Matthew Reddin
On Stage 6/5

Summer bursts onto the arts scene

The MSO kindles a fiery finale, new works go on display at the Haggerty, Pridefest opens, and summer favorites bloom.

By - Jun 5th, 2012 04:00 am


Matthias Pintscher, guest conductor for the MSO’s last concert of the season, will premiere his new composition “Ex Nihilo” in Milwaukee. Photo courtesy MSO.

The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra ends its classical subscription season with three 20th-century works and one from the 21st. That would be Ex Nihilo, by guest composer/conductor Matthias Pintscher.  Pintscher will also lead the MSO through season Anton Webern’s tone poem Im Sommerwind, Stravinsky’s The Firebird, and Aaron Copland’s Clarinet Concerto. Principal clarinetist Todd Levy will be the soloist. Performances are Friday, June 8 at 11:15 a.m. and Saturday, June 9, at 8 p.m.; tickets range from $25 to $102. To order, call (414) 291-7605 or visit the MSO’s website.

And if you haven’t already, do sign up for TCD’s Sci-Fi Spectacular Spectacular, a special deal on the final MSO Pops show of the year, June 16. The $110 package includes dinner at the Intercontinental Hotel’s Gallerie M with our Senior Editor Tom Strini; a brief talk led by Strini on the concert over dessert; loge seats at the Marcus Center for the MSO Pops Sci-Fi Spectacular concert, hosted by George Takei and comprised of compositions from Star Wars, Star Trek, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, 2001: A Space Odyssey and The Day the Earth Stood Still; and automatic entry in a drawing for another pair of MSO tickets and a $50 Kil@wat gift certificate. Click through to order or send us an email for more information.

For 65 years, Milwaukee’s Fine Arts Quartet has performed a series of concerts called the Summer Evenings of Music, and their 66th series begins Sunday. The FAQ (violinists Ralph Evans and Efim Boico, violist Nicolo Eugelmi and new cellist Robert Cohen) will perform Beethoven’s String Quartet No. 2, Russian composer Efrem Zimbalist’s String Quartet and Gabriel Faure’s Piano Quintet No. 2, with guest pianist Xiayin Wang. The concert begins Sunday, June 10 at the Helen Bader Concert Hall at 7:30 p.m. All Summer Evening of Music concerts are free, but reservations at (414) 229-4308 are recommended.

This Thursday also marks the first Jazz in the Park of the season, performed as usual in Cathedral Square Park from 5 to 9 p.m. The long-standing Milwaukee tradition occurs every Thursday through Sept. 6. This week’s guest is Reverend Raven and the Chain Smoking Altar Boys; a full lineup can be found at the festival’s website. Jazz in the Park is free throughout the summer.


Packers fans are generally pretty loyal to each other. So when a group of Packer-loving aliens ask you to save their planet, you say yes, right? Such is the premise of Packer Fans from Outer Space, the sci-fi/football comedy mashup coming to the Marcus Center June 8. It pits a Door County apple farmer against the evil “Space Bears,” much to the chagrin of his Chicago Bears-loving wife. Did we mention it’s a sci-fi football musical comedy, with songs like “You Gotta Hate the Bears” and “Winning is the Only Thing”? Performances run June 8 to July 22, at 7:30 p.m. weeknights, 3 and 7:30 p.m. Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays, with occasional weekday matinees. Tickets are $40 and can be ordered (414) 273-7206 or at the Marcus’ online box office.

Alchemist Theatre opens Help Wanted, a 1940s-era drama penned by Aaron Kopec. The play depicts awkward accountant Rand Dandrich and his office assistant Marjory Lotus, who looks to find success by helping Dandrich find success. The only catch is the strange “games” she has Dandrich play to hone his focus and confidence – games which look to jeopardize their progress. Performances are Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays from June 7 to June 23, all shows at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $15 until June 9 and $17 after or at the door; visit the Alchemist’s online box office to order.

Susanne Carter portrays Little Misfit, a girl whose attempted career pursuits take her through cooking, music and secretarial schools before she finds her true calling. Photo credit Troy Freund.

This weekend, performance artist Susanne Carter comes to In Tandem Theater for The Adventures of Little Misfit. The work, which also features Chris Flieller and is directed by Jane Fleiller, is a coming-of-age story about a girl who doesn’t quite fit in that blends theater with music and modern dance elements. The show runs June 8 to 10, at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $20, $15 for students/seniors, and can be ordered at (414) 271-1371 or In Tandem’s website.

Angry Young Men, Ltd. brings their cast of puppets to Soulstice Theatre starting this weekend for Full Frontal Puppetry: Summer Sell-Out. Cast members including the Director Puppet, Murray Gauntman, the inventor Blondie and Joon the Ogre will be joined by guest host Alice Wilson, founder of silent-film comedy troupe M.U.T.E.S., for an evening of irreverent, dark humor. The company will perform four weekends this summer: June 8-9, June 15-16, July 13-14 and July 19-20. All shows are at 7:30 p.m., and tickets are $10.


“Mao” (1972), a Warhol screenprint recently added to the Haggerty’s Tatalovich Collection, will be among the works displayed by the museum for the first time.

Visual Art

The Haggerty Museum of Art opens three new summer exhibits Wednesday. Two of the exhibitions are photographic: Mark Ruwedel’s Dusk, a series of eight black and white images depicting decaying homes in the Southern California desert, and NYC July 4, 1981, a collection of photographs by Tom Arndt depicting an almost warlike Independence Day in New York City’s Little Italy and Chinatown neighborhoods. The largest of the three, though, is Selections from the Mary and Michael J. Tatalovich Collection, a wide array of American prints that cover seminal portions of the pop art and minimal canon. The collection has grown by 50 percent since the last time it was exhibited (in 1998), so many of the exhibit’s works are now being displayed for the first time. All three exhibitions run through Aug. 5; visit the Haggerty’s website for more information.



This weekend, Pridefest returns to the city of Milwaukee, celebrating its 25th anniversary. The city’s biggest LGBT event of the year will take place at the Summerfest grounds for the 16th consecutive year of music, dancing and more from Friday to Sunday. Mainstage headliners include Belinda Carlisle, performing Friday at 10:15 p.m.; Taylor Dayne, performing Saturday after 9:30 p.m. fireworks; and Berlin, performing Sunday at 8:30 p.m. Festival hours are 3 p.m. to 12 a.m. Friday, 12 p.m. to 12 a.m. Saturday and 12 p.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday (although the Dance Pavilion remains open until midnight). Admission is $15 at the door, with $12 tickets and a $25 three-day pass available online. For more information or to order, visit Pridefest’s website.


Boulevard Theatre: Cowboy Versus Samurai, through June 24

Fireside Theatre: Legally Blonde, through July 1

Last Chance

Pink Banana Theatre: One-Act Festival: The End of the World, through June 9

Skylight Music Theatre: Sunday in the Park with Georgethrough June 10

Sunset Playhouse: Six Degrees of Separation, through June 10

0 thoughts on “On Stage 6/5: Summer bursts onto the arts scene”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Hey Matthew… I would have thought that somewhere between ‘art’ and ‘festivals’ your June review of upcoming cultural events would have included The Lakefront Festival of Arts at MAM, June 15-17. It’s the 50th Anniversary and they expect 30,000 attendees this year. Plus it’s just about the best festival there is!

  2. Anonymous says:

    Hey Bob, Lakefront’s coming in the 6/12 edition of On Stage. — Strini

  3. Anonymous says:


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