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Oct. 27, 2008

Contact Rick Walters at 608-796-3793 or


LA CROSSE, Wis. – Viterbo University will present the powerful musical, Violet, Friday, Nov. 14–Saturday, Nov. 15 and Thursday, Nov. 20–Sunday, Nov. 23 in the Fine Arts Center La Croix Black Box Theatre.

Set in 1964 in the Deep South during the Civil Rights movement, Violet follows the growth and enlightenment of a determined young woman whose face was accidentally scarred by her father. In the hope that a television evangelist can heal her, she embarks on a journey by bus from her sleepy North Carolina town to Oklahoma. Along the way, she meets a young soldier who teaches her about beauty, love, courage, and what it means to be an outsider. This production is intended for mature audiences.

As one of the most acclaimed off-Broadway shows of the 1990s, Violet astounded critics and audiences with its powerful story, its energetic, toe-tapping gospel, rock, country, and rhythm and blues score, and its well-crafted dialogue and lyrics that deal with important and sensitive issues.

Violet was written by Jeanine Tesori (who is perhaps best known for the Broadway musical Thoroughly Modern Millie), with book and lyrics by Brian Crawley. This Viterbo production is directed by Rick Walters, chair of the university theatre department.

Tickets are $10 for general admission seating. For more information, contact the Viterbo box office at 608-796-3100. 

Violet Cast

Character                                                                     Name                                                     Hometown

Violet                                                                          Erin Nelson                                            Spring Green, WI

Understudy for Violet                                                  Katy Knutson                                         Minnetonka, WI

Flick                                                                            Lance Newton                                        Las Vegas, NV

Monty                                                                          Ross Pirsig                                            Albert Lea, MN

Young Violet                                                               Laura Savage                                         Las Vegas, NV

Father                                                                         Ryan Readio                                          Savage, MN

Bus Diver, Preacher, Rufus, Bus Drive4                    Matt Barnett                                           Moorehead, MN

Old Lady, ensemble                                                   Mary Leigh Snider                                  Milwaukee, WI

Landlady, ensemble                                                   Jamaica Steward                                   Minneapolis, MN

Music Hall Singer, ensemble                                      Samantha Pauly                                    Bettendorf, IA

Virgil, Bus Driver 2, Creepy Guy, Gospel Singer 1    Paul Hibbard                                          Richland Center, WI

Gospel Singer 2, ensemble                                        Jill Iverson                                             Minocqua, WI

Billy Dean, ensemble                                                 Cameron Meilicke                                  Brookfield, WI

Hotel Singer, ensemble                                              Nicky Hilsen                                          Chicago, IL

Leroy Evans/Earl/Radio Trio                                       Ian Kane                                               Janesville, WI

Waiter, Bus Driver 3, ensemble                                  Seth Locken                                          New Town, ND

Mechanic/Radio Trio                                                  Nic Marinucci                                         Calgary, Canada

Radio Soloist (trio)                                                      Brian Pekol                                            Rhinelander, WI

Ensemble                                                                   Sarah Sakalis                                         Las Vegas, NV

Ensemble                                                                   Sarah Michalski                                     Menomonee, WI

Ensemble                                                                   Katie Bakalars                                        Fountain City, WI

Ensemble                                                                   Katy  Knutson                                        Minnetonka, WI      


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