Welcoming in Milwaukee’s first November guests
Turandot, Puccini’s last, unfinished work, comes to the Florentine Opera this weekend. The opera tells the story of the ice-hearted Princess Turandot and the brutal challenge she forces upon her suitors: correctly answer three riddles to wed her, or die. A prince soon comes who can win her hand — but can he win her heart? The Florentine brings audience favorite Renzo Zulian back to play the Prince Calaf, while Turandot is played by soprano Lise Lindstrom, who has played the princess with companies including The Metropolitan Opera in New York City and Italy’s Teatro alla Scala. Performances are Friday, Nov. 4, at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Nov. 6, at 2:30 p.m. Tickets start at $30; call (414) 291-5700 or visit the Florentine website.
The Fine Arts Quartet performs a concert Sunday, Nov. 6, with guest cellist Robert Cohen joining violinists Ralph Evans and Efim Boico and violist Nicolò Eugelmi on Mozart’s String Quartet in D Minor, Bartok’s String Quartet No. 3, and Grieg’s String Quartet in G Minor. All Fine Arts Quartet concerts are free this year, in commemoration of their 65th anniversary, but tickets are still required for the 3 p.m. concert at the Zelazo Center. Call (414) 229-4308 to make reservations.
Singer-songwriter Christina Trulio comes to the Sharon Lynne Wilson Center of the Arts Friday, Nov. 4. Her blend of jazz, folk and country will be accompanied by Kate Markowitz, former backup vocalist for James Taylor. The show starts at 8 p.m.; tickets are $28 and can be purchased at their online box office or at (262) 781-9520.
The Milwaukee Theatre hosts Frankie Beverly & Maze this Saturday, Nov. 5. The soul group topped the R&B charts in the late ’80s/early ’90s with songs like Back in Stride and Can’t Get Over You. The show starts at 8 p.m.; tickets are $90.50, $70.50, $56.50, or $42.50 based on location. Call (800) 745-3000 or visit the online box office to order.
Latino Arts hosts two musical guests this weekend. First is Moona Luna, who perform bilingual, Mexican folk-rooted children’s music. They’ll be at the center Thursday and Friday (Nov. 3 and 4) at 10:30 a.m.; tickets are $12 adults, $8 students and children. Then there’s Pistolera, who merge a similar Mexican folk base with a pop rock aesthetic to create a genre they call “latin pop-folklorico.” They bring their music to the dance floor Friday at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $25, $20 for seniors and $15 for students; a special offer including a Friday fish buffet before the show is $32. Visit the Latino Arts website for more information.
Six and a half hours of near-nonstop music. That’s what’s on the docket for the Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra’s 2011 Playathon, at the Bayshore Town Center. The fundraiser lets audiences hear all of the organization’s numerous ensembles, staggered from 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 6. Visit the MYSO’s website for a full schedule and donation information.
This weekend, the Milwaukee Rep brings in triple-threat actor/singer/dancer Jon Peterson for the one-man tribute Song Man Dance Man. Peterson created the 25-number production to pay tribute to seven Hollywood song and dance icons, including Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly, Sammy Davis, Jr. and Bobby Darin. He’ll be joined by Jack Forbes Wilson on piano. Shows run Nov. 4 through Jan. 8, and tickets range from $20-70. To order call (414) 224-9490 or visit the Rep’s website.
Soulstice Theatre revives Milwaukee native Larry Shue’s The Nerd Friday. Set in 1979 Indiana, the play focuses on Willum, an average architect, and Rick, the titular nerd, who saved Willum’s life in Vietnam and has now unexpectedly shown up on his doorstep. He quickly overstays his welcome; comedy ensues. The play runs Nov. 4 through Nov. 19, and tickets are $18, $16 for students and seniors and $10 for children under 10. Call (414) 481-2800 or visit their online box office to order.
Thursday, Pink Banana Theatre opens Sarah Ruhl’s Dead Man’s Cell Phone at Next Act’s new theater on 255 S. Water St. The play starts exactly how it sounds: with the ringing of a dead man’s cell phone. It’s when the show’s protagonist answers that things get real — and surreal. Shows are at 8 p.m. Nov. 3 to 12, and tickets are $18. To order, visit Pink Banana’s online box office.
Come ready to laugh at Carte Blanche Studios’ Reefer Madness, which opens this weekend. The musical comedy mocks the over-earnest 1936 film of the same name, which warned kids about the dangers of marijuana. Expect political satire, jazz, debauchery and probably a desire to eat a ridiculous amount of food after the show. Reefer Madness runs Nov. 4 to 20, and tickets are $20, $15 for students and seniors; order online at Carte Blanche’s website.
The chic and daring Stephen Petronio Company will dance on the Alverno Presents series Saturday, Nov. 5, at 8 p.m. The company blends fashion, visual art and the work of eclectic musicians Lou Reed and Rufus Wainwright with their dance. The company is touring Underland, a dark exploration set to the works of Nick Cave. Tickets are $35 and can be purchased at (414) 382-6044 or via the Alverno box office.
First Stage: Don’t Tell Me I Can’t Fly, through Nov. 13
Boulevard Theatre: The Importance of Being Earnest, through Dec. 3
Fireside Theatre: A Fireside Christmas, through Dec. 22
American Folklore Theatre: Guys and Does, through Nov. 6