Your Spring Arts & Entertainment Picks

arts and entertainment, Madison events

By Jessica Steinhoff | Photo courtesy Ben Zastrow

CONCERTS AND MUSIC FESTIVALS

FESTIVAL CHOIR OF MADISON WITH WISCONSIN CHAMBER ORCHESTRA
May 21, UW Hamel Music Center, Mead Witter Hall

Two groups of elite local musicians team up to present Mozart’s “Requiem,” a choral masterpiece steeped in mystery. A secret patron commissioned the work, and Mozart died soon afterward. One of his students finished the project, raising questions about who composed which parts of the masterpiece. festivalchoirmadison.org, wcoconcerts.org

MAKE MUSIC MADISON
June 21, see website for concert times and venue list

Musicians of all stripes, from first-time performers to seasoned professionals, share their talents throughout Madison for this annual celebration of song and summer, now in its tenth year. Fitchburg and Waunakee are also in on the action in 2022, as well as nearly 100 Madison venues, including Lisa Link Peace Park and the Parched Eagle Taproom. makemusicmadison.org

BASTILLE
June 1, The Sylvee

Nearly a decade after their 2013 hit “Pompeii,” this band of Londoners are back with “Give Me the Future,” a synth-driven concept album that nods to ’80s pop culture while imagining what the future might hold. thesylvee.com

LADY A, BOYZ II MEN, EDWIN MCCAIN
June 10, Breese Stevens Field

This concert helps kick off the American Family Insurance Championship, a three-day charity golf tournament at University Ridge. Two ’90s hitmakers — Boyz II Men and Edwin McCain — open the show, which concludes with a performance by Grammy-winning country act Lady A. amfamchampionship.com

NATIONAL WOMEN’S MUSIC FESTIVAL
June 30-July 3, Madison Marriott West, Middleton

This fest pays homage to women’s creativity with performances of all kinds, including comedy, theater and a ukulele chorus. Hardened and Tempered, a folk duo known for their plaintive harmonies, hit the SheRocks stage on the first day. nwmf.info

THEATER AND VISUAL ART

INVISIBLE WONDERS WITH ANAND VARMA
May 24, Capitol Theater, Overture Hall

For photographer and TED Talk presenter Anand Varma, a camera is a tool for documenting what our eyes often can’t see. Marvel at the hidden life of honeybees, the habits of hummingbirds and more as he shares his photos and the stories behind them at this National Geographic Live presentation. overture.org

“NATASHA, PIERRE & THE GREAT COMET OF 1812”
June 3-5 & 9-12, The Loft at Four Winds Farm, Fitchburg

A 19th-century Russian tavern is the setting for this Tony-nominated “electropop opera” based on Tolstoy’s “War and Peace.” Impulsive Natasha Rostova arrives in Moscow to wait for her fiancé to return from the front lines but falls under the spell of Anatole. Pierre, a family friend, must pick up the pieces of her shattered reputation. Presented by Capital City Theatre, this tale unfolds in every corner of the theater for an immersive story of action and intrigue. capitalcitytheatre.org

“MEL CHIN: THERE’S SOMETHING HAPPENING HERE”
Through July 31, Madison Museum of Contemporary Art

Featuring 43 years’ worth of conceptual works by Mel Chin, this exhibition explores how different forms of justice — social, political, environmental and more — intersect with art and each other. mmoca.org

WATCH THESE WOMEN MAKE HISTORY AT LUNART

Iva Ugrcic left her home in Serbia when political and economic turmoil threatened to derail her career as a flutist. She landed at UW-Madison, where she earned her doctorate and drew attention to the extraordinary works of Doina Rotaru, a Romanian composer long overlooked because of her gender. Determined to shine the spotlight on more women in the arts, she founded the LunART Festival, which returns to Madison for its fourth year, May 31-June 5. Here are four groundbreaking artists who’ll be featured at the festival. lunartfestival.org

ELLEN ROWE, MARION HAYDEN AND ELIZA SALEM
Musical fireworks happen when pianist and composer Ellen Rowe (above), bassist Marion Hayden and drummer Eliza Salem get together to perform. You’re in for a treat if they share some of Rowe’s original jazz compositions, which often reflect the essence of women who have moved her.

STACY GARROP
In addition to being the festival’s composer- in-residence, a job that includes mentoring up-and-coming female composers, Stacy Garrop is a prolific creator. Orchestras and choirs across the country will premiere at least six of her new works in 2022, proving that she is a star on the rise. Each of her musical creations tells a story. Sometimes it’s dark, with many twists and turns. Other times it’s light, filled with pure and simple beauty.

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