Milwaukee Chamber Theatre
Press Release

Milwaukee Chamber Theatre Marks 40 Years on June 15, 2015

Milwaukee Chamber Theatre (MCT) was co-founded in 1975 by two local actors.

By - Jun 10th, 2015 02:19 pm

Milwaukee, WI. … On June 15, 1975 at Vogel Hall in the (then) Performing Arts Center in downtown Milwaukee a new theatre company took to the stage to offer its first performance and Milwaukee Chamber Theatre was born. The production was George Bernard Shaw’s DON JUAN IN HELL and it featured Robert Ingham as Don Juan, William McKereghan as the Devil, Ruth Schudson as Dona Ana and Montgomery Davis as the Statue.

Milwaukee Chamber Theatre (MCT) was co-founded in 1975 by two local actors, Montgomery Davis and Ruth Schudson who believed that Milwaukee needed more than one theatre for professional (Equity) actors and took it upon themselves to correct the problem by founding a new theatre company. Davis and Schudson envisioned a space where audiences could open their minds to new theatrical ideas and Milwaukee’s theatre professionals could broaden their skills and apply their craft.  Montgomery Davis went on to be MCT’s artistic director for the first 30 years of the company’s existence.  In 2005, Milwaukee-based director and actor C. Michael Wright was hired as the company’s second artistic leader.

HIGHLIGHTS OVER 40 YEARS:

  • Milwaukee Chamber Theatre has produced approximately 180 productions. (visit the MCT website for production history)
  • For twenty years of its existence (1983-2002), MCT was the only theatre company in the United States to produce an annual Shaw Festival.
  • In addition to George Bernard Shaw, other playwrights’ work frequently produced by MCT include Athol Fugard, A.R. Gurney, Alan Bennett, Terrance McNally, Noël Coward, Donald Margulies and Tony Kushner.
  • In 1993, MCT became a resident theatre company at the newly built Broadway Theatre Center facility.
  • In addition to co-founders Montgomery Davis and Ruth Schudson, actors who have appeared on the MCT stage most often are: Durward McDonald, Bill Leach, Mary MacDonald Kerr, Norman Moses, Carrie Hitchcock, Brian Mani, James Tasse, Angela Iannone and Dan Mooney.
  • In 2006, the first Young Playwrights Festival was produced by MCT. Each Festival features three one-act plays, the winners of our annual high school playwriting competition. YPF is MCT’s signature education program with the participation of hundreds of young playwrights and emerging theatre artists since its inception.
  • In 2007 MCT produced a workshop and staged reading of THE DALY NEWS, the inaugural project in the Montgomery Davis Play Development Series. Through the Series, each season MCT develops two new scripts by Wisconsin playwrights.

Today, under the leadership of Producing Artistic Director C. Michael Wright and Managing Director Kirsten Mulvey, Milwaukee Chamber Theatre works to fulfill its mission to produce intimate, high-quality, professional theatrical works of literary merit that engage and challenge the audience, while employing and nurturing principally local theatre artists.

Milwaukee Chamber Theatre is very pleased to mark its 40th Anniversary on June 15, 2015 with the completion of one of the most successful seasons in the company’s history.  The 2014-2015 Season productions boasted record attendance and ticket sales. Earlier this month, MCT held a 40th Anniversary Gala Celebration raising $70,000 to ensure the continuation of artistic and educational programing.

Milwaukee Chamber Theatre’s 2015-2016 Season includes BOEING BOEING by Marc Camoletti, August 13-30, 2015; DEAR ELIZABETH, by Sarah Ruhl, September 23 – October 18, 2015; “LOVE STORIES” featuring three, one-act plays: VILLAGE WOOING by George Bernard Shaw, THE JEWISH WIFE by Bertolt Brecht and HERE WE ARE by Dorothy Parker, performing November 25 – December 20, 2015; SLOWGIRL, by Greg Pierce, February 24 – March 20, 2016; and FALLEN ANGELS, by Noël Coward April 14 – May 1, 2016.  For more information, visit www.milwaukeechambertheatre.com.

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0 thoughts on “Milwaukee Chamber Theatre Marks 40 Years on June 15, 2015”

  1. Anonymous says:

    I never knew that Montgomery Davis and Ruth Schudson “believed that Milwaukee needed more than one theatre for professional (Equity) actors and took it upon themselves to correct the problem by founding a new theatre company.” Good for them – bravo! – and now Chamber Theater is definitely a tradition in Milwaukee!

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