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Warren Gerds/Critic at Large: Week ahead: Performances arriving or no longer in calendar, part 38

Critic At Large

Coronavirus COVID-19 impact

Allie Lent, a University of Wisconsin-Green Bay theater major, is featured as a young woman struggling with the grief of her sister’s suicide in the UWGB world premiere production of “Faithfall” streaming December 3-8. (UW-Green Bay photo)

GREEN BAY, Wis. (WFRV) – Along with a few performances that are happening live with in-person audiences, below is an overview of performances that were to take place in Northeastern Wisconsin in the coming week. Due to the coronavirus COVID-19 outbreak, the “was arriving,” etc. events are canceled or postponed.


Since the performance cancellations and postponements started around March 12 in Northeastern Wisconsin, affected have been at least 808 public productions and at least 2,705 performances, not counting club, casino or other engagements.

Many organizations are canceling or postponing performances through the end of the year at least. In a normal year, last year, the week ahead saw performances at or by the Northeastern Wisconsin Dance Organization in Green Bay, The Dance Company in De Pere, Weill Center in Sheboygan, Weidner Center in Green Bay, Menominee Nation Arena in Oshkosh, UW-Green Bay Music, Fox Cities PAC in Appleton, Play-by-Play Theatre in Green Bay, Acts of Peace Players in Oshkosh, Treehouse Theater in Manitowoc, Resch Center in Ashwaubenon, Capitol Civic Centre Community Chorale in Manitowoc and Birder Players in De Pere, among ongoing professional and community theater productions. The tallies above have become mere shadows of performances influenced by the coronavirus.


– In Green Bay, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Theatre will present a virtual presentation of faculty member Thomas Campbell’s world premiere of Faithfall(preview story) at 7 p.m. Dec. 3 on the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts’ YouTube site (see Access continues to Dec. 8 – free of charge with donations accepted. Pre-show interviews and a post-show discussion on the play’s themes will provide additional insights.

– In Baileys Harbor, Door Shakespeare will present livestream readings of essays from David Sedaris’ “Holidays on Ice” at 7 p.m. Dec. 4-5, 5 p.m. Dec. 6, 7 p.m. Dec. 18-19 and 5 p.m. Dec. 20 at The Door Shakespeare Reading Series is free, and donations are accepted. Adult content and language. Parental discretion is advised. Performing is Michael Stebbins, producing artistic director of Door Shakespeare. According to the website: “Coming to you live from Michael’s rental unit in Shorewood, Wisconsin, Stebbins will share three essays, including one new addition titled, ‘The Cow and the Turkey,’ a tender (no pun intended) story of barnyard animals who decide to share holiday presents by way of ‘Secret Santa.’ The tenderness is also doused with Sedaris’ brand of holiday hot sauce, adding a special kick as only Sedaris can.” Stebbins says, “As an actor, my job is to stay out of Sedaris’ way and let his wonderful writing cast the spell. His imagery is so vivid, his voice so identifiable, I think of myself as more of a conduit, which is a welcome challenge. I hope that excitement, that admiration, comes through in this virtual delivery. But, there are so many who are familiar with and love his work – whether it is because of National Public Radio, or his essays in The New Yorker or his many books – I am certainly not alone.”

– In De Pere, Birder Studio of Performing Arts will present “Frozen Kids” live, in-person at Broadway Theatre at 11 a.m. Dec. 5, 6:30 p.m. Dec. 9, 6:30 p.m. Dec. 10, 5 and 7 p.m. Dec. 11 and 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Dec. 12. Info:

– In Oshkosh, The Grand Oshkosh will present the virtual “ExtravaGRANDza” at 7 p.m. Dec. 6 free of charge. Info: The show of Christmas music and variety-style acts is pre-recorded from people’s studios or living rooms and featuring friends of The Grand. Currently set to appear: B2wins, Erin Boehme with Ross Catterdon and Julio Reyes, Bill Blagg, Blue Canvas Orchestra, Boogie and the Yo-Yo’Z, Natalie Cordone and Shawn Kilgore, Laura Ellis, Frank Ferrante as Groucho Marx, James Garner, Joshua Kane, Mallory Lewis and Lamb Chop, Billy McGuigan of “Yesterday & Today: The Interactive Beatles Experience” and “Rave On! The Buddy Holly Experience,” Mister MOJO of “MOJO & the Bayou Gypsies,” Lisa Rock and the cast of “A Carpenters’ Christmas,” Sundae + Mr. Goessl and Bill Zeffiro, with a special appearance by The Four Phantoms and Jeff Daniels.

– In Green Bay, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Theatre will present a virtual presentation of the revue Only for Now(preview story) at 7 p.m. Dec. 10 on the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts’ YouTube site (see free of charge with donations accepted.

– In Oshkosh, The Grand Oshkosh will host the live, in-person “For Kids from One to 92!” at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 10-11, featuring Steve March Tormé, Michael Bailey and Mark Wood. Info:

– In Ashwaubenon, Daddy D Productions will present the live, in-person Daddy D’s Christmas 2020(preview story) at Stadium Bar and Grille as dinner shows Dec. 10-12.


– In Oshkosh, University of Wisconsin-Theatre and Radio TV Film will present virtual productions of Christopher Durang’s Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike(my review) and Tennessee Williams’ The Glass Menagerie(my review) to Dec. 6. A pay-to-view ticket allows access anytime during the week via computer, tablet, cell phone or smart TV. Info:


– In Green Bay, Let Me Be Frank Productions show troupe will continue the live, in-person “A Frank’s Christmas(my review) to Dec. 23 at the Meyer Theatre.


– In Sister Bay, Midsummer’s Music will collaborate as the Chicago Philharmonic celebrates two influential Black composers Dec. 6, in its “David Perry + Friends” program that will be streamed at 4 p.m. on the website, under the Concerts tab. According to a press release: Scott Speck, Chicago Philharmonic artistic director and principal conductor, host of the “Hear it Together” series, will be joined by violin virtuoso David Perry. The two will provide historical context and performance perspective to the chamber program that showcases works from George Walker and Florence Price. Adding to the historical dialogue as a featured speaker is Karen Walwyn, recording artist and specialist in the works of Florence Price. Allyson Fleck, Midsummer’s Music executive director, assistant artistic director and performer, will join the introductory discussion about the program’s original setting and why these two composers “need to be heard in these strenuous times, as they remind us of the power and beauty of universal feelings expressed in music.” The event starts performance by Wendy Guiterrez of Chicago Center for Music Education introduced by Troy Anderson, executive director. Midsummer’s Music performed Walker’s “Molto Adagio from String Quartet No. 1” and Price’s “Quintet in A Minor for Piano and Strings” as part of its 2020 virtual concert season, featuring musicians David Perry and Ann Palen, violins, Allyson Fleck, viola, Paula Kosower, cello, and Jeannie Yu, piano, all of whom appear in this Chicago Philharmonic program. Midsummer’s Music was co-founded in 1990 by Jim and Jean Berkenstock, long-time Door County summer residents and principal orchestral players with the Lyric Opera of Chicago.


+ CANCELED: “Dad’s Christmas Miracle,” Dec. 4-6, 10-12, a presentation of Wolf River Theatrical Troupe, at Real Opportunities Outreach, New London.

+ CANCELED: “Elf the Musical, Jr.,” Dec. 4-6, 11-13 (eight performances), a presentation of Abrams Spotlight Productions, at The Nancy Byng Community Theater, Abrams.

+ CANCELED: “The Nutcracker Ballet,” Dec. 5-6, a presentation of Brittany’s School of Dance, at Weill Center, Sheboygan.

+ CANCELED: “To Kill a Mockingbird,” Dec. 8-13 (eight performances), a touring production, at Fox Cities PAC, Appleton.

+ REPLACED: “Christmas by the Bay Presents A Christmas Carol,” an in-person Theatre on the Bay event, with virtual performances of Christmas selections Dec. 17-20.


+ CANCELED: “Jingle and Mingle,” Dec. 5, a Manitowoc Symphony Orchestra event, at Capitol Civic Centre, Manitowoc.

+ CANCELED: “Christmas Sing,” Dec. 6, an Oshkosh Community Band event, at The Grand Oshkosh.


– In Green Bay, Green Bay Community Theater will continue its virtual “Off-Stage Season” series with the webinar “Basic Principles of Theater Make-up” from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Dec. 3. Limited space is available. To register: Featured is Christopher Russo, a designer and instructor at make-up Studio FX. Russo has worked a lifetime designing theater makeup for theaters of various reputations from coast to coast, culminating at the prestigious grand opera, The Lyric Opera of Chicago. He continues his design work free-lancing wherever and whenever called upon. Viewing of previous events in the series is available by sending an email to and a link will be sent.

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