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Playhouse announces lead of 'Evita'

Anna Eilinsfeld (Flat Rock Playhouse photo by James W. Johnson) Anna Eilinsfeld (Flat Rock Playhouse photo by James W. Johnson)

A Broadway actress who has recently performed in a national tour of Wicked will play Eva Peron in the Flat Rock Playhouse production of Evita.

Anna Eilinsfeld is making her debut at the Playhouse in the starring role for one of two big musicals the Playhouse is staging this summer.

A graduate of Northwestern University with a degree in Theatre and a certificate in Musical Theatre, Eilinsfeld is an actress and singer based out of New York City.
"I am beyond thrilled to be portraying such an iconic role," she said in a news release. "Eva has been a part I've been wanting to play since I first heard the original Broadway recording."
"Anna had one of those auditions that directors dream about," said Vincent Marini, Artistic Director of Flat Rock Playhouse. "When she left the room I think everyone knew that we had found our Eva."
Eva Perón used her smarts and charisma to rise meteorically from the slums of Argentina to the presidential mansion as First Lady. Adored by her people as a champion for the poor, she became one of the most powerful women in the world — while her greed, outsized ambition and fragile health made her one of the most tragic. Evita tells Eva's passionate and unforgettable true story, and features some of theater's most beautiful songs, including "Don't Cry for Me Argentina," "Another Suitcase in Another Hall" and "High Flying, Adored."

Evita is a musical with music by Andrew Lloyd Webber and lyrics by Tim Rice. It concentrates on the life of Argentine political leader Eva Perón, the second wife of Argentine president Juan Perón. The story follows Evita's early life, rise to power, charity work, and eventual death.
This is the first time in a few years that the Playhouse has had two large musicals back to back. Almost half the cast from Evita will be staying to perform in Les Miserables, which results in substantial savings to the Playhouse in transportation costs, housing, and union salaries. The shows will also feature a 16-member apprentice company, which is meticulously chosen from over 1,000 eligible young actors during a month-long audition process.
The cast of Evita will include Ronald L. Brown (Juan Peron), Charlie Brady (Che), Jane Bunting, Fred Odgaard, Mathew deGuzman, Michael Williams, Khori Petinaud, Christopher Vo, Lauren Hopkins, Jennifer Jancuska and Timothy Ellis. Apprentices appearing as ensemble members include second-year apprentices Katie Zanca, Ethan Andersen, Catharine Kay, Jeff Sundheim. First-year apprentices are Katie Mooney, Tara Lynn Steele, J. Morgan Shaffo, Lorin Zackular, Leah Greene, Sara Spadacene, Patrick Dinnsen, Patton Chandler, Critter Manley, Adam Vanek, Nate Huntley and Ryan Burch.
Morris Broadband presents Evita at Playhouse Mainstage June 5-30. Performances will be Wednesday through Saturday at 8 pm; matinees Thursday, Saturday and Sunday at 2 pm. All tickets are $40 and can be purchased by calling the Playhouse box office at 828-693-0731, toll-free at 866-732-8008 or online at www.flatrockplayhouse.org. Discounts available for seniors, AAA members, military personnel, students and groups.