A Note from the Co-Creators
When we set out on our journey to “get to know”, Viola Irene Desmond, not only did we discover the intelligence, the strength, and the courage of this incredible woman, we also found similar attributes in the music written during her lifetime. We were lucky to get to know her through scholars and historians, but most valuably through the words and memories of her sister, Wanda Robson, who’s book Sister to Courage, is a beautiful tribute to Viola and her family. Without Wanda, Hey Viola! would be missing something very personal. We feel so honoured to be able to help share Viola’s story, which is still far too relevant in today’s world. She’s an inspiration on so many levels. As Canadians, we have to recognize that this is not a unique story in our history, but one that reflects an imperfect culture, past and present, and is one of many examples of how we can always strive to be better. We hope to share Viola’s story across the country, giving more Canadians a chance to get to know this incredible human being. This cabaret run of the show in Edmonton is part of a full production tour that includes New Westminster, West Vancouver, Kamloops, Gananoque, Hudson and Charlottetown. It is the not knowing that fueled the passion to create this show, and why it now exists.
Thank you to James MacDonald and Western Canada Theatre for their new play development and premiere production support, the Anvil Centre who along with Musical TheatreWorks and WCT against all odds premiered this show in the fall of 2020. And to all those who have been champions along the way.
~ Enjoy ~
Krystle Dos Santos & Tracey Power
Cast & Creative Team
KRYSTLE DOS SANTOS,
Krystle Dos Santos is an extraordinary blues, jazz and soul singer based out of Vancouver, Canada. Her voice is commanding, powerful and rich with talent. Dos Santos grew up in Edmonton and her roots are Guyanese. She studied at the elite Canadian College of performing arts and at the University of Alberta. She has performed in the Arts Club musical Dreamgirls and Chelsea Hotel: the songs of Leonard Cohen at the Firehall arts centre and created a show called BLAK exploring Canada’s black history. Dos Santos loves performing for young audiences to share her show A History of Motown and BLAK: Canadian Women in Music in schools. Krystle is extremely excited to bring Hey Viola! to audiences across Canada this spring/summer and release the soundtrack to the show “Hey Viola! The Soundtrack of a Life”. WWW.KRYSTLEDOSSANTOS.COM
Tracey has worked across Canada and internationally as a director, choreographer, actor and writer. She’s the choreographer and writer of GLORY, inspired by the true story of the women’s hockey team the Preston Rivulettes, which continues to tour across Canada, the musical Miss Shakespeare, and the director/choreographer of Chelsea Hotel, The Songs of Leonard Cohen. She continues to work as an actor both on stage and screen as well as create new work for both mediums. Hey Viola! has been a gift to create with Krystle, and Tracey is thankful for the team of artists, who even during a pandemic believed in the power of theatre and the importance of sharing Viola’s story with you. Tracey is the recipient of the Jessie Richardson, Elizabeth Sterling and Betty Mitchel Awards for her work. WWW.TRACEYPOWER.CA
Steve Charles is a composer and performer from Vancouver. Highlights include: Peter Pan (Carousel Theatre); 4000 miles (Belfry); Once (Arts Club); Empire of the Son (VACT); Othello (Bard on the Beach); Love Bomb (Shameless Hussies); Urinetown (Firehall Theatre); Brief Encounter (Playhouse/MTC); Dance Marathon (Bluemouth Inc.); The French-Canadian talent show Galala on TV Unis and Pacifique en Chanson. He is a member of the Escape Artists who created Chelsea Hotel in 2012, Miss Shakespeare and J.Caesar in 2015, Glory with WCT/ATP in 2018, and is excited to be part of the team for Hey Viola! in 2022. He tours internationally with bands Viper Central and Forro do Cana as a multi-instrumentalist and is very active in Vancouver’s diverse music scene.
Chris is a touring member of the Grammy-Nominated soul package, Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings in 2014. He appears on trumpet and piano on “Soul of A Woman” (Daptone Records). He is also a frequent guest musician in Stay Human, the house band for The Late Show with Stephen Colbert (CBS). Chris has performed for numerous television productions including The Grammys, The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, Conan, The Espys, The Mark Twain Prize, The NFL Honors, and The White House.
ANDREW GLOVER ,
Andrew Glover is an accomplished pianist and composer. He is credited with a huge body of work which extends to Europe and the U.S., as well as his home town of Edmonton, AB, Canada. A talented pianist and composer, Andrew graduated from the Grant MacEwan Community College, and studied solo piano with Adrian Chornowol and Charlie Austin. Andrew worked with Mike Rud, Jack Semple, Kennedy Jensen, Dianne Donovan, the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, Scott Hamilton and Sheena Easton among others. For over ten years he toured extensively with the Big Miller Band.