Student Connections

Meet Lisa Brescia '08

By Helen Edelman, manager, Exchange

April 8, 2013

woman posing in yellow dance outfitLisa Brescia ’08, at right, graduated from the Center for Distance Learning with a B.A. in the arts. A native of Sioux Falls, S.D. who was raised in Milwaukee, she is an American musical theatre actress who has performed as lead and understudy in several Broadway shows, including on Broadway as Donna in the critically acclaimed “Mama Mia!”

Previous Broadway appearances include Elphaba in “Wicked,” Amneris in “Aida,” Cleo in Twyla Tharp’s “The Times They Are A-Changin’”and Marion Halcombe in “The Woman in White.”

Regional credits include the Kennedy Center’s “Side Show” as Violet, Chicago’s “Wicked” as Elphaba, as Mom in “The Unauthorized Autobiography of Samantha Brown,” in “Evita” as Eva, in “The Last 5 Years” as Cathy, in “A Little Night Music” as  Petra and as Meg in “Brigadoon.”

For five years, Brescia toured internationally with The Mamas and The Papas with original members John Phillips and Denny Doherty.

She also graduated with honors from the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, and was a member of the prestigious AADA Repertory Company.

Spare time is most happily spent with husband Craig Carnelia (an American musical theater composer and singer, known for his collaboration on the musicals “Working” and “Sweet Smell of Success”) and their yorkie-poo Louie. She enjoys reading anything she can get her hands on (especially self-improvement tomes), writing poetry, “grunting through Insanity workout DVDs and self-deprecating.”

Her favorite word is “fearlessness.”