Theater & Dance


Liz Lauren

They share the same mother, but Zarariah has dark skin, while his brother Morris could pass for white. Athol Fugard’s “Blood Knot” is a look at what it’s like for them to live under the crushing racism of apartheid. more



Mike Brown

Claire Haden is the driving force in “1776,” playing John Adams in a ponderous and uneven musical that looks at the founding of the United States. more

Stage 1 Comments

One of Madison’s most successful original productions is back for a new generation. Mercury Players Theatre is staging a revival of "Temps! The Musical!" more


The Victor Hugo novel turned Disney animated film gets a pro treatment from Madison’s Capital City Theatre. The show includes a 50-person chorus and some Broadway star power, including a former cast member from “Hamilton.” more

Stage 1 Comments

Professional actors turn third- and fourth-graders’ songs, stories and poems into a delightful and unexpected performance. It’s called “Whoopensocker,” and the public can see the greatest hits at Overture Center June 1 and 3. more



Ross Zentner

A young woman of color learns from the grownups around her in a powerful production of “Lines” from Theatre LILA. more


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Brett Williams

Madison Theatre Guild presents a reimagined musical version of “Working” at the Bartell Theatre. There are star turns for local performers and some songs, including a couple by “Hamilton”’s Lin-Manuel Miranda, that are worth the price of admission. more



Matthew Murphy

Hot off the presses: Overture Center announces a huge new season, including “Miss Saigon” and “School of Rock.” more



Kent Sweitzer

Isthmus classical music critic John W. Barker has seen productions of “Dido and Aeneas” in major opera houses. But his favorite so far was Madison Bach Musicians’ masterful production last weekend. more



Jonathan Raymond Popp

“Body Awareness,” a play by Pulitzer-winning playwright Annie Baker, invites us into a complicated family drama set on a quaint New England college campus. It’s at the Bartell Theatre through April 7. more



Darren Lee

After 19 years at the helm of Madison Ballet, W. Earle Smith will depart. The company’s final concert of the season, “Rise,” celebrates his prolific contributions. more

Stage 1 Comments

No one does opera quite like Fresco Opera Theatre. The troupe’s latest invention is a world premiere of “Queen of the Night,” a prequel to Mozart’s “The Magic Flute.” more


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Matthew Murphy

Despite a paper-thin plot, the dance and the visuals rule the touring production of “An American in Paris,” at Overture Hall through March 4. more


David Andrews Rogers has his dream job as musical director of the first touring Broadway production of “An American in Paris.” Gwendolyn Rice talks to him about touring with a 14-piece orchestra and why he loves life on the road. more



Shawn Harper

Kanopy Dance pairs up with renowned corporeal mime performers for an intriguing collaborative work in “Dark Tales.” It’s at Overture through Feb. 18. more



James Gill

Excellent production values and a splendid cast elevate Madison Opera’s “Abduction from the Seraglio.” more



Darren Lee

It’s a shame Madison Ballet’s “She” only runs one weekend. The excellent celebration of female choreographers couldn’t be more timely. more



Samantha Dutcher

It’s been 10 years since Emily Mills and Jesse Russell launched a raunchy, inclusive event on the same night as the Frostiball. The organizers say the apocalypse-themed masquerade at the Majestic on Jan. 27 will be the finale. more



Carol Rosegg

When it debuted in 1996, “Rent” blew audience’s minds. As the 20th anniversary tour rolls through Overture, theater critic Gwendolyn Rice talks to Madison’s theater geeks about how well the show holds up. more

Stage 2 Comments


Joan Marcus

Isthmus arts and culture editor Catherine Capellaro looks back at a year where she found hope and faith in humanity through art. more

A & E