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Evita opens at Playhouse Merced
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Playhouse Merced is opening Evita with Rachel Pearre as Eva Pern and Joel Scott Shade as Pern. - photo by Photo by Shawn Overton

“Evita,” the musical adaption of the life and times of Argentina’s most celebrated first lady Eva Perón opens at Playhouse Merced tonight.

The musical will have a four week run at Playhouse Merced, ending Sept. 20. Show times are at 7:30 p.m. for Friday and Saturday shows and 2 p.m. on Sundays.

“Evita” is the true story of a poor Argentine girl, Eva Duarte, who grows up to be the wife of the president of Argentina and worshipped by her people. As a young girl, Eva quickly learns that the way to achieve the power she desires is by seducing powerful men. In order to make it to Buenos Aires, Eva has an affair with the tango singer, Augustin Magaldi. After she is through with him, she seduces the rising political figure, Colonel Juan Perón. Perón eventually becomes the President of Argentina while Eva becomes a hero to the poor and working class. When Eva reaches the height of her fame at the end of her life, she questions whether or not she took the right path.

The music of “Evita” includes songs like, “Don’t Cry for Me Argentina,” “Another Suitcase in Another Hall,” and “High Flying, Adored.” The music was composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber and lyrics were done by Tim Rice.

Playhouse Merced’s version is directed by Rob Hypes with musical direction by Darrel Lingenfelter, and stars Rachel Pearre as Eva Perón, GB Blackmon III as Che, Jesse Stofle as Augustin Magaldi, and Joel Scott Shade as Perón.

The show is rated “T” for Teens and above.

Tickets range from $15 to $22 and are available by going online to, by calling 725-8587, or visiting the box office at 452 West Main Street in downtown Merced, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.