Following an international casting search, Broadway In Chicago and producers James L. Nederlander, Estefan Enterprises, Inc and Bernie Yuman are pleased to announce the cast for ON YOUR FEET! – the new Broadway musical based on the life story of seven-time GRAMMY® winning international superstar Gloria Estefan and her husband, legendary producer-musician-entrepreneur Emilio Estefan. Ana Villafañe will make her Broadway debut as Gloria Estefan opposite Josh Segarra as Emilio Estefan. ON YOUR FEET! begins performances in Chicago on Tuesday, June 2, 2015 at the Oriental Theatre (24 W. Randolph). The musical, directed by two-time Tony Award® winner Jerry Mitchell (Kinky Boots, Hairspray), choreographed by Olivier Award nominee Sergio Trujillo (Jersey Boys, Memphis) with a book by Academy Award winner Alexander Dinelaris (Birdman film, The Bodyguard Musical) will open on Broadway on Thursday, November 5, 2015, with preview performances beginning Monday, October 5, 2015 at the Marquis Theatre in New York City.
In the fall of 2014, the production launched an international casting search, Reach Gloria (#ReachGloria) which offered performers around the world a chance to audition for the cast of ON YOUR FEET!. Thousands of Broadway hopefuls – from Los Angeles, to Australia, to Colombia, to Singapore – auditioned for roles by submitting videos online, or attending one of two open casting calls held in New York City and the Estefans’ home-city of Miami, Florida.
Ana Villafañe, a Cuban-American singer, dancer and actress from Miami, makes her Broadway debut in ON YOUR FEET!. A long-time fan of Gloria Estefan – who even attended the same Miami high school as the pop star – Villafañe learned of the Miami open casting call last fall and, although she was unable to attend, sent the casting office a video audition. Within three days, she was called to audition for Jerry Mitchell and the Estefans, and cast in the show.
“She walked into the room, and I immediately thought to myself – ‘this is it’,” said director Jerry Mitchell. “Not only was she beautifully reminiscent of a young Gloria, but she embodied her energy and spirit in such a captivating way. And then she fully rose to the occasion by giving a sensational audition.”
Villafañe’s film and television credits include: the award-winning Magic City Memoirs (executive producer Andy Garcia), “Los Americans” (alongside Esai Morales, Lupe Ontiveros and Raymond Cruz) created by Dennis Leoni (“Resurrection Boulevard”), Hiding (Anchor Bay), the upcoming Hulu Original Series “South Beach: Fever” set in her native Miami, and the female lead in the highly anticipated superhero feature film Max Steel (Mattel), set for global release in summer 2015.
Josh Segarra has made a name for himself on the New York stage in roles such as ‘Boland’ in Second Stage Theater’s Dogfight directed by Joe Mantello, and as ‘Mick’ in the Broadway and Off-Broadway runs of the critically-acclaimed Lysistrata Jones. His extensive television work includes a current starring role as ‘Billy Cepeda’ in the comedy series “Sirens” for USA, a recurring role on NBC’s “Chicago PD”, a series regular on PBS’s “The Electric Company, and guest appearances in the Emmy-winning Showtime series “Homeland” and FOX’s “The Following”. This summer, he’ll appear in the Judd Apatow feature film Trainwreck.
“It’s a rare and wonderful thing when you find an actor who wholly matches the material,” said Mitchell. “Josh has been a part of this project since the very first reading, and brings such an incomparable spark, passion, and humor to the role of Emilio, that we held onto him with all our might.”
The cast will also feature Drama Desk Award winner Andréa Burns (In The Heights) as Gloria Fajardo (Gloria’s mother), Alma Cuervo (Beauty and the Beast) as Consuelo (Gloria’s grandmother), Alexandria Suarez as Little Gloria, Noah Johnston as little Emilio, Felix Monge, Karmine Alers, Yassmin Alers, David Baida, Natalie Caruncho, Henry Gainza, Lee Zarrett, Linedy Genao, Carlos Gonzales, Nina Lafarga, Genny Lis Padilla, Omar Lopez-Cepero, Hector Maisonet, Marielys Molina, Doreen Montalvo, Liz Ramos, Eliseo Roman, Luis Salgado, Marcos Santana, Martin Sola, Brett Sturgis, Eric Ulloa, and Tanairi Vasquez.
The creative team includes three-time Tony-nominated Scenic Designer David Rockwell (Kinky Boots, Legally Blonde), Tony nominated Costume Designer Emilio Sosa (Porgy & Bess), Tony Award-winning Lighting Designer Kenneth Posner (Wicked, Hairspray), Tony Award-winning Sound Designer Steve Kennedy (Lady Day, Guys and Dolls), Projections by Darrel Maloney, and Hair and Wig Designer Chuck LaPointe (Beautiful, Newsies).
With Music Direction by Lon Hoyt (Hairspray), Orchestrations by Gloria Estefan and Emilio Estefan, Dance Arrangements and Dance Orchestrations by Oscar Hernandez (The Capeman), the ON YOUR FEET! Orchestra will include several members of The Miami Sound Machine.
ON YOUR FEET! is the story of two people who—through an unwavering dedication to one another and their pursuit of the American dream—showcased their talent, their music and their heritage to the world in a remarkable rise to global superstardom. The musical is set to Gloria’s chart-topping, smash hits such as “Rhythm Is Gonna Get You,” “Conga,” “1-2-3,” “Get On Your Feet,” “Don’t Want To Lose You Now,” and “Coming Out Of The Dark,” in addition to new music penned by the Estefans.
Tickets for ON YOUR FEET! at the Oriental Theatre are on sale now. Group tickets for 10 or more are available by calling Broadway In Chicago Group Sales at (312) 977-1710. Tickets are available at all Broadway In Chicago Box Offices (24 W. Randolph St., 151 W. Randolph St., 18 W. Monroe St. and 175 E. Chestnut), the Broadway In Chicago Ticket Line at (800) 775-2000, all Ticketmaster retail locations and online at www.BroadwayInChicago.com.