StageQ’s New Play “Perfect Arrangement” Takes On Government Persecution of LGBTQ People

by | Mar 10, 2017 | 0 comments

MADISON, WI – StageQ’s production of the “Perfect Arrangement” by Topher Payne, which opens in the Bartell Theatre on April 21, takes a hard look at the issue of government persecution and blacklisting of LGBT people during the McCarthy era. The work, directed by John Siewert, is part of a broader initiative by StageQ to open community dialogue on LGBTQ visibility. Two couples – one gay and one lesbian – seem to have an ideal arrangement posing as heterosexual couples by swapping partners publicly. Madcap classic sitcom-style laughs give way to provocative drama as two “All-American” couples are forced to stare down the closet door. Their perfect lives begins to unravel when Bob and Norma, who work at the State Department are tasked with rooting out sexual deviants from among their ranks. “Perfect Arrangement” opens April 21 and runs through May 6.

To open broader conversation about LGBTQ visibility, StageQ will be hosting talk back sessions and a photography exhibit. Dick Wagner, local historian, activist and civic leader, will be leading talk-back sessions on April 22, 27 and 30 that explore the McCarthy era history in Wisconsin.

The photography exhibit “Sight Unseen,” co-sponsored by LeDame Footwear, brings together the works of Natalie Kirk and Kyle Krueger, both with Wisconsin roots, in a joint exhibit that visually explores gender biases as well as LGBTQ sexual violence. This exclusive exhibit and reception will be held April 7 at the Madison Masonic Center and will include a silent auction fundraiser to benefit StageQ. A selection of photos from exhibit will be on display in the lobby of the Bartell Theatre during the run of “Perfect Arrangement.”

Event Details:

When: April 21 – May 6
Where: Bartell Theatre, 113 E Mifflin St, Madison, WI 53703
Tickets: $15 (Thursdays and matinees), $20 (Friday and Saturday evenings). Available online at or by calling the Bartell Theatre Box Office at 608-661-9696


About Stage Q:

Founded in 2001, Stage Q provides a stable home for gay and lesbian-themed plays within the broader Madison theater community. Stage Q’s mission continues to celebrate queer diversity through quality theater written by and about LGBTQ people, building an inclusive community and affecting positive social change. For more information on Stage Q and upcoming productions, visit

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