By Jim Higgins
April 19, 2013
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
When the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Peck School of the Arts wanted someone to write a play for its Avant Garde Coffeehouse Project, someone who could listen to the folk and blues music of the '60s, read the articles and the oral histories, look at the historical photos, digest and distill all that source material and fashion a drama that could capture the spirit of those times in a way that matters now, the school turned to the most logical person:
A 23-year-old punk-rock singer emblazoned with tattoos.
But those aren't ordinary tattoos, and the folks who've worked with Fly Steffens will happily tell you that Steffens is no ordinary 23-year-old, punk-rock-singing playwright. "Wise beyond her years," one of her former supervisors called her.
Steffens has buzzed through the UWM theater community the past few years, working on plays and documentaries and even promotional materials for the Peck School's Year of the Arts celebration.
She drew on many of those experiences in writing "Meet Me at the Avant Garde," a play based on research but with fictionalized characters, set at the famed Milwaukee music spot of the '60s.
The Avant Garde project is one of the Peck School's biggest Year of the Arts efforts, a collaboration among the university's music and theater departments and its finger-style guitar program. Photos, videos, sound recordings and ephemera from the coffeehouse are on display through May 12 at Inova, 2155 N. Prospect Ave., where UWM finger-style guitar students have given concerts of related music.Read the full article at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.