Northern Lights/Southern Nights; NEWSKI w/ Valentiger; Ben Miller’s Stand-Up Science; Green Fest MKE 2023 and an Easter evening of psychedelic rock and more—This Week in Milwaukee!
Thursday, April 6
Present Music’s “Northern Lights/Southern Nights” @ Milwaukee Art Museum, 7:30 p.m.
“There has been an axis between Latin and Nordic countries, with especially Finland long becoming a center for the tango movement,” says Present Music’s Co-Artistic Director Eric Segnitz (shepherdexpress.com/culture/classical-music/present-music-bridges-north-and-south). The concert is focused, often from unexpected angles, at recent compositions from or relating to the Nordic countries. Fiddle soloist Caoimhin O Raghallaigh will perform on a 10-string hardanger d’amore. The performance also features another world premiere, Retro Pop, by Brazilian American Clarice Assad. The three-movement Retro Pop is a magical music history tour, opening with À Primeira Vista, a mixture of a re-imagined 6/8 pop ballad inspired by John Lennon’s “Norwegian Wood, ” and a nostalgic, melancholy homage to the French composer Michel Legrand.
Friday, April 7
NEWSKI w/ Valentiger @ Anodyne, 7 p.m.
Back when Brett Newski set up his first tour, he already had valuable perspective. He didn’t mind booking the shows, loading gear or selling merch. He realized, “there’s nothing about this that I don’t like. If each tour got 8% less shitty, do that long enough and pretty soon you are not playing shitty shows anymore.”
Newski, the Milwaukee indie rock trio won’t have the all-star cast of collaborators featured on the new album Friend Rock (shepherdexpress.com/music/local-music/newski-and-the-strength-of-collaboration) but expect singer-songwriter to have plenty of tales from the group’s recent Canadian tour.
Moonchild w/Austin Antoine @ Shank Hall, 8 p.m.
In the short space of three years, Moonchild have released two acclaimed albums, and collaborated or played live with many notable names in the soul-jazz scene including Jill Scott, India.Arie and Kamasi Washington. Stevie Wonder heard the band and invited them to perform at a show. Austin Antoine is a performance artist that blends music and poetry. All of his passions effortlessly mix with abilities that span from singing soulful solos to conquering an opposing rapper in a contest of improvised wit.
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Saturday, April 8
Green Fest MKE 2023 @ Flores Hall (2997 S 20th St, Milwaukee), 11 a.m.
Green Fest MKE will be a showcase for solar and environmental sustainability, weatherization, health and wellness. Workshops, lectures, and entertainment will make it a fun festival while learning. Environmental awareness has come to the forefront of global issues. More people and businesses are becoming increasingly concerned about the impact of their activities and how they can make a difference. Planning and executing a green festival and event is a great way to begin a path to environmental sustainability.
Ben Miller’s Stand-Up Science @ Interchange Theater, 7:30 p.m.
Have you ever seen a comedian cite their sources? In a show that’s equal measures hilarious, educational, and deeply personal, NYC based scientist and comedian Ben Miller uses stories on topics ranging from his musculoskeletal condition to his childhood history with milk as jumping off points for scientific and comedic exploration. Using pictures, graphs, and videos, this multimedia comedy show makes science both approachable and delightful.
Sunday, April 9
Hop to the Movies Easter Brunch at Select Marcus Theatres, 10 a.m.
Come for the food but stay for a movie. Bistroplex Southridge, Movie Tavern Brookfield Square and Ridge Cinema will be offering brunch. The Super Mario Bros. Movie hits the big screen Easter weekend and is sure to entertain families of all ages. Or pick from several other movies. The movie ticket isn’t included in the price of the brunch, but it is the perfect complement to the day.
Garcia Peoples w/ Chris Forsyth and A. James Shelp and the Rolling Hills @ Cactus Club, 7 p.m.
In 2019, Garcia Peoples set at Milwaukee Psych Fest presented a positive spin of improvisation. The next year at a Colectivo show echoed some great music (German band Can jamming with the Allman Brothers band; Mayo Thompson fronting the Butterfield Blues Band), while still sounding vital. Guitarist Chris Forsyth recent Evolution Here We Come includes a contribution Sun Ra Arkestra saxophonist Marshall Allen, as well as Garcia Peoples guitarist Tom Malach. A. James Shelp and the Rolling Hills open the evening with their freerange sounds.
Monday, April 10
John Mellencamp @ The Riverside Theater, 7 p.m. (also Tuesday)
John Mellencamp’s recording career began as glam rocker under David Bowie’s management, Svengali Tony DeFries. As the Seymour, Ind. native took hold of his career his maturation as a songwriter grew; “I Need a Lover,” “Ain’t Even Done with the Night” led to “Hurts So Good,” “Jack & Diane,” “Pink Houses,” “Lonely Ol’ Night,” “Small Town,” “R.O.C.K. in the U.S.A.” and “Paper in Fire.”
Never an artist to stay still, Mellencamp began painting in the mid ’70s. By 1985, along with Willie Nelson and Neil Young, Mellencamp organized the first Farm Aid concert to raise awareness about the loss of family farms and to raise funds to keep farm families on the land. Mellencamp bounced back from a heart attack in 1994; he has acted, as well as penned a stage musical collaborating with Stephen King.
Shakespeare RAW: King Lear @ Best Place at the Historic Pabst Brewery, 7 p.m. (Also Tuesday and Wednesday)
How does it work? A group of actors arrive the day of the show having read (hopefully) the script so they are at least passingly familiar with the text. Then, they pull a character name from a bucket to learn who they will be playing that night. They then have approximately 5 minutes to get into character (read: grab a drink) and get ready for their first scene. And the next one. And the one after that. You get the idea.
Tuesday, April 11
Food For Thought Poetry Open Mic Tuesdays @ The Q (2730 North Doctor Martin Luther King Junior Drive), 7 p.m.
A fresh new poetry night experience for everyone to enjoy, from beginners to well-established poets. Come sign up and share your wisdom, knowledge and thoughts.
Wednesday, April 12
Frozen @ Marcus Performing Arts Center, 7:30 p.m. (Through April 16)
Lauren Nicole Chapman, who portrays Anna in Frozen, recalled the time they took the show on the road, literally. “One time the fire alarm went off during a scene before ‘Love is an Open Door’ and the whole theatre had to evacuate including the entire cast in costume,” the actor recalls. “Everything was totally okay, but it was definitely a sight to see. I was in a ballgown in downtown San Francisco. It was pretty funny.” (shepherdexpress.com/culture/theater/frozen-brings-special-magic-to-the-marcus-pac)