Optimist Granted WAB Grant
Wisconsin Arts Board awards Optimist $9,000
The holidays begin to come to an end in the coming week as a touring production of Mama Mia! breezes through town and Greendale Community Theatre’s production of Bat Boy: The Musical gets ready to open at the end of the week. Only a couple of days prior to the New Year, The Optimist Theatre had announced that it had received a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board.
This is Optimist’s second grant from the WAB, the last one allowing Optimist to stage The Tempest as its initial Free Shakespeare In The Park offering on the campus of Alverno College. This year’s $9,000 grant will help support Optimist’s next production—The Twelfth Night as directed by Laura Gordon starring James Pickering as Malvolio. Optimist hopes its Shakespeare in the park program can become a Milwaukee theatre fixture. It’d be a nice addition to what I hope continues to be a thriving local DIY thatter summer season. There’s always outdoor Shakespeare elsewhere in the state—Door Shakes and the American Players Theatre always do such an excellent job with it. It’s reassuring to have a free, local Shakespeare show in addition to the more expensive options in distant corners of the state.