The spring arts season maintains its blistering pace this weekend. The calendar includes: the conclusion of the Line Breaks festival; Design MMoCA and a Wisconsin Arts Boards Visual Arts Fellows exhibition; Buckystock and the Crazylegs Classic; productions of Maria Stuarda, Almost, Maine, Multiple O: Women on Top and performances of the UW Dance Spring Concert; Kingstock IV; and, live music by Harmonious Wail, F. Stokes, the WCO, Vanilla Ice, Madison Bach Musicians, Suzanne Vega, Martin Sexton, The Whigs, White Rabbits, Body Language, and Amos Lee.
NOTEWORTHY: Henry Aaron hammers his first major-league home run, 1954.
BIRTHDAYS: Aussie actress Judy Davis, 1955.
Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, noon-8 pm. Also Saturday (10 am-8 pm) & Sunday-Thursday (noon-5 pm), April 25-29
In this benefit event, 16 design teams create fabulous rooms inspired by artwork from MMoCA's permanent collection. The event also features lectures, gallery talks and workshops.
UW Library Mall, 3-9 pm
Assuming the weather is good, spring fever will be raging for this All Campus Party featuring the Grace Weber Band, JT Roach, Meteorade, Kevin Paris, the Nod, Bascom Hill and We the Living, plus the winner of All-Campus Idol. Ditching class is frowned upon, but understandable.
UW Music Hall, 7:30 pm. Also Sunday (3 pm) & Tuesday (7:30 pm), April 25 & 27
University Opera performs Gaetano Donizetti's 1834 work, controversial in its day, about a fictional meeting between Elizabeth I and Mary, Queen of Scots. In the title role is soprano Emily Birsan, who'll complete a master's in music at UW this spring.
Overture Center's Playhouse, 8 pm. Also Thursday (7:30 pm), Saturday (2 & 8 pm), Sunday (2 pm), Tuesday (7:30 pm) & Wednesday (2 pm & 7:30 pm), April 22, 24, 25, 27 & 28
Milwaukee Repertory Theater's production of John Cariani's comedy features four actors, 19 characters, eight vignettes and one cold winter night in the titular northeastern state.
Brink Lounge, 8 pm
The Madison-based gypsy swing outfit has a new album, The Vegan Zombie's Lament. Their enthusiasm shows in their live act, which is full of vivacious vocals and masterful mandolin passages.
Broom Street Theater, 8 pm. Also Saturday (8 pm) & Sunday (2 pm), April 24 & 25
Reliably ribald Broom Street explores women's sexual fantasies in the latest from company stalwart John Sable. Don't bring the kids.
UW Lathrop Hall's H'Doubler Performance Space, 8 pm. Also Thursday & Saturday, April 22 & 24, 8 pm
The UW Dance Program's annual spring concert features a premiere by Taiwanese choreographer Kun-Yang Lin, as well as work by UW choreographers Kate Corby, Collette Stewart, Li Chiao-Ping, Jin-Wen Yu and more. The concert honors the 100th birthday of Lathrop Hall, the program's lovely campus building.
Majestic Theatre, 8 pm
Stokes, up from Chicago, brings some experimental hip-hop awesomeness for your listening pleasure -- and, presumably, music from his collaboration with Lazerbeak, Death of a Handsome Bride. With Psalm One, Toki Wright, JDante, DJs Vinnie Toma, Dr. Funkenstein.
Overture Center's Capitol Theater, 8 pm
The WCO performs music of Schubert, Strauss and Hummel to conclude its season, with help from pianist Stewart Goodyear (see Music).
UW Memorial Union Terrace, 9 pm
The fresh-faced Grammy nominee from Kansas City found her way onto OutKast's Idlewild while studying at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy. Before she knew it, she'd been signed to Diddy's Bad Boy label, which will release her debut album, The ArchAndroid, a sci-fi journey through cabaret, hip-hop and soul music, next month. She performs as part of the UW's spoken-word conference Line Breaks; for schedule, Vanilla Ice Spring Break House Party
Scatz, 9 pm
Spring break may be over for UW students, but it's not over for the fallen star who brought the world "Ice Ice Baby" back in 1990. Since then, he's adopted a more rock-oriented sound and ditched the parachute pants, but he's sure to pump up the party by getting his rap on at the Middleton sports bar.
NOTEWORTHY: Rock icon David Bowie marries supermodel Iman, 1992.
BIRTHDAYS: Faith No More bassist Billy Gould, 1963; comedian Cedric the Entertainer, 1964.
Capitol Square, 9:45 am
The eight-kilometer run/wheelchair race and two-mile walk benefits the UW athletic department. The course finishes at Camp Randall, where you can dance, maybe, at a post-race party featuring the UW Marching Band and the Eddie Butts Band.
Wisconsin Union Theater, 8 pm
The Bay Area hip-hop theater honcho kicked off the UW's First Wave initiative with a 2008 residency. His performance of the dance/poetry piece "the break/s" is part of First Wave's Line Breaks conference.
First Unitarian Society, 8 pm
The ensemble of local early-music don Trevor Stephenson performs Bach's indelible "Brandenburg Concertos" 4, 5 and 6.
Overture Center's Capitol Theater, 8 pm
Vega sings with a voice that's virtually vibratoless. This lack of tone-bending makes her folk-rock sound cool rather than warm and lends her performances a feeling of wistful wonder that's hard to replicate. This show is likely to showcase her two biggest hits -- "Tom's Diner" and "Luka" -- and material from her new album, Close-Up, Vol. 1: Love Songs, which contains stripped-down versions of some of the more romantic favorites from her 25-year songwriting career.
Barrymore Theatre, 9 pm
It's a big night of gender-bending entertainment as drag-king troupes from the Midwest and beyond converge. Groups representing Madison and Milwaukee dance and do their thing, along with performers from as far afield as Santa Fe.
Majestic Theatre, 9 pm
Sexton brings an intriguing combination of elements to the stage, from fingerstyle guitar to beatboxing, while blending soul, gospel, R&B and a touch of Delta blues. With Ryan Montbleau Band.
UW Memorial Union Terrace, 9:30 pm
This trio proves that Athens, Ga., isn't just about R.E.M. and the B-52s, but garage rock as well. Their new CD, In the Dark, also shows just how indie-rock a garage band can sound, thanks to producer Ben Allen, who also worked on Animal Collective's excellent Merriweather Post Pavilion. With Jeremiah Nelson & the Wildbirds.
High Noon Saloon, 9:30 pm
The six-piece post-punk band from Columbia, Mo., visit the High Noon to showcase their year-old CD, It's Frightening, which is still in heavy rotation on many local fans' iPods. Perhaps they'll drop some hints about an upcoming album as well. With Here We Go Magic, the Kickback (see Tour Stop).
NOTEWORTHY: Soviet troops encircle Berlin, 1945.
BIRTHDAYS: Oscar- & Tony-winning actor Al Pacino, 1940; actress Renee Zellweger, 1969.
Overture Center's James Watrous Gallery, through June 13
This year the Wisconsin Arts Board granted fellowships to Wisconsin artists working in painting, sculpture and metal. See why at this exhibition, and shmooze with the artists at today's reception (2-5 pm).
Project Lodge, 7 pm
"Body Language" is a 1982 song by Queen, a 2009 song by Jesse McCartney and a Brooklyn, N.Y.-based band bringing a ghostly, detached and strangely alluring aura -- think Passion Pit on Quaaludes--to dance floors across the country. With Fun Cartel and Patrick Awesome.
Majestic Theatre, 7:30 pm
The singer-songwriter is a protégé of Norah Jones. Expect tunes from his most recent album, Last Days at the Lodge, which saw him mining folk sounds and doing some marvelous falsetto soul crooning. With Tift Merritt.