First Stage Young Company opens its 13th season with THE COMEDY OF ERRORS

Contact Erica Davis (414) 267-2931 or

First Stage Young Company opens its 13th season with

December 9 – December 18, 2016
Milwaukee Youth Arts Center

By William Shakespeare

Directed by John Maclay

Suggested for families with Young People ages 12 – 17 and up


Milwaukee, WI – First Stage Young Company, the Theater Academy’s award-winning training program for advanced high school actors, presents THE COMEDY OF ERROS from December 9 -December 18, 2016 at the Milwaukee Youth Arts Center located at 325 W. Walnut Street, Milwaukee. Tickets are $14. Tickets are available online at or through the First Stage Box Office at (414) 267-2961.

Two sets of twins separated at birth collide in the same city, in THE COMEDY OF ERRORS. Mistaken identities, assumed personas and wild mishaps occur as laughs fly in Shakespeare’s farce about the most outrageous family reunion ever.

“The Young Company has earned a national reputation for performing the works of Shakespeare with clarity and skill well beyond their years,” said First Stage Associate Artistic Director John Maclay who directs this production. “This program will have a hand in cultivating not only the next generation of Shakespearean actors, but of audiences as well.”

The Young Company recently celebrated its sixth overall first place finish at the Utah Shakespeare Festival, the nation’s largest Shakespeare competition this October. Young Company members Sydney Salter (who plays Dromio of Syracuse in this production) won the Larry Lott Acting award for outstanding performance in the division, her twin sister Alex Salter (playing Dromio of Ephesus) received a first place award for her Duo scene with Young Company member Lawson Mitchell.

John Maclay (Director) taught Classical Scene Study for First Stage in the summer of 2000 and has been involved in one way or another ever since. As a playwright, John is an active adaptor of literature for the stage and his works are professionally produced throughout the country from Orlando to Portland. His plays include ANATOLE with Lee Becker and James Valcq, NANCY DREW AND THE BIGGEST CASE EVER with First Stage Artistic Director Jeff Frank, GERONIMO STILTON: MOUSE IN SPACE and JUST A LITTLE CRITTER MUSICAL with Brett Ryback. In addition to GOOSEBUMPS THE MUSICAL: PHANTOM OF THE AUDITORIUM, ROBIN HOOD, co-written with Joe Foust will premiere later in First Stage’s 2016-17 season.  You may have also seen John act a few times at First Stage as anything from Mike Mulligan to Shrek and he will return to the stage later this season in ROBIN HOOD as the Sheriff of Nottingham. Since 2004 he has served as Associate Artistic Director and Director of the nationally renowned Young Company. John has directed or acted in over 25 Todd Wehr, First Steps and Young Company productions and has produced more than 50 shows in First Stage’s high school programs.

John is a proud member of Actor’s Equity Association, the union of professional actors and stage managers and a member of the Dramatist Guild. John holds degrees in theatre from Lawrence University and the University of Illinois.

The Young Company cast for THE COMEDY OF ERRORS includes: Ariana Padavano (as Solinus, Duke of Ephesus) from West Allis; Abby Barbeau (as Aegeon) and Claire Zempel (as Luciana) from Wauwatosa; Grace Becker (as Antipholus of Ephesus) and Sylvia Arnold (as Aemilia /Abbess) from Hubertus; Megan Watson (as Antipholus of Syracuse) from Wauwatosa; Alex Salter (as Dromio of Ephesus) and Sydney Salter (as Dromio of Syracuse) from Germantown; Grace Reasoner (as Balthazar, a merchant), Sam Crevenston (as Second Merchant) and Teddy Esten (as Adriana) from Cedarburg; Jeannie Babisch (as Angelo, a goldsmith) from Milwaukee; AJ Wielichowski (as First Merchant/Ensemble) from Oak Creek; Bree Kazinski (as Pinch, a schoolmaster) from Dousman; Abby Wesley (as Luce/Ensemble) from Hales Corners and Alexandria Eggert (as Courtesan) from Mequon.


The Artistic Staff for THE COMEDY OF ERRORS includes: Brandon Kirkham (Scenic Designer); Lyndsey Kulhmann (Costume Designer); Amanda McDonald (Lighting Designer); Matt Whitmore (Sound Designer) and Lauren Gingold (Stage Manager).



Location:  Milwaukee Youth Arts Center, 325 W Walnut Street, Milwaukee WI


Dates:  December 9 – December 18, 2016


Description:  Two sets of twins separated at birth collide in the same city. Mistaken identities, assumed personas and wild mishaps as laughs fly in Shakespeare’s farce about the most outrageous family reunion ever. Suggested for families with young people ages 12-17+


  • Friday, December 9 at 7:00 p.m. (OPENING NIGHT)
  • Saturday, December 10 at 3:30 & 7 p.m.
  • Sunday, December 11 at 3:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, December 17 at 7 p.m.
  • Sunday, December 18 at 3:30 p.m.

Tickets are $14.  Tickets may be purchased at or through the First Stage Box Office at (414) 267-2961.


About First Stage
Celebrating its 30th anniversary in the 2016-2017 season, First Stage is one of the nation’s leading theaters for young audiences and families. First Stage touches hearts, engages minds, and transforms lives by creating extraordinary theater experiences for young people and families through professional theater productions that inspire, enlighten, and entertain. Its Theater Academy, the nation’s largest high-impact theater training program for young people, fosters life skills through stage skills and serves over 2,100 students each year. As Wisconsin’s leader in arts-integrated education in schools, First Stage’s dynamic Theater in Education programs use theater to promote active learning throughout the curriculum, serving over 20,000 students throughout southeastern Wisconsin each year.  In 2012, First Stage was selected to participate in the Partners in Education program of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. First Stage is the recipient of the Milwaukee Business Journal’s Eureka Award in 2013 and 2015, recognizing creativity and innovation in business, education, and the arts. First Stage is a member of TYA/USA, the American Alliance for Theatre and Education, the Wisconsin Alliance for Arts Education, Theatre Wisconsin, and Milwaukee Arts Partners, and is a cornerstone member of the United Performing Arts Fund (UPAF).




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