John Schneider

John Schneider has been an assistant A&E editor and the Shepherd’s dance writer for many years. He is a longtime artist-in-residence and performing arts faculty member at Marquette University, and the founding director of the much-awarded Project Non-Violence in which youngsters from Milwaukee’s toughest neighborhoods create and perform theatre on subjects of concern to them. He is also leader of the John Schneider Orchestra, a 25-year-old cabaret-jazz band, and the creative director of the new Milwaukee Fringe Festival.

He was a founding member of the Milwaukee experimental theatre ensemble, Theatre X, and served as its artistic leader and resident playwright for most of 35 years. Theatre X presented original work internationally while maintaining an alternative art center in Milwaukee that supported artists in many disciplines. In 1995, he became the first person to receive the Milwaukee Arts Board’s annual Artist of the Year Award for contributions to the artistic life of the city. Other awards include a National Endowment for the Arts Playwright Fellowship, a Wisconsin Arts Board New Works Award, a Milwaukee County Artist Fellowship, a Rockefeller Foundation Playwright Grant, an OBIE Award with Theatre X and a Pulitzer Prize nomination.

His works have been presented by many theatres, universities and international festivals across the United States and in Canada, New Zealand, Japan, Great Britain, Germany, Sweden, Belgium and the Netherlands, and have been translated into Swedish, German, and Flemish. He also served as a panelist, screener and reporter for the National Endowment for the Arts for 20 years, providing him a wide-ranging immersive education in the American performing arts.


Photo credit: Social Candy

This week, we preview King Lear (Optimist Theatre) and Ballet Beat (Milwaukee Ballet). more

, Performing Arts Weekly


Photo credit: Christa Wagner

Something remarkable—even heroic—is happening every Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday from noon to 3 p.m. at Alfons Gallery through Aug. 5: Andrea and Daniel Burkholder’s live performance and video installation, The Accumulation of Acts. more



Photo credit: Lila Aryan

Each year the Shepherd Express’ LGBTQ Progress Awards honors people and organizations that have worked and taken risks to improve conditions for LGBTQ people in Wisconsin. more



Photo credit: Mark R Mariucci

Off the Cuff with Brett Blomme, president and CEO of the Cream City Foundation. Topics include the philanthropic foundation’s elevated priority areas: health, equity and prosperity; as well as Blomme’s personal commitment to LGBTQ advancement. more

Off the Cuff


Photo Credit: Mark Frohna

The Swan Lake that Michael Pink and the Milwaukee Ballet dancers, orchestra and crew presented last weekend was certainly as beautiful as anything could ever be. more



Photo credit: Jenny Plevin

Pearl Cleage’s 1992 play Flyin’ West begins as a gentle history lesson about African American woman pioneers in Kansas in 1898, then opens to multiple shocks. Bronzeville Arts Ensemble’s production reminded us again how little we know of black ... more



Photo Credit: Tom Davenport

On the first days of June, Milwaukee Ballet reprises Michael Pink’s innovative staging of Swan Lake. more

A&E Feature

Performing Arts Week highlights live theater, dance and classical music performances throughout the greater Milwaukee area. This week, we preview a concert by the Glenn Miller Orchestra; Bronzeville Arts Ensembles production of Flyin’ West; and a ... more

, Performing Arts Weekly


Seven professional choreographers responded to poems by high school student writers responding to the vets’ life stories. more

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Photo Credit: Mark Frohna

The extraordinary co-production by Milwaukee Opera Theatre and Wild Space Dance Company of composer Ana Sokolovic’s ferociously challenging a capella opera Svadba-Wedding shouldn’t disappear after three weeknight shows. more

Classical Music

UW-Milwaukee’s Dance Department’s “Springdances 2018: joyUS Momentum” featured three premieres by Milwaukee choreographers as well as an excerpt form a longer work by guest choreographer Ana Maria Alvarez. The joy was that in all cases the ... more


Two of Milwaukee’s most eligible performance companies, Milwaukee Opera Theatre and Wild Space Dance Company, are remarried in the Milwaukee premiere of the unusual one-act opera, Svadba-Wedding. more

A&E Feature

The Shepherd Express’ Performing Arts Week highlights live theater, dance and music performances in and around the city of Milwaukee. This week, we look at productions of Judy Moody & Stink, Celebration and Haydn’s oratorio, The Creation, as ... more

, Performing Arts Weekly

The Shepherd Express’ Performing Arts Week highlights live theater, dance and music performances in and around the city of Milwaukee. This week, we look at productions of The Fantasticks, Wait Until Dark and A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and ... more

, Performing Arts Weekly

Performing arts openings this week include a sequel to Boeing Boeing, a production of Tartuff and a tribute show to Rodgers and Hammerstein. more

, Performing Arts Weekly


Photo Credit: Paul Ruffolo

Danceworks Performance Company’s Secrets From the Wide Sky, a beautifully constructed, nine-episode experiment in dance, music and spoken text. more



Photo Credit: Mark Frohna

Everybody in the land should attend a performance of Milwaukee Ballet’s Beauty and the Beast, Michael Pink and company’s finest work to date. more


Among this week’s performing arts openings are Doubt: A Parable at Milwaukee Chamber Theatre, Pericles, Prince of Tyre at Marquette University, Secrets from the Wide Sky at Danceworks, and a concert and masterclass by organist Jon Gillock at the ... more

, Performing Arts Weekly


Photo Credit: Nathaniel Davauer

With Beauty and the Beast, the Milwaukee Ballet’s Michael Pink adds another full-length ballet to a body of work that includes his original takes on varied literary sources. more

A&E Feature

Young Milwaukee dance artist Zach Schorsch, along with several established and student dancers, present Wisdom Teeth at Danceworks, Saturday, March 31. more