Bike-o-Rama and Canoecopia
Spring is right around the corner, and Madison gears up this weekend with Bike-o-Rama and Canoecopia. The calendar also includes: the Encounter Cultures photo exhibit and the banned Art in Protest show; a screening of We Are Wisconsin; productions of Uncivil Disobedience and Twinkle Twonkle, and a new Old Time Radio Live show; a book reading by Kevin Henkes; standup by Ralphie May; performances by greenTONE a capella, the MSO, and Perfect Harmony Men's Chorus; the Wobble dance party, Great Midwest Bluegrass Bash, and Zombie Prom with DJ Wyatt Agard; the Charity Jamboree and a benefit show for groups opposing mines in Wisconsin; and, more live music from Jake Shimabukuro, Count This Penny, Doomtree, Electric Six, EMA, Lower Dens with Yellow Ostrich, Rachel Platten, and Born in Flames.
NOTEWORTHY: Napoleon marries Josephine, 1796.
Alliant Energy Center's Arena, noon-9 pm. Also Saturday (8 am-9 pm) & Sunday (10 am-6 pm), March 10 & 11
Spring is just days away, so prepare for outdoor recreation on two wheels at this expo, featuring the latest in cycling plus daredevil bike performances. Daredevil bike performers can jump over just about anything.
Alliant Energy Center's Exhibition Hall, 4-9 pm. Also Saturday (9 am-6 pm) & Sunday (10 am-5 pm), March 10 & 11
If outdoor recreation on the water is your passion, don't miss the annual confab devoted to all things paddling, with exhibitors, vendors and speakers.
Overture Center's James Watrous Gallery. Reception: 5:30-7:30 pm
In this show, UW photography assistant professor Jones presents photographs of people who dress as Native Americans by way of reenacting the 18th- and 19th-century French fur trade in North America. The images raise all kinds of unsettling questions.
Orpheum Theatre, 7 pm
Director Amie Williams' documentary profiles Wisconsinites who converged on the Capitol early last year to protest Gov. Scott Walker's policies.
Bartell Theatre, 7:30 pm. Also Saturday, March 10, 7:30 pm
This ensemble emerged from UW-Madison's Tangled Up in Blue as several members graduated, entered the workforce and began yearning for opportunities to harmonize. The group's sets incorporate jazz, doo-wop and hip-hop.
Overture Hall, 7:30 pm. Also Saturday (8 pm) & Sunday (2:30 pm), March 10 & 11
Carl St. Clair conducts as the big ensemble performs Brahms' Symphony No. 3 and Rimsky-Korsakov's "Capriccio Espagnol." The Los Angeles Guitar Quartet makes its MSO debut with Joaquin Rodrigo's "Concierto Andaluz."
Stoughton Opera House, 7:30 pm
A ukulele represents endless possibilities for this Hawaii-bred artist, who proves that the instrument can be the focal point of a rock band, a jazz ensemble or a classical concert. His repertoire includes stunning, virtuosic covers of Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" and the Beatles' "While My Guitar Gently Weeps."
Overture Center's Rotunda Studio, 7:30 pm. Also Saturday, March 10, 7:30 pm Forward Theater Company presents this staged reading of Mike Lawler's play about the dreadful 1970 antiwar bombing at UW Sterling Hall (see Theater).
Goodman Community Center, 8-11 pm. Also Saturday, March 10, 4-11 pm
Last month, amid pressure from Rep. Steve Nass, the UW Extension canceled a show of art stemming from last year's protests at the Capitol. That rankled some people, and they have set up this revised version of the show, which will feature protest art that's brought by anyone who wants to display it, plus an open mike.
Wisconsin Veterans Museum, 8 pm
This local Americana combo has grown from a duo into a quartet known for its thoughtful lyrics and tuneful harmonies. At this concert, the group will premiere recordings of songs inspired by archival letters from Wisconsin's Civil War soldiers.
Sett at UW Union South, 9 pm
Minneapolis' Doomtree collective have polished a new crop of hip-hop gems, which they'll flaunt during this collaborative performance. Afterwards, around midnight several members, including DJ Paper Tiger and beatmaker Lazerbeak, will kindle a party made for dancing, freestyling and fist pumping (see Tour Stop). With Milo.
Electric Earth Café, 9 pm
Windy City DJ Paul Anthony headlines Shatterbox Productions' biweekly electronic-music celebration, where he'll whip Chicago house and electro into a gale-force frenzy. With DJs Just Elmo, Mr. Alexander and Greenhouse.
High Noon Saloon, 9:30 pm
This sextet from Detroit scored a solid fan base when their 2003 album, Fire, spawned two humor-tinged hits: "Danger! High Voltage" and "Gay Bar." Listen for hints of Queen, KISS and Devo in tunes from their latest studio album, 2011's Heartbeats and Brainwaves. With Aficionado and Pink Mink.
Frequency, 9:30 pm
Drone princess Erika M. Anderson, a.k.a. EMA, layers grunge-flavored guitars with tantalizing synth noise and pungent vocals. The video for her song "California" landed on PitchforkTV and indie blogs such as GuerolitoMusic last March. With Nu Sensae and Golden Donna.
Rathskeller at UW Memorial Union, 9:30 pm
Baltimore's Lower Dens swathe stages in fuzzy guitars, clamorous drums and the entrancing vocals of front woman Jana Hunter as they preview their album Nootropics. The indie songmakers of Yellow Ostrich fete recent successes such as their single "Bread," which appeared in the first-season finale of NBC's Parenthood. With Grace Weber and 1 2 3.
NOTEWORTHY: Willard Scott debuts as Today Show weather forecaster, 1980.
Essen Haus, 11:30 am
A who's-who of local acts (People Brothers Band, Star Persons, Steez, Wook, many more) perform at this benefit for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the UW Carbone Cancer Center and the American Diabetes Association. Twenty-two bands on three stages means there's something for everyone.
Barnes & Noble-West Towne, 7 pm
The locally based, internationally acclaimed children's author-illustrator talks about Penny and Her Song, which introduces another irresistible character to his pantheon. It's a beautifully crafted tale of a young mouse who just can't resist the crooning impulse.
West Side Club, 7 pm. Also Sunday, March 11, 7 pm
The gay men's choral ensemble stages a cabaret-style concert called "The Last Cabaret (Unless the Mayans Were Wrong)." The program touts optimism in the face of gloom with tunes like "It's Raining Men" and "I Will Survive."
Barrymore Theatre, 8 pm
The comedian was, some felt, robbed in the finals of NBC's Last Comic Standing. But he has soldiered on with TV specials and live performances featuring what he styles "equal-opportunity-offender" shtick.
Overture Center's Playhouse, 8 pm
Wisconsin Public Radio presents a live radio performance of It Happened One Night, Frank Capra's wonderful 1934 comedy, complete with live music and other classic broadcasting trappings. The opener is Four Seasons Theatre, presenting tunes from the great American songbook.
Majestic Theatre, 8 pm
Insomniac Gypsy, SweetGrass, Horseshoes and Hand Grenades, and others take the stage for a big night of banjos and/or mandolins.
Redamte Coffee House, 8 pm
Steep your synapses in this singer, pianist and beatboxer's signature blend of pop and rock, which brims with radio-friendly tunes like "1,000 Ships." With Bess Rogers and Gavin Jones.
Inferno, 8 pm
The Mad Rollin' Dolls are throwing their annual prom for the undead, where ghoulish souls slurp PBRs and sashay to haunting mixes by the good DJ. Previous years' festivities have featured kissing stations and spanking booths, and this edition will last an extra hour thanks to the calendar's switch to daylight saving time.
Sett at UW Union South, 9 pm
Brooklyn's hip-hop heritage and Detroit's rock 'n' roll legacy collide when Jean Grae, Invincible and Tamar-Kali get together. Watch sparks fly as these ladies showcase their latest riffs, rhymes and roars.
Revolution Cycles, 9 pm
Manginas, Kitty Rhombus and Thistle will unfurl some sonic brain-benders to raise money for Deep Green Resistance and Madison for the Penokees, two nonprofits fighting to stop open-pit mining in Iron and Ashland counties. One concertgoer will win a bike, ensuring a speedy getaway if Gov. Scott Walker comes knocking.
NOTEWORTHY: Mikhail Gorbachev succeeds deceased Soviet President Konstantin Chernenko, 1985.
Overture Center's Capitol Theater, 3 pm
The London company Tall Stories presents a musical show for kids 3-7, combining nursery rhymes and astrophysics. Two kids who like to gaze at the stars take a trip through outer space, where they see the cow jumping over the moon and other such scientific phenomena.