Cast Official for Broadway's Anna in the Tropics; Begins Nov. 4

News   Cast Official for Broadway's Anna in the Tropics; Begins Nov. 4
 
All the principals seen in the McCarter Theatre version of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Nilo Cruz play Anna in the Tropics have signed on for the Broadway berth, set to begin previews at the Royale Theatre Nov. 4, for a Nov. 16 opening.

In addition to the previously-announced Jimmy Smits, the show will star Daphne Rubin-Vega, Priscilla Lopez, John Ortiz, Vanessa Aspillaga, Victor Argo and David Zayas. Emily Mann directs.

Anna continues at New Jersey's McCarter Theatre until Oct. 19.

Playwright Cruz has set his play in a Cuban-American cigar factory in 1929. The factory employs "lectors" to entertain and educate the factory workers, and a new lector who reads aloud from Anna Karenina becomes "a catalyst in the lives of his avid listeners, for whom Tolstoy, the tropics, and the American dream prove a volatile combination."

Smits, known from television's "NYPD Blue" and "L.A. Law," recently returned to the theatre, acting in Twelfth Night in Central Park in 2002.

Anna will be Rubin-Vega's first non-musical Broadway role. An original cast member of Rent, she later acted in The Rocky Horror Show. Off-Broadway, she has shown herself a capable dramatic actress in plays like Two Sisters and a Piano (also by Cruz) and Fucking A. Both Ortiz and Zayas are company members of the rising Off-Broadway outfit LAByrinth Theatre Company. The acted together in the original Jesus Hopped the A Train and Zayas also appeared in LAByrinth's recent Our Lady of 121st Street.

Lopez returns to Broadway for the first time in twenty years, since stepping into the role of Liliane La Fleur in the original mounting of Nine. She became a star as the original Diana in A Chorus Line and won a Tony Award for A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine.

Priscilla Lopez, Victor Argo and Jimmy Smits in McCarter's current production of <i>Anna in the Tropics</i>.
Priscilla Lopez, Victor Argo and Jimmy Smits in McCarter's current production of Anna in the Tropics. Photo by T. Charles Erickson
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