John W. Barker


Shawn Harper

Madison is a creative city. Want proof? Here’s our guide to upcoming highlights in theater, dance, visual arts and classical music. more

Sep 21, 2017 5:00 AM , , , Isthmus Cover Stories

Maestro John DeMain is in fine form for Madison Symphony Orchestra’s season opener. more

Sep 16, 2017 10:15 AM MUSIC


Tim Shelton

Madison Savoyards’ production of “H.M.S. Pinafore” is a spirited satire. It runs through August 6 at UW’s Music Hall. more

Aug 3, 2017 5:00 AM Stage

In three short years, the Willy Street Chamber Players have inserted themselves into Madison’s musical landscape. They play two more concerts in July at their home base in Immanuel Lutheran Church. more

Jul 13, 2017 5:00 AM MUSIC


Dick Ainsworth

The impressive opening concert for the Bach Dancing and Dynamite Society’s 26th season demonstrates why the innovative chamber music ensemble has thrived. It’s the first of 12 concerts staged in the next three weeks. more

Jun 11, 2017 10:00 AM MUSIC


Barry Lewis

The Ancora String Quartet finished its season on May 13 with contrasting works from Saint-Saëns and Beethoven. more

May 18, 2017 5:00 AM MUSIC

Madison Symphony Orchestra finishes off the season with a monumental performance of Brahms’ “Requiem” — with a chorus of 166 singers. more

May 6, 2017 10:35 AM MUSIC 1 Comments

The Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra closed out its season with a world premiere of “Double Rainbow,” a two-piano concerto by Juilliard’s Thomas Cabaniss. more

May 4, 2017 5:00 AM MUSIC 1 Comments


James Gill

Despite its chaotic libretto, Madison Opera’s production of “The Magic Flute” delivers plenty of outstanding music and performances. more

Apr 27, 2017 5:00 AM Stage


Kent Sweitzer

Madison Bach Musicians’ Trevor Stephenson has organized a proper Baroque recreation of Bach’s St. John Passion. A final performance is April 15. more

Apr 15, 2017 12:00 AM MUSIC

Madison Symphony and guest pianist Philippe Bianconi match modernists and Romantics in April's concert program at Overture Center. more

Apr 8, 2017 8:47 AM MUSIC

The Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra’s March 24 concert featured a homecoming for violist Vicki Powell, a UW-Madison grad with a flourishing international career. more

Mar 30, 2017 5:00 AM MUSIC

Norwegian trumpet virtuoso returns to Madison Symphony Orchestra. But the Hummel Trumpet Concerto she plays is overshadowed by a superlative Beethoven overture. more

Mar 11, 2017 10:15 AM MUSIC


Michael R. Anderson

University Opera's spring production is a carefully conceived and thought-provoking staging of Benjamin Britten's chamber opera "The Turn of the Screw." more

Mar 4, 2017 9:41 AM Stage

At the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra’s Feb. 24 concert, award-winning 16-year-old prodigy Julian Rhee tackled two tough pieces: Brahms’ Violin Concerto in D major and Paganini’s Caprice No. 5 for solo violin. more

Mar 2, 2017 5:00 AM MUSIC


Bill Fritsch

Stephen Hough, one of the leading pianists of our time, delivers an absorbing performance of “The Egyptian” by Camille Saint-Saëns with Madison Symphony Orchestra. more

Feb 18, 2017 11:15 AM MUSIC

UW-Madison music faculty’s convivial “Schubertiade” has become a highlight of the season. more

Feb 2, 2017 5:00 AM MUSIC


Peter Rodgers

Madison Symphony Orchestra presents a multimedia presentation designed to help audiences understand Rimsky-Korsakov, composer of the popular “Symphonic Suite,” or “Scheherazade.” more

Jan 19, 2017 5:00 AM MUSIC

Most of us are ready to let go of 2016. But Isthmus music critics have some fond memories of this year’s concerts — from punk to pop to classical. more

Dec 22, 2016 5:00 AM , , MUSIC


Kent Sweitzer

Along with the usual holiday offerings, the Madison Bach Musicians have established another worthy holiday tradition, the excellent Holiday Baroque Concert. John W. Barker reviews the Dec. 10 concert. more

Dec 15, 2016 5:00 AM MUSIC