Milwaukee Repertory Theater
Press Release

Milwaukee Repertory Theater Reopening in April with First In-Person Performance in Over a Year


By - Feb 25th, 2021 12:29 pm

Milwaukee, Wis – February 25, 2021 – Milwaukee Rep will reopen with in-person performances of previously announced Ella Fitzgerald: First Lady of Song with Alexis J Roston (Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill) beginning April 27 and running through May 23, 2021 in the Quadracci Powerhouse Theater.

“We are thrilled to finally welcome audiences back in a carefully conceived and safe environment to enjoy the shared experience of live theater once more,” said Artistic Director Mark Clements. “Theater is cathartic, empathetic, joyful, profound, and most importantly entertaining, which is something we are all greatly in need of after a year of our stages being closed to the public. These in-person concert performances of Ella Fitzgerald: First Lady of Song will be a wonderful and meaningful way of allowing us to start gathering again in a socially responsible manner, as we begin to turn the corner of the COVID-19 pandemic, and put behind us huge challenges of the last year that we have all endured. I’m immensely proud of our staff, artists, and Board leadership for their strong commitment to safety so we can continue to fulfill our mission of creating positive change in the cultural, social and economic vitality of our community.”

The City of Milwaukee health officials have approved Milwaukee Rep’s safety plan for in-person performances. Reinforcing protocols to support healthy and safe environments for patrons, staff and artists include increased cleaning procedures, paperless tickets, and upgrades to the HVAC system. Facemasks will be required for patrons and staff at all times. When reopened, theaters will initially operate at 25% of capacity and patrons will be seated in a socially distanced manner. Please visit this link for a detailed list of Safety protocols.

Presented by Artists Lounge Live, Award-winning actress Alexis J Roston salutes America’s favorite jazz singer in Ella Fitzgerald: First Lady of Song. Roston was last seen at Milwaukee Rep in her mesmerizing star turn as Billie Holiday in Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar and Grill (Chicago’s Jeff Award, Black Theater Alliance Award) and in the 2014 production of The Color Purple.  In a spellbinding concert performance with a live band, Roston effortlessly emits the sultry swing and playful joy that made Ella an American treasure. Classic tunes by Ellington, Gershwin, Porter and more include “Summertime,” “The Lady is a Tramp,” and “It Don’t Mean a Thing If It Ain’t Got That Swing.”

Tickets for Ella Fitzgerald: First Lady of Song go on sale March 15, 2021.  Purchase tickets at or by calling the Ticket Office at 414-224-9490

For more information, please visit

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