2016 Key Events

Opening Party

Tuesday, September 13, 2016
6:30–8:30 p.m.
Harley-Davidson Museum®

Sponsored by Délégation du Québec à Chicago with party games sponsored by UIA Presents, Exhibit 309

Unleash your inner rebel at this year’s “can’t miss” event at the expansive indoor and outdoor destination, which explores the legendary history of Milwaukee’s own Harley-Davidson motorcycles. Take a tour of the celebrated museum featuring more than 450 motorcycles and even jumpstart an actual Harley. Photo opportunities abound—plus yard games, a cash bar, and plenty of food. Leather optional.

Photo courtesy of VISIT Milwaukee.


Wednesday, September 14, 2016
12:30–2:00 p.m.
Wisconsin Center, Ballroom

Sponsored by KMP Artists & Phare Circus from Cambodia, Exhibit 100

Join us at the Conference’s largest gathering! Continue conversations started in the Marketplace and enjoy a performance by this year’s luncheon sponsor.

Khmer Village performed by Phare Circus from Cambodia — Uniquely Cambodian. Daringly modern. More than just a circus, Phare Circus performers use theater, music, dance, and modern circus arts to tell uniquely Cambodian stories, historical, folk, and modern. They will astonish you with their emotion, enthusiasm, and talent. It’s an extraordinary take on ordinary Cambodian life. Routine is transformed into remarkable. Fun, family entertainment with jaw-dropping acrobatics, hand-to-hand balance, and partner contortion is combined with high-energy live music. “Phare is no ordinary circus, but an edgy, alternative, down-to-earth Cambodian circus in the tradition of Cirque du Soleil.” —CNN

Photo by JF Moussseau


Thursday, September 15, 2016
9:00–10:15 a.m.
Wisconsin Center, Ballroom

Sponsored by Mid-America Arts Alliance, Exhibit 600

Throughout his career, Oskar Eustis has been dedicated to the development of new work that speaks to the great issues of our time and has worked with countless artists in pursuit of that aim, from Tony Kushner and Suzan-Lori Parks to David Henry Hwang and Lin-Manuel Miranda. As Artistic Director of the Public Theater since 2005, he has made a significant impact on American theater and demonstrates a firm commitment to creativity, collaborations, and broadening the performing arts audience. He is currently a Professor of Dramatic Writing and Arts and Public Policy at New York University; and has held professorships at UCLA, Middlebury College, and Brown University.

Photo by Aislinn Wiedele

Sponsored Spotlight Showcase Meet and Greet

Thursday, September 15, 2016
5:30–6:30 p.m.
Pabst Theater

Please join us for an exclusive meet and greet with “The Fab Four” immediately before BritBeat’s showcase presentation of their multimedia concert journey through Beatles music history.

Sponsored Spotlight Showcase

Thursday, September 15, 2016
6:35–6:50 p.m.
Pabst Theater

Sponsored by BritBeat—A Multimedia Concert Journey Through Beatles Music History, Exhibit 203

BritBeat tells the story of the Beatles from their early days in Liverpool to their final breakup in 1970. Written and produced by Edge Entertainment, this high caliber concert plays to the backdrop of immersive and captivating multimedia that intertwines with the moods and emotions of the Beatles’ iconic music catalog. With over 1,000 performances worldwide, BritBeat delivers a theatrical and stunning show that can be tailored to your budget and appeal to audiences of all ages.

Photo by BritBeat


Friday, September 16, 2016
10:15–11:45 a.m.
Wisconsin Center, Ballroom

Sponsored by Ball in the House, represented by Dow Artists, Inc., Exhibit 202

Settle in for a lively performance and hear from Milwaukee’s own Dasha Kelly.

Ball in the House presents “Totally Vocally,” a celebration of the human voice with the harmony, virtuosity, rhythm, and soul you’d expect from an R&B/Soul/Pop group—all a cappella. This high energy show has audiences dancing, singing, even beatboxing along. The voices behind Amazon Prime and Cool Whip, Ball in the House appeared on “America’s Got Talent,” headlined the 2016 China International Choral Festival, and won the 2016 Boston Harmony Sweepstakes.

Photo by Leslie K

As a nationally-respected writer, artist, and social entrepreneur, Featured Speaker Dasha Kelly was named Artist of the Year in 2016 by the City of Milwaukee. She founded the Still Waters Collective, an arts education and community-building initiative that uses creative writing and spoken word as tools for building leadership and shaping self-esteem. In addition to writing for several national, regional, and local magazines, she has published two collections of poems, essays, and short stories; four full-length spoken word recordings; a poetry chapbook; and two novels including her latest, Almost Crimson (Curbside Splendor).

Photo by Catina Cole Photography (Copyright 2015)

Closing Party

Friday, September 16, 2016
3:00–5:00 p.m.
Marcus Center for the Performing Arts

Sponsored by IMG Artists, Exhibit 303, with additional support provided by Marcus Center for the Performing Arts

Get a head start on Oktoberfest and toast the end of our time together in true Milwaukee-style—polka band included! Enjoy the Marcus Center’s outdoor plaza along the Milwaukee River right in the heart of downtown and close to some of the city’s best restaurants, brewpubs, shops, and waterfront nightlife. Lederhosen optional.

Photo courtesy of VISIT Milwaukee