Viola Samuels faces social obstacles as she challenges gender norms in post-Civil War America by fighting for female independence, joining the battle for women's suffrage, advocating free love, and becoming the first woman to run for President of the United States.
Clairvoyant child from the wrong side of the tracks, Viola Samuels rises from the ashes against all odds; escaping poverty, abuse and forging a life of independence in an America blind to the rights of women. Struggling for “free love”, her basic human rights, and to make America her home, with the aid of her quirky, loveable, loud-mouthed sister, Lizzy; and her dutiful, handsome, ambitious husband, Corlett, Viola becomes the first women to open a brokerage firm on Wall Street making her one of the richest, most influential people in the country.
The time: post Civil War America. The place: New York City - Women’s Suffrage is on the brink of collapse and in need of a new heroine. The country is on the threshold of the Great Depression - as Viola predicts. At the center Viola and her powerful friends, Susan B. Anthony and Cornelius Vanderbilt conspire to get Viola on the ballot as the first woman President of the United States; at a time when women did not even have the vote! But a dark family secret surfaces just before the election which threatens to derail the entire campaign.
The story is historical fiction. A “probable history” one might say. I developed it based on a few actual events from the era; designing plausible scenarios in order to celebrate and illustrate what might have taken place to allow a Woman to aspire to these heights. And most importantly, to create a great piece of entertainment.
The show is a full length, dramatic play, accompanied by a live symphonic score, at times told through the art of ballet. This unique one of a kind theatrical event is both stark and lush, grand and intimate, epic and simple, utilizing spellbinding creativity in the form of high drama, a majestic musical score and stunning choreography. I will play Lizzy.