The Playbill Vault Celebrates Tony Award Winner Chita Rivera

By Megan Dekic
23 Jan 2014

Three years later, Rivera starred in the original production of Charles Strouse, Lee Adams and Michael Stewart's Bye Bye Birdie, which opened April 14, 1960, at the Martin Beck Theatre. She played Rose opposite Dick Van Dyke as Albert Peterson.

Brooks Atkinson gave the show a lukewarm review, but said Rivera was "a flammable singer and gyroscopic dancer." The production ran for 607 performances and earned Rivera her first Tony Award nomination for Featured Actress in a Musical. The show also took home the 1961 Tony for Best Musical.

Bye Bye Birdie was revived on Broadway in 2009, with Gina Gershon as Rose and John Stamos as Albert.

Read the original Bye Bye Birdie Playbill here.