the MadStage Podcast

Suzan and Buzz talk with playwright/director Stephen Murray about Broom Street Theater's upcoming production of his play Geppetto.


By Stephen F. Murray

Directed by Stephen F. Murray

Inspired by the classic story by Carlo Collodi, Geppetto is told from the point of view of the father. Geppetto starts as an angry drunk who creates a puppet to save him from his loneliness. Sadly, Pinocchio’s desire for independence leads him to run away leaving Geppetto alone once again. He then has a decision to make: to stay at home and continue in his dreary life or to take a risk and go after the puppet who may once again reject him. As both search the whole wide world for what defines them, their journeys ultimately lead them to the same place: each other. After the to emerge from the belly of the whale with their lives transformed, they can face their new adventures together. This telling combines the classic children’s tale combined with other familiar myths and fables (such as the biblical tales of the prodigal son and Jonah and the whale) mirrors the challenges we face every day as we strive to shake off our own woodenness and become more human.

This world premier will build on the work of the 2014 In the Works Residency through the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events. The laboratory helped Murray incorporate clowning, puppetry, music, and masks into the construction of this play for a magical evening of theater.

Produced by Broom Street Theater at Broom Street Theater, 1119 Williamson Street, Madison

Performances: April 28 - May 20, 2017

Performance Times:
Thursday, Fridays, and Saturday at 7:30pm.

Ticket Prices: $11 at

For more information please visit or

Direct download: MSP_014_Geppetto_StephenMurray.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm CST

Director John Siewert talks with Suzan and Buzz about the upcoming performances of StageQ's "Perfect Arrangement."

Perfect Arrangement

By Topher Payne

Directed by John Siewert

“Perfect Arrangement” by Topher Payne, takes a hard look at the issue of government persecution and blacklisting of LGBT people during the McCarthy era. The work 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. Tickets available at

Produced by StageQ at Bartell Theatre's Evjue Stage, 113 E. Mifflin St., Madison

Performances: April 21 - May 6, 2017

Performance Times:
Friday, 4/21 8:00pm
Saturday, 4/22 8:00pm
Thursday, 4/27 8:00pm
Friday, 4/28 8:00pm
Saturday, 4/29 8:00pm
Sunday, 4/30 2:00pm
Thursday, 5/4 8:00pm
Friday, 5/5 8:00pm
Saturday, 5/6 2:00pm

Ticket Prices: Thursday & Sunday $15 Friday & Saturday $20

Call 608-661-9696 for reservations or more information

Direct download: MSP_013_PerfectArrangement_JohnSiewert.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm CST

The Nance

By Douglas Carter Bean

Directed by Steve Noll

In 1930s New York, burlesque is a dying art. Between the dancing girls were male comedians. Chauncey is one of the best, and his signature act is playing a sissy man, what was called a "nance." But Chauncey harbors a secret. While he pretends to be a straight actor pretending to be gay on stage, in real life he is a very closeted gay man. When new-to-the-city Ned hooks up with Chauncey, he finds his personal life crashing into his on-stage life while the mayor of New York starts cracking down on the "perverts" in the city. A comedic drama with music, from the author of As Bees in Honey Drown and The Little Dog Laughed.

Produced by Madison Theatre Guild at Bartell Theater's Drury Stage, 113 E. Mifflin St. , Madison

Performances: April 21 - May 6, 2017

Performance Times:
Friday, Apr 21 - 7:30, Saturday, Apr 22 - 7:30, Thursday, Apr 27 - 7:30, Friday, Apr
28 - 7:30, Saturday, Apr 29 - 7:30, Sunday, Apr 30 - 2:00 pm, Thursday, May 4 - 7:30, Friday, May
5 - 7:30, Saturday, May 6 - 2:00 pm

Ticket Prices: $20

Call 608-661-9696 for reservations or more information.

Direct download: MSP_012_TheNance_SteveNoll.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm CST

Actors Katie Brotherton & Kathleen Tissot talk about Strollers Theatre's production of Steel Magnolias.

​By Robert Harling
Directed by Scott Albert Bennett
March 31st to April 15th

​The action is set in Truvy's beauty salon in Chinquapin, Louisiana, where all the ladies who are "anybody" come to have their hair done. Helped by her eager new assistant, Annelle (who is not sure whether or not she is still married), the outspoken, wise-cracking Truvy dispenses shampoos and free advice to the town's rich curmudgeon, Ouiser ("I'm not crazy, I've just been in a bad mood for forty years"), an eccentric millionaire, Miss Clairee (who has a raging sweet tooth), and the social leader, M'Lynn. Meanwhile, Shelby (the prettiest girl in town), is about to marry a "good ole boy." Filled with hilarious repartee and not a few acerbic but humorously revealing verbal collisions, the play draws on the underlying themes of strength and love, which makes each character truly touching, funny, and marvelously amiable in good times and bad.

Direct download: MSP_011_SteelMagnolias_Brotherton_Tissot.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm CST