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We all know, in general, the story of Eva Peron: born to poverty, she rose to power as the wife of Juan Peron, leader of Argentina.

Her biography turns out to be a bit more interesting than that.

Eva's autobiography, La Razón de mi Vida,[7] contains no dates or references to childhood occurrences, and does not list the location of her birth or her name at birth.[8] According to Junín's civil registry, a birth certificate shows that one María Eva Duarte was born on 7 May 1922. Her baptismal certificate, however, lists the date of birth as 7 May 1919 under the name Eva María Ibarguren.[9][10] It is believed that in 1945 the adult Eva Perón created a forgery of her birth certificate for her marriage.[11]

Eva Perón spent her childhood in Junín, Buenos Aires province. Her parents, Juan Duarte and Juana Ibarguren (sometimes referred to as Doña Juana), were descended from Basque immigrants.[12] Juan Duarte was a wealthy rancher from nearby Chivilcoy, where he already had a wife and family. During this time period in rural Argentina, it was not uncommon to see a wealthy male with multiple families.[13] However, the lack of legitimacy for Juana and her children would still leave them stigmatized and rejected. Referred to as "bastards", the family was somewhat isolated. When Duarte suddenly passed away, and his mistress and their children made an attempt to attend his funeral, a small scandal erupted at the church gates. Though Juana and the children were permitted to pay respects to Duarte, they were promptly directed outside afterward. Mrs. Juan Duarte did not want her husband's mistress and children at the funeral, and as his legitimate wife, her orders were respected. Eva would never forget the bitter memory of having her mother and siblings thrown out of her father's funeral.

http://en.wikipedia.org/...

Wikipedia is extremely helpful. Eva moved to Buenos Aires as a teenager (under what circumstances seems to remain in question, depending upon whom you ask), and

remained in glamorous Buenos Aires. There she embarked on an exciting adventure, pursuing jobs on stage, radio, and eventually became a film actress. Though never regarded as particularly talented on stage, Eva's beauty was certainly appreciated. Eva had a series of relationships, and via some of these men, she did acquire a number of her modeling appointments. This would be the beginning of Eva's detractors describing her as having been a woman who used men to get what she wanted. When Eva decided to bleach her raven black hair, the effect was striking and quite flattering to her creamy complexion. Eva would keep her hair blonde for the duration of her life.
http://en.wikipedia.org/...

From that early period, when Eva was working as an actress, this iconic song:

Go read the whole Wiki entry: fair use doesn't allow me to quote much more, and really I would want to just quote it all here. Which would make for a lively Monday Night at the Biography, but alas, nothing to do with theater.

What I will say is that Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber seem to have played with her biography for dramatic effect. As one would expect from a biopic, or in this case, a biomusical.

When Juan is briefly out of power (from the original Broadway show):

As we all know, Eva Peron died young, from uterine cancer. How young? Depends whether she was born in 1919 or 1922. (From one broad to another: I'm betting on the 1919 date.) Sir Lloyd Webber nailed it:

That was Elaine Paige, who created the role in Evita's original run in London's West End.

Here's Patti Lupone, who created the role here on Broadway:

Poll

La Lupone? or Elaine Paige?

33%3 votes
66%6 votes
0%0 votes

| 9 votes | Vote | Results

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Comment Preferences

  •  Enjoy: (8+ / 0-)

    Irony takes a worse beating from Republicans than Wile E. Coyote does from Acme. --Tara the Antisocial Social Worker

    by Youffraita on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 01:37:31 PM PDT

  •  LuPone. Did you have to ask? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Youffraita, Louisiana 1976

    And that clip was Evita scheming on how to get Juan elected President--exploit the unions.

    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White -6.00, -5.18

    by zenbassoon on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 05:12:41 PM PDT

  •  Who else but LuPone has the belt for (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Youffraita, Louisiana 1976, Dumbo

    "A New Argentina"?

    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White -6.00, -5.18

    by zenbassoon on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 05:13:49 PM PDT

  •  I happened... (6+ / 0-)

    to be traveling in Europe and saw Evita in London.  So I much preferred the London version (altered slightly for the American theatre) and thus Elaine Page!  :)

    I did see Patti Lupone when a friend who works in theatre got tickets for the Broadway version.  But I couldn't get past loving the London version.

    All the suffering of this world arises from a wrong attitude.The world is neither good or bad. It is only the relation to our ego that makes it seem the one or the other - Lama Anagorika Govinda

    by kishik on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 05:25:12 PM PDT

  •  Watch Elaine Paige's Face Near the End... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Youffraita

    ...as the orchestra swells before she sings the final iteration of "Don't Cry For Me Argentina." Then watch her expression right after she finishes singing the line. Had this been during a performance of the play, I'd have found it disconcerting, (had I attended with a powerful set of binoculars). But in a televised concert setting, it's (butter-cream) icing on the cupcake.

    best,

    john

    Strange that a harp of thousand strings should keep in tune so long

    by jabney on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 05:50:59 PM PDT

    •  OK, jabney, I watched it yet again (0+ / 0-)

      and whatever you're saying is too subtle for me.

      What do you see in her face that I am totally missing?

      Irony takes a worse beating from Republicans than Wile E. Coyote does from Acme. --Tara the Antisocial Social Worker

      by Youffraita on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 06:03:46 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Watch Her Mouth - At 5:15 She Reminds Me of... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Youffraita

        ...my cat, Amy, after she's cornered her prey. She knows she's going to nail it. But there's still the final piece of work to be done - the formality of the kill (a wadded up piece of paper, usually).

        Then, notice the look of, 'yeah, that's how it's done' around 5:38 or so, before the broad toothy smile for the audience at the very end. Before she walks from the spot where she'd been singing. Not a boastfully ungracious expression, it seems, but perhaps a rather private one that happened to be captured on tape.

        best,

        john

        Strange that a harp of thousand strings should keep in tune so long

        by jabney on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 06:44:53 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I sat in row 2 for the Broadway show. Wonderful (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Youffraita, PatriciaVa, Radiowalla

    My mother in law's cousins live in Buenos Aires.  In 1979, one family member smuggled in the record album, which we listened to on the roof of their apartment in Rividavia St.  

    The smuggler taught mechanical engineering and imported machinery from England.  Of course, he did not do well with this after the Falklands war.  

    A couple of years ago, we visited Evita's gravesite/memorial in Recoleta.  

    We have visited the family 4 times since 1979;  the first was the strangest because we had to pass checkpoints where machine-gun dressed soldiers interrogated us.  

    •  1979 was during the time (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      frosti

      of the desaparacidos. Right? I remember that...from the safety of being here, but it was awful.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/...

      Irony takes a worse beating from Republicans than Wile E. Coyote does from Acme. --Tara the Antisocial Social Worker

      by Youffraita on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 06:06:56 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yes, they were very interested in my husband. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Youffraita

        Also, we hiked with our relative up in the Andes, and stayed at a gendemaria on the border.  I took a picture of the logo on the station, and they took my camera.  I didn't think we were any threat, but...
        Many things were strange about this time.  
          No safety glass for the windshield, so a rock caused us to have a lapful of tiny pieces of glass.
          A brand new Ford Falcon station wagon was 1959 model even though it was 1979.
          Cars drove down the middle stripe of the highway at night and honked on the curves to warn others.
           Bahia Blanca, a navy town, had road blocks everywhere.

        No one was around the Casa Rosada then, but on a subsequent trip, there were chalked outlines of bodies outside of the pink house.

        •  IIRC, the junta (0+ / 0-)

          was making anyone who disagreed with them just...disappear. It was a terrible time to be an Argentinian.

          Irony takes a worse beating from Republicans than Wile E. Coyote does from Acme. --Tara the Antisocial Social Worker

          by Youffraita on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 06:26:37 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  I remember seeing Evita back (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Youffraita

    in 1982 in L.A.  I could barely follow what was going on because there was so much stuff.  You don't see it in these videos, but the stage presentation was a real three ring circus, with screens to left and right showing a mixture of real historical black and white videoclips of the Perons mixed with recreations.  The actual stage presentation too had multiple spotlights on different simultaneous groups of actors.  I didn't know where to look.  I got fascinated in the video clips because I was so far from the stage up in the balconies that I couldn't see anybody's face.

    I also remember I didn't get laid that night.  It may have tarnished my memory of the night a little, heh.

    My favorite line from Evita:

    "THE PEOPLE ADORE ME...
    SO CHRISTIAN DIOR ME!"

    And my favorite song, Santa Evita.  Best scene in the musical for me.

    That was from a high school performance, but it was vastly more impressive to me than many of the professional performances that I skipped through to find that one.  (Just for you, youffraita, cuz I always give you such a bad time about GoT!)  Click through to it and punch the like button if you can, because that little girl deserves some love.

    That was the most obscene part of the show for me.  When I saw it live, they had rows of little girls in Catholic confirmation dresses, with the veils and all that, carrying lit candles, march together on stage singing Santa Evita.  It was very beautiful and moving, on the one hand -- the music is a bastardization mash-up of the Evita theme with the Bach-Gounod Ave Maria  -- and yet it was such a manipulative piece of shit that more than anything else, I thought, that bitch needs to die an awful death for this.

    I guess that's one of the best things about Evita -- how you are allowed to perceive it on multiple levels.  I watched people in the audience crying for poor Evita when she sings her "Don't cry for me..." And I felt offended by the audience (!) for responding that way.  I was only sorry she couldn't have been gunned down by angry little children in a Godfather-like finale.

    The whole musical was a great vehicle for mixing and contrasting cloying sentimentality with political cynicism.

  •  I would be derelict in my duties as a (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mama jo

    Theatricals person if I didn't embed this Inside the Actors Studio interview with Glenn Close:

    Irony takes a worse beating from Republicans than Wile E. Coyote does from Acme. --Tara the Antisocial Social Worker

    by Youffraita on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 07:38:51 PM PDT

  •  No recs? Really? (0+ / 0-)

    I rec all of your diaries.

    I don't beg. Don't bother to rec me now.

    But this wasn't a throwaway...I actually put some thought and work into it.

    And got comments.

    No recs? Really?

    Irony takes a worse beating from Republicans than Wile E. Coyote does from Acme. --Tara the Antisocial Social Worker

    by Youffraita on Mon Jul 29, 2013 at 08:16:46 PM PDT

  •  sorry I have missed so many recent diaries (0+ / 0-)

    i am a HUGE fan of Book of Mormon and Sweeney Todd and wish I could have commented there.

    But I have to admit La Lupone is not one of my favorite singers.

    She is an extraordinarily powerful belter and Broadway always respects that.  But her softer notes lack the same clarity.  When I listen to her, the bulk of the song is just the warm up for the big moments, and I expect a Broadway star to hold me through every single note of a big solo.

    I know that is sacrilege in some circles, so I apologize to all who love her dearly!!!

    Politics is like driving. To go backward put it in R. To go forward put it in D.
    Drop by The Grieving Room on Monday nights for support in dealing with grief.

    by TrueBlueMajority on Fri Aug 02, 2013 at 10:45:00 AM PDT

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