Classical Music


Beau Meyer

Despite some sound engineering issues, a joint production of University Opera and University Theatre produces a marvelous talent showcase with “Into the Woods.” Read more


Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra says goodbye to departing CEO Mark Cantrell. As a consolation prize, the great Russian pianist Ilya Yakushev plays with WCO on Feb. 22. Read more



Benjamin Ealovega

Madison Symphony Orchestra welcomes 2019 Grammy-winning violinist James Ehnes for a magnificent performance of Brahms’ Violin Concerto. Read more



Rick Langer

The Pro Arte Quartet delivers a moving performance of quartets by Haydn, Shostakovich and Schumann. Read more


The Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra kicked off its winter-spring season with a stimulating performance of Saint-Saëns’ Cello Concerto No. 1, played by 12-year-old cellist Miriam K. Smith. Read more


The latest installment of “Schubertiade,” organized by Bill Lutes and Martha Fischer, celebrates the music Franz Schubert made in his very last year, before he died at age 31. Read more


Madison Symphony Orchestra delivers an excellent multimedia exploration of Felix Mendelssohn’s Italian Symphony. Read more

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Madison Symphony Orchestra explores the life and work of Felix Mendelssohn in a special “Beyond the Score” production featuring actors from American Players Theatre. Read more



Lisa Marie Mazzucco

Madison’s top-notch classical ensembles continued to deliver surprises and landmark performances in 2018, writes classical critic John W. Barker. Read more



Kent Sweitzer

Madison Bach Musicians held their annual holiday concert in the First Congregational Church on Dec. 8. The large hall was not an ideal setting for the small-scale works, conceived for intimate settings. Read more



Brynn Bruijn

As he approaches 80 and battles kidney disease, Pulitzer Prize-winning composer John Harbison looks back at a long and fruitful career. Read more



Michael R. Anderson

University Opera delivers a delightful version of Monteverdi’s Baroque masterpiece, “L’incoronazione di Poppea.” It’s a story worth revisiting, based on the history of the narcissistic tyrant Nero. Read more



James Gill

Madison Opera delivers a passionate and lavish double bill of “Cavalleria Rusticana” and “Pagliacci.” It plays once more on Nov. 4. Read more


While Freakfest raged outdoors, the Pro Arte Quartet delivered an exploration of Schubert, Bolcom and Mendelssohn at Mills Hall on Oct. 27. Read more


The Madison Symphony Orchestra hosts guest conductor Tania Miller and cellist Zuill Bailey for its fall concerts. Read more

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Betty Liang

Madison Bach Musicians kick off their 15th season with a program devoted to Bach and Handel, two powerhouse composers and contemporaries who never met. Read more



Lisa Marie Mazzucco

The Madison Symphony Orchestra launched its 25th season with John DeMain with a visit from the extraordinary pianist Emanuel Ax, who delivered a muscular yet tender performance. Read more


The Pro Arte Quartet opened its fall season on Sept. 21 with a superb concert demonstrating some of the finest examples of the quartet spanning three centuries. Read more


When it comes to the arts, Madison keeps upping the ante. Our arts writers help you narrow it down with their picks for the most promising events in theater, comedy, dance, visual art and classical music. Read more

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Greg Zelek, Madison Symphony Orchestra’s principal organist, has designed a magnificent Concert Organ Season. The concerts include some of the nation’s finest players, including Zelek’s Juilliard mentor and classmates. Read more