Milwaukee Rep retools artistic relationships

The Milwuaukee Repertory Theatre announced Thursday that it has created a new large group of more loosely affiliated associate artists, essentially replacements for what was one of the last remaining resident companies of actors in America but nonetheless including the actors who were part of that group. 

Artistic director Mark Clements said that the theater's decision to stage "more diverse and innovative productions" had led to the change, which he called an expansion of the theater's "core artistic family."

The 19 names on Clements' list are the actors Jonathan Gillard Daly, Lee E. Ernst, Laura Gordon, Gerard Neugent, James Pickering, Deborah Staples, Lindsay Smiling, Reese Madigan, Mark Kudisch and Angela Iannone; the directors May Adrales, Timothy Douglas and Aaron Posner; the designers Todd Edward Ivins, Jeff Nellis and Todd Rosenthal, the composers Dan Kazemi and John Tanner; and the multi-hyphenate Eric Simonson.

Some of the names already are members of other collectives: Simonson, for example, is a Steppenwolf Theatre ensemble member.  The model of artistic affiliates is increasingly common in regional theater. 

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