At age 15 Chita Rivera won a scholarship to the School of American Ballet in New York. But it was the bright lights of Broadway that called to the pioneering performer. With a theater resume that includes seminal portrayals in Call Me Madam, Guys and Dolls, West Side Story, The Rink (Tony), Chicago, and Kiss of the Spiderwoman (Tony), you might be forgiven for thinking the Tony Award Rivera is gunning for Sunday is some sort of lifetime achievement award.
But no: the flame still burns and Chita Rivera hopes to win her third Tony for her latest performance — in The Visit. Rivera (born Dolores Conchita Figueroa del Rivero) plays the widowed billionaire Claire Zachanassian with immense verve and power.