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Evita


1. A CINEMA IN BUENOS AIRES, 26 JULY 1952
(An audience is watching a less than distinguished movie [in both the original London and New York productions of EVITA a clip from one of Eva Peron's own movies was used]. The soundtrack dialogue is in Spanish, the music melodramatic. Suddenly the film grinds to a halt. The people in the cinema begin to protest but are silenced by an announcement)

THE VOICE OF THE SECRETARY OF THE PRESS
(in Spanish) It is the sad duty of the Secretary of the Press... (in English) ...to inform the people of Argentina that Eva Peron, spiritual leader of the nation, entered immortality at 20.25 hours today.

2. REQUIEM FOR EVITA / OH WHAT A CIRCUS

(EVA's funeral. CHE is the only non-participant. He moves through the mourners, apparently unseen.)

CROWD
Requiem aeternum dona Evita
Requiem Evita
Evita
Evita

CHE
Oh what a circus! Oh what a show!
Argentina has gone to town
Over the death of an actress called Eva Peron
We've all gone crazy
Mourning all day and mourning all night
Falling over ourselves to get all of the misery right

Oh what an exit! That's how to go!
When they're ringing your curtain down
Demand to be buried like Eva Peron
It's quite a sunset
And good for the country in a roundabout way
We've made the front page of all the world's papers today
But who is this Santa Evita?
Why all this howling hysterical sorrow?
What kind of goddess has lived among us?
How will we ever get by without her?

She had her moments--she had some style
The best show in town was the crowd
Outside the Casa Rosada crying, "Eva Peron"
But that's all gone now
As soon as the smoke from the funeral clears
We're all going to see how she did nothing for years!

CROWD
Salve regina mater misericordiae
Vita dulcedo et spes nostra
Salve salve regina
Ad te clamamus exules filii Eva
Ad te suspiramus gementes et flentes
O clemens o pia

CHE
You let down your people Evita
You were supposed to have been immortal
That's all they wanted
Not much to ask for
But in the end you could not deliver

Sing you fools! But you got it wrong
Enjoy your prayers because you haven't got long
Your queen is dead, your king is through
She's not coming back to you

Show business kept us all alive
Since 17 October 1945
But the star has gone, the glamour's worn thin
That's a pretty bad state for a state to be in

Instead of government we had a stage
Instead of ideas a prima donna's rage
Instead of help we were given a crowd
She didn't say much but she said it loud

And who am I who dares to keep
His head held high while millions weep?
Why the exception to the rule?
Opportunist? Traitor? Fool?

Or just a man who grew and saw
From seventeen to twenty-four
His country bled, crucified?
She's not the only one who's died!

Sing you fools? But you got it wrong
Enjoy your prayers because you haven't got long
Your queen is dead, your king is through
She's not coming back to you

CROWD
Salve regina mater misericordiae
Vita dulcedo et spes nostra
Salve salve regina Peron
Ad te clamamus exules filii Eva
Ad te suspiramus gementes et flentes
O clemens o pia

(A non-descript GIRL moves through the pageantry of the funeral. She sings as the voice of the dead Evita)

GIRL
Don't cry for me Argentina
For I am ordinary, unimportant
And undeserving of such attention
Unless we all are--I think we all are

Ride on my train o my people
And when it's your turn to die you'll remember
They fired those cannons, sang lamentations
Not just for Eva, for Argentina

Not just for Eva, for everybody
So share my glory, so share my coffin
So share my glory, so share my coffin

CHE
It's our funeral too

3. ON THIS NIGHT OF A THOUSAND STARS / EVA AND MAGALDI / EVA BEWARE OF THE CITY

(Flashback to 1934 and to a nightclub in Junin, EVA's home town. EVA DUARTE is fifteen. The cabaret is nearly over. MAGALDI is singing with great gusto.)

CHE
Now Eva Peron had every disadvantage you need if you're going to succeed. No money, no class, no father, no bright lights--there was nowhere she'd been at the age of fifteen, as this tango singer found out. A tango singer! Agustin Magaldi--who has the distinction of being the first man to be of use to Eva Duarte.

MAGALDI (The final song of his act)
On this night of a thousand stars
Let me take you to heaven's door
Where the music of love's guitars
Plays for evermore!

In the glow of those twinkling lights
We shall love through eternity
On this night in a million nights
Fly away with me!

I never dreamed that a kiss could be as sweet as this--now I know that it can
I used to wander alone without a love of my own I was a desperate man
But all my grief disappeared and all the sorrow I feared
Wasn't there anymore
On that magical day when you first came my way
Mi amor!

On this night
On this night
On this night of a thousand stars
Let me take you to heaven's door
Where the music of love's guitars
Plays for evermore!

(MAGALDI joins EVA and her family--mother, 3 sisters, brother--at their table. CHE is loitering nearby at the bar.)

EVA
To think that a man, as famous as you are, could love a poor little nothing like me!

MAGALDI
The audience here are sitting on their hands

CHE
Listen chum, face the fact they don't like your act

MAGALDI
But this is Junin! If this were Buenos Aires--I'd have that town at my feet! I never ever meet members of the public--they'd tear me apart!

CHE
I understand their feelings

EVA
I want to be a part of B.A.--Buenos Aires--Big Apple!

EVA and FAMILY
She wants to be a part of B.A.--Buenos Aires--Big Apple!

CHE
Just listen to that! They're onto you Magaldi! I'd get out while you can

EVA
It's happened at last--I'm starting to get started--I'm moving out with my man

MAGALDI
Now Eva don't get carried away-

EVA
Monotony past--suburbia departed--who could ever get kicks in the back of the sticks?

MAGALDI
Don't hear words that I didn't say

EVA's FAMILY
What's that? You'd desert the girl you love?

MAGALDI
The girl I love? What are you talking about?

EVA's FAMILY
She really brightened up your out of town engagement,
she gave you all she had--she wasn't in your contract
--you must be quite relieved that no-one's told the papers
--so far--

EVA
I want to be a part of B.A.--Buenos Aires--Big Apple!
Would I have done what I did if I hadn't thought, if I hadn't known, we would stay together?

CHE
Seems to me there's no point in resisting, she's made up her mind, you've no choice. Why don't you be the man who discovered her? You'll never be remembered for your voice.

MAGALDI
The city can be paradise for those who have the cash, the class and the connections--what you need to make a splash. The likes of you get swept up in the morning with the trash--if you were rich or middle class--

EVA
Screw the middle classes! I will never accept them! And they will never deny me anything again! My father's other family were middle class and we were kept out of sight, hidden from view, at his funeral! If these are the people of Buenos Aires I welcome the chance to shine in their city!

CHE
Do all your one night stands give you this trouble?

MAGALDI
Eva, beware of the city
It's hungry and cold, can't be controlled, it is mad
Those who are fools are swallowed up whole
And those who are not become
What they should not become
Changed--in short they go bad

EVA
Bad is good for me--I'm bored, so clean and so ignored
I've only been predictable--respectable!
Birds fly out of here so why oh why oh why the hell can't I
I only want variety--notoriety!
I want to be a part of B.A.--Buenos Aires--Big Apple!

EVA and FAMILY
She wants to be a part of B.A.--Buenos Aires--Big Apple!

MAGALDI
Five years from now I shall come back
And finally say, you have your way--come to town
But you'll look at me with a foreigner's eyes
The magical city a
Younger girl's city, a
Fantasy long since put down

EVA
All you've done to me--was that a young girl's fantasy?
I played your city games alright--didn't I?
I already know what cooks, how the dirty city feels and looks
I tasted it last night, didn't I?
I'm going to be a part of B.A.--Buenos Aires--Big Apple!

EVA and FAMILY
She's going to be a part of B.A.--Buenos Aires--Big Apple!

MAGALDI
Eva beware your ambition
It's hungry and cold, can't be controlled, will run wild
This in a man is a danger enough
But you are a woman, not
Even a woman, not
Very much more than a child and whatever you say
I'll not steal you away!

4. BUENOS AIRES

(EVA and MAGALDI arrive in Buenos Aires)

EVA
What's new Buenos Aires?
I'm new--I want to say I'm just a little stuck on you
You'll be on me too!

I get out here Buenos Aires
Stand back--you ought to know what'cha gonna get in me
Just a little touch of star quality!
Fill me up with your heat, with your noise, with your dirt, overdo me
Let me dance to your beat, make it loud. let it hurt, run it through me
Don't hold back you are certain to impress
Tell the driver this is where I'm staying

Hello Buenos Aires!
Get this--just look at me, dressed up somewhere to go
We'll put on a show!

Take me in at your flood, give me speed, give me lights, set me humming
Shoot me up with your blood, wine me up with your nights, watch me coming
All I want is a whole lot of excess
Tell the singer this is where I'm playing

Stand back Buenos Aires!
Because you ought to know what'cha gonna get in me
Just a little touch of star quality!

And if ever I go too far
It's because of the things you are
Beautiful town--I love you
And if I need a moment's rest
Give your lover the very best
Real eiderdown--and silence

CHE
On the 9th February 1935, in Buenos Aires--a polo match, between a team of leading Argentine players and the touring British side. The British ambassador said he had never seen a social occasion quite like it. Even by the standards of Buenos Aires society the gathering at the polo ground glittered. The Rolls' and the Daimlers, the hampers from Harrod's, the clothes, the diamonds, the crystal, the wines, the procession of nannies from England and France. The result of the match? Oh yes--the home team won, but as the British ambassador pointed out, that did not reflect badly on British horsemanship. Three of the Argentine players were educated at Eton.

EVA
You're a tramp, you're a treat, you will shine to the death, you are shoddy
But you're flesh, you are meat, you shall have every breath in my body
Put me down for a lifetime of success
Give me credit--I'll find ways of paying

Rio de la Plata! Florida! Corrientes! Nueve de Julio!
All I want to know!

Stand back Buenos Aires!
Because you oughta know what'cha gonna get in me
Just a little touch of
Just a little touch of
Just a little touch of star quality!

5. GOODNIGHT AND THANK YOU

CHE (To MAGALDI)
Goodnight and thank you Magaldi
You've completed your task, what more could we ask
Of you now?
Please sign the book on your way out the door
That will be all
If we need you we'll call
But I don't think that's likely somehow

EVA
Oh but it's sad when a love affair dies
The parting, the closing of doors
But we must be honest, stop fooling ourselves

CHE
Which means--up yours!

CHE and MAGALDI
There is no-one, no-one at all
Never has been and never will be a lover
Male or female
Who hasn't an eye on
In fact they rely on
Tricks they can try on
Their partner
They're hoping their lover will help them or keep them
Support them, promote them
Don't blame them
You're the same

CHE (To EVA's FIRST LOVER)
Goodnight and thank you whoever
She's in every magazine, been photographed, seen
She is known
We don't like to rush but your case has been packed
If we've missed anything
You could give us a ring
But we don't always answer the phone

EVA
Oh but it's sad when a love affair dies
But when we were hot we were hot
I know you'll look back on the good times we've shared

CHE
But Eva will not!

CHE, EVA, MAGALDI, EVA's FIRST LOVER
There is no-one, no-one at all
Never has been and never will be a lover
Male or female
Who hasn't an eye on
In fact they rely on
Tricks they can try on
Their partner
They're hoping their lover will help them or keep them
Support them, promote them
Don't blame them, you're the same

CHE (To EVA's SECOND LOVER)
Goodnight and thank you whoever
We are grateful you found her a spot on the sound radio
We'll think of you every time she's on the air
We'd love you to stay
But you'd be in the way
So do up your trousers and go

EVA
Of but it's sad when a love affair dies
The decline into silence and doubt
Our passion was just too intense to survive

CHE
For God's sake get out!

(By now a fairly long line of EVA's rejected LOVERS has formed)

LOVERS
Oh but this line's an embarrassing sight
Someone has made us look fools
Argentine men call the sexual shots
Someone has altered the rules

CHE
Fame on the wireless as far as it goes
Is all very well, but every girl knows
She needs a man she can monopolize
With fingers in dozens of different pies--

LOVERS
Oh but it's sad when a love affair dies

6. THE ART OF THE POSSIBLE

(Five members of the G.O.U., a right-wing grouping of officers within the military government that seized power in Argentina in 1943, including Colonel Juan PERON, are seen moving slowly back and forth in rocking chairs. During this sequence, every time the music stops, the officers rise and one chair is removed. By the end of the scene there is just on chair left, occupied by PERON.)

OFFICERS
One has no rules
Is not precise
One rarely acts
The same way twice
One spurns no device
Practicing the art of the possible

One always picks
The easy fight
One praises fools
One smothers light
one shifts left to right
It's part of the art of the possible

(While the officers continue their game of political musical chairs, EVA appears, script in hand, at a microphone.)

EVA (on the air)
I'm only a radio star with just one weekly show
But speaking as one of the people I want you to know
We are tired of the decline of
Argentina with no sign of
A government able to give us the things we deserve

OFFICERS
One always claims
Mistakes were planned
When risk is slight
One takes one's stand
With much sleight of hand
Politics--the art of the possible

One has no rules
Is not precise
One rarely acts
The same way twice
One spurns no device
Politics--the art of the possible

VOICES
Peron! Peron! Peron!

7. CHARITY CONCERT / I'D BE SURPRISINGLY GOOD FOR YOU

(Backstage at the Luna Park Stadium. EVA by now a successful actress, and PERON, by now one of the most powerful men in the military government, are both present. EVA's old friend MAGALDI is finishing his act on stage.)

MAGALDI
On this night...

CHE
Luna Park Stadium, Buenos Aires, January 22, 1944

MAGALDI
On this night...

CHE
A concert in aid of the victims of an earthquake that devastated the town of San Juan, Argentina

MAGALDI
On this night of a thousand stars
Let me take you to heaven's door
Where the music of love's guitars
Plays for evermore!

CHE
Ladies and gentlemen! Agustin Magaldi! Any minute now--the man of the hour!

(MAGALDI comes off stage and runs into EVA)

EVA
You're act hasn't changed much

MAGALDI
Neither has yours

(MAGALDI leaves. The crowd begins to call for PERON. PERON pushes his way onto the stage.)

PERON
Tonight I'm proud to be the people's spokesman! You've given help to those who've lost their homes, but more than that conclusively shown that the people should run their affairs on their own! Make sure your leaders understand their people!

CROWD
Peron! Peron! Peron!

(PERON leaves the stage and finds himself face to face with EVA)

EVA
Colonel Peron?

PERON
Eva Duarte?

EVA and PERON
I've heard so much about you!
I'm amazed for I'm only an actress (a soldier)
Nothing to shout about (One of the thousands)
Only a girl on the boards (Defending the country he loves)

EVA
But when you act, the things you do affect us all

PERON
But when you act, you take us away from the squalor of the real world
--Are you here on your own?

EVA
Yes

PERON
So am I--what a fortunate coincidence. Maybe you're my reward for my efforts here tonight

EVA
It seems crazy but you must believe
There's nothing calculated, nothing planned
Please forgive me if I seem naive
I would never want to force your hand
But please understand
I'd be good for you

I don't always rush in like this
Twenty seconds after saying hello
Telling strangers I'm too good to miss
If I'm wrong I hope you'll tell me so
But you really should know
I'd be good for you
I'd be surprisingly good for you
I won't go on if I'm boring you
But do you understand my point of view
Do you like what you hear, what you see, and would you be
Good for me too?

I'm not talking of a hurried night
A frantic tumble then a shy goodbye
Creeping home before it gets too light
That's not the reason that I caught your eye
Which has to imply
I'd be good for you
I'd be surprisingly good for you

PERON
Please go on--you enthrall me!
I can understand you perfectly
And I like what I hear, what I see, and knowing me
I would be good for you too

EVA
I'm not talking of a hurried night
A frantic tumble then a shy goodbye
Creeping home before it gets too light
That's not the reason that I caught your eye
Which has to imply
I'd be good for you
I'd be surprisingly good for you

EVA and PERON
(neither seems aware that the other is singing)
There is no-one, no-one at all
Never has been and never will be a lover
Male or female
Who hasn't an eye on
In fact they rely on
Tricks they can try on
Their partner
They're hoping their lover will help them or keep them
Support them, promote them
Don't blame them, you're the same

8. ANOTHER SUITCASE IN ANOTHER HALL

(EVA and PERON arrive at PERON's apartment. PERON's 16 year-old MISTRESS is in bed.)

EVA
Hello and goodbye!
I've just unemployed you
You can go back to school--you had a good run
I'm sure he enjoyed you
Don't act sad or surprised, let's be friends, civilized
Come on little one!
Don't sit there like a dummy!
The day you knew would arrive is here--you'll survive
So move, funny face!
I like your conversation--you've a catchy turn of phrase

(EVA turns PERON's MISTRESS out into the hall.)

MISTRESS
I don't expect my love affairs to last for long
Never fool myself that my dreams will come true
Being used to trouble I anticipate it
But all the same I hate it--wouldn't you?
So what happens now?

CHE
Another suitcase in another hall

MISTRESS
So what happens now?

CHE
Take your picture off another wall

MISTRESS
Where am I going to?

CHE
You'll get by, you always have before

MISTRESS
Where am I going to?

Time and time again I've said that I don't care
That I'm immune to gloom, that I'm hard through and through
But every time it matters all my words desert me
So anyone can hurt me--and they do
So what happens now?

CHE
Another suitcase in another hall

MISTRESS
So what happens now?

CHE
Take your picture off another wall

MISTRESS
Where am I going to?

CHE
You'll get by you always have before

MISTRESS
Where am I going go?

Call in three months time and I'll be fine I know
Well maybe not that fine, but I'll survive anyhow
I won't recall the names and places of this sad occasion
But that's no consolation--here and now
So what happens now?

CHE
Another suitcase in another hall

MISTRESS
So what happens now?

CHE
Take your picture off another wall

MISTRESS
Where am I going to?

CHE
You'll get by, you always have before

MISTRESS
Where am I going to?

CHE
Don't ask anymore

9. PERON'S LATEST FLAME

CHE
At the watering-holes of the well-to-do
I detect a resistance to...

ARISTOCRATS
Precisely!

CHE
...our heroine's style

ARISTOCRATS
We're glad you noticed

CHE
The shooting sticks of the upper class

ARISTOCRATS
Give her an inch...

CHE
Aren't supporting a single ass
That would rise for the girl

ARISTOCRATS
...she'll take a mile

Such a shame she wandered into our enclosure
How unfortunate this person has forced us to be blunt
No, we wouldn't mind seeing her in Harrod's
But behind the jewelry counter--not in front

CHE
Could there be in our fighting corps a lack of enthusiasm for...

ARMY
Exactly!

CHE
...Peron's latest flame?

ARMY
You said it brother

CHE
Should you wish to cause great distress
In the tidiest officer's mess
Just mention her name

ARMY
That isn't funny!

Peron is a fool, breaking every taboo
Installing the girl in the army H.Q.
And she's an actress! The last straw
Her only good parts are between her thighs
She should stare at the ceiling, not reach for the skies
Or she could be his last whore
The evidence suggests
She has other interests
If it's her who's using him
He's exceptionally dim
Bitch! Dangerous Jade!

ARISTOCRATS
We have allowed ourselves to slip
We have completely lost our grip
We have declined to an all-time low
Tarts have become the set to know

ARMY
It's no crime for officers to do as they please
As long as they're discreet and keep clear of disease
We ignore, we disregard
But once they allow a bit on the side
To move to the center where she's not qualified
We should all be on our guard
She should get into her head
She should not get out of bed
She should know that she's not paid
To be loud but to be laid
Slut! Dangerous Jade!

(EVA, the glamorous movie star, enters, flanked by HEAVIES.)

CHE (in the guise of a reporter)
This has really been your year Miss Duarte
Tell us where you go from here Miss Duarte
Which are the roles that you yearn to play
Whom did you sleep--dine with yesterday?

EVA
Is that the extent of your interest in me?
It shows how futile acting must be

CHE
Can we assume then that you'll quit? Is this because of your association with Colonel Peron?

HEAVIES
Goodnight and thank you

(They push CHE aside and EVA out)

ARMY
She won't be kept happy by her nights on the tiles
She says it's his body but she's after his files
So get back onto the street!
She should get into her head
She should not get out of bed
She should know that she's not paid
To be loud but to be laid
The evidence suggests
She has other interests
If it's her who's using him
He's exceptionally dim

ARISTOCRATS
Things have reached a pretty pass
When someone pretty lower class
Graceless and vulgar, uninspired
Can be accepted and admired

10. A NEW ARGENTINA

PERON
Dice are rolling, the knives are out
Would be presidents are all around
I don't say they mean harm, but they'd each give an arm
To see us six feet under ground

EVA
It doesn't matter what those morons say
Our nation's leaders are a feeble crew
There's only twenty of them anyway
What is twenty next to millions who
Are looking to you?

All you have to do is sit and wait
Keeping out of everybody's way
We'll--you'll be handed power on a plate
When the ones who matter have their say
And with chaos installed
You can reluctantly agree to be called

PERON
There again we could be foolish
Not to quit while we're ahead
For distance lends enchantment
And that is why
All exiles are distinguished
More important they're not dead
I could find job satisfaction
In Paraguay

EVA
This is crazy defeatist talk
Why commit political suicide?
There's no risk, there's no call
For any action at all
When you have unions on your side

WORKERS' VOICES
Peron! Peron!

CHE
A new Argentina!
The chains of the masses untied!
A new Argentina!
The voice of the people cannot be denied!

EVA
There is only one man who can lead any workers' regime
He lives for your problems, he shares your ideals and your dreams
He supports you for he loves you, understands you, is one of you
If not--how could he love me?

MOB
A new Argentina!
The workers' battle song!
A new Argentina!
The voice of the people rings out loud and long!

EVA
Now I am a worker I've suffered the way that you do
I've been unemployed and I've starved and I hated it too
But I found my salvation in Peron--may the nation
Let him save them as he saved me

CHE
A new Argentina!
A new age about to begin!

CHE and SECRET POLICE
A new Argentina!
We face the world together and no dissent within

(The SECRET POLICE lay into CHE)

INDIVIDUAL WORKERS
Nationalization of the industries that the foreigners control
Participation in the profits that we make
Shorter hours
Higher wages
Votes for women
Larger dole
More public spending
A bigger slice of every cake

PERON
It's annoying that we have to fight elections for our cause
The inconvenience--having to get a majority
If normal methods of persuasion fail to win us applause
There are other ways of establishing authority

SECRET POLICE
We have ways of making you vote for us, or at least of making you abstain

EVA
Peron has resigned from the army and this we avow
The descamisados are those he is marching with now!
He supports you for he loves you, understands you, is one of you
If not--how could he love me?

ALL
A new Argentina!
The chains of the masses untied!
A new Argentina!
The voice of the people cannot be, and will not be, and must not be, denied!

PERON
There again we could be foolish
Not to quit while we're ahead
I can see me many miles away
Inactive
Sipping cocktails on a terrace
Taking breakfast in bed
Sleeping easy, doing crosswords
It's attractive

EVA
Don't think I don't think like you, I often get those nightmares too
They always take some swallowing
Sometimes it's very difficult to keep momentum if
It's you that you are following
Don't close doors
Keep an escape clause
Because we might lose
The Big Apple
But--would I have done, what I did
If I hadn't thought, if I hadn't known
We would take the country?

ALL
A new Argentina!
The chains of the masses untied!
A new Argentina!
The voice of the people cannot be, and will not be, and must not be, denied!


END OF ACT ONE


ACT TWO

11. ON THE BALCONY OF THE CASA ROSADA / DON'T CRY FOR ME ARGENTINA

(PERON has just won a sweeping victory in the 1946 Presidential Election. This is the first public appearance by PERON and EVA since that triumph. Action takes place both inside and outside on the balcony of the Casa Rosada - the pink Presidential Palace in Buenos Aires.)

CHE
People of Argentina! Your newly elected President--Juan Peron!

(The CROWD begins to chant "Peron! Peron!")

PERON
Argentinos! Argentinos! We are all shirtless now!
Fighting against our common enemies--
Poverty, social injustice, foreign domination of our industries!
Reaching for our common goals--
Our independence, our dignity, our pride!
Let the world know that our great nation is awakening
and that its heart beats in the humble bodies of Juan
Peron--and his wife, the first lady of Argentina,
Eva Duarte de Peron!

CHE
As a mere observer of this tasteless phenomenon, one has to admire the stage management--

(HEAVIES move in on Che)

There again--perhaps I'm more than a mere observer -
listen to my enthusiasm, gentleman! Peron! Peron!
Peron!--Look, if I take off my shirt, will you-

(HEAVIES bundle CHE away)

(The CROWD by now are beginning to chant "Evita! Evita!")

EVA
It won't be easy, you'll think it strange
When I try to explain how I feel
That I still need your love after all that I've done
You won't believe me
All you will see is a girl you once knew
Although she's dressed up to the nines
At sixes and sevens with you

I had to let it happen, I had to change
Couldn't stay all my life down at heel
Looking out of the window, staying out of the sun
So I chose freedom
Running around trying everything new
But nothing impressed me at all
I never expected it to

Don't cry for me Argentina
The truth is I never left you
All through my wild days
My mad existence
I kept my promise
Don't keep your distance

And as for fortune, and as for fame
I never invited them in
Though it seemed to the world they were all I desired
They are illusions
They are not the solutions they promised to be
The answer was here all the time
I love you and hope you love me

Don't cry for me Argentina...

(EVA breaks down; the CROWD takes up her tune)

EVA
Don't cry for me Argentina
The truth is I never left you
All through my wild days
My mad existence
I kept my promise
Don't keep your distance

Have I said too much? There's nothing more I can think of to say to you
But all you have to do is look at me to know that every word is true

(The CROWD is ecstatically enthusiastic; EVA goes inside from the balcony)

Just listen to that! The voice of Argentina! We are adored! We are loved!

OFFICER
Statesmanship is more than entertaining peasants

EVA
We shall see, little man

CROWD
Evita Peron! La Santa Peronista!

(EVA goes back onto the balcony)

EVA
I am only a simple woman who lives to serve Peron in his noble crusade to rescue his people! I was once as you are now! I have taken these riches from the oligarchs only for you--for all of you! One day you will inherit these treasures! Descamisados! When they fire those cannons, when the crowds sing of glory, it is not just for Peron, but for all of us! All of us!

AN ARISTOCRAT (mocking applause)
Things have reached a pretty pass
When someone pretty lower class
Can be accepted and admired-

EVA
But your despicable class is dead! Look who they are calling for now!

12. HIGH FLYING, ADORED

CHE
High flying, adored, so young, the instant queen, a
Rich beautiful thing of all the talents, a cross between a
Fantasy of the bedroom and a saint
And you were just a backstreet girl
Hustling and fighting
Scratching and biting
High flying, adored, did you believe in your wildest moments
All this would be yours, that you'd become the lady of them all?
Were there stars in your eyes when you crawled in at night
From the bars, from the sidewalks
From the gutter theatrical?
Don't look down, it's a long long way to fall

High flying, adored, what happens now, where do you go from here?
For someone on top of the world, the view's not exactly clear
A shame you did it all at twenty-six
There are no mysteries now
Nothing can thrill you
No-one fulfill you
High flying, adored, I hope you come to terms with boredom
So famous, so easily, so soon, is not the wisest thing to be
You won't care if they love you, it's been done before
You'll despair if they hate you
You'll be drained of all energy
All the young who've made it would agree

EVA
High flying, adored, I've been called names but they're the strangest
My story's quite usual, local girl makes good, weds famous man
I was slap in the right place at the perfect time
Filled a gap--I was lucky
But one thing I'll say for me
No-one else can fill it like I can


13. RAINBOW HIGH

EVA
I don't really think I need
The reasons why I won't succeed
I haven't started!
Let's get this show on the road
Let's make it obvious
Peron is off and rolling

EVA's DRESSERS
Eyes! Hair! Mouth! Figure! Dress! Voice! Style!
Movement! Hands! Magic! Rings! Glamour! Face!
Diamonds! Excitement! Image!

EVA
I came from the people
They need to adore me
So Christian Dior me
From my head to my toes
I need to be dazzling
I want to be Rainbow High!
They must have excitement
And so must I

EVA's DRESSERS
Eyes! Hair! Mouth! Figure! Dress! Voice! Style! Movement!

EVA
I'm their product
It's vital you sell me
So Machiavell-me
Make an Argentine Rose!
I need to be thrilling
I shall be Rainbow High!
They need their escape
And so do I

EVA's DRESSERS
Eyes! Hair! Mouth! Figure! Dress! Voice! Style!
Movement! Hands! Magic! Rings! Glamour! Face!
Diamonds! Excitement! Image!

EVA
All my descamisados expect me to outshine the enemy--the aristocracy
I won't disappoint them!

I'm their savior!
That's what they call me
So Lauren Bacall me
Anything goes
To make me fantastic
I have to be Rainbow High
In magical colors--

You're not decorating a girl for a night on the town!
And I'm not a second-rate queen getting kicks with a crown!
Next stop will be Europe!
The Rainbow's gonna tour
Dressed up, somewhere to go
We'll put on a show!
Look out, mighty Europe!
Because you oughta know what'cha gonna get in me
Just a little touch of
Just a little touch of
Argentina's brand of
Star quality!


14. RAINBOW TOUR

(PERON and some of his OFFICERS reflect on EVA's European progress. CHE takes over many of the OFFICERS' lines during this sequence and also adds various comments of his own.)

PERON
People of Europe! I send you the Rainbow of Argentina!

CHE
Spain has fallen to the charms of Evita
She can do what she likes--it doesn't matter much
She's the New World Madonna with the golden touch
She filled a bull-ring--forty-five thousand seater
But if you're prettier than General Franco
That's not hard

Franco's reign in Spain should see out the forties
So you've just acquired an ally who
Looks as secure in his job as you
More important, current political thought is
Your wife's a phenomenal asset
Your trump card

PERON and OFFICERS
Let's hear it for the Rainbow Tour
It's been an incredible success
We weren't quite sure, we had a few doubts

CHE
Would Evita win through?

PERON and OFFICERS
But the answer is yes!

EVA (in Spain)
There you are, I told you so
Makes no difference where we go
The whole world over--just the same
You should have heard them call our name
And who would underestimate the actress now?

PERON
I'm not underestimating you--just do the same thing in Italy please

CHE
Now I don't like to spoil a wonderful story
But the news from Rome is not so good
She hasn't gone down like we thought she would
Italy's unconvinced by Argentine glory
They equate Peron with Mussolini
Can't think why

EVA (in Italy)
Did you here that?
They called me a whore!
They actually called me a whore!

AN ITALIAN ADMIRAL (CHE)
But Signora Peron--
It's an easy mistake
I'm still called an admiral
yet I gave up the sea long ago

CHE / OFFICERS
Things aren't all that bad she met with the Pope
She got a Papal decoration and a kindly word
So even if the crowds gave our lady the bird
The Argentine/Italy axis does have some hope
She still made a fabulous impact
Caught the eye

PERON and OFFICERS
Let's here it for the Rainbow Tour
It's been an incredible success
We weren't quite sure, we had a few doubts

CHE
Would Evita win through?

PERON and OFFICERS
But the answer is--

CHE
A qualified--

PERON and OFFICERS
Yes!

CHE
Eva started well, no question, in France
Shining like the sun through the post-war haze
A beautiful reminder of the carefree days
She nearly captured the French, she sure had the chance
But she suddenly seemed to lose interest
She looked tired

PERON and OFFICERS
Tired? Eva tired?

CHE
Face the facts, the Rainbow's starting to fade
I don't think she'll make it to England now

PERON
It wasn't on the schedule anyhow

CHE
You'd better get out the flags and fix a parade
Some kind of coming home triumph
Is required

PERON and OFFICERS
Let's here it for the Rainbow Tour
It's been an incredible success
We weren't quite sure, we had a few doubts
Would Evita win through?

CHE
And the answer is--

PERON and OFFICERS
Yes

CHE
And no

PERON and OFFICERS
And yes

CHE
And no

PERON and OFFICERS
And yes... and no
Let's here it for the Rainbow Tour
It's been an incredible success...

EVA (back from Europe)
Who the hell does the King of England think he is?
Tea at some tinpot castle of his--what kind of invitation is that?
Argentina's First Lady deserves Buckingham Palace!
If England can do without me
Then Argentina can do without England!

15. THE ACTRESS HASN'T LEARNED (THE LINES YOU'D LIKE TO HEAR)

ARISTOCRACY
Thus all fairy stories end
Only an actress would pretend
Affairs of state are her latest play
Eight shows a week two matinees
My how the worm begins to turn
When will the chorus girl ever learn?
My how the worm begins to turn
When will the chorus girl ever learn?

EVA
The chorus girl hasn't learned the lines you'd like to hear
She won't be scrambling over the backs of the poor to be accepted
By making donations--just large enough--to the correct charity
She won't be president of your wonderful society of philanthropy
Even if you asked her to be
As you should have asked her to be

The actress hasn't learned the lines you'd like to hear
She won't join your clubs, she won't dance in your halls
She won't help the hungry once a month at your tombolas
She'll simply take control as you disappear

CHE
Forgive my intrusion but fine as those sentiments sound
Little has changed for us peasants down here on the ground
I hate to seem churlish, ungrateful, I don't like to moan
But do you now represent anyone's cause but your own?

EVA
Everything done will be justified by my Foundation

16. AND THE MONEY KEPT ROLLING IN (AND OUT)

CHE (and WORKERS on choruses)
And the money kept rolling in from every side
Eva's pretty hands reached out and they reached wide
Now you may feel it should have been a voluntary cause
But that's not the point my friends
When the money keeps rolling in you don't ask how
Think of all the people guaranteed a good time now
Eva's called the hungry to her--open up the doors!
Never been a fund like the Foundation Eva Peron!

Rolling rolling rolling
Rolling on in

Would you like to try a college education?
Own your landlord's house, take the family on vacation?
Eva and her blessed Fund can make your dreams come true
Here's all you have to do my friends
Write your name and your dream on a card or a pad or a ticket
Throw it high in the air and should our lady pick it
She will change your way of life for a week or even two
Name me anyone who cares as much as Eva Peron!

Rolling rolling rolling
Rolling on out

And the money kept rolling out in all directions
To the poor to the weak to the destitute of all complexions
Now cynics claim a little of the cash has gone astray
But that's not the point my friends
When the money keeps rolling out you don't keep books
You can tell you've done well by the happy grateful looks
Accountants only slow things down, figures get in the way
Never been a lady loved as much as Eva Peron!

Rolling rolling rolling
Rolling on out

If the money keeps rolling in what's a girl to do?
Cream a little off the top for expenses--wouldn't you?
But where on Earth can people hide their little piece of Heaven?
Thank God for Switzerland
Where a girl and a guy with a little petty cash between them
Can be sure when they deposit no-one's seen them
Oh what bliss to sign your checks as three-o-one-two-seven
Never been accounts in the name of Eva Peron!

Rolling rolling rolling
Rolling on in

17. SANTA EVITA

CHILDREN
Please, gentle Eva, will you bless a little child?
For I love you--tell Heaven I'm doing my best
I'm praying for you, even though you're already blessed
Please, mother Eva, will you look upon me as your own?
Make me special, be my angel, be my everything wonderful perfect and true
And I'll try to be exactly like you
Please, holy Eva, will you feed a hungry child?
For I love you--tell Heaven I'm doing my best...

CHE
Get them while they're young, Evita, get them while they're young!

CHILDREN
...I'm praying for you, even though you're already blessed

WORKERS
Santa Santa Evita
Madre de todos los ninos
De los tiranizados
De los descamisados
De los trabajadores
De la Argentina

CHE
Why try to govern a country when you can become a saint?

18. WALTZ FOR EVA AND CHE

CHE
Tell me before I waltz out of your life
Before turning my back on the past
Forgive my impertinent behavior
But how long do you think this pantomime can last?
Tell me before I ride off in the sunset
There's one thing I never got clear
How can you claim you're our savior
When those who oppose you
Are stepped on, or cut up, or simply disappear?

EVA
Tell me before you get onto your bus
Before joining the forgotten brigade
How can one person like me, say,
Alter the time-honored way the game is played?
Tell me before you get onto your high horse
Just what you expect me to do
I don't care what the bourgeoisie say
I'm not in business for them but to give all my descamisados
A magical moment or two

CHE and EVA
There is evil, ever around, fundamental
System of government quite incidental

EVA
So what are my chances
Of honest advances?
I'd say low
Better to win
By admitting my sin
Than to lose with a halo

CHE
Tell me before I seek worthier pastures
And thereby restore self-esteem
How can you be so short-sighted
To look never further than this week or next week
To have no impossible dream?

EVA
Allow me to help you slink off to the sidelines
I'll pay your fare, give three cheers
But first tell me who'd be delighted
To witness me tackle
The world's greatest probles
From war to pollution?
No hope of solution
Even if I lived for one hundred years

CHE and EVA
There is evil, ever around, fundamental
System of government quite incidental

EVA
So go, if you're able
To somewhere unstable
And stay there
Whip up your hate
In some tottering state
But not here, dear
Is that clear, dear?

Oh what I'd give for a hundred years!
But the physical interferes
Every day more--O my Creator!
What is the good of the strongest heart
In a body that's falling apart?
A serious flaw--I hope You know that


19. SHE IS A DIAMOND

OFFICERS
It's all very well--to a certain extent
For the lady at the side of the President
To show an interest in affairs
But let's not be blind to the drift of events
She's eclipsing the strength of the government
She should return to below stairs
She will never win our hearts
She's a woman for a start
She holds no elected post
She's an ornament at most

CHE
What's new Buenos Aires? Your nation, which a few years ago had the second largest gold reserves in the world, is bankrupt! A country which grew up and grew rich on beef is rationing it! La Prensa, one of the few newspapers which dares to oppose Peronism, has been silenced, and so have all other reasonable voices! I'll tell you what's new Buenos Aires!

PERON (to OFFICERS; CHE has gone)
But on the other hand--she's all they have
She's a diamond in their dull gray lives--and that's the
Hardest kind of stone--it usually survives
And if you think about it, can you recall
The last time they loved anyone at all?

She's not a bauble you can brush aside
She's been out doing what we just talked about--example
Gave us back our businesses, got the English out
And when you think about it--well why not do
One or two of the things we promised to?

But on the other hand she's slowing down
She's lost a little of that magic drive--but I would
Not advise her critics present to derive
Any satisfaction from her fading star
She's the one who's kept us where we are

OFFICERS
She's the one who's kept you where you are

20. DICE ARE ROLLING

PERON
Dice are rolling, the knives are out
I see every bad sign in the book
And as far as they can--overweight to a man!
They have that lean and hungry look

EVA
But we still have the magic we've always had! The descamisados still worship me--we arrived thanks to them and no-one else; no thanks to your generals--a clutch of stuffed cuckoos!

PERON
It's not a question of a big parade, proving we're big with the mobs on the street--

EVA
You're wrong--the people, my people--

PERON
The people belong to no-one! They are fickle, can be manipulated, they don't matter! However much they love you now it matters more that as far as my stuffed cuckoos are concerned, you don't politically exist!

EVA
So I don't exist! So I count for nothing! Try saying that on the street when all over the world I am Argentina!

(EVA breaks off for a second--in some pain)

Most of your generals wouldn't be recognized by their own mothers! But they'll admit I exist when I become vice-president!

PERON
That won't work... we've been through all of this before,
they'd fight you tooth and nail--you'd never overcome
them with a hundred rallies and even if you did--

EVA
Yes?

PERON
Your little body's slowly breaking down
You're losing speed, you're losing strength--not style--that goes on
Flourishing forever, but your eyes, your smile
Do not have the sparkle of their fantastic past
If you climb one more mountain it could be your last

EVA
I'm not that ill--bad moments come but they go
Some days are fine, some a little bit harder
But that doesn't mean
I should change my routine
Have you ever seen
Me defeated?
Don't you forget what I've been through and yet
I'm still standing
And if I am ill--that could even be to your advantage!

PERON
Advantage? I'm trying to point out that you are dying!

This talk of death is chilling--of course you're not going to die!

EVA
Then I must now be vice-president!
And I shall have my people come to choose
Two Perons to wear their country's crowns
In thousands in my squares and avenues
Emptying their villages and towns
Where every soul in home or shack or stall
Knows me as Argentina--that is all

Oh I shall be a great vice-president!

(But EVA collapses in great pain)

PERON
So what happens now?
So what happens now?

EVA
Where am I going to?

PERON
Don't ask anymore

21. EVA'S FINAL BROADCAST

CHE
Forgive my intrusion, Evita, I just have to see
How you admit you have lost--a brand new experience

We got it set up! We fixed you a broadcast--and you're so good on the air!

EVA
The actress hasn't learned the lines you'd like to hear
She's sad for her country
Sad to be defeated by her own weak body

(a microphone is switched on--she is now on the air)

I want to tell the people of Argentina
I've decided I should decline
All the honors and titles you've pressed me to take
For I'm contented--let me simply go on
As the woman who brings her people to the heart of Peron!

Don't cry for me Argentina
The truth is I shall not leave you
Though it may get harder
For you to see me
I'm Argentina
And always will be

Have I said too much? There's nothing more I can think of to say to you
But all you have to do is look at me to know that every word is true

22. MONTAGE

(In her last hours, images, people and events from EVA's life flow through her mind, while the grief of the nation knows no bounds)

CHE
She had her moments--she had some style
The best show in town was the crowd
Outside the Casa Rosada crying, "Eva Peron"
But that's all gone now--

MAGALDI
Eva beware your ambition--

EVA
Screw the middle classes! I will never accept them and they will never deny me anything again. My father's other family were middle class, and we were kept out of sight, hidden from view--

It seems crazy but you must believe
There's nothing calculated, nothing planned
Please forgive me if I seem naive
I would never want to force your hand
But please understand--

CROWD
A new Argentina!
The chains of the masses untied!
A new Argentina!
The voice of the people cannot be and will not be and must not be--

PERON
High flying, adored, so young, the instant queen, a
Rich beautiful thing of all the talents, a cross between a
Fantasy of the bedroom and a saint--

CROWD
Santa Santa Evita
Madre de todos los ninos...

CHE
Sing you fools but you got it wrong
Enjoy your prayers because you haven't got long
Your queen is dead, your king is through
She's not coming back to you!

CROWD
...de los tiranizados
De los descamisados
De los trabajadores
De la Argentina

23. LAMENT

EVA
The choice was mine and mine completely
I could have any prize that I desired
I could burn with the splendor of the brightest fire
Or else--or else I could choose time
Remember I was very young then
And a year was forever and a day
So what use could fifty, sixty, seventy be?
I saw the lights and I was on my way

And how I lived! How they shone!
But how soon the lights were gone!

Oh my daughter! Oh my son!
Understand what I have done!

(The moment EVA dies, EMBALMERS move in to preserve her fragile body)

EMBALMERS
Eyes, hair, face, image
All must be preserved
Still life displayed forever
No less than she deserved

CHE
Money was raised to build a tomb, a monument to Evita. Only the pedestal was completed and Evita's body disappeared for seventeen years.