Theater

kate gabrielle / Flickr

Sir Noel Coward was a jack of all trades. He was an actor, a composer and a singer - but he’s most remembered for his plays. The English playwright wrote dozens of plays during his life, including: Private Lives, Blithe Spirit and Hay Fever, just to name a few.

Marcus Center/Patrick Dewane

The Accidental Hero is a one-man show detailing the true story of an American officer in World War II.  It’s written and performed by Patrick Dewane, the grandson of the play’s protagonist.

For years, Dewane would visit his grandparents' house and see WWII memorabilia decorating the house. He would beg his grandfather, Matt Konop, to tell him war stories, but he wouldn't talk.

Konop died in 1983 and Dewane "figured that we buried grandpa with his stories."

The Children's Aid Society

Although orphan trains operated in the U.S. for decades, the legacy of the trains has gone relatively unnoticed. Over the course of 75 years, hundreds of thousands of children from cities like New York and Boston were shuttled onto trains headed West in search of a new home. But not much is known about these children, or what happened to them after they left the trains. A new play at UWM is hoping to change that.

Paul Ruffolo Photography

Milwaukee’s First Stage Children’s Theater is known for commissioning and producing new works by some cutting edge playwrights. But they probably went as far as they could go to find the writer for their current world premiere production, The Snowby playwright Finegan Kruckemeyer

Mark Frohna / Skylight Music Theatre

What is a crown? To some, it’s a symbol of royalty. To others a crown is a hat, but not just any hat. Skylight Music Theater’s production of Crowns: A Gospel Musical is about the African American tradition of wearing flamboyant and ornate hats to church.

Tom Margie / Flickr

The late Yip Harburg wrote the words to more than 600 songs in his life, but the one he’s probably known for more than all the rest is the iconic Over the Rainbow, from The Wizard of Oz, for which he won an Academy Award.

Paul Ruffolo

Where do you go when you’re trying to escape your troubles? Well, Costa Rica, of course - at least that’s true of the main characters in Slowgirl.

The play opened this week at the Milwaukee Chamber Theatre.

Eric Appleton / UW-Whitewater

If all the world’s a stage, someone has to set it. In Shakespeare’s day there may not have been much in the way of scenery – some banners and backdrops, and probably some hand props. But even now that set designers have more materials at their disposal, the goal of modern set design remains the same: to translate the text for present day audiences and make the play's words come to life.

Ryan Blomquist

Among the holiday offerings that reliably come around this time of year – like the Milwaukee Ballet’s Nutcracker, the symphony’s Holiday Pops concert, and the Milwaukee Rep’s “A Christmas Carol,” there’s always one that swims against the tide.

Acacia Theatre Company / facebook.com

We’ve probably all wondered what we might talk about if a compelling figure from history dropped by for coffee, and Acacia Theatre's latest production puts two historical figures together for one last conversation.

Freud’s Last Session envisions a meeting between Sigmund Freud, the father of much of contemporary psychology; and the writer C.S. Lewis.  The two were actually contemporaries, but never met in real life.

splinter-group.org

Before playwright Tracy Letts won the Pulitzer for August, Osage County in 2008, he had already written three plays and was an accomplished stage and screen actor.

Bug, Letts' second play published in the mid 1990s, opens the third season of the Splinter Group theatre company. 

Theater RED / https://www.theaterred.com/

American theatre  in the 1870s was much different than what theatregoers, and the actors themselves, experience today.

One influential actor from the 19th Century was Edwin Booth. Considered the father of American acting in theatre circles, Booth was supremely successful in his time. He was a member of the original royal family of American theatre, which included his father Junius and brother, the notorious John Wilkes Booth. Local actress and playwright Angela Iannone has already written and produced three plays about the great 19th Century American actor.

summitplayerstheatre.blogspot.com

The live theater experience always carries with it a sense of event - the idea of everyone getting together in one place, often dressed nicely, to watch a thought-provoking or just entertaining stage play.  Summer in Wisconsin, though, affords another theater going experience people look forward to - the ability to watch live theater outdoors.

Grammy-nominated Broadway performer Cheyenne Jackson is a celebrated entertainer widely known for his roles on the television shows Glee and 30 Rock. He first garnered acclaim on Broadway where his soaring voice, charisma, and matinee idol looks won over both audiences and critics. Jackson has performed at The Kennedy Center, sold out Carnegie Hall, and was a principal soloist on West Side Story, which was nominated for Best Musical Theater Album at the 2015 Grammys.

Paul Ruffolo / First Stage Theater

Professional wrestling is nothing if not theatrical. There are good guys to cheer and bad guys to boo, and good and evil fight it out in the ring every night. When you talk about the Mexican tradition of lucha libre, in which the wrestlers wear colorful masks that they seldom remove - even in their real lives, the level of theatricality jumps even higher.

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