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Community Theatre breaks tradition by casting blind performer in blind role

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A La Crosse theatre group may be making history with its next production. 

The La Crosse Community Theatre has cast a blind performer to play the blind main character in the thriller ‘Wait Until Dark,’ which opens January 24th. 

That may seem logical on the surface, but it appears that before now, the lead role of Susy has never been played by a blind woman in a U.S. production in the 50-plus years since the play premiered.

LCT director Grant Golson says when the theatre discussed doing ‘Wait Until Dark’ this year, staffers decided they probably wouldn’t stage the show if a blind actress could not be found for the part.

LCT has done the play twice before, most recently in 1991, both times with sighted performers in the lead.

Area musician Mei-Ling Felten from Chaseburg plays the role of Susy, and Golson says Felten is new to acting.

Golson has brought in veteran LCT performer Rhonda Staats, who also is blind, as a consultant for the play.

‘Wait Until Dark’ opens at the Weber Center on January 24th.      

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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