Tuesday, July 21, 2009

wesselowski quits: "this breaks my heart"

actor and composer nathan wesselowski is the latest add to the growing list of skylight ship jumpers:
To Eric Dillner and The Skylight Board

I am very sad to withdraw from my duties of performing in the role of Fiorello and chorus for the production of Barber of Seville with Skylight Opera Theatre. I have read that there are willing artists waiting in the wings and "the show must go on". I cannot go on with this “show” anymore. I am also discontinuing my work with Skylight’s education programs as well. This breaks my heart even more. I have been working closely with Ray Jivoff now for 7 years. It is safe to say that I would not be a composer today if I had not developed my skills with the trust and belief that Ray had in me as an educator and an artist. My sixth grade classes I’ve worked with at Tippecanoe School and Golda Meir are very dear to my heart. Creating Original Operas with sixth graders has been one of the most rewarding projects I have ever done in my entire career. I will miss them greatly.

I moved to Milwaukee in January of 2002 in large part because of the wonderful stories I had heard about Skylight in my years working at Lyric Opera Cleveland and Cleveland Opera with Bill Theissen, Dotty Danner, Gary Briggle, Jamie Johns, Paula Suozzi, Richard Carsey, John Muriello and the list goes on. I fell in love with Skylight the first time I set my foot on the stage in 2003 in the production of Viva La Mamma. I have grown very fond of the family I have made at the Skylight over my seven years with the company and I can honestly say that there is not one of those family members left now. So I can no longer be a part of The Skylight because the “family” no longer exists under the roof that was Skylight Opera Theatre. All of the people who have resigned or who have been fired are my family and will continue to be. You may as well change the name of the theatre all together in my opinion. Whatever this theatre is heading to is not, by definition, Skylight Opera Theatre.

With deep sadness,

Nathan Wesselowski


  1. Peggy Peterson RyanJuly 21, 2009 at 11:48 PM

    Thank you, Nate, for articulating the heartbreak we all are feeling. I stand with you in support of your principles, your standards and your love for the real Skylight. Blessings to you.

  2. You are a sweet, sweet man!

  3. Thank you, dear friend, for putting your heart in print.

  4. It's sad to see Skylight's education department is falling apart as well. The best in the city.

  5. Aw, Nate. I'm sorry, too ...... sorry about the mess Skylight has made of itself.

    I know you will all be back. Soon. When someone on the Board comes to her/his senses.


  6. I recently had my first opportunity to work with Nate, and it saddens me to see him, along with so many others, walk away from opportunities I have only aspired to have. What a gift it is to be an artist, and what a rare gift for Milwaukee to have so many principled artists. I am proud to know some of these fine people.


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