Brian Jacobson
Performing Arts and Music Preview

May 26 – June 1

By - May 26th, 2009 01:07 pm

With spring awakening ancient feelings, Milwaukee’s fine arts scene turns to a celebration of the spirit. We suspect many artists, actors, and musicians are oiling up their bikes for next weekend’s Miller Lite Ride for the Arts (more on that in a feature article for TCD next week). But there are several programs for kids, by kids, and by up-and-comers featured this week:



William Barnewitz, Pabst Theater, 5/26 at 7 p.m.
Ooh, a wine tasting precedes this event. That just may be the corker for a local french horn pop star whose out promoting his latest album, The Long Road Home. It’s an album that celebrates fighting “adversity with the triumph of art, featuring some of the greatest artists in the world.” Proceeds from Barnewitz’s album benefits Parkinson Disease research and education at the Wisconsin Parkinson Association. Barnewitz came to Milwaukee over a decade ago as a soloist for the MSO and currently teaches at Northwestern University. He has guested with a few major American symphonies, and is a great propoent for the arts. Event is tonight, so contact 414.286.3663 or see the Pabst page about Barnewitz.

thibaudet_surprisesMSO: Musical Surprises, Uihlein Hall, 5/29-30 at 8 p.m.
With Pietari Inkinen as conductor and featuring Jean-Yves Thibaudet on piano, the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra presents yet another deep pocket of music with two selections from complex French composers that mine some epic subjects. First a religious meditation by Messiaen, sober and lovely, but sometimes fierce. Then a lively, graceful concerto by Saint-Saens. Finally, two Sibelius symphonies — one restless, the other thoughtful and grand. Contact the Marcus Center box office at 414.273.7206 or visit their website.

How Can I Keep from Singing?, Milwaukee Children’s Choir at Uihlein Hall, 5/31 at 4 p.m.
It’s a 15th Anniversary special for all five choir levels, and it happens Sunday afternoon for the first time at the Marcus Center for the Arts. Alumni are scheduled to join in on the joyous sound with selections from the past 2.5 decades. This concert is also Emily Crocker’s final MCC concert performance as Artistic Director before she assumes a new role as MCC’s Artistic Advisor. Choral classics will include John Rutter’s “What Sweeter Music,” “For the Beauty of the Earth,” and MCC Founder and Artistic Director Emily Holt Crocker’s arrangement of “How Can I Keep From Singing!” plus excerpts from David Fanshawe’s African Sanctus. More information: 414.273.7206 or 888.612.3500 and see the Milwaukee Children Choir’s website.



Tony and Tina’s Wedding, Turner Hall Ballroom, starts 5/26 at 7:30 p.m.
Have you ever wanted to eat while watching theater? Have you ever wanted to eat food from Buca’s while marveling at the Turner’s storied architecture during a wedding? Have you ever wanted to watch said wedding spin off its Italian rails? Well, you are in luck. One of the longest Off-Broadway shows comes to the Turner for three nights of frivolty and chicken parmesan. Contact 414.286.3663 or visit the event’s page online.

Broadway for Kids, Sunset Playhouse Studio Theatre, 5/27 – 30
‘Bug in a Rug’ theatre company members Beth Mulkerron and Paul Helm present a family friendly show with great tunes from famous Broadway shows. It promises to be an interactive pajamas and blanket party for any age. Come a half hour early and pay $2 extra to participate in a craft related to the performance. Call the box office at 262.782.4430 or visit Sunset Playhouse’s website.

The Shadowbox, Off the Wall Theatre, starts 5/28 at 8 p.m.
In a season where this scrappy company has gone into various aspects of “dysfunctional families” as a theme, Off the Wall takes on Michael Cristofer’s Pulitzer Prize-winning play about terminal illness and how one set of characters deals with it. OWT says ” … this play is not about dying. Instead it is about how you must continue to live life and love before the chance is gone. Within the span of one spring day, three very different families must deal with the curve ball life has thrown them. The manner in which each of these families confronts the impending loss of a loved one is as diverse as life itself: touching, tearful, courageous, angry, blindly hopeful, and at times surprisingly hilarious.”  Contact 414.327.2552 or visit Off the Wall for details.

Noises Off!, Sunset Playhouse, opens 5/29 at 7:30 p.m.
The famous farce by Michael Frayn makes its way to Elm Grove with a run that goes through June. Call 262.782.4430 or visit Sunset’s website for ticketing info.

Play in a Day 4, Tenth Street Theatre, 5/30 at 8 p.m.
“It’s an acrobatic feat of theatre, the artistic equivalent of a trapeze artist diving off a platform without a safety net, hoping to god that he finds a bar swinging towards him.”

Alamo Basement and Insurgent Theatre present an annual event happening at the Tenth Street Theatre. “The process is simple: begin writing a full-length play on Friday at 8:00 PM. At 8:00 PM on Saturday, that play goes up.” It’s a full length play, with a complete script and no improv. They do costumes, lighting, props, the whole shebang. Call 414.271.1371 or look up Tenth Street Theatre’s site.

Milwaukee Comedy Festival, Off-Broadway Theatre, 5/30 at 7:30p.m .and 10p.m.
The best of Milwaukee comedy groups are set for a two show special benefiting the August Milwaukee Comedy Festival. Audiences will have an unique opportunity to win door prizes and tickets to future event. Tickets for the shows are available for $7, or audience members may attend both for only $12. Call 414.278.0765 or visit



dpc20509picwithtxtDPC2 presents Spring Departures, Danceworks,  5/29 – 30 at 7:30 p.m.
The third annual special, post-season show introduce 10 dedicated dancers from the 2008-2009 Company. DPC2 is made up of pre-professional Repertory Company dancers and an internship training program for advanced level dancers ages 16 through adult and includes an Internship Scholarship. They will perform a range of original works by Dani Kuepper, Gina T’ ai, Liz Hildebrandt, Hannah Marquardt  and Andrea Hill Johnson. Call: 414.277.8480 or visit

For venue, tickets, showtimes and more, visit Footlights Milwaukee online.

Leave a Reply

You must be an Urban Milwaukee member to leave a comment. Membership, which includes a host of perks, including an ad-free website, tickets to marquee events like Summerfest, the Wisconsin State Fair and the Florentine Opera, a better photo browser and access to members-only, behind-the-scenes tours, starts at $9/month. Learn more.

Join now and cancel anytime.

If you are an existing member, sign-in to leave a comment.

Have questions? Need to report an error? Contact Us