Here is this week's critics' choice calendar. The Guide provides an extended listing of events in and around Madison.
NOTEWORTHY: Best-selling videogame Tetris released, 1984.
Absolutely Art & Cafe Zoma, through June 28. Reception: 5-9 pm
It's a bittersweet night as Absolutely Art kicks off its final show (see Madland). But the "sweet" part includes a group show about local love featuring several dozen artists, plus live music and food. Thanks for the memories, Absolutely Art.
Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, through Aug. 24. Curators' talk: 6:30 pm
This exhibition, drawn mostly from MMoCA's permanent collection, is inspired by lines from Ecclesiastes 3. Works by such luminaries as Grant Wood, Claes Oldenberg and Thomas Hart Benton provide a contemporary take on the biblical lyrics, and represent the mutability of life with all its joys and sorrows.
Citywide, through June 15. Reception at Bright Red Studios: 7 pm (madisonarthunt.com)
Seven artists collaborated to install art in secret locations throughout the city. Everyone's invited to participate in this weeklong scavenger hunt; all you need is curiosity and a camera. Clues will be handed out at the gallery-show reception.
Bartell Theatre, 7:30 pm. Also Saturday & Thursday, June 7 & 12, 7:30 pm. Through June 14
Lots of Broadway productions flop, and sometimes great songs are lost as a result. Music Theatre of Madison's latest show examines musicals that bombed through a story involving a writer, a producer, a director and two actors.
Brink Lounge, 8 pm
This act features some of Madison's most sought-after string players, who fuse elements of the classical and bluegrass traditions onstage.
Olbrich Botanical Gardens, 8 pm
Multicolored architectural lighting debuts in the Bolz Conservatory at this event featuring cocktails and music by Madison's Red Rose and Milwaukee's Perspective Heights.
Frequency, 9 pm. Also Saturday, June 7, 9 pm
The downtown concert venue celebrates its sixth birthday with two nights of locally made rock and power-pop. Friday's bill includes newfangled new-wave band Sexy Ester, along with I Saw the Creature, Annabel Lee and the Lurk Hards. Saturday features the surfy dance-punk of Venus in Furs and more.
UW Memorial Union Terrace, 9:30 pm
Wiz Khalifa signed this Chicago rapper to his Taylor Gang label.
High Noon Saloon, 10 pm
A champion among hip-hop emcees and slam poets, Francis explores politics and philosophical quandaries with brains, guts and heart. With F.Stokes and B. Dolan.
Mickey's Tavern, 10 pm
This dreamy psych-pop band from Chicago have earned high marks from Consequence of Sound and a few other blogs of note. With William Z. Villain and Karsten Osterby.
Capitol Square, 8 am-1 pm
Bevies of bovine beauties strut their stuff for June Dairy Month. Cow-centric activities include a petting zone. There's also a free shuttle to the Wisconsin Institutes for Discovery, where you'll learn about dairy food science. Cowabunga!
Yahara Place Park, 8:30 am-9 pm. Also Sunday, June 8, 11:30 am-9 pm
This free outdoor event kicks summer festival season into high gear with kids' activities and live music by more than a dozen artists, from local groups like Son Contrabando (Saturday, 1:30 pm) and Building on Buildings (Sunday, 11:30 am) to touring acts like Califone (Saturday, 3:15 pm), Lyrics Born (Saturday, 5:15 pm), the Sadies (Saturday, 7:30 pm), Mother Falcon (Sunday, 6 pm) and MarchFourth Marching Band (Sunday 7:30 pm). (See Tour Stop.)
State Street, 10 am-3 pm
More than 100 gleaming classic cars and trucks will line State Street, including a 1917 Model T and a 1936 Cadillac Town Cabriolet. Remember: Look, but don't drool.
Goodman Community Center, 10 am-5 pm
Since this is the festival's fourth iteration, we're thinking this vegan thing might stick around. This year's event will appeal to vegans and the vegan-curious with plenty of samples, cooking demos and speakers.
Alliant Energy Center's Coliseum, 7:30 pm
Rapper, actor and bodybuilder John Cena joins Bray Wyatt to show off mind-blowing maneuvers like the body avalanche and the short-arm clothesline at this over-the-top spectacle, which also features an Intercontinental Championship match between Big E and Bad News Barrett. Sheamus, the Miz and the Bella Twins are slated to appear, too.
True Coffee Roasters, Fitchburg, 8 pm
The Nashville-based singer-songwriter performs songs from his new EP, Company, which is filled with clever lyrics and solid acoustic guitar playing. With Max Dvorak and Standard Wavves.
Good Style Shop, 8 pm
This avant-garde gospel and noise band began performing around Chicago in the '80s, but they've started recording some fascinating new music in the last few years. With Samantha Glass and Lens.
UW Memorial Union Terrace, 9:30 pm
Led by Guinean percussionist and praise singer Mandjou Mara, this afropop band perform funk grooves that are as dance-friendly as they come. With Limanya Drum & Dance Ensemble.
Jolly Bob's, 10 pm
This Moscow-born, Chicago-based DJ excels at two-step and funky, electronic music styles that have found lots of fans in the U.K. His dub mixes are a thing of wonder as well. With DJ Wyatt Agard.
NOTEWORTHY: George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four published, 1949.
Angell Park in Sun Prairie, 10 am-4 pm
Dog owners are encouraged to bring their furry friends to the annual event, which includes contests, demos and other four-legged activities. The participating pups are eager -- very eager -- to perform for you.
Mystery to Me, 2 pm
The local author reads from her deliciously thrilling new mystery, Hot Fudge Frame-up.
Frequency, 8 pm
Originally a side project for South San Gabriel's Will Johnson, Centro-Matic's Texas-bred rock has matured nicely over the last 15 years. "Only in My Double Mind" from Candidate Waltz is a good starting point for new listeners. With the Belle Weather and Vintage Blue.
Frequency, 7 pm
Performing soul, faith-based R&B and hip-hop, this local artist has won multiple Madison Area Music Awards and will debut his fourth full-length album, Jump Start the Soul, at the show. With Derek Ramnarace and Kari Arnett.
High Noon Saloon, 8 pm
A powerhouse vocalist who isn't a diva, Brown infuses her R&B with earthy folk. She'll perform material from her 2013 album, Back Road Highways. Nelson, a local folk artist, opens with selections from a new EP, Whittier (see Music). With the Ericksons.
NOTEWORTHY: NASA's Mars Exploration Rover mission begins, 2003.
High Noon Saloon, 6:30 pm
Childhood friends Jonathan Clay and Zach Chance create harmony-laden Southern country that incorporates influences like Stevie Ray Vaughan. With the Wind & the Wave and Kris Orlowski.
Overture Hall, 7:30 pm. Also Wednesday & Thursday, June 11 & 12, 7:30 pm. Through June 15
Overture Center closes its 2013-14 season with this moving play about a horse that helps the English troops in the trenches of World War I. The tale, based on Michael Morpurgo's 1982 novel, is worth the price of admission, but the stars of the show are life-size horse puppets that come alive onstage (see Theater).
NOTEWORTHY: U.S. agrees to send Lend-Lease aid to Soviet Union during World War II, 1942.
NOTEWORTHY: All U.S. laws prohibiting interracial marriage declared unconstitutional by Supreme Court, 1967.
East Side Club, 6 pm
Paste has called this Illinois folk act's songs "refreshing," and we think they're pretty cool, too. Ease into the weekend by pairing them with tiki bar cocktails and scenic views of Lake Monona. With Derek Pritzl.
Monona Terrace Rooftop, 7 pm
This area act attracts a lively crowd of urban cowboys and cowgirls when they play in Madison proper. You'll find plenty of boot-scootin' fun at this free show, the first in this summer's Concerts on the Rooftop series.
Orpheum Theater, 8 pm
Initially a side project of two Grateful Dead members -- guitarist Weir and bassist Rob Wasserman -- this band cover the Dead's music as well as material by Bob Dylan and Chuck Berry.
Majestic Theatre, 8:30 pm
David Byrne, David Bowie and other legends have been spotted at concerts by this indie rock group from Philly. The band's fourth album, Only Run, features several strong tracks. With Stagnant Pools.
Ancora Coffee-King Street, 8 pm
A favorite of Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's music critics, this trio stop by from Brew City to launch the downtown coffee shop's latest series of free live music.
High Noon Saloon, 8:30 pm
Touring with this experimental folk band from Portland, Ore., helped Madison's PHOX raise their national profile last fall. Recent set lists have included material from 2013's VII as well as Furr, their popular 2008 Sub Pop release. With the Parkington Sisters.
Frequency, 9 pm
Composed of drummer Patrick Hallahan of My Morning Jacket, guitarist Adrian Quesada of Grupo Fantasma and vocalist Dante Schwebel of Hacienda, this act was featured in Rolling Stone earlier this year.
Mickey's Tavern, 10 pm
This indie pop band blame the three-year gap between their debut and their latest record, the recently released The Sky as Well as Space, on band member Mike Bridavsky's attention-seeking cat. Luckily, tracks like "The Celebrated Summer" were worth the wait. With The Flavor That Kills and Venus in Furs.
Edited by Vitali Sediuk