Tom Crawford celebrates his home town at Alverno Presents. Photo by Kat Schleicher. #5: Want/Need at Danceworks. Why? Because Danceworks Performance Company celebrates its 15th anniversary with—appropriately—some things old and some things new. Artistic Director Dani Kuepper restages her 2007 piece, “The Gate,” and former Artistic Director Sarah Wilbur reprises her 2006 piece, “I Before […]
Tom Crawford celebrates his home town at Alverno Presents.
Photo by Kat Schleicher.
Why? Because Danceworks Performance Company celebrates its 15th anniversary with—appropriately—some things old and some things new. Artistic Director Dani Kuepper restages her 2007 piece, “The Gate,” and former Artistic Director Sarah Wilbur reprises her 2006 piece, “I Before We.” There’s also new work by Steven Moses, Christal Wagner, Sarah Gonsiorowski, and all of it seems cast in a reflective spirit of both “Where have we been?” and “Where are we going?” Something to move about.
Why? Because you are of sophisticated musical taste. Because you know the standard opera and classical music repertory well. Because you have refined sensibilities. And because you have always wondered what the “Habenera” from Bizet’s Carmen sounds like if it is played on a set of taxi horns. Well, meet Michael “Ding” Lorenz and his collection of vintage and novelty musical instruments. And allow him—along with Ray Jivoff and Jamie Johns—to take you on a sonically adventurous trip ranging from Mozart to Rodgers and Hammerstein. An expanded version of the hit Skylight show from 2009 edition, it’s the perfect way to spring into spring.
Why? Because Youngblood gets a little bloody in Jennifer Haley’s mindbending horror-story about suburban kids trapped in a loop-de-loop of reality when they become addicted to a video game. A little bit David Cronenberg, a little bit Shirley Jackson, the play was a hit at the prestigious Humana Festival in 2008, and Haley just joined the company of Sarah Ruhl, Paula Vogel and Caryl Churchill by winning the Blackburn Prize, given annually to the best play of the year written by a woman. Youngblood’s own Benjamin James Wilson directs the play and stages it in a “claustrophobic basement” of a costume shop, which should fit the play’s sense of reality to a tee.
Why? Because Tom Crawford is not only the soul behind WMSE radio, he’s a native son who will proudly continue his native ways, and has been telling the city why since last summer as part of Ex Fabula’s “Terminal Milwaukee” project. Over the last year, fans have visited the significant haunts of Crawford’s life, listened to his and other’s stories, and painted a word-portrait of our city that hasn’t been seen or heard before. It all comes together in this Terminal Milwaukee finale, complete with gospel singers, bagpipers, and—of course—accordion players.
Why? Because The Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra has figured out how to get to Carnegie Hall, and it doesn’t necessarily involve the Q or R trains. In May, conductor Edo de Waart will take the MSO to that venerable New York concert hall as part of the “Spring for Music” festival of American orchestras. This weekend and next, the group will preview the Carnegie program, starting with the interesting pairing of Debussy’s great tone poem, La Mer, and Olivier Messiaen’s “The Forgotten Offering,” a 1930 meditation on Christ’s sacrifice on the cross by one of Debussy’s disciples. As if that’s not enough, the concert concludes with Anton Bruckner’s sonically rich sixth symphony.