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

Efrat Katz / Flickr


The news has been full of stories on tariffs and immigration, and how both are affecting the economy. These aren’t topics our wine contributor, Ray Fister, typically talks to Lake Effect about. But he says these national and international policies will show up as higher per bottle prices for the consumer.

One of the biggest changes coming down the pike are with California labor laws that take effect next year.

Dasha Kelly Hamilton

The fourth annual Milwaukee Fringe Festival, running this Saturday and Sunday, will feature more than 25 performances. The diverse lineup of performances — theatre, art, music, and dance — will take place at the Todd Wehr Theatre, the Peck Pavilion, and Vogel Hall.

Local artists Dasha Kelly and Chad Piechocki are both taking part this year.

Ann-Elise Henzl

On Saturday Aug. 24, the last JobLines bus will cease operations. While Route 57 will still operate in Milwaukee County, it'll no longer cross the county line into Waukesha. Meanwhile, Milwaukee County Transit System (MCTS) is facing a large budget shortfall and is looking to shut down even more routes than the remaining JobLine to balance a nearly $6 million deficit for 2019.

Alesandra Tejeda

Connla, a young band whose members hail from Armagh and Derry in Northern Ireland, combines traditional Irish music with rock and jazz influences. While its instrumentation is a pretty standard set up for an Irish band, the compositions and arrangements reflect its wide-ranging musical influences. The group came to Lake Effect's Studio C to perform ahead of appearances at Irish Fest this weekend.

Bonnie North

Hearing, and seeing, guitar virtuoso and composer Shane Hennessy is magical. It’s technique, sure. He has it in spades. But his music goes well beyond playing lots of notes fast. It's in turns lyrical, polyrhythmic, and always full of melody. Plus, the sheer joy he exudes while playing is infectious.

Dilok /

It's been quite a summer of political unrest around the world. There has been a shuffle of political leaders in the British government amid the ongoing Brexit saga. Tensions between Japan and South Korea have intensified as anti-government protests in Hong Kong rock the region. And the U.S. government has placed tariffs on a myriad of foreign goods, deepening the trade war and impacting economies throughout the globe.

Lake Effect foreign policy contributor, Art Cyr, says these tariffs aren't likely to help us in the long run. 

Portrait Society Gallery

Art and the people who make it are often found on the margins of society. In the case of painter M. Winston, those margins include a cell and guards. Winston is incarcerated, and it was just an accident that his work — miniature abstract paintings — was discovered.

Milwaukee County Zoo

Aug. 12 is World Elephant Day. But for these intelligent, social and compassionate creatures, the statistics are grim. In 1980, there were around 1.3 million elephants in Africa. By 2012, there were less than of half that number remaining. There are only between 40,000 and 50,000 Asian elephants left.

Dan Mullen / Flickr

Editor's note: This piece was originally published on April 21, 2017.   

Phil Lapayowker has noticed a distinct lack of what some people unkindly call "flying rats" in Milwaukee.

NASA Image and Video Library / NASA

Humans first left Earth 59 years ago, landing on the moon nine years later. Since then, we’ve orbited the Earth, sent rovers to Mars, and sent people to live on the international space station. And it won’t be too long before we make the journey to Mars to begin our extraterrestrial colonization.

Bonnie North

The Morning Glory Art Fair takes place Aug. 10-11. The nationally recognized juried fair is in its 45th year and showcases artists and craftspeople from around the country. This year, even more artists were invited to show their work — the fair moved to the plaza in front of the Fiserv Forum.

Courtesy of Robert Cohen

Every month, we talk with contributor Robert Cohen about the life and work of a touring classical musician for our On That Note series. This month, Cohen is thinking about his musical influences, which started with his parents at home. His father was a violinist who practiced chamber music in the house.

"His attitude definitely, and most of all the way he played the violin, which was a very warm sound, very singing and very beautiful," he recalls. "That definitely was a major influence on the way I played the cello, what I expected from the cello."

Milwaukee Music Roundup: July 2019

Jul 31, 2019
L'Resorts/Bandcamp, Liar's Club/Bandcamp, Camp Essence/Bandcamp

We’re starting a new partnership on Lake Effect. Matt Wild is one of the co-founders of Milwaukee Record, which he and the other co-founder, Tyler Maas, describe as an online source for music, culture, and gentle sarcasm.

Death Defying: The Art Of BMX Stunts

Jul 26, 2019
Nitro Circus

Loop de loops 25 feet high. Guys flying through the air on bikes with no brakes. Death defying tricks done on bikes that look like they couldn’t hold the weight of the rider. It’s Bicycle Motocross, or BMX, and it’s Micah Kranz' passion.

How Film In Medical School Makes Better Doctors

Jul 24, 2019
sharaku1216 /

Using the arts and humanities in medical school isn't new. Exposure to literature, music, and visual arts during their training can help medical students become better clinicians. 

Film is another medium that can have a profound effect on students. Watching films together, especially about difficult topics like the end of life, can help students become aware of their own biases.