EL PASO, TX (KTSM) – Actress Rita Moreno, one of the few performers to have won an Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar, and a Tony is returning to the Plaza Theatre for the 15th annual Plaza Classic Film Festival.
The iconic singer, dancer, and actor will appear for the 1952’s “Singin’ in the Rain” at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 28, and at 7 p.m. Friday, July 29, for Steven Spielberg’s 2021 version of “West Side Story” at the Plaza Theatre. The El Paso Community Foundation’s 15th annual Plaza Classic Film Festival will be July 28-Aug. 7 in and around the Plaza Theatre.
Moreno is the last surviving member of the main cast of “Singin’ in the Rain,” which starred El Paso-born actress Debbie Reynolds, the mother of the late Carrie Fisher.
In “Singin’ in the Rain,” Moreno played Zelda Zanders, her first Anglo character in a feature film, in the Gene Kelly and Stanley Donen classic.
She won a supporting actress Academy Award for her portrayal of the fiery Anita in 1961’s “West Side Story.” In the new version, she served as an executive producer, played the newly created character of Valentina, and performed the pivotal song “Somewhere.”
Moreno has a long history with the Plaza Theatre and the Plaza Classic Film Festival. She headlined a benefit concert there in 1986, which enabled the El Paso Community Foundation to purchase the deteriorating 1930 movie palace and eventually restore it with the City of El Paso. She appeared again in 2007, the year after the theater reopened, and headlined the Plaza Classic in 2013. Since then, she starred in the Latinx remake of TV’s “One Day at a Time,” received considerable Oscar buzz for the new “West Side Story” and has roles in the forthcoming “Fast and Furious” sequel “Fast X,” and Tom Brady’s “Eighty for Brady.”
Rita Moreno, 90, is one of the few performers to receive TV’s Emmy, music’s Grammy, cinema’s Oscar, and Broadway’s Tony awards. In addition to her Academy Award, she received Emmy Awards for “The Muppet Show” and “The Rockford Files”; a Grammy for contributions to the soundtrack of the children’s show, “The Electric Company,” and a Tony for her performance in the Broadway production of “The Ritz.” Her extensive credits include HBO’s “Oz” and the films “The King and I,” “Carnal Knowledge,” and “The Four Seasons.”
Moreno joins the previously announced F. Murray Abraham, an El Paso native, as this year’s special guests. Abraham will appear for a showing of “Amadeus,” for which he won the best actor Oscar, at 7 p.m. Friday, and for the “The Grand Budapest Hotel” at 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 6, both in the Plaza Theatre.
Tickets will go on sale on June 27 at the Plaza Theatre box office and Ticketmaster.com. Festival Passes, which include admission to Plaza Classic movies and special events, and the new Movies Only Pass, are on sale at plazaclassic.com/tickets. Go to plazaclassic.com for more information or follow us on social media.
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