Milwaukee Chamber Theatre
Press Release

Darkly Funny Solo-Performer Tour De Force!


By - Jan 7th, 2022 01:13 pm
Image courtesy of the Milwaukee Chamber Theatre.

Image courtesy of the Milwaukee Chamber Theatre.

MILWAUKEE, WI – January 7, 2022- Milwaukee Chamber Theatre announces full casting and production details for MALA by Melinda Lopez directed by Artistic Director Brent Hazelton. MALA opens Saturday, January 22nd at 8pm. The preview night is on Friday, January 21st at 7:30pm. Tickets can be purchased via the MCT website, or by calling 414-291-7800.

Melinda Lopez’s play, MALA, is a darkly funny and unsentimentally poetic solo-performer tour de force featuring Milwaukee favorite Rána Roman. In MALA, an adult daughter strives to live up to the unpredictable demands of caregiving for her aging mother while navigating this new stage of their lives and relationship. Maddening and moving, hard and hopeful, trying and triumphant—it’s only in letting go of trying to be the perfect child that Mala becomes a good one.

“MALA invites us to be vulnerable, to forgive ourselves and others, express compassion, and lets us know that there is no one who will teach us how to navigate life–we just have to move through it the best we can,” said MCT Marketing Director Nicole Acosta.

Prior to joining Milwaukee Chamber Theatre as Artistic Director, Whitewater native Hazelton spent 20 seasons at Milwaukee Repertory Theater, including ten as Associate Artistic Director, where he directed critically and popularly acclaimed productions including LIBERACE!, HOW THE WORLD BEGAN, THE WHIPPING MAN, A CHRISTMAS CAROL, MCGUIRE, OUR TOWN, and GUARDS AT THE TAJ. After directing the 2020/21 MCT virtual season production of UNDERNEATH THE LINTEL, Brent is thrilled to make his in-person MCT directing debut with MALA.  He will also direct Paula Vogel’s INDECENT coming up March 2022.

“Through MALA, Lopez offers a deeply personal perspective on what it means to be a caretaker, family member, and human, and she roots all of her work in her personal mission to create complex Latina characters and put them center stage,” said Hazelton.  “MALA is funny, cathartic, and offers an honest examination of what happens when we find ourselves unprepared for impossible situations.  And I’m thrilled to collaborate with Rana on the play.  Her sensitivity, abundant heart, and wonderful sense of humor are a perfect match for the play.

Rána Roman is a Milwaukee native and a proud graduate of the Milwaukee H.S. of the Arts. She is honored to be back at MCT bringing this beautiful story to life. She is deeply grateful for all the hard work and compassion that has gone into getting our doors open again. Join us for a special appearance by Rána on January 13th at Latino Arts at the United Community Center at 5:30pm for HERE2PLAY.

MCT is excited to introduce HERE2PLAY in partnership with Latino Arts at United Community Center. HERE2PLAY is a sneak peek into MCT’s upcoming production of MALA by Melinda Lopez. Through collective conversation, a live performance, and of course, food, and live music by Caña Brava. HERE2PLAY is a chance to immerse yourself in the world of the play alongside your neighbors and hear directly from the artists about their personal connection to the story, all before opening night. RSVP to this free community event here:

The creative team includes Stage Management by Emily Wright, Scenic Design by Lisa Schlenker, Costume Design by Jazmin Aurora Medina, Sound Design by Josh Schmidt, Lighting Design by Colin Gawronski, Associate Scenic and Properties Design by Simone Tegge, Dramaturgy by Nicole Acosta, Scenic Construction by Ron Scot Fry, and ASM/COVID Safety Management by Matthew Lewis.


Rána Roman

Rána’s previous collaborations with MCT include VANYA AND SONYA AND MASHA AND SPIKE (Cassandra) and LEND ME A TENOR (Maria). Most recently she was seen reprising her role as Mrs. Cratchit in ACHRISTMAS CAROL at the Milwaukee Rep. In the world that was before, Rána had the pleasure of performing in KISS ME KATE (Lily/Kate) at Skylight Music Theatre, ON THE WINGS OF A MARIPOSA (Mámi) at First Stage Theatre and in LIFE SUCKS (Ella) at Forward Theater of Madison, where she is also a member of the Advisory Company.


MALA runs from January 21st until February 13th. Tickets can be purchased by calling 414-291-7800 or ordering online at More information about MCT, it’s 21/22 season, how to purchase tickets, and how to donate can be found at For Talk Theatre, ViewPoints and TalkBack dates visit


The health and safety of our artists, staff, and patrons is extremely important to us. That is why we have joined dozens of other local cultural organizations in requiring all audience members ages 12 and older be either fully vaccinated or provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of your performance date. Proof of vaccination or negative test must be presented with a matching photo ID. Additionally, masks are required inside the Broadway Theatre Center at all times. For full details of our health and safety plan, go to


Founded in 1975 by Montgomery Davis and Ruth Schudson, guided until 2020 by Michael Wright and Kirsten Finn, and now led by Brent Hazelton and Amy A. Salat, Milwaukee Chamber Theatre (MCT) partners with other arts organizations, community-based organizations, and universities to produce thought-provoking productions and innovative outreach programs on an intimate, human scale. As a leader in developing Milwaukee and Wisconsin’s theater community, MCT provides regular employment and a stable artistic home to local theatre professionals through a five-play subscription season, the Young Playwrights Festival (YPF), and the Montgomery Davis Play Development Series (MDPDS). MCT performs at the Broadway Theatre Center in Milwaukee’s Historic Third Ward and is a proud Member Group of the United Performing Arts Fund. For more information, to purchase tickets, or to make a donation please visit

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