Welcome To
Acadia Broadcasting NewsThe Latest and Greatest ContentYour Trusted Local Source


Acadian actress Viola Léger passed away on Jan. 28, 2023, at the age of 92. Image: Le Pays de la Sagouine

Acadian Actress Viola Léger Dies At 92

By Brad Perry Jan 30, 2023 | 7:07 AM

Acadian actress Viola Léger passed away over the weekend at the age of 92.

Her death was confirmed Saturday in a statement from Le Grenier musique.

Léger was best known for portraying the character La Sagouine, a humble Acadian cleaning lady, in the play of the same name.

The actress played this role more than 3,000 times during her career, garnering numerous rave reviews.

Léger won the 1981 Dora Mavor Moore Award for her outstanding performance and was recognized for her lifetime achievement as a recipient of the 2013 Governor General’s Performing Award.

She also received the Order of Canada, the New Brunswick Excellence in the Arts Award, the Order of New Brunswick, the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres de la France, and four honorary doctorates.

Léger retired from public life in January 2017 after suffering a stroke.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Léger “held Acadian culture dear and worked tirelessly to defend it.”

“Viola Léger entertained millions of people and inspired many to learn and honour the Acadian people and culture. A true artist, her presence both on and off the stage will be missed,” Trudeau said in a statement.

In addition to her acting career, Léger also served as a senator from 2001 to 2005.

Official Languages Minister Ginette Petitpas Taylor also reflected on Léger’s life in a Facebook post.

“Never has Acadie had a more faithful ambassador than she for whom La Sagouine was not only the role of a career and a lifetime, but also represented a great symbol of pride and tenacity for all Acadians,” she wrote.

“And while you may not find it on any current map, Acadie continues to persevere because of the example and sacrifices of those whose path we continue to follow.”

Premier Blaine Higgs released a statement Monday offering his condolences to Léger’s family.

“Throughout her life, both onstage and off, she championed the Acadian people, becoming a symbol of pride and resilience and acting as their ambassador nationally and internationally,” said Higgs.

“Many consider Viola the greatest actress that Acadie has ever produced.”

Details about Léger’s funeral have yet to be announced.


Leave a Reply