By Jeanné McCartin

“Evita,” at Seacoast Repertory Theater, is a sublime, polished package. Its cast is riveting, and each of its elements strengthens the other.

The operetta, with music by Andrew Lloyd Webber and book and lyrics by Tim Rice, follows the life of María Eva Duarte de Perón (Evita) through her rise to Argentina’s First Lady and death.

Evita, a remarkable historical figure, was born out of wedlock, into poverty. If this play is to be believed, she masterminds her rise to power, moving from man to man as it suits her goals.

Eva, who becomes a radio figure, eventually marries Secretary of Labour and Social Welfare Juan Peron, who, with Eva at his side (which proves a great advantage with the public) becomes president of Argentina.

Eva rocks a lot of boats as his wife. She is despised by the military and elite, but largely loved by the masses, who she champions. She inspires adoration in some quarters, hate in others.

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