John F. Kennedy and Nikita Khrushchev maintained official but personal correspondence that reveals respectful adversaries with a common goal: to stop the world tumbling into Armageddon. From the failed invasion at the Bay of Pigs through the Cuban Missile Crisis, a first nuclear summit, and the building of the Berlin Wall, all with the Space Race a proxy background battle, the two men form a precarious partnership, sundered with Kennedy’s assassination.
Discovered among US official papers by playwright and historian Joseph Ryan, these letters tell a fast-paced, eye-opening tale of statesmanship and brinksmanship with the highest stakes. An encounter with the hearts of the era and these prominent figures to vivid life, including intimate reflections, public postures, occasional whimsy, and the surprising coda between Khrushchev and Jacqueline Kennedy in the wake of tragedy.
Love Letters from the Cold War, a new play by Joseph Ryan will stream online from December 25-31, 2022 through a virtual playhouse reading to benefit Metropolitan Playhouse, with a portion of all proceeds contributed to the efforts of Direct Relief in Ukraine.
The play features:
Elisabeth Ahrens as Jacqueline Kennedy
Sam Kitchin as Nikita Khruschev
Jed Peterson as John F. Kennedy
Directed by Francis X. Kuhn
Musical Arrangements by Jonathan Allentoff
Video Design by Alex Roe