Strikingly relevant to Wisconsin’s current atmosphere of labor union tension, Jeffrey Sweet’s drama "American Enterprise" will be presented by Soulstice Theatre from April 29 – May 14 at the Marian Center for Nonprofits in St. Francis. This Wisconsin premiere revolves around the true story of the rail car empire built by millionaire Chicago magnate George Pullman, whose stubborn idealism eventually leads to a devastating strike by his workers.
At the height of the Industrial Revolution, George Pullman built a utopian community for his workers outside of Chicago. As political and economic forces shattered railroad markets, fortunes and the national economy, the ideal world Pullman created was largely destroyed and workers of his Pullman Palace Car business turned to a union for representation. Extensively researched and cleverly presented in story-theatre format, this unique show also features several songs of the period (1865-1890).
In collaboration with Steven Decker, Associate Professor of Theatre at UW-Waukesha, Soulstice Artistic Director Char Manny directs. George Pullman is played by David Ferrie, who most recently impressed audiences and critics in Soulstice’s production of "Shining City." Additional roles are played by Charles Lynch, Steven Pfisterer, Jason Thompson, Paul Pfannenstiel, Roger Rivas, Brian Faracy, Abby Armstrong, Erin Walton, Mandi Marcucilli and Shannon Nettesheim.
Part of Soulstice’s mission is to give back to the community by donating a percentage of its box office to a charity chosen by the cast and production team during the rehearsal process. For "American Enterprise", Soulstice has chosen the United Way of Greater Milwaukee.
"American Enterprise" will be performed at 7:30 p.m. on Fridays/Saturdays, April 29/30, May 6/7, 13/14 (Pay-what-you-can: Thurs April 28) at the Marian Center for Nonprofits - Auditorium Theatre, 3211 S. Lake Drive, St. Francis. Tickets are $15 / $12 and can be reserved at www.soulsticetheatre.org or by phone at 414/431-3187.
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