“O Captain! My Captain! rise up and hear the bells;
Rise up—for you the flag is flung—for you the bugle trills” ~ Walt Whitman
Dead Poets Society is our third PIX Flix in our 61st season! Robin Williams called this one of his favorite performances of all time: “it had some sort of amazing… there’s something in that movie that affected people beyond just a movie.” Join us as we help celebrate his legacy! Get inspired by joining us for this extraordinary film on September 25th at 6:30 pm! Tickets are $5 for everyone – you won’t find a better deal than that!
As in all his roles, Robin Williams lent a certain genius to this film. Playing a new English teacher, John Keating, he sets out to encourage his students to cast aside normality and chart their own course through life. Learning of his colorful past, his students resurrect the unsanctioned Dead Poets Society, and sneak off to explore their own individuality. What follows is a foray you won’t want to miss!
“The poem by Henry David Thoreau that is featured on the front page of the poetry book Neil receives is not an original poem by Thoreau. Rather, it is a rearrangement of sentences from his work “Where I Lived,” Chapter Two from his seminal work, Walden.” ~IMDb
“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived. I did not wish to live what was not life, living is so dear; nor did I wish to practice resignation, unless it was quite necessary. I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life, to live so sturdily and Spartan-like as to put to rout all that was not life, …” ~Henry David Thoreau
Dead Poets Society won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay (Tom Schulman). Peter Weir received a nomination for Best Director and the film itself was nominated for Best Picture of 1989. Robin Williams received his second Best Actor in a Leading Role nomination and it has since been widely recognized as one of the actor/comedian’s best roles. It also won the BAFTA Award for Best Film.
For only $5, join us on September 25th to celebrate the legacy of Robin Williams, Tom Schulman, poetic inspiration, and our 61st season all at once! See you at the PIX!
WCT Board Secretary
“Carpe. Carpe diem. Seize the day, boys. Make your lives extraordinary.”
Come join us on Monday, July 31st at 6:30 pm for the classic movie-musical, West Side Story! Set against a backdrop of two warring teenage gangs on the streets of New York City in the 1950s, this musical re-telling of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet opened on Broadway on September 26, 1957. Racial tensions against a growing immigrant population from Puerto Rico fuel the feud between the Sharks, a gang of Puerto Rican immigrants, and the Jets, a gang of Americans. Caught in the crossfire are the star-crossed lovers: Tony and Maria. While at a school dance, Tony and Maria meet, falling in love at first sight. However, their love is ill-fated as Tony is a former Jet and Maria is the sister of the Sharks’ leader, Bernardo.
The story unfolds as told through the dialogue by author Arthur Laurents, music by Leonard Bernstein, and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim. Together, the team created some of the most beautiful and recognizable songs in Broadway history, including, “Something’s Coming,” “Maria”, “Tonight,” “America,” and “I Feel Pretty.”
A film adaptation of the musical was released in 1961, starring Natalie Wood as Maria and Rita Moreno as Anita. West Side Story went on to win 10 Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actor, Best Actress, and Best Musical Score. Jerome Robbins received a special Academy Award for his choreography.
To this day, West Side Story remains a favorite in the theatre community. What better way to celebrate the 60th anniversary of West Side Story than to see the film at the Waukesha Civic Theatre on Monday, July 31st at 6:30 pm? Tickets are only $5!
Vertigo is a 1958 American crime film. It is a romantic story of obsession, manipulation, fear, suspense and mystery all wrapped around twisted human psychology. The versatility and genre befuddled audiences of 1958. “Dolly zoom,” zooming a zoom lens to adjust the angle of the view toward or away from the subject created a continuous perspective of distortion. It was a technique used to increase the drama in a scene.
Hitchcock actually pulled Vertigo out of circulation in 1973. It wasn’t until 1980 that audiences saw it again and grew to appreciate it more. A digital restoration of the film in 1996 further returned it to its original glory.
The film was shot on location in San Francisco, California and Paramount Studios in Hollywood. Scottie’s apartment is one block downhill from the “crookedest street in the world”. The Mission San Juan Bastista is a real place. Madelaine jumps into the sea at Fort Point, underneath the Golden Gate Bridge. The views of San Francisco and surrounding area are beautiful. The step back in time with the classic automobiles of the 1950’s is dramatic.
In 1989 Vertigo was recognized as a “culturally, historically and aesthetically significant” film by the United States Library of Congress and selected for preservation in the National Film Registry in the first year of the registry voting. As of 2016, on Rotten Tomatoes the film has a “certified fresh” rating of 97%.
What better place to watch this film, considered to be one of Hitchcock’s best, if not THE best, than the big screen at the Waukesha Civic Theatre?
Take a look for yourself and decide whether or not Vertigo is the greatest Hitchcock film of all time. Don’t leave yourself hanging in suspense (like poor Scottie).
Also, don’t forget, Hitchcock appears somewhere in all of his films. Will you spot him?
No movie may be more nostalgic of the 80’s than E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial. I’d like to welcome you to enjoy our presentation of the April PIX Flix feature on Monday, April 10th. This was one of my favorite movies growing up. What could be more intriguing to kids both young and old than the mystery of a young boy befriending an alien from another planet?
From the moment this movie starts, it captures your imagination and relates it all to a young boy with an older know-it-all brother and talkative younger sister. This younger sister was the breakout performance to none other than Drew Barrymore.
A set around the fall season and Halloween adds to this timeless adventure. The whole story is pulled together by the continued breathtaking music compilations by John Williams. John Williams has been nominated for 50 academy awards and won 5 for iconic movies like Star Wars and Jaws, including one for this very movie.
This movie has everything a good family movie should have. There are emotional ups and downs along the way, but it remains one of the most touching family friendly movies of all time. So please join us with your whole family for E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial on Monday, April 10th, and don’t forget the popcorn!
Next month, on Monday, March 20th, we bring Mr. Holland’s Opus back to the big screen. Friends, bring tissues.
Glenn Holland is a composer who wants to write the great American symphony. Instead he grinds out a career teaching high school music for decades to children of widely varying attitude and aptitude, while fighting his administration for funding and appreciation.
At home he’d love nothing more than to share his love of music with his only child, but tragedy strikes and his son is born deaf. Along with this heartbreak, Holland’s stubbornness causes him to estrange himself from the boy for years.
Michael Kamen was so moved by his experience composing for this movie that afterward he founded the Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation (www.mhopus.org) to “[keep] music alive in our schools by donating musical instruments to under-funded music programs nationwide.”
Richard Dreyfuss gives us yet another Oscar and Golden Globe nominated performance in this modern family classic, with an ending evocative of It’s a Wonderful Life.
Please join me on Monday, March 20th for the feel-good movie of 1995. I’m not crying – you are!
Put Monday, February 13 at 6:30 p.m. on your calendar to join my wife Dawn and me at the Waukesha Civic Theatre to see one of my all-time favorite films – Casablanca for only $5.00. Critic Leonard Maltin considers it to be “the best Hollywood movie of all time.”
It stars Humphrey Bogart as Rick Blaine, in his first truly romantic role and Ingrid Bergman as Ilsa Lund which her website calls her “most famous and enduring role.” Critic Roger Ebert called her “luminous” and her chemistry with Bogart: “she paints his face with her eyes.”
Casablanca has some of the most famous lines ever! Watching today’s news, an anchor said they “rounded up the usual suspects” which Claude Rains as Captain Louis Renault says twice to great effect.
One of the best final lines in any movie, “Louie, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship,” was added a month after shooting ended. Other famous Bogart lines are: “We’ll always have Paris,” and “Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine.”
Personally I love when Renault says, “I’m shocked, shocked to find that gambling’s going on here” and then’s told, “Your winnings, sir.” I also love when Bogart tells the head Nazi, “Well, there are certain sections of New York, Major, that I wouldn’t advise you to try to invade.”
So come see why Casablanca, celebrating its 75th anniversary this year, won Best Picture, Director and Adapted Screenplay at the 1943 Academy Awards and includes the iconic theme song, “As Time Goes By” sung by Dooley Wilson. Then you should watch Woody Allen’s 1972 film, Play It Again Sam, which Bogart never actually says.
I guarantee you’ll enjoy seeing it on the big Civic screen – “Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but soon and for the rest of your life.” How many films offer comedy, romance, suspense, and the fifth most memorable line in cinema – Rick’s toast to Ilsa, “Here’s looking at you, kid,” which Bogey said to Bergman as he taught her poker between takes.
Waukesha Civic Theatre Board Director
This exciting film did not come without its dangers, however. The original Tin Man, Buddy Ebsen, reacted to the makeup and had to be replaced. The aluminum powder makeup coated his lungs, causing him to be hospitalized and the makeup team to switch to an aluminum paste over a layer of clown white. Margaret Hamilton, who played the Wicked Witch Of The West, suffered second degree burns when the grease in her makeup caught fire during a Munchkinland scene. They had to fully remove the makeup before treating her burns. After six weeks in the hospital, she returned to finish filming.
As Andy Williams said, “It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year.” And in the words of Blues Traveler “If it’s Hanukah, or Kwanzaa, Solstice Harvest, or December 25th, peace on earth to everyone, and abundance to everyone you’re with.”
I love this season, and I love WCT’s tradition of presenting an affordable family show for the community to enjoy. This season we present a hidden gem by local playwright / composer Jason Powell; For Purely Elfish Reasons, a holiday show with great characters and a story line that gives a respectful (and hilarious) nod to the Marx Brothers. We open tonight and run through December 18, including two Pay What You Can performances Saturday, December 3 at 7:30 pm and Saturday December 17 at 2:00 pm. Click here for more information.
Waukesha Silver Bells is once again sponsoring Horse Drawn Carriage Rides in downtown Waukesha every Friday and Saturday throughout the month. Click here for more information.
The West End Artists are presenting their 94th Art Crawl Saturday, December 3, from 4:00 pm to 10:00 pm, with fantastic art displays in several galleries and stores in downtown Waukesha, including our own Waukesha State Bank Art Gallery in the WCT lobby. Click here for more information.
For those of you looking for something a little naughty (but a lotta nice) Joel Kopischke brings his unique brand of comedy to our stage for the eighth consecutive season with I Got Yule, Babe Tuesday and Thursday, December 6 and 8, at 7:30 pm both nights. Joined by his merry band of incredible musicians and singers, he will present some of his favorites with a few new songs mixed in. Click here to buy tickets.
We have two auditions coming up this month. A.C.T. Live! auditions will be held on Monday, December 12 from 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm, and auditions for 33 Variations will be held on Monday and Tuesday, December 12 and 13, starting at 6:30 pm. Click here for more information.
Our PIX Flix movie series is utilizing our new screen and projector, bringing the silver screen back to the PIX. Our next movie of the season will be Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas on December 19 at 6:30 pm. The cast of the movie includes Jim Carrey, Taylor Momsen, Jeffrey Tambor, Christine Baranski, Bill Irwin, Molly Shannon, 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.
We end the holiday season with the return of Tony Davis as Elvis Presely in Elvis: The Legend Lives On with performances December 29-31. Click here for more information.
Our current featured artist in the Waukesha State Bank Art Gallery in our lobby is the InterFaith Lifetime Art Competition Winners through December 8, and then we will feature the art of Jonathan Korotko December 10 through January 9.
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 know we are only half way through our current season, but I am so excited about our 61st season I have to share it with all of you. I am thrilled to annouce that our 2017-2018 season will include:
Sex Please, We’re Sixty
The Hunchback Of Notre Dame (an area premier!)
The House Without A Christmas Tree (an original adaptation by our own Doug Jarecki)
The Complete Works Of William Shakespeare (Abridged)
Wait Until Dark
Father Knows Best
Amazing, right? Subscription packages will go on sale in May 2017! Individual tickets will go on sale in July 2017!
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 will be appearing with the Waukesha South High School choirs in two concerts. The first with the Wisconsin Philharmonic on Tuesday, December 6 at 7:30 pm at Shattuck Auditorium, and the second at Waukesha South High School on Wednesday, December 21 at 7:00 pm.
Have a Happy Holiday Season, and I’ll see you at the theatre!
Managing Artistic Director
262-547-4911 ext. 13 office
Don’t Be A Grinch … Come See The Grinch!
By now you are all most likely aware of our new PIX Flix movie series, where we have brought the Silver Screen back to the PIX one Monday every month. We are half way through our second season of the series, and our next movie makes me giddy. It is no secret that I love Christmas. It is my favorite time of year, and I love, love, love, love, love holiday movies. I’m hoping to get a full house for our December movie, Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas, starring Jim Carrey, Taylor Momsen, Jeffrey Tambor, Christine Baranski, Bill Irwin, Molly Shannon, and more. This is easily one of my all-time favorite holiday movies, and I can watch it over and over.
Based on the book by Dr. Seuss and the original 1966 cartoon TV special narrated by Boris Karloff, the movie brings the wonderful world of the Whos to life. Ron Howard directed the movie, which has become the second highest-grossing holiday film of all time with over $345 million worldwide. It won the Academy Award for Best Makeup, and was also nominated for Best Art Direction and Best Costume Design.
And of course there’s Jim Carrey.
Love him or hate him, you can’t deny Jim Carrey’s 100% commitment to every role he plays. When Mr. Carrey first started having success on the big screen I was not amused. I didn’t understand what the buzz was about, but I saw every film he was in. Perhaps begrudgingly, but I saw it. Over time I grew to appreciate his genius, and now he is one of my favorite actors of all time. His ability to completely transform himself, both vocally and physically, is a wonder to behold. And his Grinch is pure brilliance.
I love quoting the Grinch. I’m no Jim Carrey, but it sure is fun to imitate him. This is my usual go-to:
The nerve of those Whos. Inviting me down there – on such short notice! Even if I wanted to go my schedule wouldn’t allow it. 4:00, wallow in self pity; 4:30, stare into the abyss; 5:00, solve world hunger, tell no one; 5:30, jazzercize; 6:30, dinner with me – I can’t cancel that again; 7:00, wrestle with my self-loathing… I’m booked. Of course, if I bump the loathing to 9, I could still be done in time to lay in bed, stare at the ceiling and slip slowly into madness. But what would I wear?
The movie’s soundtrack is loaded with fun, funny, and sentimental songs, including “Green Christmas,” “Christmas Of Love,” “Better Do It Right,” and “Perfect Christmas Night.” And of course, Carrey’s inspired version of the classic “You’re A Mean One, Mr. Grinch” is spectacular. These songs are in my personal holiday music playlist and always make me smile when they start to play.
The movie will be on Monday, December 19th at 6:30 pm. Tickets are $5 each, and we have concessions (including popcorn!) and bar service. It would be a great night for everyone that loves WCT to gather just before the holiday to celebrate this incredible organization, each other, a very fun and funny movie, and our NEW SCREEN and PROJECTOR!!!!! I’m hoping that we can get 200, or MORE, of our key supporters and participants to come see this movie. You can fully experience our projector and screen, purchased and installed a little over a year ago thanks to the generous donations we have received for our Spotlight On The Future Campaign. (It’s never too late to give to the campaign, or give again to the campaign. We are at 47% of our total goal). You can buy tickets online or at the box office by phone, email, fax or in person. Get your tickets early so you are sure to have a seat! I’ll see you then, if not before!
Managing Artistic Director
PS – click here to check out the rest of our PIX Flix series!
“I wouldn’t give you two cents for all your fancy rules if, behind them, they didn’t have a little bit of plain, ordinary, everyday kindness and a little looking out for the other fella, too.” – Jefferson Smith
Waukesha Civic Theatre’s next PIX Flix presentation is Mr. Smith Goes To Washington, starring James Stewart, Claude Rains, and Jean Arthur, and directed by Frank Capra.
“Aah, he’ll never get started. I’ll make public opinion out there within five hours! I’ve done it all my life. I’ll blacken this punk so that he’ll – You leave public opinion to me. Now, Joe, I think you’d better go back into the Senate and keep those Senators lined up.” – Jim Taylor
When it premiered in 1939, Mr. Smith Goes To Washington was a widely celebrated, highly controversial film. The story of idealistic everyman Jefferson Smith, who is temporarily appointed to the United States Senate only to find it filled with corruption, has inspired audiences for over seventy-five years.
“You can’t count on people voting, half the time they don’t vote, anyway.” – Senator Joseph Paine
Politics may seem inescapable at times, but this film still speaks to audiences today. Neither the Republican nor Democrat parties are ever mentioned or even hinted at on screen, and at the time of its release, it was both lauded for its patriotism and decried as pro-communist and anti-American. Washington insiders hated it, but fascist states in Europe banned it for fear that it showed that democracy worked.
“This is the most titanic battle of modern times. A David without even a slingshot rises to do battle against the mighty Goliath, the Taylor machine, allegedly crooked inside and out.” – Diz Moore
Mr. Smith Goes To Washington, one of the great films of 1939 (a prestigious company that includes classics such as The Wizard Of Oz, Gone With The Wind, Stagecoach, and Goodbye, Mr. Chips), was nominated for eleven Academy Awards, ultimately winning for Best Original Story. It made the American Film Institute’s 100 Years … 100 Movies list, ranking at number 26, and it is widely considered one of Frank Capra’s best films.
“Because of just one, plain, simple rule: Love thy neighbor. And in this world today, full of hatred, a man who knows that one rule has a great trust.” – Jefferson Smith
For only $5, join us at 6:30 on Monday, November 7th for this classic American film. And don’t forget to vote!