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Encyclopedia > Chita Rivera
The Dancer's Life poster

Chita Rivera (born Dolores Conchita Figueroa del Rivero on January 23, 1933 in Washington, D.C.) is a Tony Award-winning Broadway musical actress dancer, and singer best known for her musical theater roles. Rivera who is of Puerto Rican heritage, is the first Hispanic woman to receive a Kennedy Center Honors award. Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... is the 23rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1933 (MCMXXXIII) was a common year starting on Sunday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... For other uses, see Washington, D.C. (disambiguation). ... What is popularly called the Tony Award (formally, the Antoinette Perry Award for Excellence in Theatre) is an annual award celebrating achievements in live American theater, including musical theater, primarily honoring productions on Broadway in New York. ... For other uses of Broadway, see Broadway. ... Musical theater (or theatre) is a form of theatre combining music, songs, dance, and spoken dialogue. ... A contemporary dancer rehearsing in a dance studio Dance generally refers to human movement either used as a form of expression or presented in a social, spiritual or performance setting. ... For other uses, see Singer (disambiguation). ... Musical theater (or theatre) is a form of theatre combining music, songs, dance, and spoken dialogue. ... Hispanic flag, not widely used. ... This article or section is not written in the formal tone expected of an encyclopedia article. ...

Contents

Early years

She was born Dolores Conchita Figueroa del Rivero in Washington, D.C. to a Puerto Rican father who played clarinet and saxophone for the Navy band and a mother of Scottish and Italian descent. Rivera was seven-years-old when her mother became a widow and went to work for The Pentagon. For other uses, see Washington, D.C. (disambiguation). ... Two soprano clarinets: a Bâ™­ clarinet (left, with capped mouthpiece) and an A clarinet (right, with no mouthpiece). ... The saxophone (colloquially referred to as sax) is a conical-bored instrument of the woodwind family. ... USN redirects here. ... This article is about the country. ... This article is about the United States military building. ...


In 1944, Rivera's mother enrolled her in the Jones-Hayward School of Ballet. Later, when she was 15, a teacher from George Balanchine's School of American Ballet visited their studio and Rivera was one of two students picked to audition in New York City; she was accompanied to the audition by Doris Jones, one of the people who ran the Jones-Hayward School. Chita's audition was successful and she was accepted into the school and given a scholarship. Among her new teachers were Allegra Kent and Maria Tallchief. George Balanchine (January 9 (O.S.) = January 22 (N.S.), 1904–April 30, 1983) was one of the 20th centurys foremost choreographers, and one of the founders of American ballet. ... New York, New York and NYC redirect here. ... This article is about scholarship (noun) and scholarship as a form of financial aid. ... Maria Tallchief (January 24, 1925) was an American ballerina. ...


Broadway roles

In 1952, Rivera accompanied a friend to the audition for a Broadway production of Call Me Madam and ended up winning the role herself. She followed this by landing roles in other Broadway productions such as Guys and Dolls and Can-Can. In 1957, she was cast in the role which was destined to make her a Broadway star, the firebrand Anita in West Side Story. (The role would bring fame and an Oscar to another Puerto Rican, Rita Moreno, in the 1961 film version). Rivera starred in a national tour of Can-Can and played the role of Nicky in the film adaptation of Sweet Charity with Shirley MacLaine. Call Me Madam is one of Irving Berlins last musical comedies. ... Guys and Dolls is a musical, with the music and lyrics written by Frank Loesser and book by Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows, based on The Idyll Of Miss Sarah Brown, a short story by Damon Runyon. ... Can-Can is a 1953 musical with music and lyrics by Cole Porter, with a book by Abe Burrows. ... This article is about the musical. ... Academy Award The Academy Awards, popularly known as the Oscars, are the most prominent and most watched film awards ceremony in the world. ... Rita Moreno (born December 11, 1931, in Humacao, Puerto Rico) is a singer, dancer and an Academy Award-winning actress and the first and only Puerto Rican actress in history (as well as one of only nine people) to have won an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar, and a Tony... West Side Story is a 1961 film directed by Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins. ... Sweet Charity, based on Federico Fellinis screenplay for Nights of Cabiria, is a musical directed and choreographed by Bob Fosse, with music by Cy Coleman, lyrics by Dorothy Fields, and book by Neil Simon. ... Shirley MacLaine (born April 24, 1934) is an Academy Award-winning American film and theatre actress, well-known not only for her acting, but for her devotion to her belief in reincarnation. ...


On December 1, 1957, Rivera married dancer Tony Mordente. Her performance was so important for the success of the show that the London production of West Side Story was postponed until she gave birth to the couple's daughter Lisa. In 1963, Rivera was cast opposite Alfred Drake in Zenda. The Broadway-bound musical closed on the road. is the 335th day of the year (336th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1957 (MCMLVII) was a common year starting on Tuesday (link displays the 1957 Gregorian calendar). ... Tony Mordente (born December 3, 1933) is an American dancer, choreographer, and television director. ... This article is about the capital of England and the United Kingdom. ... Lisa Mordente (born July 30, 1958) is an American actress, singer, and dancer. ... Alfred Drake (born Alfred Capurro) (October 7, 1914 - July 25, 1992) is a Broadway theater performer best known for his appearances in the musicals Babes in Arms, Oklahoma!, Kiss Me, Kate, and Kismet. ... Zenda is a musical with a book by Everett Freeman, lyrics by Lenny Adelson, Sid Kuller, and Martin Charnin, and music by Vernon Duke. ...


In 1986, Rivera was in a severe accident when her car collided with a taxi on West 86th Street in Manhattan. Injuries sustained included the breaking of her left leg in twelve places, requiring eighteen screws and two braces to mend. After rehabilitation, Rivera continued to perform on stage. 86th Street is a major two-way street in the Upper East Side and Upper West Side of Manhattan, New York. ... For other uses, see Manhattan (disambiguation). ...


Rivera is regarded by many theatre aficionados as a "living legend" and in an In Theatre magazine interview, George Horsfall suggested, "You must be tired of the term 'legend', but let's get it out of the way. You have long been considered a Broadway legend." Rivera replied "Oh, God!" and laughed.


In addition to her ballet instructors, Rivera credited Leonard Bernstein and Gwen Verdon, with whom she starred in Chicago, as being people from whom she learned a great deal. Leonard Bernstein in 1971 Leonard Bernstein (IPA pronunciation: )[1] (August 25, 1918 – October 14, 1990) was an American conductor, composer, and pianist. ... Gwyneth Evelyn Verdon (January 13, 1925 – October 18, 2000) was an acclaimed Tony Award-winning American dancer and actress, known professionally as Gwen Verdon. ... Chicago is a Kander and Ebb musical set in prohibition era Chicago. ...


Tony awards and recognitions

Rivera received two Tony Awards (for The Rink and Kiss of the Spider Woman) and seven additional nominations. She was the first Hispanic woman to receive a Kennedy Center Honors award. The Rink is the tenth musical written by the composer/lyricist team John Kander and Fred Ebb, the creators of both Cabaret and Chicago. ... Kiss of the Spider Woman is a 1993 Broadway musical written by John Kander and Fred Ebb with book by Terrence McNally. ... Hispanic flag, not widely used. ... This article or section is not written in the formal tone expected of an encyclopedia article. ...


Later years

Rivera starred in the Goodman Theatre production of the Kander and Ebb musical The Visit in 2001. She is expected to reprise her role in a Signature Theatre staging in Autumn 2007. She guest-starred along with Michele Lee in a February 2005 episode of Will & Grace, and in December of that year Chita Rivera: The Dancer's Life, a retrospective of her career, opened on Broadway. She received a Tony nomination for her self-portrayal. The Goodman Theatre The Goodman Theatre is a theater in Chicagos Loop, and part of Chicago theatre. ... Kander and Ebb is the songwriting team of composer John Kander, born March 18, 1927 and lyricist Fred Ebb (April 8, 1933 - September 11, 2004). ... The Visit is a musical with a book by Terrence McNally, lyrics by Fred Ebb, and music by John Kander. ... Signature Theatre is a regional theatre company based in Arlington, Virginia. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Will & Grace is a popular Emmy Award winning and Golden Globe nominated American television sitcom that was originally broadcast from 1998 to 2006. ...


Additional Broadway credits

Awards
Preceded by
Natalia Makarova
in On Your Toes
Tony Award for Best Leading Actress in a Musical
1984
for The Rink
Succeeded by
Bernadette Peters
in Song and Dance
Preceded by
Faith Prince
for Guys and Dolls
Tony Award for Best Leading Actress in a Musical
1992
for Kiss of the Spider Woman
Succeeded by
Donna Murphy
for Passion

Mr. ... Bye Bye Birdie is a Tony Award-winning musical with a book by Michael Stewart, lyrics by Lee Adams, and music by Charles Strouse. ... Bajour is a Broadway musical that first opened on 23 Nov 1964 at the Shubert Theatre, with music and lyrics by Walter Marks, and book by Ernest Kinoy based on stories by Joseph Mitchell originally published in The New Yorker. ... For the 1950 film version, see Born Yesterday (1950 film) For the 1993 remake, see Born Yesterday (1993 film) Born Yesterday is a play written and first directed by Garson Kanin and adapted into a successful 1950 film. ... The Rose Tattoo is a Tennessee Williams play. ... Call Me Madam is one of Irving Berlins last musical comedies. ... The Threepenny Opera (Die Dreigroschenoper) was a revolutionary piece of musical theatre written by the German dramatist Bertolt Brecht in collaboration with the composer Kurt Weill in 1928. ... Sweet Charity, based on Federico Fellinis screenplay for Nights of Cabiria, is a musical directed and choreographed by Bob Fosse, with music by Cy Coleman, lyrics by Dorothy Fields, and book by Neil Simon. ... Kiss Me, Kate is a Tony Award-winning musical with a book by Samuel and Bella Spewack and music and lyrics by Cole Porter. ... Bring Back Birdie is a musical with a book by Michael Stewart, lyrics by Lee Adams, and music by Charles Strouse. ... Nine is a musical with music and lyrics by American composer Maury Yeston. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Nataliya Romanovna Makarova is a ballet dancer. ... On Your Toes has two possible meanings. ... The Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical is awarded to the actress who was voted as the best actress in a musical, whether a new production or a revival. ... The Rink is the tenth musical written by the composer/lyricist team John Kander and Fred Ebb, the creators of both Cabaret and Chicago. ... Bernadette Peters (born February 28, 1948) is an American actress and singer. ... Song and Dance is a musical entertainment comprised of two unrelated acts. ... Faith Prince (born 5 August 1957) is an American actress. ... Guys and Dolls is a musical, with the music and lyrics written by Frank Loesser and book by Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows, based on The Idyll Of Miss Sarah Brown, a short story by Damon Runyon. ... The Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical is awarded to the actress who was voted as the best actress in a musical, whether a new production or a revival. ... Kiss of the Spider Woman is a 1993 Broadway musical written by John Kander and Fred Ebb with book by Terrence McNally. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Pasión es una obra musical que se estreno en Broadway en 1994, adaptada de la película de Ettore Scola Passione dAmore que, a su vez , se basa en la novela de Igino Tarchetti Fosca. Con libreto de James Lapine y música y letras de Stephen Sondheim. ...

See also

list of famous Puerto Ricans in alphabetical order by last names, where applicable. ...

External links


  Results from FactBites:
 
Chita Rivera - THE HOUSE OF BERNARDA ALBA (736 words)
CHITA RIVERA has no problem admitting that her long, celebrated career in musical theater has a downside.
Rivera is not the first actress who comes to mind.
That's why Rivera was floored when she got a call out of the blue from director Lisa Peterson, whom she had never met.
MySpace.com (632 words)
Chita Rivera (born Dolores Conchita Figueroa del Rivero on January 23, 1933 in Washington, D.C.) is a Broadway musical actress and dancer of Puerto Rican heritage, and the first Hispanic woman to receive a Kennedy Center Honors award.
Chita's mother, Katherine Figueroa, went to work for The Pentagon when Chita was seven years old and her father passed away; Chita's mother herself passed away in 1983.
Later, when Chita was 15, a teacher from George Balanchine's School of American Ballet visited their studio and Chita was one of two students picked to audition in New York City; she was accompanied to the audition by Doris Jones, one of the people who ran the Jones-Hayward School.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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