Cuba to stage its first Broadway musical in more than 50 years when Rent begins three-month run

Cuba will stage its first Broadway musical in more than 50 years when Rent starts a three-month run on December 24.

The Nederlander entertainment group finally succeeded after trying for several years to produce a Broadway musical in Cuba, a spokesman for the company said.

US-produced musicals were disallowed in Cuba after the 1959 revolution that brought Fidel Castro to power.

Although a workshop production of Carmen Jones was staged in June, this Spanish-language production of Rent will be the first Broadway musical with a full cast, musicians and production elements in Cuba in over 50 years, spokesman Keith Sherman said.

The country’s culture ministry invited Nederlander to stage a full Broadway musical after it produced a concert based on Broadway show tunes in 2011.

Mr Sherman called it an “arts-based” production rather than a profit-making venture, and said low-priced tickets would fail to cover costs.

Nederlander, one of the biggest theatre and music venue operators and producers in the United States, is producing Rent in conjunction with Cuba’s National Council of Performing Arts at Havana’s Bertolt Brecht Theatre with a company of 15 Cuban actors.

Reuters, ABC News

November 25, 2014

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