Next Act Theatre Makes Economics Entertaining

Sept. 22, 2012

Hang on to your portfolio! Next Act Theatre opens their season with a brand new economic roller coaster ride sure to pique your interest rate. microcrisis by Mike Lew runs September 27 – October 21, 2012 at Next Act’s new home, 255 S. Water St. in Milwaukee.

Inspired by the 2008 financial crisis, microcrisis uses satire to imagine the world’s next catastrophe with micro-loans and a hotshot financier. Playwright Mike Lew comments, “I wanted to channel all the outrage and shock that the financial crisis provokes, but you really can’t do that with naturalistic drama. In order to capture the sheer absurdity of the times, you have to create a play that’s just as absurd.”

Opening night is Friday, September 28. Tickets range from $25-$35 and may be purchased by calling 414-278-0765 or visiting online at

Edward Morgan (THE EXONERATED, MARY’S WEDDING, LOMBARDI: THE ONLY THING and COYOTE ON A FENCE) will direct the production. Morgan comments, “This play is both clever and funny, but it leaves me feeling a little queasy, too. For one thing it’s made me aware of my ignorance of the recent economic crisis, how the whole commercial paper market works, and how bankers, financial officers and politicians (from both parties) brought financial ruin to untold trusting citizens and businesses, while often still managing to hit the jackpot themselves. Thankfully, microcrisis is neither a gritty account of that debacle or a mind-numbing seminar on Collateralized Debt Obligation.”

The cast features seven actors: Alexandra Bonesho as Lydia, David Cecsarini as Bennett, Michael Cotey as Randy, Erica Cruz Hernandez as Mrs. Chavez/Collette, Mary Kababik as Clare/Beta Test/Renée, John Kishline as Frankfurt/Christophe and Lee Palmer as Acquah/Mr. Chavez/Drunken Gambler.

The production team includes Costume Designer Kimberly O’Callaghan, Lighting Designer Jason Fassl (THE EXONERATED, MARY’S WEDDING, PURGATORIO) and Nikki Kulas (THE EXONERATED, A SLEEPING COUNTRY) returning as Props Master. Rick Rasmussen will design the set, Producing Artistic Director David Cecsarini will design the sound, Aaron Sherkow will create video animations and Lee Palmer will provide choreography. Resident Production Stage Manager is Jessica Connelly.

• Opening Night Reception – Patrons are invited to a post-show reception in the lobby Friday, September 28.
• The Exchange: A Community Conversation, held October 14 at 4 pm, will be a lively discussion examining the past, present and future of our global economic system. This is a free event.
• A Pay-What-You-Can performance will take place on Monday, October 15, at 7:30 pm. These tickets, limited to two per person, are available only in person at the theatre beginning at 6:30 pm the evening of the performance.
• Gallery Night – During the run, the lobby walls will feature artwork by three local artists, handpicked for the debut art show at Next Act Theatre. Next Act will be an official participant in the October 19 Gallery Night, presented by the Historic Third Ward Association.
• Talkbacks, a chance for the audience to pose questions to the director and cast, will be held after selected performances. With the support of the Milwaukee Arts Board, the talkback series has been expanded. For dates and times, see the attached Fact Sheet Calendar.

The mission of Next Act Theatre is to engage the hearts and minds of our audience with compelling and intimate theatre productions intended to stimulate thought, foster the exchange of ideas and to promote the development of new perspectives and understanding. Next Act Theatre is celebrating 23 years of professional theatre.

microcrisis is sponsored in part by Larry and Patty Compton. It is supported in part by a grant from the Milwaukee Arts Board and the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin. Next Act Theatre’s 2012-2013 Season was supported in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts.

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