International Festival, ‘Julius Ceasar’ and Madison Malone

Weekend 608 for Feb. 27-March 1
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Portage native Madison Malone debuts her new EP Saturday night in Baraboo. (Photo courtesy of

Experience the astounding multicultural diversity of Dane County at the International Festival, a couple Shakespeare plays with youthful casts or the hilarious grilling of a 1980s martial arts film. All that and more is worth checking out in Madison this weekend.


The International Festival, Overture Center for the Arts
Saturday, Feb. 29, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
More than 50 world cultures will be represented by more than 30 performing local artists at the International Festival on Saturday. The free public event throughout Overture Center will include the Swiss Alphorns, Mt. Zion Gospel Choir and Irish and Flamenco dancers among many others from Dane County. Some 45 food and fair trade vendors will also share their flavors and finery.

Mystery Science Theater 3000, Overture Hall, Overture Center
Sunday, March 1, 7 p.m.
Overture Hall on Sunday night will be a stop on the third and final national tour for Mystery Science Theater 3000, a long-running (and often cancelled and often revived) TV show with a cult following. The central conceit of MST3K is that one man and his snarky robots are trapped on a spaceship and forced by incompetent villians to watch terrible old movies. The hostages then riff hilariously as the movies play. Joel Hodgson, the creator of MST3K, is bringing the show to town, this time featuring the 1986 Jean-Claude Van Damme flick “No Retreat, No Surrender.”


100 Gecs, The Sett, Union South
Friday, Feb. 28, 9 p.m.
The duo 100 Gecs, hailing from suburban St. Louis, bring their spastic electronic pop-punk to the The Sett at Union South for a free show.

Eileen Ivers and Karan Casey, Shannon Hall, Wisconsin Union Theater
Friday Feb. 28, 8 p.m.
Irish folk musicians Eileen Ivers, a fiddler, and Karan Casey, a vocalist and former member of Solas, team up for a performance in Shannon Hall at the Wisconsin Union Theater.

Madison Malone, Al Ringling Theatre, Baraboo
Saturday, Feb. 29, 7 p.m.
Singer-songwriter and Portage native Madison Malone returns from a European tour to the theater where she took dance lessons as a child. She’ll play songs off her new EP “I and II” which she released earlier this month. Local musicians Shawndell Marks and Teddy Davenport will open the show.

Fitz and the Tantrums, The Sylvee
Saturday, Feb. 29, 8 p.m.
Indie-pop giants Fitz and the Tantrums make their return to Madison for a headlining tour to debut their 2019 release “All the Feels.” Twin XL opens the show at The Sylvee.

Sweet Honey in the Rock, Overture Center
Saturday Feb. 29, 8 p.m.
The all-African American female a cappella vocal group Sweet Honey in the Rock celebrates its 45 anniversary at the Overture Center, showcasing the unique sounds and social justice message.


“Julius Caesar,” Mitchell Theatre
Thursday-Friday, Feb. 27-28, 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, Feb. 29, 7 p.m; Sunday, March 1, 2 p.m.; March 3-8, 12-13 and 27-28
The University of Wisconsin­–Madison Department of Theatre and Drama brings to the stage William Shakespeare’s “Julius Ceasar,” one of the most iconic stories of deception and conspiracy, for five shows this weekend and additional performances next month. The classic play is directed by Mark Hairston, the new assistant professor of acting and directing in the theater department.

“Much Ado About Nothing,” 1806 West Lawn Ave., Young Shakespeare Players Playhouse
Thursday-Saturday, Feb. 27-29, 6 p.m.; Sunday, March 1, 1 p.m.
The Young Shakespeare Players put their unique youthful spin on “Much Ado About Nothing,” William Shakespeare’s premier comedy.


DIAVOLO: Architecture in Motion, Capitol Theater, Overture Center
Thursday-Friday, Feb. 27-28, 7:30 p.m.
See the interaction between the Los angeles-based dance troupe DIAVOLO and large, moveable — and moving — built structures.


Daniel Simonsen, Comedy On State
Thursday, Feb. 27, 8 p.m.; Friday-Saturday, Feb. 28-29, Feb. 27, 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.
Daniel Simonsen is one of the hottest up-and-coming comedians in the game. He recently taped his second late-night set for the “Late Show with Steven Colbert” and is coming off winning Foster’s Edinburgh Comedy Award for “Best Newcomer.” Catch him at Comedy on State.

Henry Michaels is an editorial intern at Madison Magazine.