Bonnie North

Lake Effect Producer / Co-host

Bonnie joined WUWM in March 2006 as the Arts Producer of the locally produced weekday magazine program Lake Effect.

Bonnie spent over twenty years working as a director, technician and stage manager in professional, educational, and community theaters. She comes from a family of musicians and artists and grew up playing all kinds of music. But her interest in and love of the arts is not limited to performance. She enjoys other art expressions as well, including painting, sculpture, photography, textiles, and writing.

Bonnie's introduction to Public Broadcasting came at Vermont Public Radio (VPR) in 1992. She spent 7 years there in various positions, including hosting classical and jazz shows and as a production associate and operations manager.

Just prior to joining WUWM, Bonnie worked in the defense industry. She spent two years in the Balkans, first in Sarajevo, Bosnia, where she managed a group of linguists that provided Serbo-Croatian interpreting and translation services for the US and NATO stabilization forces. She then went to Kosovo to manage the overall linguist program for Kosovo, Macedonia, Bulgaria, and Romania.

Bonnie holds a bachelors degree in English Literature/Drama Studies from Purchase College-State University of New York.

Ways to Connect


Feast of Crispian, a Milwaukee theater troupe that uses Shakespeare to help veterans cope with trauma and reintegration issues, is taking their mission one step further this week. Thanks to a partnership with the Milwaukee Rep, the country's first National Veterans Theater Festival is running Thursday, May 23 through Sunday, May 26 the Rep's Stiemke Theatre.

Courtesy of Francis Annan

Gullah is the Creole language of the Gullah people who live on the coast of South Carolina and nearby islands. Gullah has an English base with elements from various West African languages incorporated into it.

Jay Lawrence

Every month, cellist Robert Cohen talks about his life as a touring, classical musician. Yet over the years, he has never talked about one of the most essential parts of any musician's life: the audition process.

Cohen says he's fortunate to be past the point in his career where he has to worry about upcoming auditions. But for most musicians, auditions are a necessary entry point to work. Cohen talks with Lake Effect's Bonnie North about the audition process for classical musicians:

Audrey Nowakowski

WUWM's Project Milwaukee series Great Lakes, Troubled Waters is examining the topic of clean water, or the lack thereof, in southeastern Wisconsin — particularly in a place like Milwaukee that considers itself to be a "water hub."

Water hubs are places where industry, research, and academia converge in their efforts to create sustainable efforts or create new technology utilizing one of our most precious resources.

Courtesy David Crosby / Facebook

From the Byrds to Crosby, Stills and Nash, to his own solo career, David Crosby has sailed his own ship. In more than a half century, the California native has penned scores of classic songs. And at 77 — after a liver transplant, two heart attacks, and diabetes — he’s still going strong.

dmitrimaruta /

On Sep. 11, 2001, almost 3,000 people died during the terrorist attacks on New York’s World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and on the four planes used in the attacks. U.S. airspace was closed for five days and traffic was prevented from landing on or leaving U.S. soil. Many incoming planes had to be diverted in mid-flight.

Noir exposes the underbelly of a place. In film or fiction, characters live in the shadows, denizens of a night where every good intention is punished. Noir found its natural home in New York City and LA in the 1940s and '50s. Now, Milwaukee can lay claim to its own piece of the genre.


Whether it's an accelerating car, a person biking or a thrown object, most motion is visible to the human eye. However, even at rest we all are in motion - at least on a cosmic scale.

Lake Effect's Bonnie North and astronomy contributor Jean Creighton started a conversation last month about celestial motion, and Creighton picks up the story by explaining another kind of motion - proper motion:

Adam Jones, Ph.D. / Wikimedia

It has been 25 years since the genocide in Rwanda, in which the ruling Hutu majority government slaughtered as many as one million Tutsi people. By most measures, life in Rwanda is vastly different today, as a full generation has been born since the end of the civil war hostilities there.

Bartolotta Restaurants


Joe Bartolotta, co-owner of The Bartolotta Restaurants, died in his sleep, the restaurant group shared Tuesday. He was 60 years old.

For the past 25 years, Bartolotta's name has been synonymous with fine and quality dining in southeastern Wisconsin. He oversaw some of the area's most successful eateries, including Ristorante Bartolotta, Lake Park Bistro, Harbor House and Bachhus.

Gene Russell / United States Department of Veterans Affairs

Robert Wilkie was appointed as the Secretary of U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs last July. Wilkie grew up at Fort Bragg in a military family and still serves as an officer in the Air Force Reserve. As secretary of the cabinet level department, he’s responsible for ensuring the VA serves veterans’ physical, mental, and emotional needs to the best of its ability.

Maksim Shebeko /

While we can't say it with certainty, the likelihood of another snowstorm diminishes with each passing day, as we transition into the warmer months. With the temperature transition also comes a transition for our palates.

This time of year, we move away from heavier soups and stews to lighter fare. It’s also the perfect time to talk about spring wines with our wine contributor, Ray Fister. He says the kinds of wines we drink reflect on the trends we see in food:

Courtesy of Peter Mulvey

Peter Mulvey is no stranger to Lake Effect — or Milwaukee. Mulvey is a Milwaukee native, he went to Marquette University, and for the last 25 years he has been on the road as a working singer-songwriter. Mulvey now lives in western Massachusetts, and is back in his hometown to share songs from his new CD, There Is Another World, in a performance at the Back Room at Colectivo at 7 p.m. on Friday, April 12. 

New York Public Library Digital Collections

This year’s Oscar-winner for Best Picture was Green Book, a fictionalized account of a true story. In the film, African-American classical pianist Don Shirley, played by Mahershala Ali, is trying to do a concert tour through the south in 1960s America. He and his white driver use The Green Book to help them navigate the journey.

Ashley Smith / Wide Eyed Studios

On the page, Every Brilliant Thing is a one-man show. In reality, the audience each night plays a crucial role in how the show unfolds. Audience participation is mandatory. Although, its star Scott Greer says you can say "no," as long as someone says yes.