September 24 -
October 4, 2021

September 24 - October 4, 2021

MKEARTS HOMECOMING CELEBRATION

Free Celebration of the Performing Arts for All Ages

Because of the strong support of community members like you, the lights are turning back on, the curtains are being raised and the doors will be open for the MKE Performing Arts Homecoming Celebration, a jubilant return to the spotlight after a long, difficult year. Revel in 11 days of free performances, workshops, tours and much more from United Performing Arts Fund (UPAF) Performing Arts Members, Affiliates and Partners!

All Week Long

All Day

Danceworks, Inc.

DanceLAB: Rhythmworks

This event is fully virtual and free. Patrons will be able to view the performance for the duration of the entire homecoming week (Sept. 24-Oct. 4).


Danceworks invites the Milwaukee arts community to join us as we reunite with rhythm! DanceLAB: Rhythmworks, directed by Danceworks’ new Artistic Director Christal Wagner, originally premiered in-person on August 7, 2021 at Danceworks Studio Theatre. If you weren’t able to join us in-person, you can now see the full length performance *VIRTUALLY* in honor of the MKE Arts Homecoming Celebration. 

Times Vary By Date

Next Act Theatre

Three Viewings

THREE VIEWINGS: A Midwestern funeral parlor is the setting for three darkly funny and touching stories. Reserve your complimentary seats for performances between Sept 24 – Oct 3. Directions: Select your date, click Reserve Tickets, enter the promo COMEBACK and choose the starred seats on the map, while supplies last.

September 24

5:30pm–7:30pm

Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts

Gallery Reception for Guitars for Vets: Operation Art Strings

The Wilson Center and Guitars for Vets invites you to a gallery reception of our exhibit, Operation Art Strings. Local artists have taken guitars and transformed them into works of art. Reception will include live music provided by Guitars for Vets as well as light refreshments.

September 25

10:00am–5:00pm

The Wisconsin Conservatory of Music

Doors Open: The Wisconsin Conservatory of Music

Marvel at rich architectural details and furnishings, including grand curved glass bay windows overlooking the lake. Built in 1903, McIntosh Goodrich Mansion has been the home of the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music since 1933.

10:00am & 11:00am

Present Music Inc.

Present Music LIVE at Tanner-Monagle

Lively family-friendly performance by Present Music’s Steelpan +Trio followed by an interactive tour of Tanner-Monagle’s audio recording studios located within the original Blatz Beer building! Music appreciators of all ages can explore a state-of-the-art studio and experience a rousing concert featuring African and Latin steelpan music.

September 26

(2) Performances: 10:00 AM & 11:30 AM

First Stage

Adventures with the Three Little Pigs

Audiences ages 3-7 and their families will bring the well-loved story of The Three Little Pigs to life through storytelling, songs, dances, and tactile experiences in this 40-minute presentation.

(2) Workshops: 1:00 PM & 2:00 PM

First Stage

Theater Academy Workshops

Students in grades 3-12 can participate in a 25-minute theater workshop introducing them to Acting Theory, Improvisation, and Musical Theater. A script and music from a well-known Broadway show will be the inspiration for this class. Held at the Milwaukee Youth Arts Center.

10:00am–5:00pm

Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra

Community Day of Music

The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra proudly opens the doors to our community for a FREE and open-to-the-public event showcasing the newly-completed Bradley Symphony Center. Explore the MSO’s new home and revel in a day of fun activities and live music.

10:00am–5:00pm

The Wisconsin Conservatory of Music

Doors Open: The Wisconsin Conservatory of Music

Marvel at rich architectural details and furnishings, including grand curved glass bay windows overlooking the lake. Built in 1903, McIntosh Goodrich Mansion has been the home of the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music since 1933.

September 28

7:00pm

Skylight Music Theatre

Skylight Season Sampler

Get a sneak peak of songs from Skylight Music Theatre’s 2021/2022 season (performed by many Skylight regulars) and join Artistic Director, Michael Unger, for a tour of the Broadway Theatre Center. This will be a casual evening of music, behind the scenes insights, fun facts and history about Skylight Music Theatre.

5:00pm–8:00pm

Renaissance Theaterworks

A Sneak Peek of The Cake by Bekah Brunstetter

Join us at the first rehearsal of The Cake by Bekah Brunstetter—the first full-length show presented by Renaissance Theaterworks in our new home at 255 S. Water Street. The evening will consist of light refreshments, a sneak peek of the designs, and the first read-through of the play. Please RSVP!

5:30pm

2021 UPAF Campaign Finale

2021 UPAF Campaign Finale

Please join UPAF live for this virtual event and help us recognize the successes of the 2021 UPAF Community Campaign and celebrate the return of the performing arts for the 2021-22 season.

September 29

(2) Rehearsals: 6:00pm–7:20pm
& 7:30pm–8:50pm

Milwaukee Chamber Theatre

STEW Open Rehearsal

Join Milwaukee Chamber Theatre for an open rehearsal of the first production of the 21/22 season: 2021 Pulitzer Prize Finalist STEW by Zora Howard. Get a sneak peek at STEW and the table work process of a play on the production’s second day of rehearsal, and be among the first in Milwaukee to hear some of this hilarious and heartwarming new American play in person!

5:00pm

The Florentine Opera

Versed: Rigoletto

Get “Versed” on Verdi’s Rigoletto! Grab a cocktail and join Artistic Director Francesco Milioto (in his Florentine conducting debut) and Stage Director Omer Ben Seadia as they discuss the music and vision for the Florentine’s interpretation of this traditional opera. Love, betrayal and sacrifice – grand opera at its finest!

September 30

5:00pm–7:00pm

Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra

MYSO Rehearsal Open House

Thursdays are MYSO’s heaviest rehearsal days with ensembles that represent the wide span of MYSO’s programming – from Progressions (entry-level string program for city of Milwaukee children with no musical background) to advanced strings, steel pan bands, and jazz. Tours will be conducted. Come see these amazing kids.

12:00pm

Skylight Music Theatre

The Show Must Go On

Get a behind the scenes look at an open understudy rehearsal for Skylight’s production of The Full Monty (appropriate for all audiences). This is an actual working rehearsal as production stage manager, dance captain, and artistic director work with ensemble performers in case they have to step into a main role.

October 1

5:00pm – 7:00pm

Milwaukee Ballet

Season Kick-Off

Enjoy a taste of Milwaukee Ballet in celebration of #WorldBalletDay at their new, world-class facility in the Third Ward, Baumgartner Center for Dance. Activities to include open rehearsal viewings, costume displays, and more.

October 2

6:00pm

Marcus Performing Arts Center

Milwaukee Jazz Institute | Pre-Show Concert

The students of Milwaukee Jazz Institute perform a free concert outdoors at the Marcus Center. MJI promotes jazz through education and performance, building awareness of the ability of Jazz to transform lives. Special discount available for the 8pm concert Duets – Dianne Reeves, Chucho Valdés & Joe Lovano for Performing Arts Homecoming Celebration.

12:00pm–7:30pm

Milwaukee Repertory Theater

Free Day of Theater

Milwaukee Rep’s “Free Day of Theater” features 11 events with Rep artists and staff. A variety of performances and interactive opportunities include concerts, new play project previews, a Professional Training Institute youth showcase, a panel discussion, a master class and behind-the-scenes demonstrations. Visit website for a detailed schedule and to RSVP.

(2) Performances: 4:00pm & 7:00pm

First Stage

STEP KIDS, an Amplify Series Performance

Part of Amplify, First Stage’s BIPOC Short Play Series, STEP KIDS tells the story of a group of seemingly unconnected high school students who find common ground in the most unlikely of places—the audition for their school’s competitive step dance team. As the students become unified through the power of rhythm and dance, experience the joy of finding your tribe in this energetic performance. Recommended for families with young people ages 10 and up.

October 3

(2) Performances: 1:00pm & 4:00pm

First Stage

STEP KIDS, an Amplify Series Performance

Part of Amplify, First Stage’s BIPOC Short Play Series, STEP KIDS tells the story of a group of seemingly unconnected high school students who find common ground in the most unlikely of places—the audition for their school’s competitive step dance team. As the students become unified through the power of rhythm and dance, experience the joy of finding your tribe in this energetic performance. Recommended for families with young people ages 10 and up.

October 4

7:00pm

The Florentine Opera

Rigoletto: Open Rehearsal

Join us at the newly renovated Uihlein Hall for a behind-the-scenes look at the Italian blockbuster Rigoletto! Enjoy the rarely seen final week of rehearsal of a Grand Opera as we share Act 1 of this Verdi masterpiece with you before we open on October 8.

Thank You