COVID-19 update

An Important Update from First Stage regarding COVID-19 
Updated March 23, 2020 at 5:10PM

Please note: As of March 23, the Milwaukee Youth Arts Center will be officially closed until further notice. If you need immediate assistance, please email for all Box Office inquiries, for Theater Academy questions, or for all other questions or concerns. We appreciate your patience!

Dear First Stage Family,

Amid the public health crisis of coronavirus (COVID-19) and the subsequent ban on public gatherings of ten or more indefinitely, it is with the heaviest of hearts that we announce the cancellation of the remainder of our 2019/20 season. The health and safety of patrons, students, families, artists, volunteers, and staff is of upmost importance.

If you had tickets to remaining 2019/20 season performances, there is good news!

  • Ticket holders to GRETEL! will soon receive an email with information on how to view this performance online. Stay tuned for details. 
  • If you had tickets to THE LEGEND OF ROCK, PAPER, SCISSORS, never fear! Our epic warriors will be ready to rock again in our 2020/21 season. Our box office will be in touch soon with specific ticket options. 
  • Audiences with tickets to THE AMAZING LEMONADE GIRL (formerly ALEX AND THE AMAZING LEMONADE STAND) which was to run April 24 – May 17, this touching and inspiring world premiere will be part of our upcoming season. Look for more details from our box office. 

We look forward to bringing our First Stage Family together again in the 2020/21 season, to share the joy and spirit of community that comes uniquely from that shared experience of live theater. 2019-20 subscribers and 2020-21 subscribers, be on the lookout for revised performances schedules for our upcoming season and updated Family Package renewal opportunities in the coming weeks.

Theater Academy
While we’ve had to suspend the remainder of our in person Theater Academy’s Spring Performance Classes and School Year Intensive classes this spring, those students will hear from Academy teachers about class offerings online. Our Young Company will be shifting their training to an online platform and exploring a digital presentation of YOU CAN’T TAKE IT WITH YOU, originally slated to take the stage in May. Current ticket holders for this production will hear from our box office soon. We anticipate welcoming students back into our classrooms for our Theater Academy this summer as originally scheduled, fostering life skills through stage skills in a positive, encouraging environment.

Theater in Education
In the 2020/21 school year, our teaching artists will be energized and ready to work with students and educators throughout southeastern Wisconsin, integrating drama into the school curriculum, providing community enrichment opportunities, and more. In the meantime, fun and exciting Theater in Education curriculum is in development to share online with our educators and young people during this time spent at home.

Stay Connected
Stay tuned to our email, website, and social media channels – including Facebook, Instagram and YouTube, for uplifting, fun, and enriching content for you and your family to enjoy from the safety of your homes.

Message from Jeff Frank
Watch this video message from Artistic Director Jeff Frank

Ways to help
As we forge ahead, we hope you consider supporting First Stage, ensuring our strong success as we look towards a positive future. Here are some ways you can help:

We truly appreciate your understanding and support in the weeks ahead. With our collective belief in the power of theater, we know we will get through these difficult times together, and come out stronger than ever. Thank you for being a member of our First Stage Family!


 Betsy Corry                              Jeff Frank
Betsy Corry                                      Jeff Frank
Managing Director                          Artistic Director

The safety of our patrons, students, families, artists, volunteers and staff is of the highest priority. With the public health emergency declared by Wisconsin Gov. Evers due to the global coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, our facilities continue to be in close contact with local, state and federal agencies and are observing their recommendations.