Summer embarks upon its second half this week. The calendar includes: the Elver Park Fireworks, and an Independence Day-themed edition of Concerts on the Square; The Glass Menagerie at APT; the "Signs of Protest" show opening; and, live music from Caustic, Dave Alvin & The Guilty Ones, Ray LaMontagne & The Pariah Dogs, Left Lane Cruiser, and Strange Arrangement.
NOTEWORTHY: President Franklin D. Roosevelt signs National Labor Relations Act, 1935.
BIRTHDAYS: Band guitarist/songwriter Robbie Robertson, 1944; actress Edie Falco, 1963.
The Glass Menagerie
American Players Theatre, Spring Green, 7:30 pm
In the indoor Touchstone Theatre, the Spring Green company presents a heartbreaking production of Tennessee Williams' 1944 poetic masterpiece about an overbearing mother and her two emotionally damaged adult children. Bringing your mom is optional.
Elver Park Fireworks
Elver Park, 9:30 pm
Celebrate the nation's birth the loud, brightly colored way with the city's official display. Yes, it's a day late, but rockets-red-glare aficionados won't care in the slightest.
NOTEWORTHY: Althea Gibson wins women's singles title to become first black Wimbledon champion, 1957.
BIRTHDAYS: Grammy-winning singer/songwriter Nanci Griffith, 1954; rapper 50 Cent, 1976.
Concerts on the Square
Capitol Square, 7 pm
The Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra's summer season rolls on with, appropriately enough, "A Down Home 4th of July." The concert features bluegrass band Above the Town, whose fiddler, Jerry Loughney, moonlights playing the longhair music as a violinist with the WCO. On the program is "Orange Blossom Special," as well as music of Copland and Jay Unger. And in the seasonal spirit of big explosions, there is Tchaikovksy's "1812 Overture."
UW Memorial Union Terrace, 8 pm
A mad scientist of the musical variety, local industrial-music notable Matt Fanale places sounds inspired by Throbbing Gristle and Nine Inch Nails in his beaker, adds techno, punk and EBM, then sets the entire concoction ablaze -- metaphorically speaking. Watch him experiment live, in the fresh-air laboratory of the Memorial Union Terrace. With Null Device.
Dave Alvin & The Guilty Ones
High Noon Saloon, 8:30 pm
In addition to being a Grammy-winning guitarist and co-founder of seminal roots-rock-meets-R&B band the Blasters, Alvin has a literary bent, drawing inspiration from writers such as Charles Bukowski and Raymond Chandler when he plays solo. Expect to hear a bit of doo-wop, surf and norteño music at this performance, as Alvin's been dabbling in these genres recently.
NOTEWORTHY: Solar Challenger crosses English Channel, 1981.
BIRTHDAYS: Funny lady Amy Carlson, 1968; figure skater Michelle Kwan, 1980.
Signs of Protest
Center for Photography at Madison, through Aug. 27
This show gathers images by 28 photographers who documented the protests that began at the state Capitol last winter. Relive those extraordinary times and meet the artists at tonight's reception (7-9 pm).
Ray LaMontagne & The Pariah Dogs
Overture Hall, 7:30 pm
After being named one of the year's best by the Associated Press, LaMontagne's God Willin' & the Creek Don't Rise won the Grammy for best contemporary folk album and the top spot on Billboard's Digital Album chart. See what all the fuss is about at this concert.
Left Lane Cruiser
High Noon Saloon, 9 pm
Busting out washboards one minute and punk riffs the next, this roots-music duo from Fort Wayne, Ind., keeps fans guessing -- in a good way -- with each raucous performance and recording, including its latest, All You Can Eat. With Animals in Human Attire and the Midwestern Charm.
Majestic Theatre, 9 pm
A jam-heavy, dance-friendly progressive funk band, Strange Arrangement has become a popular pit stop on Midwesterners' treks to see Phish and Umphreys McGee. Sample their wares at this free SummerJam show. With 4th Coast.