October brings autumnal array of music to Madison
Faster than the leaves will change color this month, an early cornucopia of enticing music events will come and go in our fair city. The first big event is already underway, with the touring company of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Cinderella” playing in Overture Hall through Oct. 9. The big news is that the production marks the major role debut of Tatyana Lubov of Cottage Grove—she is no stranger to the Overture Hall stage, having performed and won Tommy Awards in 2010 and 2011.
The celebrations of the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death continue, with more than a little touch of authenticity, courtesy of the Madison Bach Musicians. At 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 7 and at 3:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 9, the MBM will present “English Music from the Baroque and Renaissance.” One of the featured composers is Robert Johnson, who provided some music for the Bard’s later plays, including “The Tempest.” And if you go, be sure to arrive 45 minutes early for an unforgettable and entertaining lecture from Trevor Stephenson, founder of MBM.
The Middleton Community Orchestra kicks off another season of affordable and affable concerts Thursday, Oct. 13, at the Middleton Performing Arts Center. All tickets are $10 (students free of charge), and there is always a reception offering a chance to talk to the players. Chief among them in this program of Bernstein, Sondheim and Gershwin are pianist Thomas Kasdorf, and vocalists Jessica Kasinski and Gavin Waid.
The following night, Oct. 14, the Wisconsin Chamber Orchestra returns to the Capitol Theater, featuring violinist Ilya Kaler in the “Violin Concerto” of Tchaikovsky, bookended by symphonies of Boyce and Schubert. The significant change for the WCO this season is that the programs begin at 7:30 p.m.
The following week, Tuesday, Oct. 18, the Madison Symphony Organ series resumes at 7:30 p.m. As is often the case, the mighty Overture Hall organ is joined by an ensemble, in this case the Gargoyle Brass of Chicago. The program is a thrilling mix of Widor, Franck and Ravel, among others; the guest organist is Jared Stellmacher.
The Madison Symphony itself returns on Friday, Oct. 21 with a favorite soloist coming back again—violinist Henning Kraggerud. He is sure to dazzle Overture Hall audiences once more in the “Violin Concerto No. 1” of Bruch, but will also favor us with three of his own Postludes from “Equinox.” Music director DeMain fills out the program (repeated as always on Saturday night and Sunday afternoon) with a rarity of Elgar and Beethoven’s “Pastorale” Symphony.
The closing weekend of the month features two wildly unique events—happily, there are two performances of each. Fresco Opera Theatre is up to its usual tricks but promises a seasonal treat in “The Poe Requiem.” Masterpieces of that early master of the macabre, Edgar Allan Poe will be heard in a world premiere score by Clarisse Tobia. The performances (8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Oct. 28 and 29) will be staged at the Masonic Center; we are promised “a complete environmental experience with singing, orchestra, artwork, dancers and other surprises along the way.”
The fortunate attendees at the more intimate showroom of Farley’s House of Pianos on those same two nights at 7:30 p.m. will get more than the usual recital on historic pianos. This start to the new season of the Salon Piano Series features not one, not two … but four world class pianists in some most unusual repertoire. “4 on the Floor” features Daniel del Pino, Lucille Chung, Alon Goldstein and Roberto Plano playing arrangements for four keyboards of Saint-Saens “Danse Macabre,” Liszt’s “Hungarian Rhapsody No. 2” and Ravel’s own arrangement of his ubiquitous “Bolero.” Due to the expected demand for tickets, this is the first time that the Salon Piano Series is presenting multiple performances.
And you thought you had to wait until November to be thankful!