The Violet Hour

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This article is about the play by Richard Greenberg. For the album by The Clientele, see The Violet Hour (album).

The Violet Hour is a play by Richard Greenberg. It was commissioned by and originally produced by South Coast Repertory with Hamish Linklater as Seavering and Mario Cantone as Gidger. It received its Broadway debut on November 6, 2003 when the Manhattan Theatre Club produced it as the first play in the renovated Biltmore Theatre. MTC's production had a cast featuring Robert Sean Leonard as Seavering and Cantone reprising his role as Gidger, and ran for 54 performances, the planned length of its subscription run.[1] Both productions were directed by Evan Yionoulis.[2]


The play takes place in New York in 1919. A young publisher named John Pace Seavering has enough money to publish one book. He is torn between publishing the gargantuan novel of his former college roommate, and perhaps more than friend, Denis McCleary. His other option is to publish the memoirs of his mistress, Jessie Brewster. Denis needs the book published so that he can look good in front of the father of the woman that he is in love with. Jessie, however, needs her memoirs published because of her life expectancy running out. Then a mysterious, paper spewing machine enters. The papers are from books that have information about the lives of the characters and their futures. Gidger, Seavering's assistant, learns that he becomes a person of no importance and that his dog becomes famous. Seavering learns from these papers that he becomes a well-to-do publisher and no matter whose book he publishes, he will either lose his mistress or his friend.

Cast of characters[edit]

  • John Pace Seavering
  • Jessie Brewster
  • Denis McCleary
  • Rosamund
  • Gidger

Production history[edit]

  • South Coast Repertory - November 5 through 24, 2002[3]
  • Manhattan Theatre Club - Opening: November 6, 2003 (54 performances)[1]
  • Theater Tribe (Los Angeles) - March 23 through April 19, 2008[4]
  • University Theatre (University of Chicago) - Opening: December, 2011 (1 preview, 3 performances)
  • Coca Black Box Theater (St. Louis) - Opening: August 23, 2012 (10 performances)[5]


  1. ^ a b "The Violet Hour". Internet Broadway Database. The Broadway League. Retrieved August 13, 2012. 
  2. ^ Brantley, Ben. "Theatre Review: Jazz Generation Sees The Future: It's Not Cool" The New York Times {November 7, 2003)
  3. ^ "The Violet Hour" (PDF). South Coast repertory. Retrieved August 13, 2012. 
  4. ^ "Theatre Review (LA): The Violet Hour by Richard Greenberg at Theatre Tribe". Blogcritics. Retrieved August 13, 2012. 
  5. ^ "The Violet Hour". Max&Louie Productions. Retrieved August 13, 2012. 

External links[edit]