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2021 Summer Concert Series

June 15 - August 17

Enjoy an evening concert in one of Madison's most delightful outdoor venues.

Purchase Tickets for All Dates Here »



  • All concert attendees must bring their own lawn chairs or blankets (including on the rooftop area).
  • Doors open 30 minutes prior to the start of the show.
  • Face masks are optional.
  • Ticket barcodes can be scanned on a phone or paper print out.
  • There is a ticket cost for summer concerts in order to support local musicians and Olbrich Gardens (except for the free community collaboration concerts).
  • Tickets must be purchased in advance online or over the phone. If you do not have internet access, please contact Mike Gibson at 608-243-0156 to purchase tickets.
  • A limited number of reduced fee tickets are available. To request a fee waiver, please contact Mike Gibson at mgibson2@cityofmadison.com or 608-243-0156.
  • Carry in picnics are allowed. Please carry out all trash.


Tuesday, June 15, 7 - 8 p.m.

Kat and the Hurricane - facebook.com/katandthehurricane

$10/person; kids 5 & under are free and do not need a ticket

Johannes Wallmann

Kat and the Hurricane is a genre- and gender-bending synth rock project from Madison, Wisconsin. Lead singer/guitarist Kat Farnsworth (she/he/they), keyboardist Benjamin Rose (they/them/theirs), and drummer Alex Nelson (they/them/theirs) deliver a unique blend of pop and haunting indie rock. Kat and the Hurricane has been rising in the indie music scene and in their hometown, sharing stages with the likes of Apes of the State, RENT STRIKE, Telethon, Partner, Yam Haus, Oux, 4th Curtis, and more! Their debut album Miles Away was released in 2017. A departure from that album's folk rock sound, the band's second album, Libra, was released in February 2020. Since the COVID-19 pandemic shut down touring in March 2020, the band has been hard at work writing new music to play whenever it is safe to do so again. They released "Sorry That I'm Like This" in November 2020 and "Out of My Mind" in January 2021 in anticipation for their next release, The Sorry EP out on all platforms June 18, 2021.


Monday, June 21, 3 - 4 p.m.

Host of Sparrows - facebook.com/hostofsparrowsmusic

Make Music Madison - FREE Community Concert - no ticket required

Johannes Wallmann

Olbrich Gardens is celebrating Make Music Madison with a concert featuring Host of Sparrows on the Frautschi Family Learning Center rooftop terrace. Make Music Madison is a citywide outdoor day of music held annually on the summer solstice.

Host of Sparrows is the singer-songwriter duo of Zack Wyatt and Lis Shea. Formed in 2019 out of Madison's East Side Acoustic Ensemble, the duo brings tender harmonies to original folk songs evoking love and loss, family and friends, melancholy and joy.


Tuesday, June 22, 7 - 8:30 p.m.

Johannes Wallmann Quartet - johanneswallmann.com

$15/person; kids 5 & under are free and do not need a ticket

Johannes Wallmann

The Johannes Wallmann Quartet is led by UW-Madison Director of Jazz Studies Wallmann, whom DownBeat Magazine has called "a remarkable pianist and composer." He has recorded nine critically acclaimed CDs as a leader, including The Town Musicians, a 2015 DownBeat Editors' Pick, Love Wins, which the Wisconsin Gazette called "one of the most interesting and accomplished jazz albums to come out in recent years," and his 2018 Shifting Paradigm Records debut album Day and Night, which DownBeat described as "confident, muscular and elegant." Rounding out the quartet are long-time bandmates Tony Barba, tenor saxophone; John Christensen, bass; and Devin Drobka, drums.


Tuesday, June 29, 7 - 8:30 p.m.

Rare Element - rareelementfunk.com

$15/person; kids 5 & under are free and do not need a ticket

Rare Element

The new Madison, Wisconsin based horn band, Rare Element performs high-energy instrumental funk music in a truly unique manner. The band's highly talented roster coupled with its creative and intricate arrangements make Rare Element a must-see act.


Tuesday, July 6, 7 - 8 p.m.

Tony Castañeda Latin Jazz Band - tonycastanedalatinjazz.com

$10/person; kids 5 & under are free and do not need a ticket

Tony Castaneda Latin Jazz Band

The TCLJB was formed in 1998 when the band landed a weekly Sunday night residency at the legendary Cardinal Bar. The residency lasted 13 years and the band has garnered Madison's Best awards for Latin Jazz from Madison Magazine and Madison's Favorite Latin Jazz Band from the Isthmus for over 15 years. The band pays tribute to the legends of latin jazz but also incorporates original latin jazz arrangements. The band includes Madison's finest musicians: Dave Stoler on Keyboards, Anders Svanoe on baritone sax, Louka Patenaude on guitar, Henry Boehm on bass, Arno Gonzalez on timbales , Tom Mattioli on vibes and of course Tony on congas/bongos and all manner of percussion. This is the band's first official performance in 14 months!


Tuesday, July 13, 7 - 8 p.m.

The Blue Olives - blueolives.com

$10/person; kids 5 & under are free and do not need a ticket

The Blue Olives

Regular artists at House of Blues-Chicago, The Blue Olives (based out of Madison, WI) have performed over 3500 shows nationally. Known as one of the fiercest jam bands around, they're described as "tight enough to be professional, yet loose enough to be really fun." They feature a hornline, killer vocal harmonies, searing guitar and a funky rhythm section.


Friday, July 16, 7 - 8 p.m. (SOLD OUT)

Madison Symphony Orchestra's Rhapsodie Quartet -madisonsymphony.org

FREE Community Concert, but tickets are required! Register for tickets using the ticket link at the top of this page.

This performance will take place in Olbrich's Thai Garden.

The Blue Olives

The Rhapsodie Quartet is the resident quartet of the Madison Symphony Orchestra's HeartStrings Community Engagement Program. HeartStrings® is the MSO's innovative program designed to address the physical, emotional, cognitive, and social needs of children and adults with disabilities, long-term illnesses and assisted living needs. To bring live music to these individuals in structured and meaningful ways, the Rhapsodie Quartet presents monthly, music therapy-informed sessions from September through May at partner locations that embrace these populations, reaching nearly 4,000 individuals annually. Through ongoing relationships with special education and rehabilitation programs at south-central Wisconsin state institutions, retirement communities, and health care facilities, HeartStrings serves a diverse population of varying needs and ages. The program enhances participants' quality of life by using musical experiences as dynamic forces of change in specific communication behaviors and existing physical and cognitive conditions. HeartStrings is grounded in the belief that music touches people on a fundamental level.


Tuesday, July 20, 7 - 8 p.m.

The German Art Students - germanartstudents.com

$10/person; kids 5 & under are free and do not need a ticket

The German Art Students

"The German Art Students manage to be subversive and slapstick at the same time, providing post-punk, Mad magazine-esque music to the world. Rolling Stone called it "nimble-witted new-wave pop." - Andy Moore, Isthmus


Tuesday, July 27, 7 - 8:30 p.m.

Kinfolk - facebook.com/KinFolkSoulMadison

$15/person; kids 5 & under are free and do not need a ticket



Kinfolk is an American R&B band based out of Madison, WI. Through the creative inspiration of vocalist Anthony Ward, Kinfolk was established in the late 2000s in order to fill a soul, neo-soul, and rhythm, and blues music void that plagued the city of Madison. In addition to Anthony Ward, Kinfolk is comprised of 2 more vocalists, LaVar J. Charleston and Marcus Fleming, and four additional musicians on keys, drums, guitar, and bassist Corey Saffold who also serves as the Musical Director for the band. The group is well known for its diverse musical styles, playing an array of music from traditional jazz, to mainstream R&B and rock-based music, to funk, Latin, and Jamaican-based rhythms, as well as a variety of soulful original tunes. Kinfolk is lauded for their captivating live performances, which infuses soulful harmonies and gritty vocals to recreate memories of the past and point to the promise of the future.


Tuesday, August 3, 7 - 8 p.m.

The Lower 5th - lower5th.com

$10/person; kids 5 & under are free and do not need a ticket

The Lower 5th

Rocking audiences with a celebration of life's joys and trials, the Lower 5th shares their unique blend of Americana, which they simply call "Midwestern Soul". Their music drifts from charged renditions of timeless classics to soulful originals that keep happy crowds singing and dancing into the night.


Tuesday, August 10, 7 - 8 p.m.

Fresco Opera - frescoopera.com

FREE Community Concert - no ticket required!

Fresco Opera

Fresco Opera Theatre is back this summer with their unique performances of opera with a modern perspective! Stroll through the Gardens and take in roaming performances of several operatic scenes performed in different garden areas. Beauty for the eyes and ears!

This is a free community concert. No ticket required!


Tuesday, August 17, 7 - 8 p.m.

Panchromatic Steel - panchromaticsteel.com

$10/person; kids 5 & under are free and do not need a ticket

Panchromatic Steel

Panchromatic Steel is Madison, Wisconsin's professional steeldrum band. Drawing from island styles like reggae and calypso and blending them with pop hits, rock and jazz, the band's high-energy music is hard to categorize but easy to love. It brightens any day, transports listeners to their happiest moments in the sun, and threads the needle by being simultaneously refined but fun, sophisticated but danceable, and artful but accessible to virtually everyone. At its heart, Panchromatic is pure sonic happiness.


weather policy

Concerts will be moved indoors, rescheduled or cancelled and tickets refunded in the event of bad weather. Call will be made by 3 p.m. and posted on this page, on the homepage, and on Facebook.



2021 Presenting Media Sponsor




Olbrich is always looking for new solo and group performers to keep our concert series fresh. If you are interested in performing for one of Olbrich's concert series, please contact:

Mike Gibson

Program Specialist

Olbrich Botanical Gardens

3330 Atwood Avenue

Madison, WI 53704




Please provide contact information (official group name, contact name, address, phone, and e-mail), music genres, and music samples.

If the entertainment committee would like to inquire further about booking you as a solo artist or the group you represent, we will contact you with available concert dates at the contact information you provide.


Olbrich Botanical Gardens is operated as a public-private partnership between the City of Madison Parks Division and the Olbrich Botanical Society.
Olbrich Botanical Gardens | 3330 Atwood Avenue, Madison, WI 53704. | Phone: (608)246-4550 | Fax: (608)246-4719