Free MPACT Programming at the Milwaukee Rep Sept/Oct

The Milwaukee Repertory Theater, a UPAF Cornerstone Group, has a wide array of free programming in September and October. Check it out!


Man of La Mancha – Tuesday, September 20 and Wednesday, September 21



BANNED BOOK SLAM! – Sunday, September 25 following the 2pm performance of Man of La Mancha (approx. 3:30pm)
As a part of Banned Books Week, join Milwaukee Rep and the ACLU of Wisconsin in a celebration of banned and challenged books, many of which are now heralded as literary masterpieces and integral parts of our literary canon. After watching Man of La Mancha, the musical adaptation of the first ever novel to escape the iron fist of Spanish censors in the 17th century, join us for live readings from some favorite challenged books, plays and poems. Attendees are invited to dress in costume as one of their favorite authors or characters from a favorite forbidden text, or you can sit back and listen to poetic words that were so un-successfully silenced. No acting, literary, or historical knowledge necessary!


SING WITH THE STARS Saturday, October 1 at 2-3pm in Rehearsal Hall 3
Learn to sing “The Impossible Dream” from the musical Man of La Mancha along with members from the Rep’s cast in this free open workshop. All ages welcome, no singing experience necessary! RSVP to


DANCE WITH THE STARS – Saturday, Oct 15 from 2 to 3pm in Rehearsal Hall 3
Join local flamenco dance troupe Siempre Flamenco and Man of La Mancha choreographer James Zager for a free Flamenco dance workshop! Participants will learn the history and basic techniques of Flamenco dancing. Then, the choreographer James Zager and professional flamenco dancers will teach an excerpt from a dance from the production, accompanied by virtuoso flamenco guitarists. No dance experience necessary! RSVP to

BOX WITH THE STARSOctober 8, 22 and 29 from 1pm-2pm in the Powerhouse Theater Lobby
Fitness and boxing trainer and former professional boxer Alberto Mercedes from AMC Boxing will teach a free boxing workshop. Learn how to box like the professionals in The Royale.  All ages welcome, no experience necessary! Learn more about Alberto Mercedes’ studio here. Recommended for ages 5-60. RSVP to


“Come, enter into my imagination”: Building community through storytelling, Sunday, October 2 following the 2pm performance of Man of La Mancha (approx. 3:30pm) – Powerhouse Theater
Miguel de Cervantes eases the suffering of his fellow prisoners through the power of storytelling. The world of his imagination is no less real to them as the bars on their windows. Why are stories so powerful? How can we use this power within our own community? Join us as we discuss how storytelling can help to build communities, promote healing, and restore our humanity and empathy when we need it most. 

Panelists include: Malkia Stampley, Artistic Director of Bronzeville Arts Ensemble; Dasha Kelly, Spoken Word Artist and founder of Still Waters Collective; Megan McGee, Executive Director of ExFabula

Imprisoning Ideas: Censorship Today, Sunday, October 9 following the 2pm performance of Man of La Mancha (approx. 3:30pm) – Powerhouse Theater
In the 17th century, Miguel De Cervantes had to navigate constant censorship of his writing. By cleverly tricking censors, he was able to publish Don Quixote, which is now considered the first modern novel. Four hundred years after the Spanish Inquisition, censorship still poses a threat to freedom of speech in our community. How does censorship shape our society? Is there a limit to what should be made publically available? Community leaders and artists who have dealt with various forms of censorship discuss the status of free speech in Milwaukee. Panelists Include: Ernst-Ulrich Franzen, Associate Editorial Page editor for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel; Richard Esenberg, President of Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty (WILL), Anne Kingsbury, Executive Director of Woodland Pattern Book Center, David LaBorde, Principal at Waukesha West HS, and chairman of the district’s Consideration Committee

How different models of prison may be the remedy for Milwaukee’s cycle of imprisonment, Sunday, October 16 following the 2pm performance of Man of La Mancha (approx. 3:30pm) – Powerhouse Theater
In Man of La Mancha, Miguel de Cervantes is thrown into prison carrying with him… a trunk of props? This is not the picture of a modern prison, where strict regulations would not allow for an entire play to occur within its walls. But prisons did not always operate like they do now. 19th century debtors’ prisons, for instance, had unisex and family cells, and influenced the set design for Man of La Mancha. Today, some correctional facilities are pushing the boundaries of our prison system and supporting programs that promote the mental and social well-being of inmates. Can these facilities mark a new and improved era for the much criticized prison system in America? Hear from the people who are tackling these issues head-on as we discuss the present and future of the prison system in Milwaukee. Moderated by James Causey, Editorial Columnist at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Panelists include: Michael Hafemann, Superintendent of the Milwaukee House of Correction; Pamela Zank, Superintendent of Milwaukee Women’s Correctional Center; José Vasquez, Street Outreach Consultant for CSNI; Dr. Lois Quinn, Senior Scientist for the School of Continuing Education Employment and Training Institute at UWM; Damien Smith, Youth Organizer for Safe & Sound

“The Ingenious Gentleman Don Quixote of La Mancha”: Realizing the story of Don Quixote, Sunday, October 23 following the 2pm performance of Man of La Mancha – Powerhouse Theater
Heralded as one of the most significant works of literature in history, Don Quixote has been told and re-told in a variety of artistic forms. Ballet, opera, theatre, and fine art have been media for telling the epic comedy of this “ingenious gentleman” and his imaginative adventures. In a discussion with local artists and scholars, we talk about the legacy and allure of Don Quixote. Panelists include: Michael Pink, Artistic Director of the Milwaukee Ballet;

  • Mark Clements, Director of Man of La Mancha and Artistic Director of Milwaukee Repertory Theater; Jim Guy, Props Master at Milwaukee Repertory Theater; Gabrielle Hanna, former professor of Spanish culture and literature at the University of Hawaii and University of Arizona; Dr. John McCaw, UWM Professor of Spanish and expert on Don Quixoteand 17th Century Spanish Literature and Culture

    Special Guest Talkback with Pete Ehrmann, writer and expert on the history of black boxing in Milwaukee – Friday, October 7 after the 8pm performance of The Royale in the Stiemke Studio
    Join writer and journalist Pete Ehrmann in a Q&A talkback as we discuss the importance of boxing during the Civil Rights Movement in Milwaukee. Pete Ehrmann has been writing about boxing for 50+ years for The Ring magazine, OnMilwaukee, and other publications.

    The March on Milwaukee, October 15 – Stiemke Studio
    Heralded as The Selma of the North, Milwaukee played an integral part in the Civil Rights Movement. Led by Father James Groppi, the housing protest marches across Milwaukee pushed the nation toward open housing legislation as part of the 1968 Civil Rights Act. Participants in the 1965-68 March on Milwaukee will discuss this landmark event, right here on the Stiemke stage. Moderated by Everett L. Marshburn, producer of MPTV’s Black Nouveau and Freedom Walkers of Milwaukee. Panelists include: Margaret “Peggy” Rozga, civil rights author, playwright, and activist, and wife of the late Father James Groppi; Fred Reed, former NAACP Youth Council; Prentice McKinney, former NAACP Youth Council


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