Rosada” addressing the thousands of poor ‘descamisados’ who wish for a better future. Eva tells the gathered crowd that she once hoped for fame and glory but is now focused on her people (“Don’t Cry for Me, Argentina”). Che ponders the prince of fame as Eva greets people at the inaugural ball (“High Flying Adored”).
Eva begins to grow more popular than her husband and demands to be lavishly dressed in the latest fashion (“Rainbow High”). She sets off on a European tour to meet heads of state but is met with mixed reactions in war-torn Europe. Eva despises the Upper Class (“Rainbow Tour”) for their view of her and her people. For ‘her’ people, Che wonders when she will begin her charitable work, commenting that “The Chorus Girl Hasn’t Learned” and so Eva sets up her foundation for the poor. In reality, acting as a cover for money laundering, (“And the Money Kept Rolling in”). As she visits the church to take the sacrament (“Santa Evita”) she goes into a trance-like state and has a vision that manifests itself as her dancing with Che, the representative of the people of Argentina (“Waltz for Eva and Che”). Eva becomes ill and finally admits that she is dying of cancer, only then does she realises that Perón truly loves her for herself and not for the publicity it brings him (“You Must Love Me”).
Despite her illness, Eva runs for the office of Vice President, however, the army is getting tired of her political meddling (“She is a Diamond”) and Perón tells her that her health must come first (“Dice are Rolling”). Realising that the cancer is slowly taking over her body, she tells the people of Argentina that she loves them with “Eva’s Final Broadcast”. Eva’s achievements fly past her eyes in a “Montage”. Upon Eva’s death the embalmers preserve her body before it is stolen for 16 years (“Lament”).
Eva: Victoria Howard-Andrews
Peron: Martin Sampson
The Mistress: Rebecca Rogers
Che: Nick Main
Magaldi: Christian Wedlock
Directed by Sue Sampson
Musical Director: Julie Dance
Choreographer: Dawn Stephens
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