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3 FUN FACTS: Rita Moreno

Posted On Nov 2, 2018, 10:19 AM by Courtney Mattern

Star of stage and screen, Rita Moreno boasts a career spanning seven decades. She’s an award-winning singer, dancer, actress – and she’s led such an incredible life it’s difficult to narrow this post down to just three facts about her.

Moreno will take us down memory lane through song and story – and a little rap – in An Evening with Rita Moreno on November 16 at the Holland Center. You may already be a super fan, but here are 3 fun facts you should know before you go.

  • Her big break

    Born in Puerto Rico, she moved to New York City at age 5 and started taking dance lessons. By age 13 she landed her first Broadway role in SKYDRIFT. She acted in films afterward including “Singin’ in the Rain,” but it was the role of Anita in the film adaptation of Leonard Bernstein’s and Stephen Sondheim’s groundbreaking musical WEST SIDE STORY that launched her into the spotlight. She won the Academy Award for Best Support Actress for the role – and guess what? She didn’t have a speech prepared, because she thought Judy Garland was going to win. She said, “I can’t believe it! Good lord! I leave you with that.”

  • She’s got an EGOT

    Speaking of awards – she has a lot of them. In fact, she’s one of only 15 artists to achieve the elusive EGOT. She’s won an Oscar, an Emmy, a Grammy and a Tony Award. Oh yeah – and she’s one of only 23 who have won the Triple Crown of Acting, with individual competitive Oscar, Emmy and Tony awards specifically for acting.

  • Honors beyond the stage and screen
    Moreno’s inspirational success extends even further! As the first Hispanic actress to win an Academy Award, she’s opened doors for Latinos in the entertainment industry. In 2004, President George W. Bush awarded her the Presidential Medal of Freedom. President Barack Obama honored her with the National Medal of Arts.

To learn more about the show and order tickets, visit