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Friday, October 24, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 50.0° F  Fog/Mist

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Madison Fall Arts Preview 2014: Theater and dance

When copious amounts of television are making you feel like a zombie, trekking to Spring Green's American Players Theatre for a classical Greek tragedy is the perfect remedy. High-art performances can engage your brain in restorative ways, and seeing them onstage has a visceral impact most TV shows can't replicate. >More
 Madison Fall Arts Preview 2014: Show tunes

Some show tunes are so good that they stand on their own in concert. Here are five chances to hear live renditions of Broadway hits and other goodies from now through the start of winter. >More
 Madison Fall Arts Preview 2014: Picks for pint-size playgoers

Madison has an abundance of excellent theater, including grownup shows you can take the little ones to. But some of the best productions all season are geared toward the 18-and-younger set. From giant peaches to dancing frogs and lively holiday fare, these productions should be stellar choices for your littlest theater fans this fall. >More
 Madison Fall Music Preview 2014: Welcome back, Wisconsin Union Theater

Wisconsin Union Theater's recently finished facelift took more than two years, but now the university's Langdon Street theater is back, complete with a spruced-up Play Circle and spiffy Shannon Hall, which has better lighting, acoustics and seating than the old main room. Here are a few of the most exciting music events coming to these two spaces this fall. >More
 Four Seasons Theatre's Kiss Me, Kate is a joyful homage to Wisconsin Union Theater's first production

I'm always impressed with the crowd at Four Seasons Theatre productions. Friday night, every seat was taken at Wisconsin Union Theater, where the local troupe presented Kiss Me, Kate. It's the first theater production at the remodeled venue, which is about to celebrate its 75th year. >More
 Fermat's Last Theater Company sets a genderqueer Troilus and Cressida in a circus ring

War is a circus. So says Fermat's Last Theater Company in its production of Shakespeare's Troilus and Cressida, which is set in a circus ring. The play -- part comedy, part tragedy, part historical drama -- is one of Shakespeare's lesser-known pieces. >More
 New mural by José Guadalupe Ríos Córdoba will illustrate Madison's human-rights milestones

What does Madison's soul look like? Mexican muralist José Guadalupe Ríos Córdoba has been asking himself this question since arriving in town last month from Madison's Mexican sister city, Tepatitlán. As part of an international artist exchange, he will soon begin working on a mural for the Madison Municipal Building. >More
 Baltimore artist Michael Owen funnels Willy Street's inclusive spirit into a mural for Plan B

Willy Street is getting a lot more love-ly this week. Baltimore artist Michael Owen is in town to create one of two new murals for Plan B, the LGBT nightclub on the 900 block. The work will consist of the word "love" spelled out in bold, graphic sign language on one side of the building. >More
 Art meets anthropology at Gallery 99

It was a wintry January night, and Lakeview Bakery & Deli was packed. People were there for bread, but not the kind traditionally sold at the Wilson Street shop. They came for an art show called Baked: Bread Sculptures on the Rise, produced and presented by Gallery 99, a pop-up gallery that organizes art shows around town. >More
 War Horse's puppeteers deliver a powerful message about love and conflict at Overture Center

War Horse rode into Overture Hall last night for its Madison premiere. The play, which runs through June 15, came before the 2011 Steven Spielberg movie of the same name, but both are based on a children's novel by Michael Morpurgo. The page is still ghostly present, providing both a literal and figurative backdrop for the story. >More
 Fat City Emporium offers Madison artists a new place to show their work

Fat City Emporium, a new gallery and retail space at 2716 Atwood Ave., opened its doors last Friday, giving local art lovers another place to admire, display and purchase pieces they love. Artist Ryan Robinson, who creates work under the name Rirostro, conceived of gallery after realizing that the near east-side building is unlike any other in town. >More
 Madison Symphony Orchestra's HeartStrings program brings chamber music to disabled audiences

This spring the National Endowment for the Arts awarded a $15,000 Art Works grant to HeartStrings, a Madison Symphony Orchestra program that brings classical music to people with disabilities throughout Dane County. MSO's professional chamber ensemble, the Rhapsodie Quartet, tours 10 sites between September and May, reaching more than 3,000 people who rarely make it to Overture Hall. >More
 Encore Studio's Different Dreams asks thorny questions about disabilities and happiness

Off the beaten path of Madison's traditional downtown theater scene lies a nontraditional company, Encore Studio for the Performing Arts. Encore is situated off the Beltline at the Fish Hatchery exit, but the location alone is not what makes it unique. The troupe is a professional theater company for people with disabilities. Its current show, Different Dreams (through May 17), is a series of loosely connected vignettes that explore the hopes and aspirations of the cast. >More
 Guts, grace and gratitude with JoJean Retrum and Dance Wisconsin

It's a very important day at Dance Wisconsin. A Regional Dance America representative is visiting to decide which of the company's routines will be performed in Chicago next month. She impatiently shushes the dancers, who talk, laugh and move about excitedly. The issue isn't that the dancers lack seriousness; it's that they're all between the ages of 12 and 18. But when the show begins, they bust out some very serious skills. >More
 Mercury Players and OUT!Cast Theatre turn Xanadu's sparkly '80s kitsch into irony-tinged gold

You may know Xanadu as the 1980 Olivia Newton-John movie featuring sparkly pop music, girls on roller skates and a hapless male lead in short-shorts. As of 2007, it's also a musical that includes all of the film's original songs, written by ELO, plus those trademark skates. Unlike the movie, the musical is a parody of the big, jukebox extravaganzas that all but dominate Broadway these days. >More
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