Tony Award winner Priscilla Lopez (A Chorus Line) will be bringing her most recent New York role back to Manhattan. In mid-summer she starred as Mexican painter Frida Kahlo in Dolores C. Sendler's Goodbye My Friduchita at The Directors Company. Now the play has been retitled -- as The Passion of Frida Kahlo -- and it will open Nov. 4 at the ArcLight Theatre. Previews began Oct. 25. Michael John Garces (Dreaming in Cuban) again directs.
Passion blends dance, music, projections and drama into the life story of painter Kahlo. Kahlo, who married fellow artist, the muralist Diego Rivera, carried on affairs with men and women, favored communism and suffered with her own demons. A streetcar accident left her in terrible pain for great sections of her life, and she spent her last several years bedridden with illness.
Goodbye My Friduchita played seven months at the Coconut Grove Playhouse in 1997-98. Sendler's other works include The Day the Pope Came to Town and a musical adaptation of Ernest Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea.
Lopez, who first became prominent in her OBIE-winning role of Morales in A Chorus Line, won the Tony for Best Featured Actress as Gino in 1980s musical Marx Brothers takeoff, A Day in Hollywood/A Night in the Ukraine. Other Broadway credits include The Sisters Rosensweig, Nine, Pippin and Company.
Passion, like Friduchita, co-stars Mexican actress Anilu Pardo, Claudia J. Arenas, David Anzuelo and Bill Torres. Vera Huff choreographs. According to a spokesperson at the Jeffrey Richards press office, the same design team will return for the commercial production of Kahlo: Troy Hourie (sets), Mimi O'Donnell (costumes), Robert Williams (lighting), William Padilla (sound) and Elaine McCarthy (projections). Producing the new version are Julian Schlossberg and Michael Parva in association with Ted Tulchin and Dolores Quinton.
Tickets ($45) to The Passion of Frida Kahlo are available by calling (212) 307-4100.
-- By David Lefkowitz & Christine Ehren