Earlier this month, the United Performing Arts Fund kicked off its 2019 campaign to raise millions of dollars for many of the region’s largest performing arts groups. Every year, the campaign begins with a special guest who has some tie or ties to the area’s performing arts community — whether they got their start in the Milwaukee area or played a significant role in a performance here.
This year, Brookfield-native Emily Schoen participated in the kickoff. Schoen, a graduated of Brookfield Central, is now a New York City-based dancer, choreographer, and teacher. She’s performed with the Metropolitan Opera company, the Rolling Stones 50th anniversary tour, and with her own group, Schoen Movement Company. She’s also a prolific choreographer and has participated in the State Department’s cultural diplomacy program — a testament to what she says is the unifying global nature of art.
"I think it’s so important for us to be reminded that everyone are people, first and foremost. We might have different politics, different religion, different whatever it is — but at the end of the day we all, inherently, kind of want the same things," says Schoen.
Schoen explains why she felt it was important to come back for the event:
"I spent the first 18 years of my life here in the Milwaukee area learning dance and learning to appreciate art, and I wouldn't be who I am today if I didn't do that," Schoen notes. "So, it's a treat to be back and lend a small helping hand in continuing to promote arts locally."