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“don't bother to go unless forecast is for perfect weather”

Concerts on the Square
Ranked #2 of 14 Concerts & Shows in Madison
Attraction details
Reviewed July 8, 2013

we look forward every year to the concert nearest July 4th for the 1812 Overture. The Chamber Orchestra always does it right, with cannons from the national guard, or I guess more recently sound effects. EXCEPT this July 3. There were scattered showers predicted, but we trudged up to the square at 3:30 for the 7 p.m. concert anyway to get good spaces. The concert started late because o a slight mist. I understand that. They have to protect the musicians and the instruments. They announced because of a late start, they'd skip the intermission. Because it was sprinkling again at 8, they did have an intermission. Okay. But when they come back, another Gershwin song, they do the tribute to the service members, present and past (to applause and cheers) and announce they're going to do an abbreviated version of the 1812. It amounted to the 2.99 Overture. Just under 3 minutes. They should have cut one of the Gershwin songs. Sometimes when "local institutions" read their own press clippings, they forget about the audience. Then after they cut the 1812, they do the Washington Post March! We won't bother going again unless it's perfect weather so they can perform what's listed, AND their signature July 4th piece. Oh by the way, another reviewer complained about not being able to talk with friends during the concerts, I think he or his ilk sits by us every concert. Yes it's a free concert, and not in a concert hall, but don't be a jerk and spoil it for people who want to enjoy the music. I've even had people leave their blanket and take a call, speaking loudly over the music and come over where we're sitting because they don't want to bother their own party!

Thank dPenguin55
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"wednesday evening"
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41 - 45 of 68 reviews

Reviewed June 29, 2013

This free concert series around the state capitol building is an absolute must do when you visit Madison during the week. The excellent Madison Symphony Orchestra plays for about 3 hours, while the locals sip wine and enjoy the local fare.

Thank Kaitiekat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 9, 2013

Concert on the square used to be SO INCREDIBLY AWESOME! You would call all of your friends grab a bottle or two of wine and some good Wisconsin cheese, put it on the back of your bicycle and ride up to the square, lay out a blanket and wave your friends over. You could actually have conversations with your friends, meet new people, sip on some good wine and have some great sounds IN THE BACKGROUND. That's right, it was GREAT background music for getting together with friends and having great conversations. Now that the bourgeois "west sider" feel has taken over, There are commercial food stands set up everywhere. Packed cars, bumper to bumper trying to find parking. People hushing you if you talk AT ALL during the "concert". Madison has gotten too big for its britches and now misses the small town Norman Rockwell fell it used to have. It's just not even worth sitting on the hard ground anymore.

1  Thank farlyjameson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 2, 2013

This is pretty fun, but it's soo very crowded and you have to get there early to get a spot on the grass and then you are just squeezed in on your square. But if you don't mind that, then its great!

Thank Amber170
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 2, 2013

Madisonian's LOVE Concerts on the Square. It's one of those rare opportunities for people who live in a fairly large city to gather and pretend it's a small town. Add to that a world class orchestra and it's a great way to spend an evening. Get there early to insure a good spot and bring an umbrella (just in case).

Thank Cindy N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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