Lin-Manuel Miranda to Take Part in Stephen Sondheim Virtual Birthday Concert

Lin-Manuel Miranda is celebrating a living musical theater legend.

The 40-year-old Puerto Rican composer, lyricist, singer, actor, producer and playwright, widely known for creating and starring in the Tony Award-winning Broadway musicals In the Heights and Hamilton, has signed on to appear on Sunday’s Stephen Sondheim virtual birthday concert.

Lin-Manuel Miranda

Miranda, who starred in Mary Poppins Returns, joins a roster of new additions that includes Jake GyllenhaalLinda LavinLaura BenantiNeil Patrick Harrisand Ben Plattfor the all-star benefit for Artists Striving To End Poverty.

Previously announced stars participating in the concert include Annaleigh AshfordMelissa ErricoBeanie FeldsteinJosh GrobanJudy KuhnRandy Rainbow and Lea Solanga

Special appearances will be made by Victor GarberJoanna GleasonNathan Lane and Steven Spielberg.

They’ll all join the previously announced Meryl StreepBernadette PetersPatti LuPone and Audra McDonald, among many others, in the special virtual concert to celebrate Sondheim’s 90th birthday.

Take Me To The World: A Sondheim 90th Birthday Celebration, hosted by Raúl Esparza, is set for this Sunday, April 26, the 50th anniversary of the opening night of Sondheim’s groundbreaking musical Company.

The concert kicks off at 8:00 pm ET, and will be available for free at Broadway.comand the YouTubechannel.

Other artists performing songs from the Sondheim catalog will include Mandy Patinkin, Christine BaranskiDonna MurphyKristin ChenowethSutton FosterBrian Stokes MitchellKelli O’HaraAaron TveitMaria Friedman, Iain ArmitageKatrina LenkMichael CerverisBrandon UranowitzStephen SchwartzElizabeth StanleyChip Zien, Alexander Gemignani and, from the cast of Pacific Overtures at Classic Stage CompanyAnn HaradaAustin KuKelvin Moon Loh and Thom Sesma.

Esparza starred as Bobby in the 2006 Tony Award-winning revival of Companyand in the Kennedy Center Sondheim Celebration productions of Sunday in the Park with George and Merrily We Roll Along in 2002, as well as the City Center Encores! production of Anyone Can Whistle and in last year’s Road Show.

“The world is in a hard place,” Esparza said in a statement, “and we are all searching for something great. Well, Stephen Sondheim is greatness personified.”

Mary-Mitchell Campbell will be the music director, with Paul Wontorek serving as director.

The online event will act as a fundraiser for ASTEP (Artists Striving to End Poverty), the organization conceived by Campbell and Juilliard students to transform the lives of youth through art.

Martin to Leave Broadway’s “Evita”

Ricky Martin will be taking his final bow on Broadway in early 2013…

The 40-year-old Puerto Rican singer/actor will play his final performance as Che in the current revival of Andrew Lloyd Webber‘s Evita on January 26, 2013.

Ricky Martin in Evita

Argentine actress Elena Roger, who stars as Eva Perón, and Michael Cerveris, who plays Juan Perón, will also leave the cast, according to producers.

In his role, Martin – who recently won the title of “Sexiest Man on Broadway” in a poll by – created a character with a charming presence that remained commanding throughout the show.

“Evita 1 of the most amazing cycles of my career,” Martin tweeted this morning. “Discipline and growth…Thanks so much for your applause.”

Fans who came to the musical to see their idol up close on stage for two-and-a-half hours surely helped to make Evita a hit. The show broke the Broadway weekly box office sales record after only six performances. It has broken its own record six times since, earning $1,586,362 for eight consecutive performances.

A soundtrack album, released in June, debuted at No. 1 on Billboard‘s cast album chart and was the top selling iTunes soundtrack in Argentina. The album has sold 10,000 copies to date in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan.

But it’s definitely not the last you’ll see of Martin…

The former Menudo member, who appeared earlier this year as Spanish teacher David Martinez on Glee, recently signed a deal with NBC/Universal‘s Universal Television to star in his own series. He has tweeted about plans to get back into the recording studio to make new music and he’s also planning to write a children’s book, according to his publicist.

Eva Perón’s Likeness May Soon Appear on Argentine Money

Eva Perón is considered an international pop culture icon… And, now the people of her native Argentina may soon be able to cash in on the former First Lady’s popularity.

Several members of Argentina’s Congress have introduced bills to put the likeness of Evita—who was just 33 at the time of her death—on Argentine money to commemorate the 60th anniversary of her death, according to the press.

Eva Peron

The new bills are being inspired by the 5-peso bill designed in 1952 after Evita’s death but later scrapped by the dictatorship that took power in 1955, government spokesmen told the Clarin newspaper.

Evita was the second wife of three-time President Juan Domingo Perón (1895-1974), who was president of Argentina from 1946 to 1955 and again from 1973 to 1974.

Eva Peron

The face of Evita—who died from cancer on July 26, 1952, and is hailed as a champion of the poor—appeared on limited coin issues in 1997 and 2002.

She’s buried at Recoleta Cemetery, the most elegant burial ground in Buenos Aires.

Evita’s body was removed from Argentina in 1957 on the orders of the military officers who overthrew Peron. After spending 14 years in a Milan tomb under another name, Evita’s remains were turned over to her husband. Gen. Peron kept the embalmed body in his home in Madrid’s Puerta de Hierro neighborhood for three years and the remains were finally returned to Buenos Aires in 1974.

Evita, who was wildly popular among Argentina’s lower classes, is known to people around the world thanks to the hit musical Evita, written by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice, which was made into a film in 1994 by Alan Parker, with Madonna as the larger-than-life first lady. The Broadway musical made a triumphant return to the stage earlier this year with Elena Rogers, Michael Cerveris and Ricky Martin in the key roles.

Martin to Perform at the Tony Awards

Following his triumphant return to The Great White Way in Evita, Ricky Martin will be performing on Broadway’s biggest night.

The 40-year-old Puerto Rican singer/actor will bring his role as Ernesto “Che” Guevara to life at the upcoming Tony Awards, which will be hosted by How I Met Your Mother’s Neil Patrick Harris.

Ricky Martin

Martin, who made his Broadway debut in Les Miserables, has wowed audiences on Broadway alongside his Evita co-stars Elena Rogers, who plays Eva Perón, and Michael Cerveris, who plays Juan Perón.

To get in character as the controversial revolutionary icon—in a role that has taken him to “another place mentally, physically, and spiritually”—Martin has grown a moustache. But the experience has had more than a physical impact on him.


“I’ve felt emotions onstage that I never felt before, it has strengthened me as a person and as an artist,” Martin said in a press conference in March. “It’s been a great journey. I’m here to grow and to learn. It’s been a fascinating trip,” he added.

In addition to Martin, the list of performers at this year’s Tony Awards include

Cuban-American Broadway star Rául Esparza, Audra McDonald, Matthew Broderick and the casts of Godspell and Ghost The Musical, among many others.

The Tony Awards will take place on Sunday, June 10.