47 Madison events to go to in February

Use our A&E guide to make your plans
Frozen
Photo courtesy of the Clean Lakes Alliance
The Frozen Assets Festival on Lake Mendota kicks off a month of outdoor and indoor February events.

Special Event

True Wisconsinites don’t stay home when the snow piles up, they celebrate! The Wisconsin Winter Carnival is the perfect occasion to make the most of our frozen home with four days of fun. Events include ice hockey and broomball tournaments on Lake Mendota, various live bands, and even a Snow Ball in the Memorial Union. Jan. 31-Feb. 3

Special Event

The Edgewater Hotel hosts the fifth-annual Frozen Assets Festival, a fundraiser for the Clean Lakes Alliance. The event gets underway Friday night with fat bike races on Lake Mendota. On Saturday at 10 a.m., the Frozen Assets 5K run/walk will also take place entirely on the lake. A ton of other activities — from ice skating, pond hockey, sleigh rides and, for little kids, face painting and a roaming magician.

Music

Kick off February with some wholesome tunes at the High Noon Saloon. The holler-folk music of Ghost of Paul Revere, and Charlie Parr’s resonant blues meld perfectly as two different takes on the same musical genre. Feb. 1

Reading

Bookworms unite! Go as the honest Jane Eyre, the adventurous Scout or the brave Harry Potter and enjoy printing your favorite quote on a printing press, making bookworm buttons and more at the Adult Swim: Book Affair. Feb. 1

Comedy

Saturday Night Live’s Jenny Slate takes the stage at Comedy on State. Best known for her work on the book and short film series, “Marcel the Shell with Shoes On,” she is a stand-up comedian, actress, author and creator. Feb. 1-2

Theater

Unicorns, and dragons and mermaids — oh my! They will all take center stage during the Bartell’s production of “Mythical Creatures.” Presented by Kathie Rasmussen Women’s Theatre, “Mythical Creatures” features 10 plays to celebrate the Theatre company’s 10th anniversary season. Feb. 1-9

Theater

You’ve probably heard of a quarter note, but what about a hemidemisemiquaver? That’s a sixty-fourth note, and yes it’s real. “Hemidemisemiquavers is a series of six short plays that music lovers of all ages can enjoy at the Broom Street Theater. Feb. 1-9

Poetry

What happens when poetry meets dance? The Winter Festival of Poetry, of course. Following prompts like “Square Dance vs. Chicken Dance,” a series of local poets will read every Sunday this month at 2 p.m. at Common Ground, a diner/cafe in Middleton. Feb. 1-Mar. 10

Music

The Glorious Sons bring all the brutal honesty of their latest album “Young Beauties & Fools” to the High Noon Saloon this month. The album addresses topics like alcoholism and finding oneself, wrapped up in their bold, rock style. Feb. 2

Music

The band that simply never stops, TESLA performs its classic radio hits and celebrates its 30-plus years as a rock band. Their performance at the Sylvee this month will feature multimedia visual screens, a new feature of their “Mechanical Resonance Live!” tour. Feb. 2

Theater

American Players Theatre hosts its Winter Words series as a way for APT artists to explore new possibilities for plays. This month the lineup includes a reading of “The Moors” by Jen Silverman and “Emilie: La Marquise Du Châtelet Defends Her Life Tonight” by Lauren Gunderson. Feb. 4 & 11

Comedy

Comedian and author of “If It’s Not Funny It’s Art,” Demetri Martin, comes to the Barrymore Theater. Known for his gut-busting, simple humor, and appearances on “The Daily Show,” Martin performs in Madison as a part of his “Wandering Mind Tour.” Feb. 7

Theater

Opposites attract in this timeless Neil Simon play, “The Odd Couple.” Get your tickets now and enjoy it at the Verona Area Community Theater. Feb. 7-16

Comedy

Dan Cummins on his “Happy Murder Tour” does what Dan Cummins does best: Makes light of dark topics. With appearances on “Conan” and “The Tonight Show,” Cummins is a favorite among dark humorists. Catch him this month at Comedy on State. Feb. 7-9

Music

Jack Torrey and Page Burkum of The Cactus Blossoms bring modern twang and gospel harmonies to vintage country music. Slide on your cowboy boots and tuck a handkerchief in your pocket, because these boys will make you laugh, dance and cry all in the same hour. See them this month at the Stoughton Opera House. Feb. 8

Comedy

Comedian Trevor Noah made a name for himself when he replaced Jon Stewart, long-time host of “The Daily Show,” in 2015. Noah quickly won over audiences across the nation with his fearless and witty attitude. Time magazine named him one of 2018’s “100 Most Influential People,” and now he’s traveling the country on his “Loud & Clear Tour. Feb. 8

Theater

Hang on to your horns. Kanopy Dance Company sets fire to the stage with “Devil’s Night,” a dizzying journey of metal cello music and asylum inmates, featuring your guide, The Mohawk Man. Catch the spectacle at the Overture Center for the Arts. Feb. 8-17

Film

The University of Wisconsin-Madison Department of Latin American, Caribbean and Iberian Studies presents the LACIS Film Series at the Cinematheque, featuring highly acclaimed films from Brazil, Cuba, Columbia and Portugal. One film, “Birds of Passage,” depicts the Colombian drug trade of the 1970s and the collision between ancient and modern culture. Feb. 8 – Mar. 1

Music

It’s techy, it’s electric, it’s alternative, it’s KLACK and Nevada Hardware at Madison’s newest nightclub, The Crucible. Presented by Body to Body, this One Love VD party is themed “Hack the Planet,” and will feature DJs Koob and Eurotic, as well as live performances. Feb. 9

Special Event

The kids will love The Wild Rumpus Winter Circus at the Goodman Community Center for its daring acrobatics and comical clowning. Proceeds go to the Wild Rumpus Circus Scholarship Fund that helps support its all-ages cast. Feb. 9-10

Theater

It’s not a trick, Magic Morgan & Liliana are returning to the Overture for February’s Kids in the Rotunda series. The husband-and-wife duo are two-time winners of the World Deaf Magician Award, and their act features magic, mime and comedy. The performances are free, and the 1 p.m. show is American Sign Language interpreted. Feb. 9

Music

Claudia Schmidt and Dean Magraw go together like milk and honey, and they’re just as sweet too. Don’t miss the folk duo at the North Street Cabaret this month and soothe your soul with their slick guitar and smooth vocals. Feb. 9

Music

One love, one heart, one Bob Marley Birthday Bash at the High Noon Saloon, and you won’t want to miss it. The show welcomes Natty Nation, Akasha and Tropical Riddim Soundsystem to the stage three days after what would have been Marley’s 74th birthday. Feb. 9

Music

The Art Lit Lab hosts Mr. Chair + Filament, two highly experimental groups seeking to test the limits of modern genres. Mr. Chair mixes rock, jazz, modern classical and contemporary improv styles, while Filament experiments with the relationship between performer and audience. Feb. 9

Art

Bring your paintbrush or mouse with you to meet Madison Public Library’s Artist in Residence, Rodney Lambright II. Lambright is a UW-Madison alumnus currently working as an animator and producer at Wisconsin Public Television and he’s ready to share his animation process in a series of workshops with anyone 14 and up. Feb. 9-23

Theater

The Stoughton Norwegian Dancers bring culture, color and captivating entertainment to the Stoughton High School gymnasium for their annual Norse Afternoon of Fun. The performance is meant to relieve the winter blues. Children under 10 wearing traditional Norwegian costume to the event get in free. Feb. 10

Music

The 18th Annual United Way Bluegrass Benefit brings five popular acts, like the Old Tin Can String Band, Madfiddle & Highway 151 and Squirrel Gravy, to the Barrymore Theatre. All proceeds go to United Way of Dane County. Feb. 10

Special Event

As seen as finalists on “America’s Got Talent” flying through the air in colorful costumes, the Cirque Zuma Zuma now comes to the Monona Terrace. They claim their African style acrobatic show is “unlike anything you have seen before.” Feb. 12

Music

They didn’t quite fit into a genre, so they made their own. Step outside of the expected with “brasshouse” trio Too Many Zooz and come to understand its electrifying and unique live performances by seeing the band at the Majestic. Feb. 12

Reading

Local author Susan Gloss will be at the Madison Public Library for the launch of her new novel, “The Curiosities.” The feel-good novel is has fully realized, Wisconsin-based characters chasing down their dreams. Feb. 12

Music

Grab your sweetheart and head to Music On The Lake at The East Side Club for Love Fest with The Jimmys. This award-winning blues band will rock your soul and warm your heart. A horn section backs Jimmy Voegeli on keys, Perry Weber on six strings and vocals and Chris Sandova on the drums. Feb. 13

Music

East Atlanta hip-hop artist J.I.D hits the Majestic on his “Catch Me If You Can” tour, with Reason, Hardo and Lou The Human opening the show. J.I.D’s album “DiCaprio 2” was released in November to critical acclaim. Feb. 13

Art

Before we had cameras in our pockets, developing photos required hours of labor that the viewer of the final photograph would never see. The complex process of historical photography is the focus of the exhibition “Un/Seen: The Alchemy of Fixing Shadows,” which holds its opening reception in the Chazen Museum auditorium. Feb. 14

Music

Celtic punk band from Boston Dropkick Murphys bring music from their new album “11 Short Stories Of Pain & Glory” to the Sylvee on their “2019 St. Patrick’s Day Tour.” The group will be accompanied by Booze & Glory, Lenny Lashley and Amigo the Devil. Feb. 20

Music

With musicians from David Bowie’s past bands, A Bowie Celebration: the David Bowie Alumni Tour is about as close to the Goblin King as you can get. Hard Rock Cafe called the performance a “musical catharsis” that honors the the legendary man of rock. Catch it at the Orpheum this month. Feb. 21

Special Event

Strap on your heels and practice your cat walk because Madison Fashion Week hits in February. Things kick off with a swimwear and lingerie fashion show and end with a day of events for kids, teens and moms. Feb. 21-24

Film

The holistic Dr. Lad brings ancient healthcare practices into modern practice in the film “The Doctor from India.” First watch, then mingle with KOSA members and partake in a virtual Q&A session with film director Jeremy Frindel. Feb. 21

Reading

UW-Madison graduate and author r.r. campbell hosts his book launch party for his new science fiction novel “Imminent Dawn” this month at the Goodman Community Center. The novel is Book I of campbell’s scifi saga “EMPATHY.” Feb. 22

Music

Country Music Hall of Famer Alan Jackson brings his timeless tunes to the Alliant Energy Center. Jackson will perform a range of fan favorites, from “Drive” to “Here in the Real World.” By the end of the night this show will have you singing, “Remember When.” Feb. 22

Theater

The Madison Theatre Guild presents “Gruesome Playground Injuries” at the Bartell. The play is the story of two childhood friends who continue to cross paths throughout their lifetime and begin to notice how their past injuries draw them together. Feb. 22-28

Special Event

Test your genius at the 2019 Braniac Bowl at The Brink Lounge and see how your smarts really size up. Grab your family, coworkers or friends and prepare to get geeky. Proceeds go to environmental education programs at the Aldo Leopold Nature Center. Feb. 23

Music

The eclectic self-reflective music of Young The Giant will leave you looking at yourself in a whole new light. Don’t miss the five-piece rock band this month at The Sylvee with opener Sure Sure. Feb. 23

Special Event

Sláinte! Gesondheid! Proost! These are just a few greetings you might hear at the International Festival at the Overture. Celebrate Madison’s rich cultural heritage with a full day of free performances, cuisine and art from all over the world. Feb. 23

Theater

Grab your red cape and head to Memorial Union as University Opera and University Theatre present Stephen Sondheim’s “Into the Woods. In this fairytale of all fairytales, some of our favorite childhood characters are forced to face their fears and learn difficult lessons. Feb. 23

Comedy

Saturday Night Live’s Rob Schneider will be at the Barrymore Theater. Schneider made a name for himself as a three-time Emmy winner on SNL’s writing staff, as well staring in roles the films “Grown Ups” and “You Don’t Mess With The Zohan.” Feb. 23

Music

If you’re a fan of music that rocks your rib cage, you won’t want to miss Crankdat at Liquid. This electronic dance music DJ is on his “Outcast” tour and is sure to have you raving in no time. Feb. 23

Claire VanValkenburg is an editorial intern at Madison Magazine.