Eva Peron in her white gown with her sleek blond chignon stands on the balcony outside the Academy of Music, giving Broad Street the regal two-armed wave. Below, on the sidewalk, women in killer stilettos are tangoing with slim men in black. Evita's back in town.
The 1978 show, by Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber, is a sung-through musical tragedy: It begins with a funeral and ends with a funeral, and in between there are flashbacks to a life of ruthless ambition, dirty politics, dirty sex, fatal cancer, and darkness.
Eva Peron (Caroline Bowman) was, from 1944 to 1952, the wife of Argentine dictator Juan Peron (Sean MacLaughlin). She was, we're told, adored by the people, first as first lady, then as a saint. At 15, she was a poor girl from nowhere; she leaves her family with handsome tango singer Magaldi (Christopher Johnstone) and, arriving in Buenos Aires, becomes a celebrity slut, quickly learning the "art of the possible." Then she meets Col. Peron, and the rest is, literally - if not accurately - history.