Warren Gerds/Critic at Large: Looking Back on Happenings in Region’s Performing Arts in 2018

Northern Sky Theater groundbreaking  may 27, 2018_1545928858582.jpg.jpg

Some of the news of 2018 on the Northeastern Wisconsin performing arts scene:

+ In Door County, Northern Sky Theater broke ground on a new headquarters. The facility will consolidate the professional company’s resources and provide an indoor theater. Northern Sky Theater’s summer shows will continue outdoors at Peninsula State Park Amphitheater. The company announced it will be moving its fall productions from Door Community Auditorium and its annual “Home for the Holidays” late-December productions to its indoor theater in 2019.

+ In Oshkosh, The Howard opened as a multipurpose venue in the renovated former Eagles Club, and the local Timber Mill Theatre Company presented a professional production of “Forever Plaid: Plaid Tidings” as an introductory upscale dinner theater venture. Theatrical performances are part of the future of The Howard.

+ In Manitowoc, a project called Act Two was started at Capitol Civic Center. The multi-million-dollar project includes improvements to lobby areas and auditorium seating.

+ In Door County, performances of Rogue Theater at Jaycee Hall came to a close. A troupe newsletter says a goal is to secure a viable theater space.

+ Throughout the region, a merger in the University of Wisconsin System affected theater programs on the Northeastern Wisconsin campuses, with four-year campuses absorbing some responsibilities of the two-campuses. Theater offerings continue to play a role everywhere.

+ In Oshkosh, ACTs of Peace Players gave its first performance, joining a general growth in community theater in the region.

+ In Green Bay, the lobby of the Weidner Center for the Performing Arts was freshened as the center marked its 25th year.

+ In Door County, world premieres included “Now and Then” at Peninsula Players Theatre and “Dairy Heirs” and “Boxcar” at Northern Sky Theater.

+ In Appleton, Brian Groner left as music director and conductor of the Fox Valley Symphony Orchestra, and a search for his replacement started.

There was more bubble and churn throughout the area – as there will be in the coming year.

Contact me at warren.gerds@wearegreenbay.com. Watch for my on-air Critic at Large editions on WFRV-TV at 6:20 a.m. Sundays. My latest book, “I Fell Out of a Tree in Fresno (and other writing adventures),” is available in Green Bay at Neville Public Museum and Bosse’s.

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