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The Friday Five for May 10
Bright and shiny orchestrations plus a trip to the dark side of spring.
Sure, spring can really hang you up, but not when there are pleasant musical diversions like these—ranging from dazzling musical lyricism to dark tragedy.

Friday 7:30 p.m. and Saturday 4:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., 3203 N. Downer Ave.

Why? Because the title may have you thinking maypole or Morris Dancing, but this is actually a seasonal addition to the UWM Dance Department’s concert season. For the inaugural Spring event, the department turns to its newest faculty member, Maria Gillespie, who has spent much of her dance life in Los Angeles. Gillespie’s work here takes its inspiration from the evocative photography of Francesca Woodman. And other work on the program—from Dani Kuepper and Christina Briggs Winslow—takes its cues from photography as well. Tim Russell provides original music for the concert.

Orlando Pimentel and Elena Abend

The Elisio Ensemble at Latino Arts

Friday 7:30 p.m., 1028 S. 9th St.

Why? Because pianist Elena Abend and clarinetist Orlando Pimentel—both natives of Venezuela--are well known in the classical music community, but with the Elisio Ensemble, they join with other Milwaukee musicians to highlight music from Latin America. Joining them are Gladys Rodriguez-Olleros, Carlos Rodriguez-Quiros and Jared Snyder. If you've never been to Latino Arts for music, you're missing out on one of the city's most comfortable venues.

Theatre Gigante’s Electra at UWM’s Kenilworth Hall

Friday and Saturday 7:30 p.m., 1925 E. Kenilworth Place

Why? Because your Mother’s Day festivities might unleash a bit of family drama, but you can always feel a little better by comparing it to the sorrow and pity evoked by great Greek tragedy. Here, Isabelle Kralj and Mark Anderson’s fine cross-genre theater-dance troupe tackles the classic story of family vengeance, based on Sophocles' telling of Electra’s vengeance for the murder of her father Agamemnon. The Gigante version will incorporate music, dance and spoken word, and relies on some of Milwaukee’s most engaging performers.

Frank Almond

Frankly Music at Schwan Concert Hall

Monday 7:00 p.m., 8815 W. Wisconsin Ave., Wauwatosa

Why? Because the last time Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra concertmaster Frank Almond brought a large ensemble together—to perform Richard Strauss’ septet version of Metamorphosen, it was powerful stuff. As a finale to this season, Almond has assembled a full chamber orchestra—mostly from fellow MSO musicians—and will conduct a Haydn Symphony, the Dvorak “Serenade for Strings” and Mendelssohn’s String Sinfonia. A sublime way to spend a spring evening.

Jamie-Rose Guarrine

Florentine Opera’s The Marriage of Figaro at The Marcus Center

Friday 7:30 p.m. and Sunday 2:30 p.m., 929 N. Water St.

Why? Because for its exquisite melodies, gentle social satire, and abundant wit, it’s hard to think of a more pleasurable opera experience than Mozart’s comic masterpiece. It’s been only a few years since the Skylight Theatre’s superb English-language production, but we’re ready for more—more orchestra, more Italian! And the Florentine’s production is sure to fit the bill. Jamie-Rose Guarrine makes her Florentine debut as Susanna. And the inimitable Frank Kelly returns to play Don Basillo.

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