RENT in Cuba

Closes March 2015
Bertolt Brecht Cultural Center

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An inspiring musical about friends and artists struggling with addiction, poverty, AIDS and most of all, love.

La Boheme poster by HohensteinBased loosely on Puccini's La Boheme, Jonathan Larson's Rent follows a year in the life of a group of impoverished young artists and musicians struggling to survive and create in New York's Lower East Side, under the shadow of HIV/AIDS. The physical and emotional complications of the disease pervade the lives of Roger, Mimi, Tom, and Angel. Maureen deals with her chronic infidelity through performance art; her partner, Joanne, wonders if their relationship is worth the trouble. Benny has sold out his Bohemian ideals in exchange for a hefty income and is on the outs with his former friends. Mark, an aspiring filmmaker, feels like an outsider to life in general. How these young bohemians negotiate their dreams, loves, and conflicts provides the narrative thread to this groundbreaking musical.

The musical was first seen in a limited three-week workshop production at New York Theatre Workshop in 1994. This same Off-Broadway theatre was also the musical's initial home following its official January 25, 1996 opening. The show's creator, Jonathan Larson, died suddenly of an aortic dissection, believed to have been caused by undiagnosed Marfan syndrome, the night before the Off-Broadway premiere.

The show won a Pulitzer Prize, and the production was a hit. The musical moved to Broadway's larger Nederlander Theatre on April 29, 1996. On Broadway, Rent gained critical acclaim and won a Tony Award for Best Musical among other awards. The Broadway production closed on September 7, 2008 after a 12-year run of 5,123 performances, the ninth longest-running Broadway show at the time.

The success of the show led to several national tours and numerous foreign productions. In 2005 it was adapted into a motion picture featuring most of the original cast members.

Rent has been performed in countries around the world, including Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Belgium, the Netherlands, Ireland, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Switzerland, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Greece, Canada, the United States, Mexico, Panama, Bolivia, Brazil, Argentina, Russia, China, Hong Kong, South Korea, Taiwan, Japan, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, South Africa, Australia, Guam, New Zealand, Israel, Puerto Rico, Austria, Peru, Trinidad and Tobago, Dominican Republic and the Czech Republic.

The musical has been performed in twenty-four languages: Danish, Estonian, Finnish, Icelandic, Norwegian, Swedish, Dutch, English, French, German, Portuguese, Spanish, Italian, Hungarian, Polish, Slovak, Greek, Russian, Mandarin Chinese, Cantonese Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Hebrew, and Czech.

This Spanish language production of RENT is being produced in partnership with the Cuban National Council of Performing Arts, and is the first Broadway musical with a full cast, musicians and first-class production elements produced in the nation of Cuba in over 50 years.

RENT Montage

RENT is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI).
All authorized performance materials are also supplied by MTI,
421 West 54th Street, New York, NY 10019
Tel: (212) 541-4684 Fax: (212) 397-4684

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Cuban National Council of Performing Arts Nederlander Worldwide Entertainment Hotel National Cuba

Copyright © 2015, Nederlander Worldwide Entertainment, LLC, All Rights Reserved. Site design: Toby Simkin

Robert Nederlander, Jr. and Nederlander Worldwide Entertainment (NWE) ( announced today a new production of RENT to be mounted in Havana, Cuba. The production will open December 24, 2014 at the Bertolt Brecht Theatre in Havana for a planned three-month run. This Spanish language production is being produced in partnership with the Cuban National Council of Performing Arts, and will be the first Broadway musical with a full cast, musicians and first-class production elements produced in the nation of Cuba in over 50 years. The new production is part of Nederlander Worldwide Entertainment’s ongoing mission to bring Broadway musicals to new and emerging markets around the globe. Following the popular success of the Nederlander Worldwide production of Broadway Ambassadors—a concert featuring Norm Lewis, Capathia Jenkins, Rob Evan and Luba Mason performing classics from the Broadway songbook—at the Havana Theatre Festival in 2011, NWE was invited by the Cuban Ministry of Culture to present an authentic Broadway musical to Cuban audiences, featuring aspiring Cuban actors and musicians. The production joins leading Broadway creative team members with their Cuban counterparts and is a true collaboration and cultural exchange between the Broadway and Cuban cultural communities. The Broadway creative team is led by Andy Señor, Jr., who will direct a company of 15 Cuban actors. Mr. Señor, a leading member of Broadway’s Cuban American community, has a long RENT pedigree, first starring as “Angel” in RENT on Broadway and later as a protégé of original RENT director Michael Greif, including assistant directing the Off-Broadway production, and later directing productions of RENT in multiple markets around the world. The Havana, Cuba production of RENT will also feature choreography by Marcus Paul James (who appeared in RENT on Broadway including the 2008 final performance film; Motown: The Musical) based on original Broadway choreography by Marlies Yearby, musical direction by Emmanuel Schvartzman (On Your Feet), sound design by Michael Catalan, and costume design by Angela Wendt (RENT original production). Thom Schilling is production manager. Gisela Gonzalez, president of the Cuban National Council of Performing Arts, said: “This production will be a paramount step for musical theater in Cuba. We will have the possibility of combining Cuban talent with the long time history of Broadway as a form of art. This collaboration in the field of theater will bring us together and we hope that we are going to come up with an authentic and high quality product that leads us into future joint projects.” Said Robert Nederlander, Jr., “For over 102 years, the Nederlander family has been a leader and innovator in the Broadway and live performance industry in the United States and around the world. It has been a great pleasure to work with the Cuban National Council of Performing Arts and their extremely talented artists, musicians and technicians in Havana. We are honored to serve as a bridge between the Cuban cultural and Broadway communities and to bring the best of Broadway to Cuban audiences.” Director Andy Señor, Jr. made his professional debut in the Tony Award winning musical RENT as "Angel," playing the role on Broadway, London’s West End, and US National and International Tours. Later he became the Assistant Director to Michael Greif on the RENT revival Off Broadway, and went on to re-stage the production in Tokyo, Japan. He holds a BFA in Theatre from Florida International University and further trained at the Public Theatre Shakespeare LAB where he appeared in All’s Well That Ends Well at the PUBLIC Theatre. Recently, he worked with Jeffrey Seller as assistant director on the new musical FLY at Dallas Theatre Center and is currently Associate Director to Jerry Mitchell on the Broadway musical, On Your Feet. He is the Artistic Director of the District Stage Company in Miami. Nederlander Worldwide Entertainment, LLC, founded and managed by Robert Nederlander, Jr., a third generation member of the Nederlander entertainment family, manages theatres and presents Broadway productions in emerging international markets, produces international productions for Broadway and elsewhere around the world, and undertakes cultural educational initiatives. NWE’s expertise covers the gamut of theatre management and operations, along with all facets of live entertainment, including ticketing, management, promotion, marketing, and advertising. In November 2011, Mr. Nederlander presented Broadway Ambassadors in Havana as part of the 14th Annual Havana Theatre Festival, the first Broadway style presentation from the United States to take place in Cuba in over 50 years.

TOBY SIMKIN is a broadway theatrical producer with over 32 years award-winning experience and proven track record in production & marketing of commercial theatre. Multiple Tony® & Olivier award-winning Broadway & West End shows, along with international show tours & events. Additionally, an award-winning internet pioneer, Toby is credited with leading the Broadway theatre industry into cyberspace in the early 1990s. Toby Simkin (沈途彬) chairs his own corporations in the USA and China, is Senior Executive V.P. of Nederlander Worldwide Entertainment, and producer of the award-winning Chinese motion picture, Three Grams of Dream.


Nederlander Worldwide Entertainment Cuban National Council of Performing Arts Bob Nederlander, Jr. Music Theatre International Andy Senor, Jr. Jonathan Larson Bob Nederlander, Jr.