Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Not Latinaface

Good news, actually; an Argentinean actress has been cast as Maria in the upcoming Broadway West Side Story revival. (Good luck with that, given the economy -- though revivals might do better than new shows, at least.) When I was in NYC in August, the rumor among the theatrical types I talked to was that Lea Michele from Spring Awakening was going to play her, and one girl in particular expressed her very strong feelings that this was just wrong when there are so many wonderful Latina performers. It's interesting that they're choosing to import, rather than casting an American of the required ethnicity; same thing was done for Miss Saigon, excuse being that there just wasn't one of the right caliber. I find these things hard to believe. It's easier and perhaps creates more buzz to identify the top guns elsewhere (this Argentinean actress is of some note on their B'way scene, so it wasn't a talent search like Saigon's) and import them with some fanfare. On the other hand, new stars like Lea Michele are found all the time, so why not look around close to home and save yourself the visa paperwork? I'm just musing, but I'd be curious to know how these things work.


Anonymous said...

Actually, Lea Michele AUDITIONED and did not get the role. One of the main reasons was she does not have the top notes required to sing this role...she is more of a belter than a legit soprano.

Heidi said...

Interesting! Thanks.