MILWAUKEE REPERTORY THEATER
Delays Start of 2020/21 Season To November
Replaces One Production in All Three Theaters
May 12, 2020 (Milwaukee, Wis) – Due to the increasingly complex challenges of COVID-19, Milwaukee Rep will delay the start of the 2020/21 Season to increase the likelihood of producing an entire season of 12 shows in theaters that are well prepared to welcome audiences back safely. The 2020/21 Season will begin October 30, 2020 and play through June 27, 2021 and will include three substitutions of previously announced plays, three canceled off-subscription plays and a revised schedule. Milwaukee’s favorite Holiday tradition A Christmas Carol, celebrating its 45th anniversary in the Historic Pabst Theater, will continue as planned.
– Steel Magnolias, directed by May Adrales will replace John Proctor is the Villain in the Quadracci Powerhouse and will play June 1 – 27, 2021.
– Antonio’s Song / I Was Dreaming of a Son, which was cancelled this past March due to COVID-19, will have its world premiere March 24 – May 2, 2021 replacing Tender Age in the Stiemke Studio.
– The world premiere event Piano Menfeaturing Milwaukee’s favorite piano man himself Steve Wattswill replace Blues in the Night in the Stackner Cabaret and will play May 14 – June 27, 2021.
– The off-subscription offerings Rep Lab, Kathleen Turner: Finding My Voice, and Lockdown are cancelled.
“These past few months have led to some of the most difficult decisions I’ve ever had to make in my career,” said Artistic Director Mark Clements. “That said, I’ve also never been more inspired by the passion and resilience of my colleagues and collaborators. Given cancellations worldwide, artist availability shifted significantly so adjustments in productions were needed to bring the world-class work we are known for safely to our stages. I’m certain our lineup of shows will entertain, challenge and delight audiences like never before.”
In order to begin performances safely in November, Milwaukee Rep is working with health officials to make any necessary changes to operations and audience experience. This may include reducing the capacities of each theater to allow for physical distancing, instituting enhanced cleaning and sanitization measures, and reducing touch points with new technology such as paperless tickets.
“It is no surprise that this pandemic has proven to be the most challenging time in Milwaukee Rep’s 66 year history, “ stated Executive Director Chad Bauman. “Like other cultural institutions in Milwaukee and theaters around the country, our mission is to serve our community the best way we know how and that means planning for a time when we will gather again safely and share in the collective experience of live theater. We are grateful for our over 10,000 Subscribers who have already renewed for the 2020/21 Season allowing us to keep 100 staff and artists employed during this time in order to create an exceptional season of plays ready to wow audiences starting in November.”
“At a time when every individual and institution is dealing with a crisis the likes of which we never could have predicted, I’m proud of the work Milwaukee Rep has and will continue to do to serve this community,” said Board President Greg Oberland. “The arts and theater in particular are a vital part of what makes this city so special. We must forge a thoughtful path forward so it can continue to thrive for future generations.”
As a nonprofit arts organization, Milwaukee Rep relies heavily on the support of Donors, Subscribers and Single Ticket buyers. Their individual support is crucial to the organization’s existence as Milwaukee Rep and other arts organizations are realizing significant losses due to the impact of COVID-19. If you are looking for a meaningful way to help, please renew or purchase a Subscription for Milwaukee Rep’s 2020/21 Season and/or donate today.
Below is a full timeline of the revised 2020/21 Season. For more information, please visit www.MilwaukeeRep.com.
Milwaukee Repertory Theater
A New Musical Comedy Celebrating Family, Folly and Football
Dad’s Season Tickets
Book, Music and Lyrics by Matt Zembrowski
Directed by Ryan Quinn
October 30, 2020 – January 3, 2021
Direct from its sold-out engagement in Door County where it became the bestselling show in Northern Sky Theater’s 28-year history, comes this new musical comedy for football fanatics and the people who love them. Who will inherit Frank’s treasured season tickets at Lambeau Field? The Kosinski sisters employ every trick in the playbook, on the way to relearning that family isn’t everything; it’s the only thing. With songs like “When You Live in Green Bay” and “What Do You Do with a Bye Week,” this quintessential Wisconsin musical will warm your heart and leave you rooting for the home team!
Eight Suspects, One Thrilling Ride
Murder on the Orient Express
Adapted for the stage by Ken Ludwig
Directed by Marti Lyons
November 10 – December 13, 2020
Board the exotic and mysterious Orient Express as it takes off into the opulence and grandeur of the 1930s, with a train full of suspects, each with a motive and an alibi. This dazzling new adaptation of Agatha Christie’s masterpiece is filled with twists, turns and larger-than-life characters. Join beloved detective Hercule Poirot
as he battles the clock to figure out “whodunit” in this murder mystery that’s perfect for the holiday season.
A Trailblazing Spirit
By Lydia R. Diamond
Directed by Tinashe Kajese-Bolden
January 5 – January 31, 2021
Declared the Best New Play of 2019 by The Wall Street Journal, this sensational theatrical event knocks it out of the park with a high intensity glimpse into the world of the first woman to go pro in baseball’s Negro Leagues. Against all odds, Toni Stone blazes a path in the male-dominated sports world, shattering expectations and creating her own set of rules. Follow Toni’s journey as she fights for love, equality and a chance to do what she wants the most — play baseball. Filled with humor and the love of the game, this intimate and profoundly relevant portrait of America will have you cheering along.
“The Voice” Returns to the Stackner
A Musical Tribute to Frank Sinatra
Created by David Grapes and Todd Olson
Book by Todd Olson
Original Production Directed by David Grapes
Directed by Kelley Faulkner
January 8 – March 7, 2021
From the king of swing to the Rat Pack, Ol’ Blue Eyes charmed his way into the hearts of millions. Celebrate the pivotal moments of Sinatra’s remarkable five-decade career with a journey through his greatest hits. Four performers sing classics such as “I’ve Got the World on a String,” “Fly Me to the Moon” and “New York, New York.” Experience the elegance of “The Chairman of the Board” as you’re transported back to the era of supper clubs, vintage Las Vegas and the perfect martini.
A John (Jack) D. Lewis New Play Development Program Production
A Gastronomical Co-World Premiere about Revolution
By Meghan Brown
Directed by Laura Braza
February 2 – March 14, 2021
Three women have a very important job—to protect high-ranking government leaders from assassination attempts by servings as food Tasters. When one rebellious Taster goes on a hunger strike, her actions reverberate through the group, causing them to question what they believe in and where their loyalties lie.
Equal parts Hunger Games, The Handmaid’s Tale and Food Network, this darkly funny new play asks the question: when one must choose between their ideas, personal safety and well-being of those close to them—what do they do? A play for the foodie and revolutionary in all of us.
The Dreams She Carried Were Unsinkable
Titanic The Musical
Music & Lyrics by Maury Yeston
Book by Peter Stone
Directed by Mark Clements
February 23 – April 4, 2021
Winner of five Tony Awards, Titanic, The Musical is a stirring and unforgettable account of the first and last days of the ship of dreams. This epic musical features real stories of people aboard the most legendary ship in the world from third class immigrants dreaming of a better tomorrow to first-class passengers living a life of fame and fortune. Rarely produced due to its size and complexity, this stunning and majestic musical sails into the intimate Quadracci Powerhouse for the theatrical event of the year!
A Star Is Born
Artists Lounge Live Presents
Get Happy: Angela Ingersoll Sings Judy Garland
March 11 – May 9, 2021
Emmy nominee Angela Ingersoll celebrates Judy Garland in a powerful virtuoso performance, as seen on PBS. Ingersoll’s moving concert delivers two glorious hours of tremendous vocals, passionate storytelling, and naturally winning humor. Ingersoll won acclaim starring as Garland in End of the Rainbow, including
Chicago’s Jeff Award and LA Times Woman of the Year in Theatre. Chicago Sun-Times exclaims, “Phenomenal. Judy Garland has been reborn.” Songs include “Over the Rainbow,” “The Trolley Song,” and “The Man That Got Away.”
A John (Jack) D. Lewis New Play Development Program Production
World Premiere Event
Antonio’s Song/ I Was Dreaming of a Son
By Dael Orlandersmith and Antonio Edwards Suarez
Directed by Mark Clements
March 24 – May 2, 2021
A poetic journey of a dancer/artist/father questioning the balance of his passions – art, culture, family. A story that questions/challenges the legacy of stereotypes: of manhood/race/fatherhood. This solo/movement drama explores the sins of our fathers and mothers – as well as the gifts that our parents bestow upon us. How do we own the responsibility – TO RECOGNIZE? TO BE AWARE? Antonio Edwards Suarez, a breathtaking performer shares the legacy with pain, promise and hope.
Shakespeare with a Twist
As You Like It
By William Shakespeare
Adapted & Directed by Daryl Cloran
Conceived by Daryl Cloran and the Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival
April 20 – May 23, 2021
The Beatles meet the Bard in this rollicking, celebratory musical take on William Shakespeare’s As You Like It. It’s 1960s British Columbia and love is in the air as a handful of cross-dressing lovers lead to mistaken identities,
hilarious mishaps and loads of laughs. Interwoven into Shakespeare’s classic romantic comedy, the production features over 20 Beatles songs performed live including “She Loves You,” “I Want to Hold Your Hand” and “Let It Be.” This perfect prelude to summer will have you rolling with laughter and singing along to some of the best songs ever written.
From Bach to Broadway
May 14 – June 27, 2021
What happens when you put two pianos onstage, add two virtuoso piano players, and throw in a limitless songbook that defies genre and decade? You get Piano Men! Equal parts concert and sing-along, this exhilarating and entertaining musical revue will have you clapping, laughing and calling out requests for your favorite songs. Inspired by the hard working piano players who play everywhere from bars to airports, hotel lobbies to grand concert halls, Piano Men will feature a unique set list from rock, pop, classical, Broadway and everything in-between. Filled with hilarious stories, and featuring Milwaukee’s favorite “Piano Man” Steve Watts, this world premiere event will leave you wanting to come back for more.
A Tenderhearted Favorite
By Robert Harling
Directed by May Adrales
June 1 – June 27, 2021
In Chinquapin, Louisiana anybody who is anybody gets their hair done at Truvy’s beauty shop—where the women are all sass and brass. Through clouds of hairspray and over the buzz of blow dryers, six southern spitfires gather each week to gossip and support each other through thick and thin. But those bonds are tested when the ladies face a life-changing event. Infused with heart and humor, Steel Magnolias is a hilarious story of love, loss, and enduring friendship.
Milwaukee’s Favorite Holiday Tradition
A Christmas Carol
November 24 – December 24, 2020
By Charles Dickens
Adapted & Directed by Mark Clements
A Christmas Carol is a wonderful tale of love, hope and redemption with just the right blend of beautiful music, lively dancing, stunning sets and eye-popping special effects. It’s a dazzling Christmas feast with enough theatrical goodies to fill any sized stocking hung by the chimney with care. Join Bob Cratchit, Tiny Tim and Scrooge in this holiday classic the whole family will love. Our special 45th Anniversary production will feature Lee E. Ernst as Ebenezer Scrooge.
About Milwaukee Repertory Theater
Milwaukee Rep is the largest performing arts organization in Wisconsin welcoming nearly 300,000 people at 700 performances of 15 productions a season in the Patty & Jay Baker Theater Complex featuring three unique performance venues– the Quadracci Powerhouse, Stiemke Studio and Stackner Cabaret. For over six decades, Milwaukee Rep has been a centerpiece of Milwaukee’s vibrant arts and cultural scene with productions ranging from Broadway musicals to Shakespeare to American Classics and New Works that are entertaining, inclusive and impactful. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Mark Clements and Executive Director Chad Bauman, Milwaukee Repertory Theater ignites positive change in the cultural, social, and economic vitality of its community by creating world-class theater experiences that entertain, provoke, and inspire meaningful dialogue among an audience representative of Milwaukee’s rich diversity.