Inspiration Studios Grand Opening--March 1, 2014

Jan. 19, 2014

January 18, 2014

--A new performance venue and art gallery--

Art and theatre join forces during the Grand Opening of Inspiration Studios on Saturday, March 1, 2014. Located in the heart of downtown West Allis, the studio now occupies a beautiful brick structure at 1500 S. 73rd Street, one block south of Greenfield Avenue. It will be home to Village Playhouse and to Erico’s Gallery and will offer a venue where artists and performers can share their talents with the broader community.

Erico Ortiz, co-owner and CEO of Inspiration Studios, states, “The intention of Inspiration Studios is to provide worthwhile art and theatre experiences to the residents of West Allis and the greater Milwaukee metropolitan area. We will offer a variety of exhibits and performances at the same high standards as existing venues, but in a more intimate setting.”

The Inspiration Studios Grand Opening celebration commences at 3:00 p.m. on March 1st (Mardi Gras weekend!) with a variety of activities for children and adults, including art making, theatre improvisation, music, and refreshments. A detailed schedule of the planned activities will be updated regularly on the website:

Inspiration Studios opens its doors with a premiere exhibit featuring artwork and images by Milwaukee artist Thom J. Ertl, entitled “Shoot for the Moon.” Defined as contemporary urban assemblage, Ertl utilizes conventional utilitarian items to create unconventional, modern, artistic, practical, provocative original home furnishings and interior design. Found becomes urban, sleek and fun. Ertl will host an opening reception beginning at 3:00pm during the Inspiration Studios Grand Opening on March 1st.

“I want people to really look at my furniture and wall art and realize that the components—simple items like book pages, buttons and even bottle caps—are things that surround us on a regular basis,” said Ertl. “It’s fantasy and whimsy. My artwork is definitely not barn scenes or sunsets. It is modern folk art that takes the fork in the road and turns utilitarian into unique.”

Village Playhouse, a well established community theatre group with a history that spans several decades of success throughout the Milwaukee metropolitan area, will also be housed at Inspiration Studios. “Village Playhouse members are thrilled to have found a new home at Inspiration Studios,” according to Art Carter, President of Village Playhouse, “They begin a new chapter of their existence with their spring production of ‘Marvin’s Room’ which opens on March 21st for three consecutive weekends.” Ticket information is available at

“My intention is to have Inspiration Studios become a viable venue for other local organizations and individuals interested in offering music performances, dance concerts, and theatre productions when the Village Playhouse is dark,” said Ortiz. “We want to showcase local, state, and regional performing groups, as well as emerging and established artists. That’s realistic. That’s reasonable. With planned monthly exhibits, our audiences will be treated to art exhibits each and every time they attend a theatre performance. And one goal is to include a broad spectrum of artistic expression, so that our community can develop a greater appreciation for the value of art in our daily lives. From the emerging to the established, Inspiration Studios will inspire creativity—now, and in the future!”

Inspiration Studios’ Grand Opening and “Shoot for the Moon” artist reception are free to the public.

Learn more by visiting the website: or by contacting Erico Ortiz through email or by phone: or 414.587.3474.

Embedded images include:
Inspiration Studios (1), Erico Ortiz (2), Thom Ertl (3), art samples (4-6), Village Playhouse (7-9)

(Image 1) Inspiration Studios
Inspiration Studios... the building!.jpg
(Image 2) Erico Ortiz
SVA face 2a.jpg
(Image 3) Artist Thom J. Ertl
Thom J Ertl face.jpg
(Image 4) "Shoot For The Moon" save the date
FB Flash Save Date.jpg
(Image 5: "Swirls" by Thom J. Ertl
Swirls Detail.jpg
(Image 6) "Rhorshach Shock" by Thom J. Ertl
Red Chair details.jpg
(Image 7) Village Playhouse 2013 One Act Festival
Late Night Phone Call 2.jpg
(Image 8) Village Playhouse 2013 One Act Festival
Information Station 2.jpg
(Image 9) Village Playhouse 2013 Traveling Children's Show: "The Princess and The Pea"
The Troll & The Prince.jpg

Erico Ortiz
3450 N. Fratney St.
Milwaukee, WI 53212-1747
414 587-3474 c
414 962-7221 h

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