This year marks David’s 40th year as a theatre professional, having debuted as a journeyman actor with the Guthrie Theatre in 1978. He returned to the state of his later upbringing in 1980 by way of the American Players Theatre in Spring Green. After seven seasons as an APT acting company member and fight choreographer, he made his way east, where he has acted with many of Milwaukee’s professional companies over the years.
David has proudly served as Artistic Director and Producer for Milwaukee’s Next Act Theatre for 28 seasons, where he has directed over 40 productions and acted in as many others. Behind the scenes, he has created sound effects and scores for most of Next Act’s work, and for many other professional productions. David holds a BA in Theatre, received upon graduation from the University of Minnesota in 1977.
Jane is delighted to join the Next Act team having most recently served as Producing Director for In Tandem Theatre, a Milwaukee-based theatre company she co-founded with her husband, Chris. Her work with In Tandem culminated in twenty-one years of producing critically-acclaimed, exciting live theatre, for which she received an Artist of the Year Award from the Milwaukee Arts Board, a Lifetime Achievement Award from the 2019 Footlights People’s Choice Awards, and numerous Best of the Year Recognitions through the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and the Shepherd Express.
A former stage manager, Jane toured nationally with the Great American Children’s Theatre Company and has worked locally for Milwaukee Chamber Theatre, First Stage Children’s Theatre, Theatre Tesseract, Next Act Theatre and Next Generation Theatre. For several years, Jane was the stage manager for ComedySportz, a position she originated. Jane’s directing credits include In Tandem, Carroll University, Broadway Baby Dinner Theatre, South Milwaukee Performing Arts Center, Whitefish Bay High School and Marquette University.
A Milwaukee-based arts administrator and actor, A.J. holds a BA in Theatre Arts and a minor in Public Relations from Marquette University. He has performed various administrative duties for Summit Players Theatre, First Stage, Theatre Gigante and Theatre Nervosa, and came to Next Act from Bottom Line Marketing and Public Relations.
In addition to his behind-the-scenes work, A.J. has been seen onstage with First Stage, Renaissance Theaterworks, Theatre Gigante, Voices Found Repertory, Summit Players Theatre, Milwaukee Chamber Theatre (Young Playwrights Festival), Theatre Nervosa, Quasimondo Physical Theatre, Off the Wall Theater, Windfall Theatre and Cooperative Performance. Outside of theatre, he enjoys baking and spending time in the great outdoors.
Mike has served as Next Act Theatre’s Technical Director since 2011, taking on the additional roles of Facility Manager and Rental Coordinator in 2014. Previously, Mike was the resident Master Electrician and Light Board Operator. Mike studied with renowned Lighting Designer Jason Fassl.
Some of Mike’s designs include I AND YOU; UnSILENT NIGHT; BRAVO, CARUSO!; IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE LIVE RADIO SHOW; NO CHILD…; PERFECT MENDACITY; and ONE TIME with Next Act Theatre and HEDWIG & THE ANGRY INCH, NEXT TO NORMAL, THE WILD PARTY and LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS with All In Productions.
When Mike is not working for Next Act he is working on building his own production company that services technical theatre needs for high schools, colleges
Grace is a Milwaukee born-and-raised theatre-maker with experience as a professional actor and as an auxiliary theatre teacher in a multitude of MPS schools. Before working at Next Act, she taught in educational outreach programs at First Stage, Skylight, Arts@Large, and The Rep, and continues to bring professional theatre experiences to classrooms and students in and around Milwaukee. When not at Next Act, Grace can be found traveling to the Edinburgh, Scotland Fringe Festival or rehearsing a staged sword fight (someday maybe both at once).
Christine discovered the world of audience services when she joined the staff of Milwaukee’s Performing Arts Center (n/k/a Marcus Center) in its inaugural season. She has worked with dozens of arts organizations and their audiences as ticketing evolved from paper and pencil to computer systems to the internet, providing new ways to enhance patrons’ experiences. Long a friend of Next Act Theatre and supporter of its mission, she was pleased to become part of its dedicated team in 2014. Since then, she has found in her interactions with Next Act audiences ample validation of her often-stated opinion that the nicest people come to theatre. Christine’s abiding interest in the fine and folk arts of diverse cultures means that she herself is often found in an audience.
Veronica Zahn has been the Administrative Assistant for Next Act since May 2017, focusing on marketing and development projects. Veronica has also stage managed at Next Act for THE OTHER PLACE and HEAR WHAT’S IN THE HEART. She has a BA in Theatre Arts from Bethel College and an MFA in Stage Management from Wayne State University. A part of the theatre community in Milwaukee since the 2014-15 season, Veronica has also stage managed at Milwaukee Chamber Theatre, Renaissance Theaterworks, Skylight Music Theatre and Theatre Gigante, in addition to teaching stage management at Carthage College. She enjoys exploring all that Milwaukee has to offer with her husband, Matt Norby.
David Anderson, Johnson Controls (retired)
Daniel P. Murray, Broadway Law Offices
Joyce Mielke, Briggs & Stratton Corporation (retired)
Tom Gauthier, Adonai Employment
Immediate Past President
Cathryn Jakicic, Healthcare Facilities Today
Terri Alioto, Community Volunteer
Michael Burzynski*, CliftonLarsonAllen, LLP
Mohammad ElBsat, Johnson Controls
Kelsey Lawler, Rev Pop
Steve Marcus*, Marcus Promotions/Footlights
Donna Martynski, Community Volunteer
John McGivern, Actor, Writer, Comedian
Daniel P. Murray, Broadway Law Offices
Susan Schoenfeld, Community Volunteer
Sandra Zingler, Community Volunteer