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Gloria Estefan stunned by ties to girl playing her on Broadway

Gloria Estefan met the star of her new life-story musical years ago at a family party.
Long before Ana Villafane auditioned to play the singer onstage in On Your Feet!, she posed for a photo with the Cuban-American star – but Gloria insists the talented wannabe had no recollection of her meeting with the singer.
“I don’t think she remembered,” Gloria told Access Hollywood Live on Wednesday (24Feb16). “I met her at our niece’s confirmation, because her sister was getting confirmed that day.
“We were pretty famous at that time – it was right at the peak – and all the kids took pictures of us. I never really officially met her, but the day before the play opened, she blew my mind by posting that picture.”
Gloria has also discovered Ana attended the same Miami, Florida high school she did.
“There’s a lot of coincidences, a lot of things that tie our lives together in some degree,” the singer added. “She grew up in Miami, so we have that Miami accent. She’s got that nailed down. And we went to Our Lady of Lourdes Academy… and that’s a mindset… She gets me in many ways that anybody that didn’t have that experience wouldn’t have a keen insight into.”
And Villafane’s casting has been a big hit with alumni from her old high school, where Gloria once studied.
“We actually had 300 Lourdes girls… make a pilgrimage to the show, along with a smattering of nuns, and it was really awesome,” Estefan explains.
The Cuban-American actress auditioned via video to play Gloria Estefan in the musical and she made her Broadway debut, opposite Josh Segarra, in On Your Feet! in October (15).

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