Broadway legend Chita Rivera has died at the age of 91 in New York City on January 30.
The heartbreaking news of her passing was confirmed by her devastated daughter, Lisa Mordente.
A heartbreaking statement read: “It is with great sadness that Lisa Mordente, the daughter of Chita Rivera, announces the death of her beloved mother who died peacefully in New York after a brief illness.”
Her rep Merle Frimark also said in a statement: “It is with immense personal sorrow that I announce the death of the beloved Broadway icon Chita Rivera. My dear friend of over 40 years was 91.”
Rivera, who was born as Dolores Conchita Figueroa del Rivero Anderson, had remarkable accomplishments in many of the unforgettable productions of Broadway.
She also made history as the first person to play the role of Anita in West Side Story. Her Broadway credits also include memorable roles in beloved productions like Kiss Me Kate, Bye Bye Birdie, Threepenny Opera, Chicago, and Sweet Charity.
Rivera also earned 10 Tony Award nominations and won in the Best Actress in a Musical category for her amazing performances in The Rink and Kiss of the Spider Woman.
Speaking about her career spanning seven decades, Rivera told The Guardian: “The only time my door would close would be just before I went on and I said my prayers. I would say the Our Father, the Hail Mary and the Act of Contrition. Then I’d go off to be crazy!”
She also shared her talents through shows with her daughter, Lisa, and performed with her own musical instruments.
Rivera is survived by her daughter and her siblings Armando, Julio, and Lola del Rivero.
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