Skylight Music Theatre will take a bold step this month, staging its first world premiere opera since artistic director Viswa Subbaraman took over the company in 2013. The Snow Dragon, by Thai-American composer Somtow Sucharitkul, is a fantasy epic about a boy who can travel between his world and a realm of eternal cold — and also a real-world drama illuminating the sensitive issue of domestic abuse.
Roelf Visagie, a white Afrikaner who drives a train in his native South Africa, is haunted by the death of a black African woman and her child. One night, out of nowhere, the woman steps in front of his engine as a way of committing suicide.
In its history as a company, Milwaukee Opera Theatre has gained a reputation for high-energy, imaginative productions. Their latest undertaking may be one of the most traditional in the opera canon — Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Mikado — but when MOT stages the classic, it comes with a twist: a complete reinterpretation of the score and story that sets it in a “percussion playground” where rhythm rules.
Athol Fugard's play about a railway conductor haunted by a woman who killed herself with his train receives an exemplary Midwest premiere at Milwaukee Chamber Theatre.
In March 2010, the Florentine Opera took a risk on a new work. The opera, Robert Aldridge and Herschel Garfein’s Elmer Gantry, which had received its world premiere performance three years prior, took the stage that month to high acclaim from Milwaukee audiences.
The Alchemist Theatre has always had a sort of devil-may-care attitude, with co-owner Aaron Kopec writing or commissioning whatever strikes his fancy — whether horror story, classic Shakespeare or zany comedy.
In 2006, a delusional gunman entered a one-room schoolhouse in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, home of an Old Order Amish community, with the intention of acting out his obsessive fantasy of molesting Amish girls. Although thwarted by the unexpected arrival of police, he shot 10 girls, ages 6 to 13, execution-style before killing himself. Five of the girls died.