Maayan Silver

News Reporter

Maayan Silver started as a reporter for WUWM News in March 2018. Before that, she spent two years as an assistant producer for WUWM's Lake Effect.

Maayan was previously a criminal defense attorney.

She loves listening to people's stories, learning about different cultures, music of all sorts, and dogs.


Several Democratic-leaning groups in Wisconsin are challenging bills Republicans passed in December that limit the powers of the state's new Democratic governor and attorney general. The groups argue it was illegal for lawmakers to call themselves into session to take up the bills.

Sam Million-Weaver

It’s the new year, a time when many are turning to resolutions — including diets. Researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison are testing a new model of a weight loss intervention device. It zaps a nerve into making your stomach feel full so that you eat less.

Lead researcher Dr. Xudong Wang of UW-Madison has been developing the device. “[It] has two wires that connects to the vagus nerve," he says. "The device will generate small electrical pulses and stimulate the vagus nerve and tell the brain that the stomach is full and stop eating.”

Tony Evers was sworn in as Wisconsin's new governor Monday. And fellow Democrat Josh Kaul took the oath of office as state attorney general.

At the inauguration, Kaul noted the atypical circumstances surrounding the event. He referred to action taken by Republican legislators in a lame-duck session in December.

Audrey Nowakowski / WUWM

Only four out of 10 working-aged adults with disabilities are employed nationally, according to the Washington, D.C.-based Brookings Institution. 

Eunbyul Sabrina Lee / Flickr

Christmas is over, so you may or may not hear any more renditions of Jingle Bells and White Christmas in 2018. But music is with us year round and according to a recent Nielson study, Americans are listening to more music than ever.

Maayan Silver

It's a little unusual to hear Christmas caroling underground, especially in a cave that's nearly a million years old. But that's what hundreds of people did in December in southwestern Wisconsin.

For over a decade, the staff at Cave of the Mounds, which is 30 miles west of Madison, have brought a cappella groups, choirs and orchestral quartets to the limestone cave to kick off the Christmas season. 

Brevin Luehring / Shift Media House

Experts on the Danish art of hygge note that one of the key factors to creating a warm, cozy environment is candles.

Milwaukee Candle Co., which has a studio in Walker’s Point, hand-pours Milwaukee’s contribution to hygge. Owner Kevin Goudzwaard says he and his workers can produce 400-500 candles a night. This includes the Hometown Collection, which represents different events in and parts of the city, including Bradford Beach (on a good day), Lake Park Breeze, and Brewery Tour.

Vincent Brassinne / Flickr

Editor's note: This piece was originally published Feb. 20, 2018.

What is hygge?

According to Meik Wiking, CEO of the Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen, Denmark, the main ingredients of hygge are: relaxation, togetherness, equality, savoring simple pleasures, and the right lighting.

"The shorthand of explaining hygge [pronounced 'hue-guh'] is the art of creating a nice atmosphere," he adds.

Vennture Brew Co.

Milwaukee is known as one of the best cities for beer in the world. It's the headquarters of major beer companies, and, the city has seen an explosion of craft breweries in recent years. Milwaukee Magazine’s executive editor Chris Drosner writes about beer and tweets about it at @WIBeerBaron.

Resonant Pictures

Editor's note: This piece was originally published on Oct. 24, 2018.

The documentary 16 Bars explores how music can bring healing and rehabilitation to people who are locked up.

Andy Manis

Republican state lawmakers recently advanced bills that would strip power from both the incoming Democratic Gov. Tony Evers and Democratic Attorney General-elect Josh Kaul.

For one, the new bills would require a legislative committee rather than the attorney general to sign off on withdrawing from lawsuits. This would prevent Kaul from withdrawing from a national lawsuit that’s seeking to invalidate the Affordable Care Act.

Maayan Silver

Milwaukee has had a controversial legacy in its sheriff’s department.

Sheriff David Clarke headed the post for 15 years. He was recognized for his cowboy hat and outspoken support of Republican policies, despite running as a Democrat. Clarke resigned from the post in 2017 to join a conservative political action committee, and Richard Schmidt took over as acting sheriff. 

371 Productions

Latrobe, Pennsylvania. Dothan, Alabama. Butte, Montana. Laredo, Texas.

These aren't names synonymous with a large Jewish presence. In fact, many would be surprised that there actually is Jewish life in those places. 

Paul Ruppa

Mandolin players these days are making music as varied as Bach to bluegrass. And a cadre of Milwaukee mandolin players, the New Vintage Frets & Friends, are teaming together to play songs from a more uncommonly drawn from era and style.

They've dug out mandolin compositions with Wisconsin ties from 1892-1919. To play the compositions, they’re using antique mandolins — instruments built by the Boston-based Vega company before 1925. 

Eliz Greene

Current Nicolet High School students are getting a musical education from those who came before them.

This week, 2004 alumna violinist Hanna Hurwitz came back to the school to be part of the music department’s Artist in Residence Program. She’s mentoring the school orchestra in preparation for Thursday night's world premiere of a new modern concerto called The Little Bird.

It’s composed by alumnus Yotam Haber who's assistant professor of composition at the University of New Orleans. He graduated from Nicolet in 1994.