Our Mission
We produce theatre and theatre education in Tucson that entertains, educates, and enlightens children, adults, and families.

Live Theatre Workshop
3322 E Fort Lowell Rd
Tucson, AZ 85716
Reservations: (520) 327-4242

MAY 14 - JUNE 13, 2015

The Columnist

THE COLUMNIST at Live Theatre Workshop

By David Auburn

Directed by Rhonda Hallquist

Keith Wick
Stephen Frankenfield
Carrie Hill
Steve Wood
Albert Riesgo
Emily Beaulieu
and Brian McElroy



From the Pulitzer and Tony award–winning author of PROOF, a drama about the press and power, sex and betrayal. At the height of the Cold War, Joe Alsop is the nation's most influential journalist: beloved, feared, and courted by the Washington world. But as the '60s dawn and America undergoes dizzying change, the intense political dramas Joe is embroiled in become deeply personal as well.

Intensely satisfying." - Bloomberg News

"Gripping and moving." - Variety

Contains adult language


Produced by Special Arrangement with Dramatists Play Service, Inc.


May 14 - June 13, 2015

Regular Performances:
Friday and Saturday Nights at 7:30 PM, Sundays at 3:00 PM

Previews: May 14 and 15 at 7:30 PM
Opening Night : Saturday, May 16 at 7:30 PM
Final Thursday Show: Thursday, June 11 at 7:30 PM
Final Saturday Matinee: June 13 at 3:00 PM


Preview & Closing Thursday Tickets: $14
General Admission: $20
Students, Seniors 62+, & Military: $18

Running time: 2 hours with one 15-minute intermission



Joe Alsop was a complicated man. An elitist WASP, an unyielding anti-Communist (yet also rabidly anti-McCarthy), he had a readership among the middle class that numbered in the millions. At his weekly dinner parties, helmed by his wife Susan Mary, Washington insiders eagerly gathered. After dessert, Joe would insist the ladies retire elsewhere so the men could speak of important issues, perhaps Soviet and American nuclear missile readiness. Alsop was not afraid to then wield that information in his column and even inside the Kennedy White House itself where he enjoyed considerable influence. He was heavily credited (or blamed) for not only the initial intervention in Southeast Asia, but for the prolonged American presence there.

But his presence at home was a sham, one of those partnerships that exudes brilliance but the shine is only for the guests, a marriage to add to his influence and to mask his nature. Today, who knows how he might be accepted, especially in the journalistic field to which he was most certainly born. On a Sunday in this decade, he would very likely be a regular on Meet the Press, or have his own News Hour, his secret perhaps overlooked and not worth mentioning.

Joe Alsop was once referred to as one of the leading casualties of the Vietnam War -- a casualty certainly of his convictions about the war, forever a hawk when nearly everyone else stepped away from supporting it. But his hawkishness seemed to pervade his life in ways that led many quietly and slowly to step away from supporting him. While his influence may have lasted through the Nixon White House, his own house could not last much longer.

In search of success, influence, even power, what do we give up? What do we choose to hide, deny, falsify? Can we both celebrate ourselves and achieve such success that Alsop enjoyed? Maybe there was bravery in standing up for what he believed in, if not standing up for himself. I hope you enjoy tonight's play.

- Rhonda Hallquist, Director


Carrie Hill, Stephen Frankenfield, and Keith Wick in THE COLUMNIST at Live Theatre Workshop


David Auburn’s first full-length play, SKYSCRAPER, ran Off Broadway in 1997. His short play, WHAT DO YOU BELIEVE ABOUT THE FUTURE? appeared in Harper’s Magazine and has since been adapted for the screen. Auburn is best known for his 2000 play PROOF which won the 2001 Tony Award for Best Play, as well as the 2001 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. He has adapted it into a film, which was released in 2005. His play THE COLUMNIST had its world premiere in a production by the Manhattan Theatre Club on Broadway, running from April 3, 2012 through June 3, 2012 and starring John Lithgow with direction by Daniel Sullivan. Auburn has also been awarded the Helen Merrill Playwriting Award and a Guggenheim Fellowship. Following PROOF, he wrote the screenplay for the movie THE LAKE HOUSE, released by Warner Bros. in 2006. In 2007, he made his directorial debut with THE GIRL IN THE PARK, for which he also wrote the screenplay.



 Rhonda Hallquist (Director) - THE COLUMNIST is the fourth play Rhonda has directed for LTW. Past shows she helmed for LTW are VISITING MR. GREEN (2013 Arizona Daily Star MAC Award winner for Best Comedy and for Best Director, Comedy), HOLIDAY MEMORIES, and THE COCKTAIL HOUR, and for Sacred Chicken Productions, BECKY'S NEW CAR. She was last seen on the stage at LTW as Mary in THE SAVANNAH DISPUTATION, and as Fay in LOOT. Some other acting roles include Myra Kesselman (REGRETS ONLY), Rachel (RECKLESS--2011 Arizona Daily Star MAC Award nomination for Best Actress), Lane (THE CLEAN HOUSE--2010 Arizona Daily Star MAC Award nomination for Best Actress in a Comedy). For Beowulf Alley Theatre, she played Maureen (THE BEAUTY QUEEN OF LEENANE -- a 2011 Arizona Daily Star MAC Award nomination for Best Actress), and Beth (DINNER WITH FRIENDS). For Sacred Chicken Productions, she played Casey (ANTON IN SHOW BUSINESS--2009 Arizona Daily Star MAC Award nomination for Best Actress in a Comedy).


 Carrie Hill (Susan Mary Alsop) has performed locally for over 20 years and is grateful to be back on stage at LTW. Recent shows include: LOVE, LOSS AND WHAT I WORE, FIVE WOMEN WEARING THE SAME DRESS (Arizona Onstage Productions), DEAD MAN'S CELL PHONE (Chicken Lipps Productions), DOUBT (Independent Theatre Productions), DINNER WITH FRIENDS (Beowulf Alley Theatre), ON THE VERGE, ANTON IN SHOW BUSINESS, BECKY'S NEW CAR, (Sacred Chicken Productions), CHAPTER TWO, HOLY SPIRIT ON GRAND AVE (LTW), IRON KISSES, CIRLCLE MIRROR TRANSFORMATION and AN EMPTY PLATE IN THE CAFE DU GRAND BOEUF (Invisible Theatre). Carrie is also the founder of Sacred Chicken Productions.


Carrie Hill and Keith Wick in THE COLUMNIST at Live Theatre Workshop

 Stephen Frankenfield (Stewart Alsop) is the Assistant Director of Children’s Programing here at LTW. He was last seen on LTW’s mainstage in THE GAMES AFOOT OR, HOLMES FOR THE HOLIDAY. Other notable acting credits on the mainstage, where he has been a staple for over 12 years, include IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE, TWO INTO ONE, THE RAINMAKER, BAREFOOT IN THE PARK, RUN FOR YOUR WIFE, ARSENIC AND OLD LACE, I HATE HAMLET, DEARLY DEPARTED, CAUGHT IN THE NET, FUNNY MONEY, THE MYSTERY OF IRMA VEP, and TUNA CHRISTMAS. His most recent directing credits include BOEING BOEING and SOUVENIR. Other directing credits include SEE HOW THEY RUN, MOON OVER BUFFALO, DON’T DRESS FOR DINNER. He wrote and directed Family Theatre’s production of THE GREAT ZANTINI AND THE MAGIC THIEF, and co-wrote and co-directed the current ATT production of WINSTON MCPEPPER AND THE VERY PUPPET-Y PROBLEM. He has been nominated for 5 Arizona Daily Star Mac Awards, three times for acting and twice for directing. Stephen is a graduate of The American Academy Of Musical and Dramatic Arts in New York City.


 Albert Riesgo, Jr. (Young Man/Andrei) is fairly new to the Theatre community of Tucson. He got his first taste of theatre when he took the lead role of Tommy Albright in his high school musical performance of BRIGADOON, and fell in love with acting. He got his first role in community theatre with El Rio Theatre company's performance of Shakespeare's THE TRAGEDY OF KING LEAR, where he portrayed the Duke of France, among other minor characters. He later joined Winding Road Theater Company where he performed in DEATH OF A SALESMAN, UNITED, and most recently ROUGH MAGIC, where he had a leading role as Chet Baxter, Beach Lifeguard/Child Warrior. This is his first LTW role, and he couldn't be more excited. His passions include music (listening, playing guitar, and singing), acting, and most recently costume design.


 Keith Wick (Joe Alsop) - Previous LTW credits include THE SAVANNAH DISPUTATION, BOEING BOEING, TWO INTO ONE, REGRETS ONLY, DEATH AND THE MAIDEN, RECKLESS, THREE VIEWINGS, HOW I LEARNED TO DRIVE, THE SISTERS ROSENSWEIG, DON’T DRESS FOR DINNER (2010 Arizona Daily Star MAC Award Winner – Best Actor in a Comedy), WHAT THE BUTLER SAW, WIFE BEGINS AT FORTY, A TUNA CHRISTMAS, LOST IN YONKERS, FUNNY MONEY, SPIDER’S WEB, and DANCING AT LUGHNASA. In addition to the main stage, Keith has appeared in several of LTW’s Family Theatre productions. Keith is a graduate of the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. Favorite roles include Fluellen in HENRY V, Second Man in AND THEY DANCE REAL SLOW IN JACKSON, and Clive Champion-Cheney in THE CIRCLE. Keith is a recipient of an AriZoni award for his portrayal of Dromio of Syracuse in the Southwest Shakespeare Company production of A COMEDY OF ERRORS.


Keith Wick in THE COLUMNIST at Live Theatre Workshop

 Emily Beaulieu (Abigail) was born and raised in Tucson, is a graduate of Empire High School and currently attends Lubbock Christian University where she studies Theatre Education. Emily made her LTW debut in Family Theatre last year starring in The Nightingale (The Empress), in Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree (Hollyberry), The Adventures of Rose Red (Little Miss Muffet/Goldilocks), and understudied in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (Dorothy). Emily has loved performing with LTW thus far and is very excited to appear in her first Main stage show. She thanks you for coming and hopes you enjoy the show!


 Brian McElroy (Philip) - If you have been to a Live Theatre Workshop show this past year, you have almost certainly seen Brian dressed in black running across the stage, taking care of broken doors, wiping down fake blood, grabbing waters and snacks for the actors backstage -- whatever is required of a humble stage manager. In addition to being a stage manager and occasionally a theatre teacher, Brian is a senior at the University of Arizona and will graduate in December of 2016 with degrees in Neuroscience and Cognitive Science, Creative Writing, and Philosophy. You may have seen him in LTW's Mainstage production of WIFE BEGINS AT FORTY (Leonard) or in LTW's Family Theatre production of THE BRAVE TAILOR (Ernie). Brian is glad to have grown up on Live Theatre Workshop's stage, ever since his parents figured he might channel that nervous energy of his productively into theatre at the age of 6. His passions include the brain, classical guitar, theatre, philosophy, writing, and most of all the way the universe proves time and time again that nothing is for certain.


 Steve Wood (Halberstam) has previously appeared in LTW’s mainstage productions of CLOUD 9, ALL MY SONS, MAURITIUS, and VISITING MR. GREEN, LOOT, and MOLLY SWEENEY. Steve performed locally with Alternative Theatre Company (BEYOND THERAPY, DIRTY SECRETS, THE GAYEST CHRISTMAS PAGEANT EVER), Winding Road Theatre Ensemble (A HUMAN EQUATION, THE LION IN WINTER, ROW AFTER ROW, BURN THIS, DEATH OF A SALESMAN, UNITED, ROUGH MAGIC), and Studio Connections (BAREFOOT IN THE PARK, ANGELS IN AMERICA: MILLENNIUM APPROACHES, TICK TICK...BOOM!, A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM, and ALL IN THE TIMING). He was also seen in PCC's productions of 42ND STREET, MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING, and THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST, to name a few. He is a proud member of the Winding Road Theatre Ensemble. See him next in the fall production of SAINT JOAN for Winding Road Theater. Love you, Amie.