A Cappella Showcase
Wisconsin Union Theater, 7 pm
Irresistible UW harmonizers the MadHatters, Tangled Up in Blue, Redefined and Fundamentally Sound wail and croon in a concert for local charities.
Overture Center Playhouse, 7:30 pm. Also Saturday (4 & 8 pm), Sunday (2 pm), Wednesday & Thursday (7:30 pm), March 8, 9, 12 & 13
The Madison Repertory Theatre presents Thomas Gibbons' refreshingly complex analysis of racial politics. An art-gallery director sparks a controversy when he displays a collection of African art alongside the Matisses and Cezannes.
Madison Symphony Orchestra
Overture Center's Overture Hall, 7:30 pm. Also Saturday (8 pm) & Sunday (2:30 pm), March 8 & 9
The MSO offers the world premiere of Joel Hoffman's "The Forty Steps," a concerto for cello (Uri Vardi) and oud (Taiseer Elias) that combines Western and Arabic music traditions. Coupled with Rossini's dramatic "Stabat Mater," this could be the powerhouse classical-music concert of the season.
Kanopy Dance Company
Overture Center's Promenade Hall, 7:30 pm. Also Saturday (7:30 pm) & Sunday (2:30 pm), March 8 & 9
In "Dark Nights: Baba Yaga and Other Dreams," the local troupe presents an ambitious evening-length work based on the Russian folk tale "Baba Yaga." Expect puppetry, masks and bewitching costumes as Kanopy puts its stamp on the tale of a hag in a very freaky house.
Comedy of Errors
Studio Theatre 206 at MATC-Truax, 7:30 pm. Also Saturday (7:30 pm) & Sunday (2 pm)
MATC Performing Arts presents Shakespeare's farce about two sets of twin brothers, combing verbal brilliance and slapstick.
My Name Is Rachel Corrie
Orpheum Theatre, 7:30 pm. Also Saturday, March 8, 7:30 pm
Corrie is the young American woman killed by an Israeli army bulldozer while serving as a human shield in Rafah. Actor Alan Rickman and journalist Katharine Viner have used Corrie's emails and other writings to create a one-woman play. Corrie's parents will attend the local production on March 7.
Majestic Theatre, 7:30 pm
The affable singer-songwriter is among the best acoustic guitarists around, and 2006's Available Light proved that his aptitude for well-considered folk and pop is as strong as ever. Peter Mulvey opens.
Bartell Theatre, 8 pm. Also Saturday (8 pm) & Thursday (7:30 pm), March 8 & 13
StageQ presents a musical comedy that satirizes lesbian stereotypes in lurid 1950s pulp novels. Expect high camp and wicked double entendres in the tale of a pilot who finds her way into a Chicago drag bar.
Broom Street Theater, 8 pm. Also Saturday (8 pm) & Sunday (2 pm), March 8 & 9
Callen Harty's new play follows a tour bus on a trip through Ireland as a man explores his heritage.
Smokin' With Superman
Annex, 9:30 pm
The local funk/hip-hop hybrid reunites once again to give the party people something to scream about.
Trampled by Turtles
High Noon Saloon, 9:30 pm
The Duluth band aren't averse to slow tempos, but it's their breakneck bluegrass updates that bring together the holler and the mosh pit. Pert Near Sandstone and Romantica open.
Source Code: Candide
TAPIT/new works Studio Theater, 7 pm
TAPIT tunes up for a tour of Mexico with a satire of fundamentalism in which the hero journeys from the deserts of Iraq to a vegetarian coffeehouse in Minnesota.
WWE RAW Road to Wrestlemania
Alliant Energy Center Coliseum, 7:30 pm
Professional wrestlers do awful things to one another for our amusement. The least we can do is scream our approval.
Wisconsin Union Theater, pm
The unconventional classical pianist has made a splash with his transcriptions of pop music; he's also performed respectable versions of Bach and Mozart with major symphony orchestras. He mixes both approaches in this solo recital, alternating Radiohead and Elliott Smith with Shostakovich.
Wild Women of the Blues
Brink Lounge, 8 pm
The Madison Blues Society hosts this International Women's Day concert featuring Canadian singer-guitarist Sue Foley, who has an encyclopedic command of blues history.
Barrymore Theatre, 8 pm
Country, folk, rock, poetry, acting -- there isn't much that the omnivorous maverick hasn't given a whirl during his brilliant career. This time out, he's touring a less political disc full of songs about his new home, New York City, and wife Allison Moorer (who opens).
Majestic Theatre, 9 pm
The Chicago house legend means to make 'em sweat every time he gets up in the sound booth. Mr. Nathaniel and Wyatt Agard open.
UW Memorial Union Rathskeller, 9:30 pm
The politically aware MC returns for a febrile rhyming session that will focus on a new CD.
Eugene Smiles Project
Bean, 9:30 pm
The bluesy rockers sound more like Southerners than Madisonians, but that's no crime. They perform with Mighty Short Bus as part of the Madison Music Project Club Tour, based on Isthmus' online directory at MadisonMusicProject.com.
Michael Coleman & the Backbreakers
Harmony Bar, 9:45 pm
Coleman, a Muddy Waters and James Cotton alum, keeps his rough 'n' ready grooves contemporary by getting down on some dance-ready funk.
Cafe Montmartre, 10 pm
The dub-wise Chicagoans have the talent to incorporate a whole lot of influences into their throbbing, so expect to get your King Tubby served up with dashes of Afro-beat and jazz.
Things I've Learned From Women Who've Dumped Me
Wisconsin Union Theater, 7 pm
UW alum Ben Karlin, former producer of The Daily Show With Jon Stewart and The Colbert Report, reads from his amusing essay collection along with fellow contributors Dan Savage, Todd Hanson, Dan Vebber and Andy Selsberg.
The Gutter Twins
High Noon Saloon, 8 pm
As The Gutter Twins, alt-rock survivors Greg Dulli (Afghan Whigs) and Mark Lanegan (Screaming Trees) pair up on majestically doomy material that shows off the latter's extraordinary pipes. Great Northern opens.