Milwaukee Metro Voices
Great Sounds on a Great Lake
~ Spiritual ~ Emotional  ~ Theatrical ~

ONLY WE KNOW BEST May 12 - 14 @ 18 - 21, 2017   @ NEXT ACT THEATRE 255 S Water St., Milwaukee WI 53204

A Word from JASON POWELL

What begins as a more-or-less conventional town hall meeting becomes a cornucopia of monologues, stories and songs from a disparate variety of unique and colorful characters. Discussions become heated, passions are ignited, and emotions flow freely, in this music/story cycle that incorporates a range of surprising ideas, unconventional attitudes and unexpected points of view. 

This show is dedicated to my pal Jay, one of those horrible “Republican” types that I used to think were just imaginary monsters that were made up in order to frighten children into behaving.  (“Eat your lima beans, Jason, or an orange-skinned hatemonger will be elected president!”) Much of the way I chose to frame the left/right divide in America – for the purposes of this semi-serious/mostly-comic musical – was shaped by my many conversations with Jay (who didn’t vote for Trump, bless him). In addition I must thank Trefor Williams and MMVoices for agreeing to this wacky “town hall” premise in the first place; director Tessara Morgan for bringing the show to life; and Erin Hartman, for suggesting that the script be about a sculpture, and then taking hundreds of hours out of her life to sculpt it. Whichever way you lean politically, I hope you’ll enjoy the work of this wonderful ensemble, whose talents amaze me daily.


The Cast

See all personal details for the 29 cast members here

Meg Givens............. Beth Lewinski

Joe............................ Ryan Krueger

Davis Tryon................. Bob Hirschi

Paula...................... Jasmine Ridgell

Sondra......................... Tess Masias

Agatha Bertram............. Liz Norton

Jameson Mukos............. Colin Daly

William Osgood............. Dan Slane

Cheryl Strepp...........Andrea Moser

Sister Betty Carlyle...Laura Spencer

Loni Crenshaw...........Hannah Esch

Barbara Howell.... Christie Burgess

Daniel Bristow.............Ben Kordus

Jennifer McLure.............. Liz Shipe

Mikaela Love..........Brittany Green

Kate Ritch…….......... Briana Lipor

Ashley................... Marika Marklin

Julie....................Clare Czechowicz

Shannon.......................Anna Hecht

Jay Austin....................Chad Larget

Bryan Shriver................ Eric Welch

Ella Pierson.............. Ana Gonzales

Edgar Simms.......Henry Hammond

Steven Breitbart..........Ben Ludwig

Bill.............................. Keith Smith

Milo......................... Manny Lupian

Lesley Kern.................Becky Cofta

Donnie..................Donnie Williams

Christine ................Christine Esche

Jason Powell is the writer, composer, lyricist of Fortuna the Time-Bender vs. the Schoolgirls of Doom, which premiered at the Alchemist in 2012, produced by Milwaukee Opera Theatre. Powell wrote the text for Danceworks Performance Company’s 2014 production of Temptation’s Snare, in which he portrayed The Devil. He stars in the short film A Perfect Match (which can be viewed on YouTube). His original musical Invader? I Hardly Know Her, was featured at the SoHo Playhouse in New York City, as part of the city’s 2010 Fringe Festival. He is also the author of the book The Best There Is At What He Does, published by Sequart in October of 2016.

This is Jason's second show for MMV - The Search for Suzie Surreal was premiered December 2016. You can also see Jason in the pit playing guitar and piano for the show.

The Songs

1 Only We Know Best

2 No One Deserves a Handout

3 Moral Outrage

4 Climate Change Cha-Cha

5 The Coal Miner’s Song

6 Let the Stars Guide You

7 Religion

8 Into The Light

9 Abstinence

10 Don’t Do the Crime

11 Protectors

Intermission

12 United States First

13 The Wonderful Land of Oz

14 We The People

15 Corporations Are People Too

16 Different Generations

17 Gonna Be Alt-Right

18 For Medicinal Use

19 Only We Know Best

Stage Director Tessara Morgan

Tessara is very excited to direct her second show with Milwaukee Metro Voices, the first being A Cabin in the Woods. Tessara graduated from Cornell College where she assistant directed two productions, and directed five. Professional theater projects outside Milwaukee include a two-season assistant directing position at the Winona Great River Shakespeare Festival, a directing internship at the Guthrie, and assistant directing at Theatre Cedar Rapids. Local project involvement includes stage managing and/or assistant directing at The Pink Banana and The Splinter Group. She has directed several productions in Milwaukee: Feeding the Moonfish at Splinter Stripped, The Secretaries which was a solo project, and Dali’s Liquid Ladies with the pop-up theater company Truepenny. She is grateful to all of the artists who dedicated their love and time to this project. Special thanks as always goes to her family and her soon to be husband. Also a special thank you Trefor and MMV for allowing her to participate in such a fun and thought provoking production.

Additional Credits

Sculpture.......................... Erin Hartman

Keyboard............................Alex Chilsen

Drums.........................Andy Blochowiak

Guitar/Keyboard................Jason Powell

Publicity/Design...........Emory Churness

Lights/Sound Design..Mike Van Dresser

Stage Manager....................Gary Shultz

Stage Director.............. Tessara Morgan

Music Dir./Producer........Trefor Williams