Music reverberates across Madison this warm summer weekend with Jazz in the Park, Busking for Books, and Blues Picnic in the Park. The calendar also includes: Juneteenth; a JoAnna Poehlmann exhibit; Rooftop Cinema; productions of It's Murder, Mary!, john & jen, and Blithe Spirit; Urban Spoken Word; the second weekend of the Bach Dancing & Dynamite Society summer series; a benefit show for WORT and the Wil-Mar Center, and another for the AIDS Network; more live music from In One Wind, Windsor Drive, DJ Abilities, Haley Bonar, Maritime, and Birthday Suits; and, the inaugural Mad City Vegan Fest.
NOTEWORTHY: Watergate break-in, 1972.
BIRTHDAYS: Tennis star Venus Williams, 1980.
Capitol Lakes Retirement Community, 333 W. Main St., through June 30
Capitol Lakes has become a venue for serious art exhibitions, and the two current shows by Milwaukee artist JoAnna Poehlmann are well worth a special trip. In the sunlit Atrium, "Things With Wings" features natural imagery (insects, birds) rendered with classical elegance but leavened with playful titles, juxtapositions and art-historical allusions. Upstairs in the Henry Street café, "Food for Thought" serves delectable mushrooms, nuts and melons on the walls above your table, inspiring reflection on the plate in front of you.
UW Memorial Union Terrace, 5 pm
The avant-pop six-piece from Brooklyn, N.Y., will give Madison a free taste of their debut LP, How Bright a Shadow!, on the Terrace, then whisk it over to the Project Lodge at 8 pm for an in-depth look at their oeuvre.
Loft at Goodman Community Center, 7 pm
The pop-rock band formed in Weston, Wis., five years ago, then relocated to Houston, landing on E! News and nabbing Clear Channel's coveted "Artist to Watch" title. With Cait & the Girls, Loftland and Here for the Moment.
In the second week of its three-week, Bach-themed series, the summer chamber music ensemble presents three programs. Tonight (and Sunday afternoon in Spring Green), The Empire Strikes Bach features music of C.P.E. Bach, Shostakovich, Gershwin and John Harbison, while on Saturday night (and Sunday evening in Spring Green), Bach of Ages includes J.S. Bach's Brandenburg Concerto No. 5, plus music of Olivier Messiaen. Saturday morning at Overture, the program Soundtrack for a Voyage is free and family-themed.
Bartell Theatre, 7:30 pm. Also Thursday & Saturday, June 16 & 18, 7:30 pm
Music Theatre of Madison presents this two-person musical written by Andrew Lippa and Tom Greenwald and originally presented off-Broadway. It's the story of a woman who protects her little brother in an abusive household; leaves him behind when she discovers the hippie movement; mourns when he's killed in Vietnam; then names a son after him to make amends.
Bartell Theatre, 8 pm. Also Saturday (8 pm) & Thursday (7:30 pm), June 18 & 23
In this mystery comedy, presented by StageQ and OUT!Cast, eight gay men are at a lodge, and someone is offing them one by one. Spoofed stereotypes from the gay bingo card include a porn star, a drag queen and a leather dude.
Majestic Theatre, 9 pm
The renowned battle DJ and half of the defunct Minnesota hip-hop duo Eyedea & Abilities hits Madison with a new crop of summer jams. With Vilas Park Sniper.
High Noon Saloon, 9 pm
DJ Spin Cycle will mix minimal house sounds with a slew of global polyrhythms to raise funds for the local radio station and community center.
UW Memorial Union Terrace, 9:30 pm
Filled with twinkling Rhodes and Wurlitzer organs, the slowcore songstress' new album, Golder, will give Lake Mendota a sonic sparkle when she visits the Terrace for a free show. With Judson Claiborne.
Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, 9:30 pm
The museum's outdoor series of avant-garde films continues with An Injury to One, Travis Wilkerson's bold documentary about the 1917 murder of Wobbly organizer Frank Little in Butte, Mont.
NOTEWORTHY: Sally Ride becomes first American woman in space, 1983.
BIRTHDAYS: Paul McCartney, 1942; love child/actress Isabella Rossellini, 1952.
Wingra Park, 9:30 am-9 pm
Start with a Lake Wingra cleanup from 9:30 am to noon, then reward yourself for your virtuous efforts with music by Tony Castañeda Latin Jazz Sextet, Madisalsa and more.
State Street, 10:30 am
Local musicians take to the streets for two hours, filling 27 sidewalk stages with acoustic tunes and collecting tips to benefit the Literacy Network of Dane County. (See Music.)
Warner Park, 11 am-9 pm
At this free event, the Madison Blues Society pays tribute to one of America's greatest gifts to world culture. There'll be food and blues galore from Tani Diakite & the Malian Blues Band, Fedora, Joe's Blues Kids, the Cash Box Kings, the Alex Wilson Band, Tana DeLonay and Outside the Blues, and the Westside Andy/Mel Ford Band.
Penn Park, 10 am onward
Juneteenth celebrates the freeing of the last African American slaves in 1865. The Madison celebration kicks off with a 10 am parade starting at Fountain of Life Church and proceeds to Penn Park for a day's worth of food, entertainment and activities.
Genna's Lounge, 7 pm
This group's events prove that poetry is better not only when it is recited aloud, but also when it is loudly evaluated by raucous spectators. Tonight's special guest is Atlanta's Queen Sheba, as seen on BET's Lyric Café.
American Players Theatre, Spring Green, 8 pm. Also Wednesday, June 22, 7:30 pm
APT presents the comedy by English wit Noël Coward, in which a man hires a spirit medium and is surprised when she conjures up the ghost of his dead first wife.
Majestic Theatre, 9 pm
Dress up in feathers, masks or powder-blue jumpsuits for this time-traveling dance party to benefit the AIDS Network. DJs Vinnie Toma, Fuzzy Duck and Mike Carlson will provide the tunes, creating a soundtrack fit for an evening at Studio 54 circa 1978.
UW Memorial Union Terrace, 9:30 pm
The latest project of Promise Ring and Dismemberment Plan members, this Milwaukee-based quartet fill each performance with tuneful emotion as they perform their new album, Human Hearts.
BIRTHDAYS: Rocker Ann Wilson, 1950; judge Paula Abdul, 1962.
Goodman Community Center, 10 am-5 pm
The free event promotes ethical eating with speakers, demonstrations and samples of vegan food. We repeat: samples.
Frequency, 9 pm
This duo from Minneapolis blow newcomers' minds repeatedly with their hyperactive stage presence and frenzied garage-meets-post-punk gems. Get initiated -- or relive your first encounter -- at this show. With Street Eaters.