Category Archives: Uncategorized

Director’s Note: The Hunchback Of Notre Dame

Thank you for joining us.

I’ve been a lover of the theatre for more than three quarters of my almost 50 years here on Earth. At a young age, I was enthralled by the storytelling and the magic that happened on stage. I was also raised Catholic, and I think that a big part of my love for the theatre came from my time spent in church – the music, the pageantry, the storytelling, the grand design of the space and even the smells took me to another world. Theatre does the same thing. This show is an amazing combination of the two for me!

The classic story by Victor Hugo and this version made popular by the Disney animated motion picture asks us to consider the idea – What makes a monster and what makes a man? It raises many questions – is the lonely, deformed hunchback the monster or is it the pious, God-loving Archdeacon? Which one is truly ugly on the inside? Does the outside matter? Can we see beyond physical deformity to the person beneath the surface?

Ultimately, we are all human.

Frollo makes it clear early on that he despises all Gypsies. His hatred for them seems to drive his every move. Does any group of people deserve to be hated simply because of who they are or where they come from? Can a race justifiably be universally condemned? Doesn’t everyone deserve to be treated equally and fairly? Esmeralda challenges Frollo’s thoughts and awakens something in the Archdeacon that he’s never faced before. Opening ourselves up to one person could literally change our lives. This show will hopefully make us all think about “what side” we’d rather be on – the judge or the judged, the lover or the loved, the monster or the man. If theatre can entertain us AND make us think, then I think it is most effective.

I hope you enjoy the fruits of the labor of a truly incredible group of people. I am so very lucky to have the chance to work with these amazing performers, musicians and design team. They are all top notch and I thank them for sharing in this vision. I do what I do to work with folks like you!

May you be filled with more of Heaven’s Light and less Hellfire. Celebrate the good in your life. Accept and encourage. Take a chance. Stand up for what you believe. Love.

Enjoy the show!


Mark E. Schuster


Meet The…Box Office Supervisor!

Floyd the Flamingo, local celebrity and COO (Chief Office Ornithologist) of WCT recently sat down with the new Box Office Supervisor, James Boylan.

Floyd: How did you get involved here at WCT?

James: As an actor. I was cast as Robert Westerby in Busybody back in 2012.

Floyd: Are you originally from the Waukesha area?

James: Yes. I grew up in Brookfield. My wife and I currently reside in Delafield.

Floyd: Will we ever see you on stage, or just in the box office?

James: Absolutely! I love performing on the stage!

Floyd: What do you like to do in your spare time? Any hobbies?

James: Acting, hiking, and traveling

Floyd: If you could be any bird, what kind would you be? Why?

James: Penguin. They’re cool!

Floyd: What’s one thing you think people should know about you?

James: I am the proud uncle of 12 nieces and nephews and 3 great-nephews!

The Waukesha State Bank Art Gallery Presents: Les Leffingwell


Les Leffingwell is native to the Milwaukee/ Waukesha/ Pewaukee landscape and is attracted by its rich visual arts heritage. He graduated from UWM in 1969 and found work as an art educator, fine art restorer and on-the-spot courtroom illustrator for television news. In 1982, he became owner and sole proprietor of Les Leffingwell Architectural Illustration. His lifelong passion for putting brush to canvas still thrives within and is viewable at:


Artist’s Statement:

In these times of threats to reduce or eliminate government funding for the creative arts, it is especially gratifying to have the opportunity to show my art at the Waukesha Civic Theatre’s Waukesha State Bank Art Gallery.

For this event, I’ve included paintings of local landmarks (acrylic plein air and Avalon composite poster) and portraits of famous performers and artists (oil paintings). The stylistic spirit of the work is what I like to call “expressionist impressionism” or “painting from the gut.” I’ve been inspired by the bright, bold colors of the Fauvists, such as Kees van Dongen, and the spontaneity of Bay Area Figurative painter Richard Diebenkorn. Also, I rely on a glazing technique taught to me early on by artist and professor Joseph Friebert.

Hopefully, my paintings will involve you to see something in a new light and encourage you to use your own imagination and experience to complete the picture. Please enjoy the show and thanks for looking!


 Les Leffingwell

Cramer’s Corner: Happy May Day!

This time of year is such a happy time.  Days getting warmer and warmer.  The burst of color as plants come back to vibrant life.  The threat of snow diminishing.  A little.  And incredible activity at WCT!

Our next PIX Flix movie of the season, Vertigo is tonight, May 1, at 6:30 pm.  Vertigo is often considered Alfred Hitchcock’s most discussed, dissected, and critically reappraised film.  The cast of the movie includes Jimmy Stewart, Kim Novak, Barbara Bel Geddes, Tom Helmore, and more.  All tickets are $5.00, and we have concessions available, including soda, water, beer, wine, cookies, beef sticks, and … wait for it … POPCORN!  Click here to buy tickets.

Our next Random Act Of Entertainment is Miscast on Thursday, May 4, at 7:30 pm.  Click here for more information or to buy tickets.  Miscast is a musical revue in which WCT performers sing songs for characters they would never have the chance to play in real life, be it due to gender, race, age … the stranger the better!

Our current Mainstage show, The Drowsy Chaperone, continues May 5 through May 14.  We have several promotions running right now for this show.  Use the code CHAIR to receive $5 off the adult ticket price, or the code THANKSMOM to buy one adult price ticket and get a second ticket for our Mother’s Day performance on May 14 at 2:00 pm. You can use the code on line or in person, over the phone, or via email.  The show has two more Pay What You Can performances on May 11 at 7:30 pm, and May 13 at 2:00 pm. And of course our Terrific Ticket promotion is always running.  Click here for more information.

We have added a movie to our schedule on Tuesday, May 9 at 6:30 pm.  Bane Vs Superman is a fan film.  Tickets are free.  Donations are welcome (all go to WCT). Concessions will be open.  Click here for more information.

Our current featured artist in the Waukesha State Bank Art Gallery is Tom Buchs. Are you interested in helping WCT make decisions about everything we do?  Join A Committee and get involved.  We have two committees that are starting work this month, our Art Gallery Committee and our Play Advisory Committee. Our Art Gallery Committee will be meeting on Monday, May 8, at 3:30 pm.  This committee determines which artists will be featured in the Waukesha State Bank Art Gallery in our lobby.  Committee members bring artist suggestions to the table and participate in determining the line up for the upcoming season. The Play Advisory Committee operates both independetly (the submission committee) and scheduled (the review committee).  If you want to suggest titles for us to consider, you complete a Play Advisory Submission Form for each title you are recommending by May 25, 2017.  If you are interested in helping us choose the shows from the submitted forms, you need to attend all three of the review committee meetings.  This year they will be held on June 8, July 13, and August 17.  All Thursday nights from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm. Our other commmittees include Education and Outreach, Finance and Facility, Fund Development, Fundraising Events (Gala), Governance, and Marketing. If you are interested in serving on one or more committees please let me know! If you are looking for a theatre experience outside of Wisconsin, consider joining us for our NYC Theatre Adventure October 12-15, 2017.  We are planning on seeing Come From Away, School Of Rock, and War Paint, but we need at least ten guests to book the trip by TODAY, May 1.  If we don’t reach our minimum number we may still go on the trip but we most likely won’t be able to see War Paint, and maybe not even Come From Away, due to the popularity of these shows and we will lose our group sale reservation if we don’t commit.  I know cast members in both of these shows so I may be able to schedule a back stage tour for one or both of them.  Contact me TODAY by email or phone if you would like more information about either trip. Registration is open for our A.C.T. summer sessions, including our summer ACT production Disney’s The Lion King JR and both our June and August A.C.T. Summer Showcases. Click here for more information. We still have several great shows in our 60th Season so please join us for some great entertainment! Season Tickets for our 61st season are now on sale! Sex Please We’re Sixty          The Hunchback Of Notre Dame                  The House Without A Christmas Tree                          The Complete Works Of William Shakespeare (abridged)                                  Clue: The Musical                                          Wait Until Dark                                                  Father Knows Best Individual tickets for these shows will go on sale July 1. Individual tickets for our Random Acts Of Entertainment, Education And Outreach shows, and Fundraising Events are on sale now! Oh, Henry: A Double Feature         Disney’s The Lion King JR.                 A.C.T. August Summer Showcase                         Combat Theatre                                  Miscast                         The Tortoise And The Hare:  The Rematch!                 Wisconsin Philharmonic Chamber Concerts         Joel Kopischke’s I Got Yule, Babe The Four Guyz In Dinner Jackets         A.C.T. Combat Boot Camp                 Singin’ In The Rain JR.                         A.C.T. Live!                                 My Funny Valentine                                         Darn Yankees                                                 Spring City’s Wild Card Saloon                                                         A.C.T June Summer Showcase Thank you to all of the generous donors that have supported us so far this season.  If you would like to donate, you can choose from any number of ways you could help us not only maintain, but thrive, as Waukesha’s Cultural Cornerstone. Please Consider Giving …      * A gift to our Operating Fund      * A gift to our Spotlight On The Future Capital Campaign      * A matching gift through local sponsoring business employers      * A gift that will last a lifetime through your Will or Estate Planning      * A gift by donation to CARS      * A gift by shopping through Amazon Smile      * A gift by purchasing something on our Amazon Wish List      * Choose WCT as your Thrivent Choice charitable organization      * Become a Sponsor of outstanding performances and educational programs On a personal note, my son Jude is playing Stu Thomas in Borderline Crazies at Waukesha South High School May 12 and 13.  He also advanced to the state competition for both forensics and solo and ensemble.  And my daughter Elena is completing her first year at UWSP, and she was in two shows and made the Dean’s List!  She was also invited to participate in the Prague Shakespeare Company Summer Intensive in July, receiving one of only four scholarships.  Proud papa! Happy Mother’s Day and Best Wishes For A Memorial Day Filled With Pride, Warmth, And Togetherness!  I’ll see you at the theatre! John Cramer Managing Artistic Director 262-547-4911 ext. 13 office

Cramer’s Corner: Gypsy, Miscast, And More Gems In Our 60th Anniversary Season!

Happy Birthday To Us! WCT is 60 years old this season, and we are celebrating.  The first mainstage show of our 60th season, Gypsy, runs through October 2nd! Considered by many to be one of the greatest American musicals ever written, the show features a score by Jules Syne and Stephen Sondheim, and a book by Arthur Laurents.  The songs in the show read like a top ten list of all-time greatest songs EVER!  “Together Wherever We Go,” “Some People,” “Small World,” “Let Me Entertain You,” “You Gotta Get A Gimmick,” “All I Need Is The Girl,” and “Everything’s Coming Up Roses!”  And of course, “Rose’s Turn” at the end of the show is possibly the greatest musical theatre moment ever created.  We have a cast of 25 talented community members that are bringing this story to life with incredible vim and verve.  You don’t want to miss this show!

As part of our celebration, my wife Kelli, is playing Rose, and I am playing Herbie.  Kelli and I haven’t been on stage together since we did I Do! I Do! ten years ago.  You never know when we will be on stage together again so don’t miss this chance to see us.  I can’t say enough about Kelli’s interpretation of this incredible woman.  Kelli had a very successful career when we lived in Chicago, playing a multitude of show stopping roles, and earning a Joseph Jefferson Award for her portrayal of the title character in Annie Get Your Gun.  Locally she has played Patsy Cline in several different productions, including the Milwaukee Repertory Theatre, the Oconomowoc Arts Center, the Sharon Lynn Wilson Center, and of course right here at WCT.  I realize that I may be a little biased, but her version of Rose rivals the great women who have played her for the past half century.

Our current featured artist in the Waukesha State Bank Art Gallery in our lobby is Michael Karl. Check him out on Facebook: MichaelKarlEncausticArtist

Right Singer, Wrong Song! Miscast is a one night only cabaret on September 22 at 7:30 pm. Come check out a night of showtunes performed by WCT singers who would never be cast in those roles.  For instance a young girl singing “If I Were A Rich Man” from Fiddler On The Roof, or a young man singing “And I Am Telling You” from Dreamgirls. Click here to get your tickets.

Our 60th Season is on sale now.  Subscription packages for the Mainstage shows, and individual tickets for everything can be purchased now.  Please join us for another great season of entertainment!

I am thrilled to announce that we are now participating in Thrivent Choice, a member-advised charitable grant program of Thrivent Financial.  Eligible members of Thrivent Choice can recommend that WCT is a recipient of Thrivent grant funds.

I also want to remind everyone who shops on (and who doesn’t) to go through Amazon Smile and select WCT as your charity.  Every purchase through Amazon Smile (which is the same as Amazon) qualifies for a donation to the chosen organization.  You can really help us just by buying what you buy anyway!

Our Mainstage season includes:


To Kill A Mockingbird

For Purely Elfish Reasons

Blithe Spirit

33 Variations

The Drowsy Chaperone

Barefoot In The Park

Our Random Acts Of Entertainment and Education And Outreach Shows include:


ACAP PlayMakers’ Show Of Shows III

Illusions In The Night

A Night Of Comedy With Fred Klett

ExFabula Story Slam

I Got Yule, Babe

Elvis: The Legend Lives On

A.C.T. Combat Boot Camp

Xanadu JR.

A.C.T. Live!

My Funny Valentine

2017 Gala: A Festival Of Fools

Snow White And The Magnificent Seven

Broadway Bound Showcase


A.C.T. June Summer Showcase

So many gems it’s dazzling and spectacular!  I hope you’ll join us all season long. Thank you to all of the generous donors that have supported us so far this season.  If you would like to donate, you can choose from any number of ways you could help us not only maintain, but thrive, as Waukesha’s Cultural Cornerstone.

Please Consider Giving …

* A gift to our Operating Fund

* A gift to our Spotlight On The Future Capital Campaign

* A matching gift through local sponsoring business employers

* A gift that will last a lifetime through your Will or Estate Planning

* A gift by donation to CARS

* A gift by shopping through Amazon Smile

* A gift by purchasing something on our Amazon Wish List

* Choose WCT as your Thrivent Choice charitable organization

* Become a Sponsor of outstanding performances and educational programs

Cramer John 2006I’ll see you at the Theatre!

John Cramer

Managing Artistic Director

262-547-4911 ext. 13 office

Theatre Vocabulary

Theatre, like any other business, is full of jargon. If you’re onstage for the first time, will you know what to do when a director tells you to cheat out? Why is everyone talking about strike? Who is a choreographer and what do they do?

WCT has put together this handy list of theatre terms to help you out anywhere you might be, from the front of house to the green room.


ARTICULATION: The clarity with which a person speaks. To speak with proper articulation is to speak clearly, pronouncing letters and words properly so the audience can understand.

BLOCKING: The actors’ movement and stage positions during a performance.

CHEAT OUT: When an actor turns his body so the audience has a better view. Two actors cheating out would not face each other directly, but turn enough so that the audience sees their faces and bodies instead of just their profiles.

CROSS: A move from one part of the stage to another.

CUE: For actors, the part of a script or show immediately before an actor’s line or action that signals the actor to proceed (i.e. entering, saying a line, answering the door, etc.)

CURTAIN CALL: The cast bow at the end of a show.

DICTION: The quality or style of speaking an actor uses to demonstrate his character. It includes elements such as accent, enunciation, and inflection.

IMPROVISATION: Acting done spontaneously and without a script; everything is made up on the spot. Often used in rehearsals to strengthen understanding of character.

PACING: The rate at which a scene is played.

PROJECTION: The volume at which you speak. If a director tells an actor to project, that actor is not being loud enough vocally to fill the space.


COSTUME: The clothing worn by characters on stage.

CUE: In technical terms, the prompt (be it a line or an event) for an action to be carried out at a specific time. Lighting and sound cues are called for by the stage manager, following along in the script with the events of the show.

DESIGN: The plan or convention for the construction or creation of an element of a play. Sets, lighting, sound, costume, plots, and make-up all require designs.

LIGHTING: The deliberate use of light to illuminate the stage or convey a location or emotion.

PLOT: In technical terms, the plot refers to the design of the lights. The lighting plot maps out the color, location, brightness, and shift between lighting cues.

PROPS/PROPERTIES: The objects actors interact with onstage. Items such as books, knives, and parasols are props.

SOUND: The deliberate use of auditory effects, music, and voice to enhance the story told onstage.

STRIKE: At the end of the run of a show, when the set and all other technical aspects are taken apart, clearing the stage for the next show. Strike generally occurs immediately after the close of the last performance.


ACTOR: The person who portrays a character in a play.

CAST: The group of actors who play all the characters in a show.

CHOREOGRAPHER: The person who designs and teaches the dancing and other specialized movement such as stage combat.

DESIGNER: The person or persons responsible for devising and creating technicals aspect of the show such as lighting, sound, costume, make-up, or props.

DIRECTOR: The individual who oversees the mounting of a stage play. He or she is in charge of all designers, bringing everything together to a cohesive whole. He or she also oversees the actors and all action onstage.

DRAMATURG: This person deals mainly with research and development for plays and operas. He or she primarily deals with the historical and cultural aspects of the play.

HOUSE MANAGER: The person in charge of the front of house, including ushers, concessions, playbill distribution, etc.

PLAYWRIGHT: A person who writes plays.

STAGE/RUN CREW: The people behind the scenes who keep the play running. They change scenery, control the elements that fly on and off the stage, help actors with quick changes, and more.

STAGE MANAGER: This person has the overall responsibility of making a show run smoothly. He or she is in charge of all of the stage crew and technicians once the show begins, calling cues and overseeing scenery changes, etc. During rehearsals, the stage manager often acts as a prompter, keeping track of the script for the director and actors.



CENTER / CENTER STAGE: The center position of the stage. Generally considered the most “powerful” position on the stage.

DOWNSTAGE: The section of stage nearest to the audience.

DOWN LEFT: The front left of the stage, when facing the audience.

DOWN RIGHT: The front right of the stage, when facing the audience. After center stage, this is generally considered the second-most powerful section of the stage as it’s the first place audiences trained to read from left-to-right usually look.

STAGE RIGHT: The section of stage to the actor’s right as he faces the audience.

STAGE LEFT: The section of stage to the left of an actor as he faces the audience.

UPSTAGE: The section of stage furthest from the audience.

UP LEFT: The back left section of the stage, when facing the audience. Generally considered the ‘weakest’ position on stage as it is the last place the audience is likely to look.

UP RIGHT: The back right section of the stage, when facing the audience.


BACKSTAGE: The wings, or the parts of the stage off left and off right, unseen by the audience.

BOX OFFICE: The place where tickets are sold.

CONTROL BOOTH: Often in the back of the theatre behind the audience, this is the room where lights and sound are controlled.

COSTUME SHOP: The room where costumes are designed, built, altered, and mended.

DRESSING ROOMS: The rooms where the actors get into their costumes and make-up.

GREEN ROOM: A room backstage for actors to gather, relax, and prepare before or during a show.

HOUSE: The place where the audience sits to watch the performance. A “full house” means every seat for that performance is sold.

LOBBY: An entrance hall or area outside the theatre and house where audiences can wait before a show begins or during intermission.

MAINSTAGE: Usually the largest performance space in a venue and the place where bigger productions are staged.

SCENE SHOP: The place where play sets, scenery, and props are built and prepared for a show.

STUDIO THEATRE: A smaller performance space, often used for experimental productions.


Waukesha State Bank Art Gallery Presents: Fine Art Montage

Fine Art Montage is a group of local artists, including Janet Hudachek, Maddy Sherman, Chris Sommerfelt, Christine Thomsen, and Katherine Thomsen. You can see more of their work on their website:


Janet Hudachek Biography  

Organization affiliations:

Founder of “Fine Art Montage”

Former President of “The Art Guild of Menomonee Falls”

Member of League of Milwaukee Artists

Member of Wauwatosa Artists Workshop

Member of MARN



Many art related classes – enhance by peer critiques:

Wax pastel – Sharon Lynn Wilson

Oil painting – WCTI

Acrylic – WCTI

Layton School of art – several classes

Brookfield Art Guild – Paint and evaluation sessions.

Color Pencil – Kristy Kutch




  • General Electric Employees art show – 2nd Place
  • MARN – “Beyond the Canvas” Award for “Domiciliary”
  • League of Milwaukee Artists for “Amethyst Emeralds Topaz and Marble”
  • “Off the Beaten Path” Award and Published in the Richeson 75 Landscape show book.
  • Selected for the  WOW “Women of Wisconsin Women of Wisconsin ” show at Alverno College
  • League of Milwaukee Artists Award for “Marbles and Stones”
  • “Peek a Boo Blue” and “Marbles and Stones” Published in the Richeson 75 Still Life/Floral show book.
  • “Off the Beaten Path” Blue Ribbon for the Wauwatosa Work Shop “Tosa Library Show”
  • “Different Perspectives” award at the Plymouth, Wi “Alive in the Arts “ show.



  • Hidden River Gallery Show Case 2014
  • Bridgetown Gallery Wauwatosa, Wi 2014
  • League of Milwaukee Artists Multiple shows 2014
  • Wauwatosa Artists Workshop   Multiple shows 2014
  • Anderson Gallery, Kenosha 2014
  • Lemon Street Gallery 2014


  • LMA Grafton Arts Mill Gallery
  • WAW Grafton Arts Mill Gallery
  • Pyramax Bank
  • Lemon Street Gallery
  • Lemon Street Gallery Solo Show
  • Lemon Street Gallery
  • Boerner Botanical Gardens solo
  • League of Milwaukee Artists Grafton Art Show
  • Boerner Botanical “ Art in the Garden”
  • Hidden River Gallery Show Case
  • Menomoee Falls “Art in the Park”
  • League of Milwaukee Artists show at St. Johns
  • Alverno College “Women of Wisconsin” show2016
  • Tosa Library Show
  • Alive in the Arts Plymouth Wi
  • Art on the Walk
  • Grafton Arts Mill with Montage
  • Waukesha Civic Theatre


  • Almont Gallery – Waukesha 2012
  • Art Gallery of the Guild – Menomonee Falls 2012-2013
  • Purlon Studio– Menomonee Falls 2014 – mid 2015
  • Lemon Street Gallery  2014 – present
  • Fine Art Montage virtual gallery 2013 – 2014

janet-hudachek-3Janet Hudachek Artist Statement

Whether you are the artist or the art viewer the attraction to a single piece is your own personal connection to that piece, a memory, a dream, a thought. I may be inspired by a palette of colors that touches my senses or a visual that invokes a memory, or just a pleasing combination of the two that I want to share. Inspiration may be just the challenge of being able to reproduce the feeling of a visual that I have encountered. There are so many inspirations if you learn to look for them in nature and in manmade structures.

One thinks of artwork as a static object, but really it has a personality. It may be one thing in day light, another at dusk, and different in artificial light. Photograph it and find lines and hues you didn’t see before. View that photo on a video screen for another array of hues depending on your vantage point.

I have been painting nature subjects, ornamental vegetation, and landscapes for a long time.  However, lately I have become inspired by divergent art, which is more of a fantasy illusion art, by the 3 dimensional illusions of Frank Lloyd Wright’s blueprints.  It is a challenge; abstract art is much more difficult to do as you have nothing to work from but your imagination.  My new pieces are fascinating to look at and actually move as you look at them.

I work mostly work in Inktense pencil and Caran d’ache wax pastels both water soluble and sometimes oil. I enjoy drawing, even when I paint, I draw with the brush.

I am mostly inspired by composition and color, however, in the divergent art is experimenting with the ability to make the artwork move before your eyes.

What makes my work different?  Mostly the media Inktense is more intense than water color but can have the look of oil or acrylic and is easier to control.


Maddy Sherman Biography

Aside from high school art classes and a couple of classes at WCTC, I am a self-taught artist.  My mother was an artist who worked in oils and acrylics.  She exposed me to the art world early through her paintings, and the art shows in which she participated. I’ve always loved to draw but never really had time to paint.  Then, in 2010 I became very ill, suffering from a nervous breakdown and severe depression.  I started painting as therapy.  It made the thoughts in my brain stop going around in circles.  It gave me peace. I guess when God takes something away with one hand, he gives with another.  Ever since then, I have become an avid acrylic painter.  I thank God every day for the wonderful gift of art he has given me.  Acrylics offer an ease of clean up and portability, and maddy-sherman-1allow me to work in a variety of locations.  I have also dabbled in charcoal, pastels, oils and watercolors.    In 2014, I added mural work to my repertoire.

Maddy Sherman Artist Statement There is so much beauty in nature and the things all around us!  I enjoy painting the simple things that we don’t stop to appreciate as much as we should.  Art is therapeutic for me, and allows me to get lost in whatever wonderful world I am creating at that moment.


Chris Sommerfelt Biography Artist and graphic designer, Chris Sommerfelt discovered watercolor at an adult evening class in the early 1980s and has since been intrigued with what happens when you mix pigment and water. Chris has since studied with many fine artists who have influenced her in her art journey. Chris has work in private collections as well as twelve pieces in the corporate collection of Northwestern Mutual Life. Chris is a sought after watercolor instructor. Her teaching schedule can be found on her website. Chris has been asked to conduct critiques, demos, and to judge exhibits for local art groups. She is member of the League of Milwaukee Artists, exhibits chair for Wisconsin Watercolor Society, and mentor for the Wauwatosa Artist’s chris-sommerfelt-3Workshop. Chris has received awards at art group exhibits and statewide juried art exhibitions.

Chris Sommerfelt Artist Statement I am a watercolor artist. I believe no medium works better than watercolor for expressing the beauty of the natural world. It’s transparency and the way that pigment mixes and moves in the water gives the medium its own voice in addition to the intent of the artist. Nature is my primary subject matter, be it a landscape, wildflowers or an intimate close-up of the natural world. It is from nature that my creative energy flows. My hope is that viewers of my art feel my connection to nature when they see my art.


Christine Thomsen Biography

Christine Thomsen earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Studio Art from Cardinal Stritch University but considers herself largely self-taught. “Institutions taught me art had to be buyer-centered and grandiose. I was pressured to abandon my artistic identity to adopt the artiste persona. Essentially, I returned to my roots and to the moral imperatives I had taught myself. There is no definitive paradigm for judging art. Artists must create for themselves in a manner which copiously explores their spirit. They must paint what helps them breathe and makes their hearts swell.” For Christine, nature provided the great inspiration she needed.

Being a native Wisconsinite, her landscapes are mainly meditations on the beautiful, poetic imagery perceived in rural Wisconsin. “My body of work recalls a time of American values – a time when family and neighbors worked and prayed together. Barns are lasting testaments to the rewards of hard work and are not only striking, but are important symbols of our agrarian past. A constant forward motion in design and technology has resulted in the disappearance of barns and historic farmhouses from our landscape. My heart yearns for a simpler way of life, and a return to the values of the farming family.” For Christine, the quietude and peace of the land is a guide to faith contemplation and a door to spiritual repose; God continually reveals Himself to her through the environmental peace. Often pursuing traditional miniature dimensions for her works facilitates the simplification of her hopes. She is able to block out what she no longer wishes to see to instead focus in detail on a single, emotive instant of the American scene.

Christine has received several awards and honors for her work, most recently earning Grand Prize in the Waukesha County Courthouse Art Purchase Award Competition. She’s also received the Art in Action Dry Media Award through the Art Guild of Menomonee Falls, as well as Honorable Mentions, Peoples’ Choice and Artist Community awards through the Waukesha Creative Arts League, the Spring Creek Art at the Creek Exhibition, and Menomonee Falls Art in Action Exhibition. Now an artist in her thirties, she continues to enjoy rendering barns and landscapes, but finds the truest gratification in the simple, pure act of creating art.

christine-thomsen-3Christine Thomsen Artist Statement

My works are meditations on the truth and devotional beauty found in nature. When I look beyond the human detritus of electronics and greed-driven lifestyles, God continually reveals Himself to me through environmental peace. By portraying the beautiful imagery of rural Wisconsin I recall a time of American values; a time when family and neighbors worked and prayed together. Barns are lasting testaments to the rewards of hard work and are not only striking, but are important symbols of our agrarian past. I work primarily with acrylic paint because of its permanence and color fastness, qualities which marry greatly with the perpetuity of my subject matter.


Katherine Thomsen Biography

“When people first get to know you, they put you in a box. No matter how old you get, or how you change and mature as years pass, those same people put you into that same box whenever they’re with you. My job, as an artist, is to find a way out of that confining box.”

Exploring confinement – and pushing its boundaries – has become a mantra of Katherine’s current body of work. With a focus on the square form, and a critical eye on what’s happening around and within it, she develops a bold, colorful brand of self-expression via abstraction, all the while redefining her art’s essence and own artistic identity. Through a combination of evocative pigments and textural strokes, she illustrates the emotional, unrestricted side of painting. Such details provide movement and purpose in any emotional story. The interplay of formal visual elements – color and texture – inspire feelings relatable to everyone and, more importantly, the desire to break free from constrictions in order to redefine oneself.

A 2008 graduate from Cardinal Stritch University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Studio Art, Katherine is not only a proud recipient of the CSU Visual Arts Departmental Scholarship, but also a proud member of the Tau Nu Chi Young Christian Artists Society and Delta Epsilon Sigma National Honors Society for superior scholarship. Katherine’s unique work, impacted by these experiences, has received much recognition. Notable achievements include winning First Place in the annual “Art at the Creek” art exhibition, having her inspired design chosen for the Sussex Hamilton “Legacy Project,” and earning Honorable Mentions for work presented in the Waukesha County Courthouse Art Purchase Award contest and various shows featuring the artists of the Art Guild of Menomonee Falls, of which she is an active member.

Her work can currently be found pushing boundaries at Purloin Studio in Menomonee Falls, WI, and on the art website she shares with her twin sister:

katherine-thomsen-1Katherine Thomsen Artist Statement

I am deeply inspired by the relationships I witness around me, and by the way an expression or tone of voice can convey what is underneath. I view art and music as looking glasses into more complex perspectives, and I appreciate the symbiotic relationship between the two. As observers and partakers of the world, we are provoked and stimulated by what takes place in our daily environments.

Though the interplay of formal visual elements, and by adapting the square form, I strive to achieve an exploration of the internal and external. Furthermore, I work to illustrate the maturation of relationships as either inward or outward environments change, for whatever happens inside effects what is outside, and whatever happens outside effects what is inside.

MAD Corner: Fawlty Towers

We end our 59th Mainstage season (and thirteen years of putting up with me as WCT’s Managing Artistic Director) with a show that is perfectly silly and full of fun … Fawlty Towers. This John Cleese British television farce has become a cult classic and Netflix favorite. The show is a potpourri of delightful and hilarious characters and situations.

We recently announced our lineup for our historic 60th season and are thrilled about the variety of high quality entertainment we are offering for our Diamond Anniversary. We are sure that you, the Waukesha community, will find something you like from our list of exciting entertainment.

In addition to that, we have been blessed with the incredible support of the Waukesha community as you support us as patrons, donors, and volunteers. We are excited about the future and the possibilities that lie before us, and we can’t to move into the next season with enthusiasm for the arts, our community partners, and all of the people that have been touched, and will be touched by the Waukesha Civic Theatre, a true gem in the heart of Wisconsin. I want to thank everyone for joining us, and I hope you are enjoying the ride as much as we are.

If you haven’t already done so, please consider a donation of any size to our Spotlight On The Future Campaign, a major gift drive with a goal to raise $750,000, providing capital for upgrades that will enhance the theatre experience, increase advertising revenue, decrease operating expenses, and provide for building maintenance. We have raised more than a third of our goal, but we need your help to reach the full amount.

Cramer John 2006John Cramer

Managing Artistic Director

Spotlight On The Board Of Directors: Fawlty Towers

What better way to end our 59th Season at Waukesha Civic Theatre than with the outrageous laughs provided by Basil Fawlty and friends in Fawlty Towers, based on the 1970s British sitcom of the same name.  I have fond childhood memories of watching Fawlty Towers with my father when it was first aired in the US; it was one of the few TV shows he thought was worth watching.  It’s an all-time classic, to be sure, as the British Film Institute put the show at #1 on its BFI TV 100 in 2000.

In our upcoming 60th Season, we’ve got more classics planned in our Mainstage series, starting with Gypsy in September and followed by To Kill A Mockingbird.  To help celebrate this big milestone season, the cast of Gypsy will include the incomparable Kelli Cramer, starring as Rose, and John Cramer as Herbie.  John will also direct Gypsy, and auditions for all remaining roles will be held on June 17-18.

For further details on Waukesha Civic Theatre’s 60th Season, feel free to pick up a 2016-2017 Season Calendar on your way out – better yet, take more than one, give them to friends, and let them know about the wonderful shows you’ve see here.

Finally, as a board director who is also an actor, I want to thank each and every one of you for your support of Waukesha Civic Theatre.  This institution means so much to me and to everyone else on-stage, off-stage, and behind the scenes; it’s truly a blessing in our lives.  Thank you!

Mallmann Jim 2012Jim Mallmann

Board Director

Spotlight On The Board Of Directors: Annie Get Your Gun

There’s no business like show business

Like no business I know

Everything about it is appealing

Everything the traffic will allow

Nowhere can you get that happy feeling

When you are stealing that extra bow

Welcome to the Waukesha Civic Theatre’s Production of Annie Get Your Gun and our historic 59th season. Irving Berlin couldn’t have said it any better. Community theatre can take us to a place like no other. Since joining WCT first as a performer and now also as a Board Director, I relish in the opportunity to share this wonderful theatre and its efforts with you. The commitment of our staff, board, performers, volunteers, and crews to put on quality productions is beyond compare. I am honored to be a part of it. But we wouldn’t be able to do what we do if we didn’t have you, the patrons, sitting in these seats and supporting us. For your attendance, and your support, I am truly grateful.

Since its debut in 1946, Annie Get Your Gun has masterfully maintained its popularity. With hits like “You Can’t Get a Man With A Gun” and “Anything You Can Do,” you are sure to leave the show smiling and humming a tune. And if you are so inclined, please help spread the word and encourage others to attend! We rely on your word of mouth and your help—you are our best marketing tool! Take advantage of the many opportunities available to you to support our theatre, including donations, and volunteering! Enjoy this amazing production!

Bagley Elizabeth 2014Elizabeth Bagley

Board Director