Madison is a hub of culture when it comes to the arts — concerts, art shows and poetry slams can be found every weekend. Few realize, however, that Madison also hosts dozens of theater performances, from Broadway tours to local productions. Here’s your guide for what to keep an eye out for this fall.
Overture’s Rising Stars (Overture Center)
On September 15, the Overture Center will host its fifth annual talent search showcase, aimed at displaying the wealth of talent in the local community. Twenty-one selected finalists will perform on the Capitol Theater stage for a chance to win the grand prize: the opportunity to perform during the Overture Center’s 2019-20 season.
Little Shop of Horrors (University Theater)
“Little Shop of Horrors” tells the story of Seymour, the mild-mannered plant store employee who discovers a rare plant that could help save the store and win him the girl. However, Seymour soon discovers that his strange and unusual plant can talk, sing and wants human blood.
University Theater will be rebooting their production of the sci-fi-horror-comedy-musical after its summer run. Performances will take place in the Mitchell Theatre September 13-23.
A Lady and a Woman (StageQ)
Written by Shirlene Holmes, this critically acclaimed play is about love and hope in a time where it was dangerous to believe in such things. Set in a small Southern town, the show follows two African-American women in the late 19th century who find courage in each other.
StageQ, who is bringing this show to Madison, celebrates queer diversity through quality theater written by and about LGBTQ people, according to the theater’s website. The show will have a limited two-week run from October 26 to November 3.
Something Rotten! (Overture Center)
Kicking off the Center’s Broadway at Overture season, “Something Rotten!” is for Shakespeare lovers and haters alike. Set in 1595, this show tells the story of Nick and Nigel Bottom, two brothers who are desperate to write a hit play. Nick seeks out his local fortune teller who sees singing, dancing and acting — all at once — in his future, thus inventing the modern musical. His biggest competition is William Shakespeare, who, even then, is a big hit with the local townspeople.
The show will make its Wisconsin debut on October 9 and will run until October 14.
Fun Home (Forward Theater Company)
Alison’s father was full of secrets that she must uncover following his death. Though he taught high school English during the day, his spare time was spent running the family’s funeral home business and restoring their debilitated house. Alison recalls her childhood to understand how her father’s choices affect her present.
This Tony Award-winning musical is not a part of the Center’s Broadway series but will feature Broadway alum and former UW-Madison professor Karen Olivo. (Olivo won a Tony for her performance as Anita in the revival of West Side Story, starred in “In the Heights” and recently performed in “Hamilton” in Chicago).
The musical will run limitedly from November 1-25.
Allison Garfield is an arts editor for the Daily Cardinal. To read more of her work, click here .