Get out and get busy over this long Thanksgiving weekend, with performances of Guys on Ice and Tearoom Tango; stand-up by Nick Mortensen, a book reading by Donald Johnson; and, live music by the Oakwood Chamber Players, Natty Nation, the Tomek Miernowski Trio, The Cordeliers, the WCO, Hayward Williams and Miles Nielsen, L.O.S.T S.O.U.L.S with DJ Jinko and DJ Fusion, and Erin Aldridge. Don't forget to shop local, meanwhile, with the Downtown Holiday Open House.
Oakwood Chamber Players
Oakwood Village Auditorium, 2, 5:30 & 8 pm
The holidays are here, so it's time to start making yourself feel holiday-ey. One way to do that is to dig in to the oodles of holiday-related musical offerings, including this one by the local ensemble. The program is dubbed Christmas Lights and features music of Craig Bohmlre, Andre Jolivet and others.
High Noon Saloon, 7 pm
The Madison reggae institution just returned from a tour of U.S. military bases in Kyrgyzstan, Qatar, Bahrain and other farflung locales. We bet they were socko in Djibouti. Also: Roster McCabe, Tropical Riddims Sound.
Guys on Ice
UW Vilas Hall's Mitchell Theatre, 8 pm. Also Saturday (4 & 8 pm), Sunday (2 & 7 pm), Tuesday (7:30 pm) & Wednesday (7:30 pm), Nov. 29-30 & Dec. 2-3
Here comes Milwaukee Repertory Theater with its production of James Kaplan and Fred Alley's ice-fishing musical. Did you think there couldn't possibly be a show tune called "Ode to a Snowmobile Suit"? You thought wrong.
MercLab, 930 Fair Oaks Ave., 8 pm. Also Saturday, Nov. 29, 8 pm
We're not talking oolong. The work by local playwright Douglas Holtz is about anonymous bathroom sex and the men who pursue it. Don't bring the kids.
Tomek Miernowski Trio
Mother Fool's Coffeehouse, 8 pm
The three members of guitarist Tomek Miernowski's jazz ensemble haven't performed together since high school, and the oldest is only 22, but they've all had considerable success since waving goodbye to Madison. Catch them while they're all in the same place: at Mother Fool's the day after Thanksgiving.
Frequency, 10 pm
The Cordeliers were a scruffy populist society during the French Revolution that supported overthrowing the old regime. The scruffy Chicago-based three-piece the Cordeliers boasts a revolutionary attitude as well, channeled through a punk-rock ethos, some power chords and a whole lot of beer. Also playing: Fedora, Cement Pond.
Downtown Holiday Open House
Downtown Madison shops, 10 am-6 pm
Walk off those tofurkey calories with a shopping spree in the central city as more than 40 merchants and restaurants on State Street and the Capitol Square serve up discounts, promotions, free grub and fun activities for the kids. All this, plus caroling and gratis trolley rides.
Waldenbooks-West Towne, 1 pm
Just in time for your gift-giving winter holiday of choice, here's Johnson. He comes to promote his 2007 book Historic Photos of Madison, which compiles pictures of our great city from the previous two centuries. The old place was as handsome then as it is now.
Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra
Marriott-West, Middleton 8 pm. Also Sunday, Nov. 30, 1 pm
In a Festivus miracle, the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra and its musicians agreed to not cancel another scheduled concert amid an ongoing labor dispute. So this holiday pops performance -- featuring the Middleton High School Concert Choir and works of Handel, Lucas Richman and others -- is actually the first of the WCO's season.
Majestic Theatre, 8 pm
The Madison comedian has of late performed Thursday early-evening shows at the Frequency, where the self-styled Ryan Adams of Comedy strives to perform new material every week -- we think he means Ryan Adams in the sense of prolific, not hostile. At this post-holiday event in a larger venue, he is recording a DVD of his stuff. Also appearing: JD Stier.
Hayward Williams and Miles Nielsen
Cafe Carpe, Fort Atkinson, 8:30 pm
Milwaukee's Hayward Williams cut his teeth in the WAMI-award-winning rock band Exit before turning to roots-infused acoustic solo work. His 2007 release, Another Sailor's Dream, landed on several music blogs' best-of lists last year and was featured on . Tonight he plays with Miles Nielsen, a Chicago-based multi-instrumentalist and son of Cheap Trick guitarist Rick Nielsen.
L.O.S.T S.O.U.L.S with DJ Jinko and DJ Fusion
Orpheum Theatre's Stage Door, 9 pm
Madison's prolific five-member hip-hop collective storms the stage at the Stage Door, prefaced by the hip-hop/electro sounds of Eau Claire's DJ Jinko and the drum 'n' bass of DJ Fusion. Also playing: Yokes & L.U.V., DJ Papi Love, DJ Kantel, Leigh Wasson.
Chazen Museum of Art, 12:30 pm
The violinist, an assistant professor at UW-Superior, performs Eugene Ysaye's "Six Sonatas for Unaccompanied Violin, Op. 2" in a Wisconsin Public Radio broadcast of Sunday Afternoon Live from the Chazen.