The 2012 Broadway revival of Andrew Lloyd Webber's and Tim Rice's Evita caused a stir because of the star-power of its male leads and the buzz of the first Argentinian to play the title role on Broadway. Though the show did not find favor at the Tony Awards, the production was a hit with audiences, and the company brings the energy of this re-imagined production to the entertaining Broadway revival cast album.
The Music & Voices
The lush score spans numerous styles, from the 1920's Argentinian tango to 1970's disco, which conjures visions of Webber and Rice's Jesus Christ Superstar. In fact, some of the recitatives and narrative singing sound similar to the music lines in the writing duo's phenomenal hit, The Phantom of the Opera, now the longest running show on Broadway.
Evita is known for its extreme vocal range, especially for the title role. The actors sometimes have trouble keeping up with Rice's wordy lyrics and Webber's wild ranges, pitches, and rhythms. The score includes the famous showtunes "Don't Cry for me Argentina," "High Flying Adored," and "Rainbow High," with the song "You Must Love Me," borrowed from the movie version of Evita, starring Madonna and Antonio Banderas. Overall, the actors handle the score very well, bringing one of Broadway's favorite musical's into the 21st century.
Elena Roger is reminiscent of a young Patti LuPone, who won the 1980 Best Actress in a Musical Tony for playing "Evita" in the original Broadway production. Roger alternates between head voice and belt in the mix and higher range, which at times comes across as a nasal shrill. Clearly, this score was written by men who did not have to actually sing it. "Rainbow High" shows some wear and tear on her voice, which could be for emotive purpose but still makes the listener cringe slightly.
Michael Cerveris, best known to television audiences as "September" on the sci-fi show "Fringe," offers an emotionally and vocally rich performance as "Peron." Ricky Martin brings a definite pop influence to his "Che," which is vastly different form the iconic Tony Award-winning performance by Mandy Patinkin. Cerveris was nominated for a 2012 Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Musical.
Also giving an impressive performance on this cast album is Max von Essen as "Magaldi."
This cast album of the 2012 Broadway revival of Evita is a faithful representation of the show and should definitely join any Broadway-phile's shelf of OCR's. With familiar tunes and a great orchestra backing up the singers, this album will survive the test of numerous listening sessions.
1. Requiem for Evita - The Company
2. Oh, What a Circus - Ricky Martin and Elena Roger
3. On This Night of a Thousand Stars - Max von Essen, Ricky Martin, and Elena Roger
4. Eva, Beware of the City - Max von Essen and Elena Roger
5. Buenos Aires - Elena Roger and Ricky Martin
6. Goodnight and Thank You - Ricky Martin and Elena Roger
7. The Art of the Possible - Michael Cerveris and Elena Roger
8. Charity Concert - Ricky Martin, Max von Essen, Elena Roger, and Michael Cerveris
9. I'd Be Surprisingly Good For You - Elena Roger and Michael Cerveris
10. Another Suitcase in Another Hall - Elena Roger, Rachel Potter, and Ricky Martin
11. Perón's Latest Flame - Ricky Martin and Elena Roger
12. A New Argentina - Michael Cerveris, Elena Roger, and Ricky Martin
1. On the Balcony of the Casa Rosada - Michael Cerveris, Elena Roger and Ricky Martin
2. Don't Cry for Me Argentina - Elena Roger
3. High Flying, Adored - Ricky Martin and Elena Roger
4. Rainbow High - Elena Roger
5. Rainbow Tour - Michael Cerveris, Elena Roger, and Ricky Martin
6. The Chorus Girl Hasn't Learned the Lines (You'd Like to Hear) - Elena Roger and Ricky Martin
7. And the Money Kept Rolling In (and Out) - Ricky Martin
8. Santa Evita - Maya Jade Frank and Isabella Moner
9. Waltz for Eva and Che - Ricky Martin and Elena Roger
10. You Must Love Me - Elena Roger
11. She Is a Diamond - Michael Cerveris
12. Dice are Rolling - Michael Cerveris, Elena Roger, and Ricky Martin
13. Eva's Final Broadcast - Ricky Martin and Elena Roger
14. Montage - Michael Cerveris, Elena Roger, and Ricky Martin
15. Lament - Elena Roger and Ricky Martin
16. No Llores Por Mi Argentina (Bonus Track) - Elena Roger