Casting is now complete for the U.K. premiere of Violet, the Off-Broadway hit that played a limited engagement on Broadway in 2014 starring Tony winner Sutton Foster. Performances will take place January 14–April 6, 2019, at the Charing Cross Theatre.
Kaisa Hammarlund, who played Alison Bechdel in the U.K. premiere of Fun Home at the Young Vic, will star in the title role with Jay Marsh (Miss Saigon) as Flick and Matthew Harvey (Loserville) as Monty, plus Simbi Akande, Angelica Allen, Kenneth Avery-Clark, Keiron Crook, James Gant, Danny Michaels, Janet Mooney with Amy Mepham, Rebecca Nardin, and Maddie Sellman as young Violet.
Featuring music by Tony winner Jeanine Tesori (Fun Home; Caroline, or Change) and a book and lyrics by Brian Crawley (The Little Princess), the production will subsequently transfer to Tokyo.
Violet will be directed by Shuntaro Fujita with choreography by Cressida Carré, set design by Morgan Large, costume design by Jonathan Lipman, lighting design by Howard Hudson, sound design by Andrew Johnson, music direction by Dan Jackson, associate music direction by Chris Ma, associate direction by Abigail Pickard-Price, and production supervision by Artistic Director Thom Southerland.
Set in 1964 somewhere between North Carolina and Oklahoma, the musical follows Violet, a young woman who was facially disfigured as a child, who hopes her life savings will bring her a miracle halfway across the country.
In an earlier statement Southerland said, “I am delighted to welcome director Shuntaro Fujita and our producing partners Umeda Arts Theater for this exciting production. For four years it has been my privilege to create shows with Umeda Arts Theater in Japan and I am pleased that Violet is the first of our collaborations in the UK. Building on our in-house musical productions of Ragtime, Titanic, Death Takes A Holiday and The Woman in White, I am thrilled that Jeannie Tseori and Brian Crawley’s urgent, exciting and extraordinary musical will find its premiere at Charing Cross Theatre. Umeda Arts Theater have been creating world class, international theatre in both Japan and on Broadway and I am delighted they have joined us at Charing Cross Theatre for a production which will transfer to Tokyo after its initial London run. This collaboration marks the beginning of an exchange of both work and artists between Charing Cross Theatre and Umeda Arts Theater and we will soon announce further projects.”<
Based on the short story The Ugliest Pilgrim by Doris Betts, Violet premiered Off-Broadway and won the Drama Critics’ Circle Award and Lucille Lortel Award as Best Musical. The Broadway production was nominated for four Tony Awards.
Producers are Steven M. Levy and Vaughan Williams for Charing Cross Theatre Productions Limited in a co-production with Umeda Arts Theater Co, Ltd., Osaka, Japan.
Sutton Foster, Colin Donnell, Joshua Henry and More Star in Broadway's Violet
(Updated December 7, 2018)