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Best Bets: June

Music

Smooth Finish
Local summer grand finales usually involve a grassy hillside, a cooler of beer and pyrotechnic feats. This year’s season denouement from the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra will take place indoors, but it certainly deserves fireworks. Months ago, the future of the orchestra was in doubt. But after belt-tightening and a successful bit of fundraising, the MSO is on more secure footing. To end this chapter, guest conductor Gilbert Varga returns with a user-friendly program that includes Ravel’s “Bolero,” a Mozart overture and Tchaikovsky’s spirited “Violin Concerto,” featuring Canadian violinist Karen Gomyo, an orchestral “It” woman, who also plays a Stradivarius violin. (Paul Kosidowski) 

➞ Bolero (June 6-8). Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra. Uihlein Hall. Marcus Center for the Performing Arts. 929 N. Water St., 414-291-7605, mso.org.

A Home Run 
Before Present Music takes off for the summer, it’s going home. In its season-closer, “Home Place,” PM joins with the Milwaukee Opera Theatre, and includes some of the most lush contemporary music you’ll encounter. It includes excerpts from Christopher Cerrone’s “Invisible Cities,” inspired by Italo Calvino’s book about a conversation between Marco Polo and Kublai Khan, and Caroline Shaw’s choral piece, Passacaglia. The highlight will be music from “Shelter,” a collaborative work by composers David Lang, Julie Wolfe, Michael Gordon, poet Deborah Artman and filmmaker Bill Morrison. (Paul Kosidowski)

➞ “Home Place” (June 21). Present Music. Cabot Theatre. Broadway Theatre Center. 158 N. Broadway, 414-291-7811, presentmusic.org.

Theater

A Forest of Evergreens 
When American Players Theatre announces its season, a few must-see shows usually prompt early calls to the box office. But this season, you should settle in for the duration. Poetry and great language are everywhere, of course. But do you prefer the witty bon mots of Oscar Wilde (The Importance of Being Earnest) or the profanity of David Mamet (American Buffalo)? Do you like your love stories infused with heartache (Romeo & Juliet) or laced with cynicism and wisecracks (Much Ado About Nothing)? Then stay for a contemporary story of long-haul love that mellows and matures, only to end suddenly (The Year of Magical Thinking). Whatever you choose, we prefer to think of the offering as a love letter to APT fans. (Paul Kosidowski)

➞ American Players Theatre (June 7-Nov. 9). 5950 Golf Course Rd., Spring Green, 608-588-2361, americanplayers.org.


Photo by Jill Newton Moore
Backwoods Bohemia 
It may seem like an odd choice for an outdoor show in June, but Optimist Theatre’s The Winter’s Tale doesn’t need wind chills or sleet to work its magic. It’s Shakespeare’s story of jealousy and deception among Sicilian royals, and bawdy hijinks in the backwoods of Bohemia. Optimist returns to the dramatic setting of Kadish Park, an outdoor bandshell overlooking the Milwaukee skyline. And as usual, the cast combines Optimist stalwarts like Tom Reed, Patrick Lawlor and Ron Scot Fry, along with top local talent like Milwaukee Rep veteran Beth Mulkerron. (Paul Kosidowski)

➞ The Winter’s Tale (June 13-29). Optimist Theatre. Kadish Park. 308 E. Lloyd St., optimisttheatre.org.

Art


Untitled by Boris Ostrerov. Courtesy of the artist. 
Tubes and Tunnels
Oil paint like you’ve never seen it, in ropes, coils, slimes and effusions. Boris Ostrerov’s website, borismakesart.com, says something about his aesthetic leanings … we’re just not sure what. The initial landing page tempts, in all lower caps, “see something you’ve never seen before,” but hover over, and the tricks of HTML replace the text with a photograph of a man in a bikini swimsuit standing on his head. Brookfield’s Wilson Center will be giving the graduate of Milwaukee and Chicago art schools one of his most serious shows to date, a temporary home for his alluring, tactile piles, mounds and webs of paint. (Matt Hrodey)

➞ Boris Ostrerov (June 7-July 23). Ploch Art Gallery. Sharon Lynne Wilson Center for the Arts. 19805 W. Capitol Dr., Brookfield, 262-781-9470, wilson-center.com.

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