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Chita Rivera

Tony-winning dancer, celebrity, and singer Chita Rivera made her main impact like a performer in Broadway musicals, showing up in them frequently for more than 40 years, including a breakout component in Western Side Tale and starring tasks in Bye Bye Birdie, Chicago, The Rink, and Kiss from the Spider Girl. She also performed in nightclubs and, sometimes, on tv and in film. Being a documenting artist, she actually is represented by way of a series of primary Broadway ensemble albums generally, although she do make several single recordings. Rivera was created Dolores Conchita Figueroa del Rivero in Washington, D.C., on January 23, 1933. Her dad, Pedro Julio Figueroa, was a clarinet and saxophone participant who passed away when she was seven. Her mom, Katherine Anderson del Rivero, had taken a job on the Pentagon. Rivera started ballet lessons at age 11. Five years afterwards, she auditioned effectively for the American College of Ballet, area of the NEW YORK Ballet, and went to on the scholarship. She turned towards the musical theatre when she was solid within the chorus from the nationwide tour of Contact Me Madam. She after that done Broadway as an alternative chorus member in Men and Dolls and Can-Can. On Feb 28, 1955, she opened up off-Broadway in Shoestring Revue, a display made by Ben Bagley and offering tracks compiled by Lee Adams, Sheldon Harnick, Michael Stewart, and Charles Strouse, amongst others. (Later on in her profession, she participated in Bagley’s group of “revisited” albums of obscure tracks by famous theatre songwriters, showing up on Kurt Weill Revisited and Leonard Bernstein Revisited.) Shoestring Revue ran 96 shows. Three months later on, on, may 26, 1955, she produced her Broadway debut like a presented performer in the publication musical Seventh Heaven, having a rating by Victor Adolescent and Stella Unger. It went only 44 shows, nonetheless it was documented for a solid recording by Decca Information, providing Rivera her documenting debut performing “Camille, Collette, Fifi” and “Like, Love, Like.” Inside a yr, Rivera got her first effective Broadway musical, showing up in a highlighted function in Mr. Great (March 22, 1956), a present built around its superstar, Sammy Davis, Jr., with music compiled by Jerry Bock, Larry Holofcener, and George David Weiss. It went 383 shows, and Decca released a ensemble record. She attained stage stardom with her highlighted function as Anita in Western world Side Tale (Sept 26, 1957), the modernized Romeo and Juliet tale with music by Leonard Bernstein and Stephen Sondheim, including her big quantities, “America” and “A Boy LIKE THIS.” It went 732 shows with a ensemble record released by Columbia Information. On Dec 1, 1957, she wedded actor/vocalist Tony Mordente, who also was showing up in West Aspect Story. Their little girl, Lisa Mordente, was created June 30, 1958. She became an celebrity. Rivera and Tony Mordente had been divorced in 1966. Rivera also made an appearance within the London creation of West Aspect Story that opened up Dec 12, 1958. She appreciated her second consecutive Broadway strike showing up opposite Dick Truck Dyke in Bye Bye Birdie (Apr 14, 1960), a musical satire predicated on Elvis Presley’s departure for the Military with a publication by Michael Stewart and tracks by Charles Strouse and Lee Adams. It went 607 shows, and Columbia released the solid recording. Again, she opened up the display in London, beginning on June 15, 1961, and she made an appearance on the initial London solid recording released by Philips Information within the U.K. and by the Wing Information subsidiary of Mercury Information within the U.S. After her two big strikes, Rivera hit misfortune with her following present, Zenda, a musical version from the Prisoner of Zenda, where she starred with Alfred Drake. It boasted music by Vernon Duke and Martin Charnin, nonetheless it shut during its pre-Broadway tryout after starting in SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA on August 5, 1963. Even so, among the shows was documented live, along with a ensemble record was released ultimately by Blue Pear Information. Rivera came back to NY, where she produced a single LP, AND TODAY I Sing!, for the small Latin-oriented Seeco Information label and made an appearance in Wonderworld, a revue with music by Jule Styne, at the brand new York World’s Good, starting on Apr 7, 1964. From the fall, she got discovered another Broadway automobile. Bajour (November 23, 1964) presented tracks by Walter Marks, and Rivera starred opposing Herschel Bernardi. The display went a good 218 shows, and Columbia released a cast record. Rivera agreed upon a singles cope with Dot Information that led to several 45s, “Blue May be the Color”/”Seriously Back again” in 1965 and “Emptiness”/”Raining in my own Center” in 1967, and recognized tasks touring in displays around the united states, including the nationwide tour of Special Charity, where she starred, in 1967. She also made an appearance, albeit in a second role, within the film edition from the musical, released in early 1969, and on the soundtrack recording released by Decca. Later on in the entire year, she is at another musical that ended up being a nonstarter, Meredith Willson’s 1491 (Oct 28, 1969), which went in LA, but didn’t head to Broadway. The first ‘70s brought even more touring. But she was back NY on March 11, 1973, to surface in the one-night advantage efficiency Sondheim: A Musical Tribute, reprising her efficiency of “America,” and it had been documented to get a two-LP arranged released by Warner Bros. Information. In Sept 1973, she got her 1st regular role inside a tv sitcom, showing up for the 3rd season of THE BRAND NEW Dick Vehicle Dyke Show and therefore reuniting with her aged partner from Bye Bye Birdie. However the display went only another 12 months, ending in Sept 1974. Rivera came back to Broadway in her third main strike, Chicago (June 1, 1975), co-starring with Gwen Verdon in John Kander and Fred Ebb’s satiric tale of criminal offense and celebrity, occur the 1920s. It went 947 shows, and Arista Information released the solid recording which Rivera sang such tracks as “EVERYTHING THAT Jazz.” After her operate in the present ended, she got a small function in the devastating 1978 film musical Sgt. Pepper’s Unhappy Hearts Club Music group. Another misbegotten work where she was included was a sequel to Bye Bye Birdie, RECREATE Birdie (March 5, 1981), once again with the innovative group of Michael Stewart, Lee Adams, and Charles Strouse, which maintained only four shows on Broadway, though it was documented for an record issued by First Cast Information. Another failing, if nearly so very bad, was Merlin (Feb 13, 1983), starring magician Doug Henning with music by Elmer Bernstein and Don Dark. It went 199 shows on Broadway, but proceeded to go unrecorded. Rivera’s following musical was hardly more successful with regards to shows, running 204, nonetheless it was better received. WITHIN THE Rink (Feb 9, 1984), she performed mom of a personality performed by Liza Minnelli and gained a Tony Honor for her problems. Polydor Information released the solid recording. Rivera was significantly injured in a vehicle accident, but retrieved with time to open up within the revue Jerry’s Ladies (Dec 18, 1985), an anthology from the tunes of Jerry Herman that went 139 shows. She spent all of those other 1980s employed in nightclubs and touring, including a yearlong jaunt, 1988-1989, in Can-Can associated with the Radio Town Music Hall Rockettes. Rivera’s 4th major musical achievement experienced an extended gestation period. Kiss from the Spider Female was predicated on Manuel Puig’s book, which also have been the foundation of movie director Hector Babenco’s 1985 film, and worried prisoners within a South American prison, among whom dreams of a well-known Hollywood superstar. The tracks had been by John Kander and Fred Ebb. A rocky pre-Broadway tryout in 1991 resulted in a 1992 creation in Toronto, accompanied by a successful starting on Oct 20, 1992, in London. (There is a recording from the Toronto ensemble by First Evening Information, and of the London ensemble by RCA Victor, both offering Rivera.) The present finally opened up on Broadway on, may 3, 1993, to get a work of 906 shows, and Rivera won her second Tony Prize for this. She going a nationwide tour that went 2 yrs. Thereafter, she performed with Carol Channing inside a display known as Broadway Legends and in a golf club act she known as “Chita EVERYTHING Jazz.” She also made an appearance in children’s tv, leading to her involvement on it soundtrack albums Gladly Ever After: Fairy Stories for Every Kid and, later on, Johnny as well as the Sprites. Her appearance within the televised concert THE BEST Broadway: The Like Songs in Oct 2000 resulted in her inclusion on the 2001 recording and house video attracted from the display. She experienced a cameo within the 2002 film edition of Chicago. She came back to Broadway within a helping role within a revival of Maury Yeston’s Nine (Apr 10, 2003), an version from the Federico Fellini film 8½ that went 283 shows, and was noticed on the ensemble record released in the PS Classics label. Time for club function, she dubbed her display “AND TODAY I Sing,” after her ‘60s LP. She made an appearance on Broadway in her personal display, Chita Rivera: The Dancer’s Existence, from Dec 11, 2005, to Feb 19, 2006, after that required it on tour. She produced another of her uncommon appearances in an attribute film with Kalamazoo?, which opened up in Apr 2006. On Dec 26, 2006, Masterworks Broadway, a department of Sony BMG, released the Rivera compilation record Legends of Broadway, offering her shows of music from the Western world Side Tale, Bye Bye Birdie, Bajour, Chicago, and Kiss from the Spider Girl primary Broadway ensemble albums. Within the springtime of 2008, she starred within a creation of The Check out, a musical version from the Friedrich Dürrenmatt play with tracks by Kander and Ebb, in the Personal Theater in Washington, D.C. Putting your signature on to the recently formed Yellow Audio Label, she documented AND TODAY I Swing, just her second single recording as such, offering tracks connected with her throughout her profession along with criteria. It had been released Oct 13, 2009, in expectation of a concert tour dubbed “Chita Rivera: My Broadway” established to begin with in January 2010.

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