WANT TO GO?
Presented by the Charleston Light Opera Guild
WHERE: Civic Center Little Theater
WHEN: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Saturday, May 10-11 and 17-18; 3 p.m. May 12.
INFO: 304-343-2287 or www.charlestonlightoperaguild.orgCHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Emily Capece has plenty to keep her busy. The mother of two is an associate director with the Appalachian Children's Chorus, working with the Cora Voce Choir. She's also the artistic director for the chorale group womanSong.
"If there's music, I'm there," she said and laughed.
Capece, who has a master's degree in music and choral conducting from Westminster Choir College, lives for music and absolutely loves a musical challenge. Still, with the Charleston Light Opera Guild's production of "Evita," she acknowledged she has her hands full.
But she just couldn't pass it up.
"The Guild doing this is kind of a big deal," Capece said. "'Evita' is kind of inaccessible to a lot of community theater groups and particularly high school theater. It's vocally very challenging, very complex, and not everyone can pull it off."
In her opinion, it's the kind of show that only a group like the guild could really pull off in Charleston, and their willingness to try was irresistible to Capece.
The musical, which opens Friday at the Civic Center Little Theater, tells the story of the rise of Eva Peron, the second wife of Argentinian President Juan Peron. A polarizing figure in politics still, Eva was condemned for alleged fascist sympathies and corruption, but also celebrated and nearly sainted for her support of the poor.
The musical, written by musical theater heavyweights Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Weber, was a massive success in London's West End and on Broadway. It earned Broadway great Patti LuPone her first Tony Award in 1980.
A Broadway revival of "Evita" returned in 2012 and has been nominated for three Tony Awards, including Best Revival of a Musical, Best Choreography (Rob Ashford) and Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical (West Virginia's own Michael Cerveris).
Capece said "Evita" is a musical theater heavyweight, but it's one of those productions people often only really think they know what it's about. Capece includes herself in that.