First Stage Young Company Presents “The Miracle Worker”

-Based on the early life of Helen Keller and the incredible teacher who changed 

her forever-

By William Gibson


Directed by Matt Daniels


Milwaukee, WI – May 2, 2019 – First Stage’s award-winning Young Company will perform William Gibson’s THE MIRACLE WORKER at the Milwaukee Youth Arts Center as their final production of the 2018/19 season.This Tony Award-winning play tells the story of six-year-old Helen Keller who has been blind and deaf since infancy, trapping her in a silent world of darkness. Along comes Annie Sullivan, the young teacher who through determination, grit and love, is able to overcome immeasurable odds, and find the key to unlock Helen’s world. THE MIRACLE WORKER explores the essence of dignity, hope and how people can fulfill their true potential despite the most adverse of circumstances. Sponsored by United Performing Arts Fund.


THE MIRACLE WORKER runs May 10 – 19, 2019 at the Milwaukee Youth Arts Center, located at 325 W. Walnut Street in downtown Milwaukee. Tickets are $14. Tickets are available are available online at or through the First Stage Box Office at (414) 267-2961. Performance runtime is approximately two hours and twenty minutes, which includes two intermissions. Suggested for families and young people ages 12+.


Director Matt Daniels had this to say about THE MIRACLE WORKER, “This story, over a hundred years removed from the true events it dramatizes, is more important than ever. Yes, it is a soaring tribute to the indomitable human spirit. But it is also about meeting societal challenges through engagement instead of derision. It is about the importance of the teacher in every one of our lives. It is about seeing and acknowledging the true, full and valid life of every person, regardless of his or her ability. We look forward to sharing this uplifting story with our First Stage audiences.”




William Gibson(Playwright) was an American playwright and novelist who lived November 13, 1914 – November 25, 2008. He won the Tony Award for Best Play for The Miracle Worker in 1959, which he later adapted for the film version in 1962. Both the play and the film adaptation featured Patty Duke as Helen Keller and Anne Bancroft as Annie Sullivan.


Matt Daniels (Director/Director of the Young Company) is a frequent collaborator at First Stage, as an actor (THE MIRACULOUS JOURNEY OF EDWARD TULANE, A CHARLIE BROWN CHRISTMAS, ELLA ENCHANTED, SHREK THE MUSICAL, A MIDNIGHT CRY and A WRINKLE IN TIME, among others), director and movement director (Roald Dahl’s JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH, THE SNOW, RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER™: THE MUSICAL among others), and Director of the Young Company, where he teaches and directs (HENRY V, ANIMAL FARM, TXT U L8R, OUR TOWN, among others). Matt’s other acting credits include appearances at Milwaukee Repertory Theater, Milwaukee Chamber Theatre, Milwaukee Opera Theatre, Renaissance Theaterworks, In Tandem Theater, and the late Milwaukee Shakespeare, as well as Forward Theater, Kentucky Repertory Theater, Lake Geneva Theater Company, several regional Shakespeare Festivals and on many independent stages in New York. In addition to First Stage his directing work has been seen at MCT’s New Play Development series, Sunset Playhouse, goats & monkeys and in New York with his company Tyrannosaurus rep. An avid ukulelist, he is working on his first album, “Welcome to Clowntown.” Matt is a graduate of the Juilliard School Drama Division.


The Young Company cast for THE MIRACLE WORKER includes: Jennie Babisch (from Milwaukee) as Annie Sullivan; Meghan DeRoche (from Milwaukee) as Kate Keller; Eloise Field (from Oconomowoc) as Anagnos/Belle/Ensemble; Addy Grace (from Milwaukee) as Percey/Doctor/Ensemble; Kyra Mathias (from Oconomowoc) as Viney/Martha/Ensemble; Ashley Nord (from Glendale) as Helen Keller; Mathilde Prosen-Oldani (from Shorewood) as James Keller; Gabe Smith (from Fox Point) as Captain Keller and Chloe Winney (from Milwaukee) as Aunt Ev/Ensemble.


The Artistic Staff for THE MIRACLE WORKER includes: Matt Daniels (Director/Director of the Young Company); Kurt Boetcher (Scenic Designer);Caitlyn de Araujo (Costume Designer); Marisa Abbott (Lighting Designer); Matt Whitmore (Sound Designer) and Emily Wright (Stage Manager).


Tickets are $14 – Tickets may be purchased at or by phone (414) 267-2961.

Group Sales– Groups of 10 or more receive discounts off regular single ticket prices on most First Stage performances at the Milwaukee Youth Arts Center. Call (414) 267-2964 or email for more information.


About First Stage

First Stage is one of the nation’s leading theaters for young people and families. First Stage touches hearts, engages minds and transforms lives by creating extraordinary theater experiences 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 promote literacy, character building and experiential learning throughout the curriculum, serving over 20,000 students each year. First Stage was selected to participate in the Partners in Education program of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts (2012), and was the recipient of the Milwaukee Business Journal’s Eureka Award, recognizing creativity and innovation in business, education and the arts for its Next Steps program for students on the autism spectrum (2013, 2015). First Stage is a member of TYA/USA, the American Alliance for Theatre and Education, the Wisconsin Alliance for Arts Education, Milwaukee Arts Partners and is a cornerstone member of the United Performing Arts Fund (UPAF).

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