This is about the stage musical. For the film see Evita.
Evita is a musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice based on the life of Eva Peron.
Original concept album (1976)
- Julie Covington - Eva Perón
- Colm Wilkinson - Ché
- Paul Jones - Juan Perón
- Tony Christie - Agustín Magaldi
- Barbara Dickson - Peron's Mistress
- Mike Smith - Dolan Getta
- Mike d'Abo - Getta's Sidekick
- Christopher Neil - The Foundation of Eva Peron Manager
Original London cast (1979)
- Elaine Paige - Eva Perón
- David Essex - Ché
- Joss Ackland - Juan Perón
- Mark Ryan - Agustín Magaldi
- Siobhán McCarthy - Peron's Mistress
The opening reveals a cinema in Buenos Aires, Argentina on 26 July 1952, where an audience is watching a film. The Spanish dialogue is heard during the film, an announcer interrupts with the message that "Eva Perón entered immortality at 20:25 hours this evening...." The audience is heartbroken, and they sing a requiem for Evita. Ché, the narrator, cynically assesses the hysterical grief that gripped Argentina when Evita died.
Che introduces the audience to 15-year-old Eva, in 1934. She has her first love affair with tango singer Agustín Magaldi after she meets him at one of his shows. Eva blackmails Magaldi into taking her with him to Buenos Aires and though he is initially resistant, he eventually surrenders. Upon her arrival at the city, Eva sings about her hopes and ambitions of glory as an actress. After her arrival, Eva is quick to leave Magaldi and Che relates the story of how Eva sleeps her way up the social ladder, becoming a model, radio star, and actress. He then tells of both a right-wing coup in 1943 and Eva's success, implying that Argentine politics and Eva's career may soon coincide. Che also makes a point to introduce the figure of Colonel Juan Domingo Perón, an ambitious military colonel who was making his way up the Argentine political ladder. In a game of musical chairs that represents the rise of political figures, Perón and other military figures compete for power and exhibit their political strategy.
After a devastating earthquake hits the town of San Juan, Perón organizes a charity concert at the Luna Park to provide aid to the victims. Eva attends and briefly reunites with Agustín Magaldi, who coldly shuns her for her past actions. Perón addresses the crowd with words of encouragement and leaps off the stage, meeting Eva as soon as he exits. Eva and Perón share a secret rendezvous following the charity concert, where Eva hints that she could help Perón rise to power. Eva dismisses Perón's mistress, who ponders the rejection.
After moving in with Perón, Eva is introduced to high society, but she is met with disdain from the upper classes and the Argentine Arm. In 1946, Perón launches his presidential bid after being promoted to general in the army, and while in bed with Eva, he discusses his chances at winning the election. Eva reassures him and soon they organize rallies where the people show their support and hope for a better future, while on the sidelines Perón and his allies plot to dispose of anyone who stands in their way.
Perón is elected President in a sweeping victory in 1946. He stands on the balcony of the Casa Rosada addressing his descamisados (shirtless ones). Eva speaks from the balcony of the Presidential palace to her adoring supporters, where she reveals that despite her initial goal of achieving fame and glory, she has found her true calling to be the people of her country. Che analyzes the price of fame as Eva dances at the Inaugural Ball with Perón, now Argentina's president-elect.
Eva insists on a glamorous image in order to impress the people of Argentina and promote Peronism. She prepares to tour in Europe as she is dressed for success by her fashion consultants. Her famous 1946 tour meets with mixed results; Spaniards adore her, but the Italians liken her husband to Benito Mussolini, France is unimpressed, and the English snub her by inviting her to a country estate, rather than Buckingham Palace, and she is forced to finish early due to illness. Eva affirms her disdain for the upper class, while Che asks her to start helping those in need as she promised. Eva begins the Eva Perón Foundation to direct her charity work. Che describes Eva's controversial charitable work, and possible money laundering.
Eva appears at a church to take the sacrament in front of her adoring supporters, but goes into a trancelike state, beginning to hallucinate. In her vision she and Che heatedly debate her actions; Che accuses Eva of using the Argentine people for her own ends, while Eva cynically replies that there is no glory in trying to solve the world's problems from the sidelines. At the end of the argument, Eva finally admits to herself and Che that she is dying and can't go on for much longer. Afterwards, Eva finally understands that Perón loves her for herself, not just for what she can do for him and his career.
Perón's generals finally get sick of Eva's meddling and demand that Perón force her to leave politics. However, Perón objects and claims that if it wasn't for her they would never have achieved as much as they have. However, he also acknowledges she won't be able to keep working for long as she will soon succumb to her cancer. Meanwhile, Eva is determined to run for vice president, much to Perón's fear that they will be overtaken by the military if she runs and that Eva's health is too delicate for any stressful work, but Eva insists she can continue, despite her failing health.
Realising she is close to death, Eva renounces her pursuit of the vice presidency and swears her eternal love to the people of Argentina. Eva's achievements flash before her eyes before she dies, and she asks for forgiveness, contemplating her choice of fame instead of long life. Eva dies, and embalmers preserve her body forever. Che notes that a monument was set to be built for Evita but "only the pedestal was completed, when Evita's body disappeared for 17 years...."
- Act One
- "A Cinema in Buenos Aires, 26 July 1952" – Crowd
- "Requiem for Evita" – Chorus
- "Oh What a Circus" – Che and Crowd
- "On This Night of a Thousand Stars" – Magaldi
- "Eva and Magaldi" / "Eva, Beware of the City" – Eva, Magaldi and Eva's Family
- "Buenos Aires" – Eva and Crowd
- "Good Night and Thank You" – Che, Eva, Magaldi and Lovers
- "The Lady's Got Potential" – Che
- "The Art of the Possible" – Perón, Generals and Eva
- "Charity Concert" – Perón, Che, Magaldi and Eva
- "I'd Be Surprisingly Good For You" – Eva and Perón
- "Hello and Goodbye" – Eva
- "Another Suitcase in Another Hall" – Perón's Mistress and Men's Chorus
- "Peron's Latest Flame" – Che, Aristocrats, Soldiers and Eva
- "A New Argentina" – Eva, Che, Perón and Crowd
- Act II
- "On The Balcony of the Casa Rosada" – Perón, Che and Crowd
- "Don't Cry for Me Argentina" – Eva
- "High Flying Adored" – Che and Eva
- "Rainbow High" – Eva and Dressers
- "Rainbow Tour" – Perón, Advisers, Che and Eva
- "The Actress Hasn't Learned the Lines (You'd Like to Hear)" – Eva, Aristocrats and Che
- "And the Money Kept Rolling In (And Out)" – Che and Crowd
- "Santa Evita" – Children and Chorus
- "A Waltz for Eva and Che" – Eva and Che
- "You Must Love Me" - Eva
- "Peron's Latest Flame Playoff" - Soldiers
- "She is a Diamond" – Perón
- "Dice Are Rolling" / "Eva's Sonnet" – Perón and Eva
- "Eva's Final Broadcast" – Eva
- "Montage" – Eva, Che, Perón and Chorus
- "Lament" – Eva, Embalmers and Che