Violet

Critics

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Reviews: 5

Audience

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Reviews: 0

The best Tony-nominated musical nobody's ever heard of… Violet has wowed critics and audiences with its powerful story and energetic gospel, rock, country and R&B score by Jeanine Tesori (Fun Home and Caroline, or Change). Set in the Deep South during the early days of the civil rights movement, this powerful musical tells the touching story of a young woman accidentally scarred on the face as a child. Hoping that a TV evangelist can cure her, Violet embarks on a long bus ride from her sleepy North Carolina town through Memphis to Oklahoma. Along the way, she meets two young soldiers who teach her about love, courage and the true meaning of beauty.

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Reviews

Eric A Gordon
"Jeanine Tesori: The most successful-ever woman composer for Broadway. She wrote the score for Tony Award-winning Fun Home and Caroline, or Change, both of which I admired and loved. It was her name that brought me once again to brave the L.A. freeways to Chance Theater in Anaheim, some 50 miles from home, to see Violet (Feb. 25)….Although Tesori explores several standard genres in her music, she puts her own ID on them. About two-thirds through several of her songs in Violet, she unexpectedly introduces a new note not in the “chord” that raises the number to a fresh, unexplored place. Both the subject matter of the songs and their staging are often distinctive: There's one number called “Luck of the Draw,” in which on one side of the stage Violet's father (Johnny Fletcher) is teaching the Young Violet (Rebeka Hoblik) how to play poker, while on the other, just a few feet away, the mature Violet (Monika Peña) is playing cards with her traveling companions, Flick (Taylor Fagins) and Monty (Jordan Schneider). It's an intricate ensemble that brought to mind another card-dealing scene—the famous fortune-telling quintet from Carmen. It bears noting that just as there are two Violets in the show, the younger and the older, in Tesori's Fun Home, based on Alison Bechdel's autobiographical coming-out memoir, there are three Alisons—the mature one writing the book, the college-age Medium version first exploring her lesbianism, and the 10-year-old Small Alison. This theatrical gimmickry, relatively rare but not unknown, must have a special appeal for Tesori."

sweet - Eric A. Gordon - People's World - ...read full review


"Aided immensely by the superb four-person live band producing its Southern music soundtrack led by musical director Robyn Manion, this production of VIOLET sings like a big musical downscaled for an intimate private party that you'll feel special for being an attendee."

sweet - Michael Quintos - Broadway World - ...read full review


"Hayter's six principals and five-person ensemble are simply superb, their talents elevating the show's 26 solid, and solidly enjoyable, musical numbers...“Violet” is tough, unforgiving and bittersweet. With a sad story that ironically brims with life and hope, it's unlikely you'll soon forget this potent piece of musical theater – or Chance's masterful production of it."

sweet - Eric Marchese - OC Register - ...read full review


"It's a thrill to see this creative team at work again; these three, with costume designer Elizabeth Cox, also staged the Chance's towering production of "Parade" last year."

sweet - Daryl H. Miller - LA Times - ...read full review


Steven Stanley
"Over the past twenty years, the Chance's reputation as Orange County's finest intimate theater has remained unchallenged. The company's latest musical mini-masterpiece makes it abundantly clear just why."

sweet - Steven Stanley - Stage Scene LA - ...read full review


Eric A Gordon
"Jeanine Tesori: The most successful-ever woman composer for Broadway. She wrote the score for Tony Award-winning Fun Home and Caroline, or Change, both of which I admired and loved. It was her name that brought me once again to brave the L.A. freeways to Chance Theater in Anaheim, some 50 miles from home, to see Violet (Feb. 25)….Although Tesori explores several standard genres in her music, she puts her own ID on them. About two-thirds through several of her songs in Violet, she unexpectedly introduces a new note not in the “chord” that raises the number to a fresh, unexplored place. Both the subject matter of the songs and their staging are often distinctive: There's one number called “Luck of the Draw,” in which on one side of the stage Violet's father (Johnny Fletcher) is teaching the Young Violet (Rebeka Hoblik) how to play poker, while on the other, just a few feet away, the mature Violet (Monika Peña) is playing cards with her traveling companions, Flick (Taylor Fagins) and Monty (Jordan Schneider). It's an intricate ensemble that brought to mind another card-dealing scene—the famous fortune-telling quintet from Carmen. It bears noting that just as there are two Violets in the show, the younger and the older, in Tesori's Fun Home, based on Alison Bechdel's autobiographical coming-out memoir, there are three Alisons—the mature one writing the book, the college-age Medium version first exploring her lesbianism, and the 10-year-old Small Alison. This theatrical gimmickry, relatively rare but not unknown, must have a special appeal for Tesori."

sweet - Eric A. Gordon - People's World - ...read full review


"Aided immensely by the superb four-person live band producing its Southern music soundtrack led by musical director Robyn Manion, this production of VIOLET sings like a big musical downscaled for an intimate private party that you'll feel special for being an attendee."

sweet - Michael Quintos - Broadway World - ...read full review


"Hayter's six principals and five-person ensemble are simply superb, their talents elevating the show's 26 solid, and solidly enjoyable, musical numbers...“Violet” is tough, unforgiving and bittersweet. With a sad story that ironically brims with life and hope, it's unlikely you'll soon forget this potent piece of musical theater – or Chance's masterful production of it."

sweet - Eric Marchese - OC Register - ...read full review


"It's a thrill to see this creative team at work again; these three, with costume designer Elizabeth Cox, also staged the Chance's towering production of "Parade" last year."

sweet - Daryl H. Miller - LA Times - ...read full review


Steven Stanley
"Over the past twenty years, the Chance's reputation as Orange County's finest intimate theater has remained unchallenged. The company's latest musical mini-masterpiece makes it abundantly clear just why."

sweet - Steven Stanley - Stage Scene LA - ...read full review