University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Press Release

Veterans Bond as they Perform ‘Julius Caesar’

Actors from Feast of Crispian will present their first large-scale public performance at 7 p.m. Oct. 30 and 31 and 2 p.m. Nov. 1, at Next Act Theatre’s Performance Space, 255 S. Water St.

By - Oct 21st, 2015 12:04 pm

MILWAUKEE_An acting troupe of military veterans is using Shakespeare to help work through their challenges, with guidance from two University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee actors and faculty members.

Actors from Feast of Crispian will present their first large-scale public performance at 7 p.m. Oct. 30 and 31 and 2 p.m. Nov. 1, at Next Act Theatre’s Performance Space, 255 S. Water St.

Bill Watson, associate professor of theater, Nancy Smith-Watson, an actor and somatic body therapist, and Jim Tasse, senior lecturer in theater, founded Feast of Crispian as a way of helping veterans deal with depression, post-traumatic stress, addiction and reintegration into society. The name comes from the “Band of Brothers” speech in Shakespeare’s “Henry V.”

The Watsons and Tasse volunteer their services to the Clement J. Zablocki Veterans Affairs Medical Center, and held their first workshop there nearly three years ago. They have worked with more than 250 veterans, doing weekend theater boot camps and small presentations for family and friends. “Julius Caesar” is the group’s first performance for the public. Volunteer actors will be on stage with Feast of Crispian members, helping with lines so that the troupe’s actors may focus on the emotions of the characters.

Admission is free, though donations are accepted. For reservations, which are strongly recommended, call (414) 278-0765.

About UWM

As Wisconsin’s only public urban research university, UWM has established an international reputation for excellence in research, community engagement, teaching and entrepreneurism. UWM educates 27,000 students on an operating budget of $546 million, an amount that does not include federal financial aid passed through to students. The Princeton Review named UWM a “2015 Best in the Midwest” university based on overall academic excellence and student reviews. An engine for innovation in southeastern Wisconsin, UWM’s economic impact is more than $1.5 billion per year in Wisconsin alone.

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