Milwaukee, Wis. (August 15, 2023) – The Gary Sinise Foundation presents a Heroes Journey Production of Last Out: Elegy of a Green Beret (Last Out) at Skylight Music Theatre, 158 N. Broadway in Milwaukee’s Historic Third Ward. Performances are Friday, Sept. 22 (7:30 p.m.) and Saturday, Sept. 23 (1 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.). Tickets are $25 or free for active military personnel, veterans, first responders and their families along with the families of the fallen.
Since 2018, Last Out has been performed across the country reaching thousands. The Gary Sinise Foundation was established in 2011 under the philanthropic direction of award-winning actor and humanitarian Gary Sinise who has been a staunch supporter of veterans, first responders and defenders for more than 40 years.
“Too many of today’s veterans come home feeling isolated and alone as they struggle with the invisible wounds of war,” said Sinise. “As the Founder of the Gary Sinise Foundation, I am honored to present Last Out under our Foundation’s ‘Community and Education’ pillar to shine a light on all the service members who defend the very freedoms that we are all so blessed to enjoy.”
The two-act play has a small cast of combat veterans and military-family members playing multiple roles. Written by Ret. Lt. Col Scott Mann and directed by Karl Bury, this epic play validates the journey of military veterans and their families while building genuine and well-informed understanding in the communities where they live.
‘Last Out’ Created to Use the Power of Stories to Heal
“In the years after I separated from the military, I found it extremely hard to know my purpose and passion in life. I slowly disconnected from the outside world,” said Scott Mann, writer, lead actor, and producer of Last Out. “It was only when I began telling my story that I finally started seeing light and hope. I wrote Last Out as a way to help other veterans learn how to use their stories to heal and find purpose. After the Afghanistan collapse in 2021, Gary Sinise contacted me. We agreed that our Gold Star Families, Military Families, and Warfighters were hurting badly from the painful Afghan withdrawal. He offered his foundation to produce the play and use the power of warrior storytelling and community engagement to serve as an emotional breaching tool to open people up to the hard subject of modern war.”
Mann portrays Army Green Beret Danny Patton, a modern-day warrior fighting battles that range from Afghanistan to his own living room. As the corrosive gears of war begin to rip apart his family, his integrity, and his soul, Danny is thrust into his final, eternal mission. On the other side, with Valhalla beckoning, he discovers that combat can be fueled by vengeance or by love . . . it just depends which price you are willing to pay. Many war stories focus on the “First In.” This is the untold true story of the “Last Out.”
Last Out features Tony Nevada, Lenny Bruce, Heather Corrigan, Cooper Mann, Scott Mann, and Chris Vetzel. The story was pulled from the experiences of the longest war in American history, a war mostly fought in the shadows. An elegy is a lament for the dead; therefore all scenes take place somewhere in the after-life, spanning different times from Danny's youth and military career.
After each Last Out performance there will be a talk back conversation between the audience, the Last Out cast, and a representative from the Gary Sinise Foundation.
“It is an honor to host Last Out: Elegy of a Green Beret,” said Skylight Music Theatre Artistic Director Michael Unger. “I have known Gary Sinise since I was lucky enough to be in the right high school at the right time – when Gary and some friends from Illinois State University returned to our hometown to start the Steppenwolf Theatre Company in the basement of a local church. Gary has been an inspiration and influence throughout my career. To receive a phone call from him asking if we’d like to present this important play at Skylight was one of the easier ‘yesses’ I’ve had to consider. This powerful play provides an opportunity for deeper reflection and opens a dialogue that helps bridge the military – civilian gap and honor our Families of the Fallen and those who have served and continue to serve. Stories, even the painful ones, have the power to heal the heart, our communities, and our nation.”
Free Storytelling Workshop for Veterans at Milwaukee County War Memorial Center
Heroes Journey will present a free storytelling workshop, “The Generosity of Scars” on Saturday, Sept. 23 at 8 a.m. at the Milwaukee County War Memorial Center, 750 N. Lincoln Memorial Drive. Under the supervision of Scott Mann, board-certified mental health professionals, and veteran storytelling coaches, warriors will learn how to take their trauma and shape it into powerful healing stories, allowing them to communicate more effectively with their families and communities. The goal is for veterans to find their voice and tell their stories after many years of remaining silent. Participants will build their story, practice telling it, and then share it with others, all in a safe environment to become a Warrior Storyteller – someone who has lived a life of service to others and shares the wisdom of that life of service through purposeful stories. To register go to Last Out Workshops.
Last Out Production Team
The Last Out production team includes: Scott Mann (Executive Producer), Monty Mann (Producer), Rebecca McBee (Lead Stage Manager), Bob Pritchard (Stage Manager), Mark Prator (Production Manager), Paul Hudson (Lighting Designer), Lee Ann Meeks (Assistant Lighting Designer), Ozzy Giron (Audio Technician), Michael Sanford (Casting Director), Megan Nemanic (General Manager), Emma Brannon (Assistant Project Manager), Kim Seevers (Community Engagement Director), Kari Ellis (Team Manager and Community Liaison), Lanena Lang (Production Coordinator & Wardrobe), Mary Millsaps & Zeke Vanderpool (Interventionists), Holly Higgins (“Families of the Fallen” Ambassador), John Corcoran (Bagpiper), Kevin Lang (Videographer), Elizabeth Cole (Publicist) and Jesse Torgerson (Breath Coach).
About The Gary Sinise Foundation
The Gary Sinise Foundation was established under the philanthropic direction of award-winning actor and humanitarian Gary Sinise, who has been an advocate of our nation's defenders for nearly 40 years. The Gary Sinise Foundation's mission is to serve our country by honoring our defenders, veterans, first responders, their families, and those in need. The Foundation's four programmatic pillars are our way of "doing a little more" for those who sacrifice so much for our country. As our Founder and Chairman Gary Sinise always says, "While we can never do enough for our defenders and their loved ones, we can always do a little more." That spirit of service is the bedrock of all of the Foundation's programs, which include R.I.S.E. (Restoring Independence Supporting Empowerment) Program, Relief and Resiliency Program, Community and Education Program, the First Responders Outreach Program. For more information, please visit GarySiniseFoundation.org.
About The Heroes Journey
The Heroes Journey is a non-profit dedicated to helping veterans and their families find their voice and tell their stories to gain an edge in transition. Storytelling is a powerful tool that has been used for thousands of years to help veterans return home from war. When done correctly, storytelling can improve veterans’ relationships at work and at home and can smooth the incredibly difficult transition from military to civilian life that most warriors experience.
For Media Use
Last Out photos, logos and information available at this link: Last Out Press Kit
Performances of Last Out are Friday, September 22 at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday, September 23 at 1 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. in the beautiful Cabot Theatre at the Broadway Theatre Center, 158 N. Broadway, in Milwaukee’s Historic Third Ward.
Heroes Journey will present a free storytelling workshop for veterans. “The Generosity of Scars” workshop will be held on Saturday, Sept. 23 at 8 a.m. at the Milwaukee County War Memorial Center. To register go to Last Out Workshops.
Tickets for Last Out are $25 (plus taxes and fees) or free for active military personnel, veterans, first responders and their families along with the families of the fallen. Tickets available at Last Out tickets or the Broadway Theatre Center Box Office. Call (414) 291-7800 or visit 158 N. Broadway, Monday – Friday from Noon – 5 p.m. or email email@example.com. Please let the Box Office know if accessible seating is needed, or if patrons will have a wheelchair or walker.
Box Office hours Mon. – Fri. Noon – 5 p.m. (After Labor Day: Mon. – Sat. Noon – 6 p.m.) Box Office window is also open two hours prior to performances.
Group discounts are available for parties of 10 or more by calling (414) 291-7800
If you have ADA needs, please contact the Box Office (414) 291-7800 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Skylight offers a risk-free guarantee to exchange, credit, or refund tickets for any canceled performances.
For more information visit skylightmusictheatre.org or email email@example.com
Purchase $5 parking vouchers from the Broadway Theatre Center Box office for use in the Historic Third Ward parking garage at 212 N. Milwaukee Street (one block east and one block north). Vouchers are valid between 5 p.m. and 11:59 p.m. for evening performances. Matinee vouchers are valid 12-5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Voucher sales stop 30 minutes before showtime. Advance purchase recommended so that vouchers can be mailed with tickets. No refunds. Meter parking is available on the street (free after 6 p.m. and on Sundays).
About Skylight Music Theatre
Founded in 1959, Skylight is Milwaukee’s professional Equity music theatre company and the largest employer of Wisconsin actors in the state. We are Milwaukee’s Home for Music Theatre -- the only professional Milwaukee arts company devoted solely to music theatre. Skylight produces the full breadth of music theatre ranging from blockbuster Broadway musicals to reimagined operas, and from exciting world premieres to contemporary off-Broadway hits. Skylight’s mainstage home is the Cabot Theatre in the Broadway Theatre Center, which was built by Skylight in Milwaukee’s Historic Third Ward in 1992. Considered to be one of Milwaukee’s most beautiful theatres, the Cabot Theatre is based on the design of an 18th-century French opera house. With just 350 seats it offers audiences great views of the action onstage. Skylight Music Theatre marks its 64th season in 2023-2024. Skylight Music Theatre is a proud Cornerstone Member of the United Performing Arts Fund.