“The Chita Challenge”: A trivia quiz unexpectedly inspired by Ms. Rivera

In her interview with the Bay Area Reporter this week, Broadway legend Chita Rivera—who performs at Feinstein’s at the Nikko next weekend (November 9-11)—confesses to being a huge fan of all things Disney.

So it comes as something of a surprise to learn that Rivera has never supplied the voice for an animated Disney character.

Someone get on that, pronto! In the meanwhile, Chita’s fandom has inspired us to concoct a super challenging showbiz quiz:

Below, find descriptions of performers based on their Broadway roles and the Disney characters they’ve played in animated films.  Can you match the stage and screen clues—and name the performer?  See sample answer below. We’ll post all the answers tomorrow…but feel free to share your guesses in our Facebook comments!

Broadway clues

1.  This performer isn’t part of the Four Seasons, but she’s been one of three Summers.

2.  This performer portrayed a singing slave—a part later played by Whoopi Goldberg.

3.  She played Dolly Levi in a recent revival and won the first of her two Tony awards singing Sondheim.

4.  After winning a Tony for her breakthrough stage role, she’s played characters named Erzulie and Eponine.

5.  She played a beleagured, betrayed mother in a recent musical that surely passed the Bechdel test.

6.  She’s won three lead actress Tony awards but has never won an Oscar, despite a record-holding six nominations.

Disney animation clues

A.  Her singing talent has taken her from the Great Wall to a great carpet.

B.  Her animated character’s big song became a Top Ten radio hit for another actress (who once replaced Chita Rivera in a Broadway role.

C.  She played the muse of dance in ancient Greece.

D.  Better known for playing the live action version of a famous Disney villain, she sings a duet  with Phil Collins in her only animated Disney role.

E.  Things get hairy for this performer’s character, who bites the dust by the end of this CGI-animated feature, one of the most expensive animated films of all time.

F.  He played a rascally meerkat, terrified by a creature voiced by Whoopi Goldberg.


Lane played Roman slave Pseudolus in “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum” on Broadway, and Timon, in Disney’s feature”The Lion King.”  Whoopi Goldberg  replaced Lane, becoming Broadway’s first female Pseudolus and played Shenzi, the hyena, in “The Lion King” film.

BONUS CLUE:  Three of the six featured performers have played Feinstein’s at the Nikko!