location

1225 West Belmont Avenue, Chicago, IL 60657

The Columnist Poster

The Columnist

Closed April 1, 2017

Johnson brings intense volatility to a marathon role.

Chicago Sun-Times

Why See The Columnist?

Politics, scandal and newspapers - sound familiar?

The dawn of 2017 marks a shaky new era for journalism, with many organisations barred from the White House briefings, and Teen Vogue leading the charge in political journalism for the modern consumer. The Columnist, David Auburn's searing political drama is currently taking audiences back to a previous era in journalism, when the formidable op-ed writer Joseph Alsop was at the top of his game, feared by the political elite. That is, however before he is embroiled in a scandal that almost torpedoes his career. Helmed by Keira Fromm, The Columnist stars Philip Earl Johnson and Kymberly Mellen in a drama that transcends politics into personal pain.

Opening in a seedy Moscow hotel room (oops!) in 1954, married pundit Alsop has finished having sex with a Russian male youth, who it turns out, has been paid handsomely by the KGB to frame him up royally. The scandal haunts him well into the Sixties, with the inauguration of John.F.Kennedy offering some respite, and shock when he is assassinated. A fearsome advocate of war, Alsop must contend with a changing news media, whilst trying to outsmart a younger go-getting reporter who seems to be stalking his every move.

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Additional Information

Dates

Opening night: 17 February 2017

Audience

Suitable for ages 13+ due to nudity

Run time

Two hours and 20 minutes with one intermission

Cast and Creative

Cast

Philip Earl Johnson as Joe Alsop
Coburn Goss as Stewart Alsop
Kymberly Mellen as Susan Mary Alsop
Ian Paul Custer as Halberstam
Tyler Meredith as Abigail
Christopher Sheard as Andrei/Philip

Creative

Keira Fromm (director)
David Auburn (playwright)
Joe Schermoly (scenic)
Jared Gooding (lighting)
Christopher J. Neville (costumes)
Christopher Kriz (sound & original music
Alec Long (props)
Sarah E. Ross (production manager)
Eva Breneman (dialect coach)
Sarah Illiatovitch-Goldman (dramaturg)
Dana M. Nestrick (stage manager)

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