Randall Trumbull-Holper is a familiar name at the Peck School of the Arts. Once a Theatre student and now a staff member, Trumbull-Holper is essential to making the Peck School an asset to the Milwaukee art scene.
Originally from Richmond, Virginia, Trumbull-Holper moved to Wisconsin as a teenager. As a student at Homestead High School in Mequon, he worked as part of the stage crew and grew interested in technical theatre. He would continue pursuing this passion through college in the Professional Theatre Training Program at the Peck School of the Arts.
After working as a freelance properties artisan at the Milwaukee Repertory Theatre, Milwaukee Chamber Theatre and Next Act Theatre and as an operations crewmember for Festival Productions, Trumbull-Holper returned to the Peck School as an operations manager and now serves as its Director of Facilities. “What started out as a temporary, part-time job to help make ends meet has turned into an extremely satisfying career in higher education and arts facilities management,” he says.
Thanks to the Year of the Arts, the Peck School of the Arts’ 50th Anniversary Celebration, Trumbull-Holper was able to make one of his long-time dreams become a reality: MKE Unplugged. This free concert series has featured local artists and Peck School alumni including Trapper Schoepp, Sugar Stems and Paul Geremia, among many others. The next MKE Unplugged performance is on May 2 at 8pm and features fingerstyle guitarist Billy McLaughlin.
“MKE Unplugged was a thought that had been rattling around in my brain for years,” says Trumbull-Holper. “Wouldn’t it be awesome if we could have a local, acoustic, free music series that anyone on campus could come to see? I wanted to create the local bar band vibe in an environment that welcomed all ages.”
The series has been extremely successful. The concerts have drawn new audiences to the Helene Zelazo Center, exposing the community to the wide variety of music that the Peck School has to offer. “It’s important to me that people view the Peck School as the place to be for all kinds of music, art, dance, film and theatre; not just classical or traditional styles, not just modern or pop,” says Trumbull-Holper. “We do it all.”
Trumbull-Holper appreciates the challenge to “do it all” within a limited space. “The Peck School is truly unique in the world of arts education; it’s the only comprehensive art school in the state,” he says. “Working to accommodate all of the exciting new acts, projects and initiatives we do into the limited space we own has been a challenge, but it serves as a testament to the creative energy here at the Peck School.”
Since the series launched last September, MKE Unplugged has found a perfect niche within the lively Milwaukee arts scene. These free, all-ages, weeknight shows offer a completely unique atmosphere and allow the community to connect with one another and the Peck School like never before.