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Don't cry for Eva.

Byline: SAMUEL EVANS

WHEN Abigail Jaye landed her dream role of Eva Peron in West End classic Evita, she knew she had to discover exactly who Argentina's first lady really was.

She takes centre stage in a re-vamped version of the hit musical, penned by Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd-Webber , which lands at Rhyl's Pavilion Theatre on June 13.

It tells the life of Eva Peron - more affectionately known as Evita, the second wife of Argentine president Juan (Earl Carpenter), and narrated by Che (Mark Powell). It follows Evita's struggle and rise to power, charity work and death in 1952 aged 33.

Abigail said: "I had to do a lot of research for this role because there is so many different perceptions of her life. Some say she was ruthless, hard and callous but then some would say how she was innocent and kind and longed to break away from small town life."

"She was an illegitimate child who managed to rise to the top, which I admire. The Argentinean military were jealous of her power but she was loved by the public and was careful to never overshadow her husband."

Abigail says the way Argentinean people felt for Eva can be compared to that of Princess Diana.

"Eva and Princess Diana both used their status for the good and how the nation fell in love with a person they had never personally known. I think we will see the same comparison with Kate Middleton in a couple of years time, she's a very charitable lady too."

With scenes of riots, political rallies, the famous balcony scene and a spectacular funeral, Evita is a musical of staging prowess.

"The sets ands costumes are fantastic. We've got a really good director too and he's directed this differently to how it is usually run, " said Abigail. "The characters are different from the film, it's a great historical musical and you can make your own mind up on what type of person Eva was."

She added: "I don't get nervous about performing the balcony scene. It's so iconic to the story, it's just really quiet and warm and I'm wearing the most beautiful dress I find it enjoyable. The hardest thing about the scene was that the first time I performed it was directly in front of my parents.

"I'm really looking forward to performing in Rhyl, it's somewhere I have never performed before and I love visiting new places, it's quite exciting.

"The Rhyl audience can expect a more rejuvenated performance of previous shows. We've changed the running order of the songs and even added You Must Love, from the film, which hasn't been in the musical before."

TICKETS Evita, Rhyl Pavilion, June 13. Tickets 01745 330000, rhylpavilion.co.uk

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Abigail Jaye as Evita Peron
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Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:May 27, 2011
Words:465
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