Date of Award

Spring 1974

Degree Type

Thesis - Restricted

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Communication

First Advisor

Price, Michael J.

Second Advisor

Jones, Leo

Abstract

Resident professional theater organizations such as the Milwaukee Repertory Theater are generally established with specific goals or purposes in mind. As one of them. the Milwaukee Repertory Theater has employed various techniques and methods in each phase of its operations in order to attain these goals. From the viewpoint of the management structure of the MRT then, this thesis proposes to establish just what those goals have been and have come to be, both long range and short term; examine the techniques used in the pursuit of those goals; and evaluate the positive and negative effects of those methods, in order to better understand how the Milwaukee Repertory Theater has developed toward its present state. Part One deals with the organization and establishment of the theater under its founder and first managing Director, Mary John. This period begins with the filing of original articles of incorporation in 1953 and continues through the 1957-58 production season. The Second and Third Parts of the thesis include the development of the theater under managing Directors Edward Magnum and Ray Boyle respectively, ranging from the late starting 1959 season through the 1960-61 subscription year. Part Four introduces MRT Producer Jack NcQuiggan and the beginnings of repertory production. This segment in the theater's history includes the seasons 1961-62 through 1963-64. Beginning with the 1964-55 season, the Fifth Part of the paper traces the first six seasons of growth under Managing Director Charles Ray McCallum. Part Six contains the paper's conclusions. This thesis is based primarily upon the theater's own records collection, The Milwaukee Repertory Theater Papers, which is housed with the Wisconsin State Historical Society's Center for Theater Research in Madison. For their cooperative assistance with the Archives Department of the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in providing these materials, I am most grateful.

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