2020 TRUE WEST AWARD: WILLIAM HAHN AND JESSICA ROBBLEE

2020 True West Awards William Hahn Jessica Robblee


Component GradientStart is not available in React's context. It is defined in agility, however. Please check React Dev tools for props.

'The casting is nothing less than brilliant.’

– Juliet Wittman, Westword

By John Moore, Senior Arts Journalist

Psst. Hey, do you remember "plays"? You know ... in the B.C. times (Before COVID)? With packed audiences and winter coats cavalierly spread over your lap by the oblivious person in front of you? Followed by coughing fits that only annoyed, rather than terrified you? Ah, yeah ... the good old days.

Jessica Robblee and William Hahn But even had more than 500 Colorado theatre productions not been canceled by the COVID shutdown in March, theatregoers surely would still be looking back at the 2020 theatre year and talking fondly about Jessica Robblee and William Hahn's humane performances in the Miners Alley Playhouse's production of "Frankie and Johnny at the Clair de Lune."

Terrence McNally's first-date play has been exploring relationships and romance between these two wary, weary veterans of the heart since 1987. They've already slept together; that's the easy part. Now they face the daunting prospect of true connection. "You just don't decide to fall in love with people out of the blue," says Frankie. But Johnny, a fast-talking short-order cook and diehard romantic, tenaciously disagrees.

This is a play that strikes a universally empathetic nerve among audiences because of the utterly recognizable ordinariness of this random encounter that dares to ask: Is this the rare one-night stand that could stand the test of time?

It's a play that's been played, occasionally spectacularly, by local actors of every size and stripe over the decades. But there was something special about the Miners Alley Playhouse's nakedly honest production, from the intimate confines of the Golden stage that put us within breathing distance of the characters, to Warren Sherrill's sensitive direction, to this pair of accomplished actors at their most tenacious – and vulnerable.

Here's some of what was said about them at the time:

"Jessica Robblee’s Frankie is slight and luminescent. Hahn makes Johnny so passionately and nakedly human, so much his own unique and eccentric self, that you can’t help rooting for him." – Juliet Wittman, Westword

"Under Warren Sherrill’s guidance, these two take it the next level as they maneuver around and with each other on the small, darkened stage. Both actors’ performances are so vulnerable, their characterizations so precise, that we are willing to forgive their characters’ personal shortcomings. Hahn’s portrayal of the offbeat, high-strung Johnny is spot-on. And Robblee’s Frankie is divine. The flashes of vulnerability that slip through under her tough façade give her a warmth and humanity that prevents her from appearing harsh We sympathize with them and understand that their idiosyncrasies stem from loneliness rather than bad intentions."  – Lane Ware, OnStage Colorado

"There is a convenience in watching these two work, a reassurance that these are two professionals who are not about to slip or fall. Hahn succeeds in masking the animalistic nature of Johnny with a determination to make Frankie aware of the joy and delicacy of his skewed grasp of reality. And Robblee responds in grounding Frankie firmly to the floor." Denver Theatre Perspectives

Video bonus: Interview with Jessica Robblee


Jessica Robblee holds a B.A. in Theatre and English from Davidson College and an M.A. in Theatre Education from the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley. She performed with the Colorado Shakespeare Festival in "Twelfth Night" and "Romeo and Juliet." In September, she performed in the worldwide launch of the play "Waiting for Obama" on Broadway On Demand. Other credits include "The Moors," "Sense and Sensibility," "The Foreigner," "Electric Baby" and "Drowning Girls" (Arvada Center Black Box); "Frankenstein," "All the Way," "Lord of the Butterflies" and "Drag Machine" (Denver Center); "Siren Song," "Duck Duck Dupe" and "Trunks" (Buntport Theater for All Ages); "5 Lesbians Eating a Quiche" (Square Product Theatre); and "This" (Boulder Ensemble Theatre Company).

Video bonus: Interview with William Hahn

William Hahn, a graduate of the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley, is a member of Curious Theatre Company, where his roles have included Ralph in "Frozen," Dorian in "Opus," The Dead Man in "Dead Man’s Cell Phone," Max in "Becky Shaw" and EKO in "The Elaborate Entrance of Chad Diety." Other local roles have included "To Kill A Mockingbird" and "King Lear with the DCPA Theatre Company, "Escanaba In Da Moonlight" and "K2" for the Aurora Fox, and "A Lie of the Mind" for Paragon Theatre. He won the 2006 Denver Post Ovation Award for Outstanding Season by an Actor for “Frozen,” “Insignificance” and Escanaba in Da Moonlight." He can be seen in the feature films "Silent Rose" and "A Test of Wills."

Video interviews by Ray Bailey TV.

Home,Reignite the Arts,Art at Home,Support Arvada Center Artists,Virtual Auction,Donate Now,Corporate Giving,News,2020 True West Awards,Visit Us,View All Events,Gift Certificates,Agatha Christie's Murder on the Orient Express,Pink Progression: Poetry Reading,Beth Malone Sings at the Arvada Center,Pink Progression: Artist Talk,528.0 Regional Juried Printmaking Exhibition,Imprint: Print Educators of Colorado,Ultimate 70s Tour: Poco, Orleans & Pure Prairie League,Face Vocal Band,Rodney Atkins,Trifles: A Radio Play,Dracula: A Radio Play,Trick Art Treat,Pink Progression: Collaborations,Escapism: ACDT Fall Concert,A Child’s Christmas In Wales,The Family Tree,Stories and Songs to Celebrate the Season,Black in Denver,Carley Warren: Three Pieces,Buyer and Cellar,Amplify curated by Betty Hart,Our Favorite Things: A Musical Retrospective,Christie Con,Amplify curated by Bobby LeFebre,The Great Gatsby: A Radio Play,Melody Epperson: 100 Years + 1,Amplify curated by Lynne Holman,Viral Influence Art in the Time of Coronavirus,Brady Smith: (Don’t be embarrassed by) your trouble with living,Small Mouth Sounds,Wood.Works,Dining Partners,Amplify,Amplify Performers,Theatre,Digital Hub,main stage musicals,Black Box Plays,Theatre for Children,Auditions,Million Dollar Quartet Auditions,Holiday Plays,Galleries,Current Exhibitions,Wood.Works Know Before You Go,Gallery Events,Upcoming Exhibitions,Art Sales,Art Submissions,Viral Influence Call for Entry,Sculpture Field,History Museum,Art Market,Education,Dance Class FAQ,View All Classes,Summer Camps,FAQ,Full Day,Classes for Kids,Classes for Adults,Ceramics,Front Range Youth Symphony,Dance Academy,For Educators,Arts Day,Arts Day Outreach,Ageless Adults,Scholarships,Teen Intensive 2021,Yesterado,Music and Dance,Jeffrey Siegel,Colorado Jazz Repertory Orchestra,Front Porch Series,Humanities,On Their Shoulders We Stand,Private Events and Rentals,Humans of the Arvada Center,Straight Talk Series ,Straight Talk with Philip Sneed,COVID’s toll on Colorado theatre: 224 productions and counting ,Straight Talk with Lynne Collins,Straight Talk with Rod Lansberry,Straight Talk with Phamaly, Buntport, Colorado Shakes and Rocky Mountain Rep,Straight Talk with Creede Rep, Town Hall, Candlelight and Theatre Company of Lafayette,Straight Talk with Aurora Fox, BDT Stage, Cherry Creek Theatre and Misfits,Straight Talk with Su Teatro, Vintage, Backstage and Counterweight,Straight Talk with Local Theater Company, Theater 29, The Source and Equinox,Straight Talk with the Denver Center, Jesters Dinner Theatre, Glenwood Vaudeville Revue and Germinal Stage-Denver,Actors' union issues safety guidelines for re-opening,Straight Talk with square product, Forge Light, Springs Ensemble Theatre and Coal Creek Theatre of Louisville,Straight Talk with the Fine Arts Center, Miners Alley Playhouse, Dangerous Theatre and Lone Tree Arts Center ,Straight Talk with Lake Dillon Theatre Company, Boulder Ensemble Theatre Company and Northglenn Arts,Straight Talk with The Catamounts, Bas Bleu and Thingamajig,Straight Talk with Curious Theatre Company,Straight Talk with OpenStage, Firehouse and Adams Mystery Playhouse,Straight Talk with Platte Valley Players and Theatreworks,Straight Talk with Parker Arts, Stories on Stage and Thunder River ,Staight Talk 2 with Philip Sneed: This much is uncertain,Pivoting With,Pivoting with The Black Actors Guild,Pivoting with ... Emily Van Fleet and Nathan Jones,Pivoting With ... Tammy Franklin and the Curtain Playhouse,Pivoting With Nick Sugar and the Town Hall Arts Center,Pivoting With Helen Murray and the Aurora Fox,Pivoting with Edith Weiss and Christy Montour Larson,Pivoting With Scott RC Levy and the Fine Arts Center Theatre Company,Pivoting with Todd Debrecini for Halloween,Pivoting with Ashley Campbell,Pivoting with Meghan Anderson Doyle,Pivoting with Jenna Moll Reyes,Pivoting with Erik Fellenstein,Pivoting with Ray Bailey ,Pivoting with Tara Falk,Community News,Inside the Arvada Center,Barbra Streisand,Governor's mask mandate does not apply to Candlelight actors,Pink Progression: Collaborations: Grow Love and Moe Gram,Director's Notes: A Midsummer Night's Dream,All About Printmaking Techniques,Watercolor Class,Humans of the Arvada Center: Meet Collin Parson ,Arvada Center Makes Masks,Earth Day Craft,Christina Noel-Adcock,"Bright Star" cast unveils video as message of hope,Podcast: B+ with Geoffrey Kent and Jessica Austgen ,Humans of the Arvada Center: Meet Christine Moore,Humans of the Arvada Center: Steven Cogswell,Humans of the Arvada Center: Ashi K. Smythe,City of Arvada to install new sculpture in Hoskinson Park,Humans of the Arvada Center Jessie Page,Here are the 2019-20 Henry Award nominations,Arvada Center to Offer Students World’s First Zoom Musical,Humans of the Arvada Center Cal Meakins,Humans of the Arvada Center: Adam Stolte,Supreme Court workplace ruling hits home for Lisa Leafgreen,'Time for talk is over': Arvada Center launch 'Amplify' series to raise black male voices,Humans of the Arvada Center Jon Olson ,The 5 Most Screwed Job Titles in COVID-era theatre,June in Colorado Theatre: 'The Reckoning' has begun,New Arvada Center, Aurora Fox seasons reflect current complexities,It's virtually impossible not to have fun in our summer camps,News roundup: Who The Denver Actor's Fund DEAR Fund has helped,Humans of the Arvada Center: Abygail Rosales,Pink Progression Collaborations: Jina Brenneman and Margaret Kasahara,Pink Progression: Julia Rymer and Drew Austin,Revealing The Dialogue,Amplify Epiode 3 launches, series expanding to include black women,Colorado Springs reaches the Mountaintop at 2020 Henry Awards,Photo Blog: Sweeney Todd Rehearsals,Humans of the Arvada Center: Gabriel Morales,Deeper Dive: A closer look at Million Dollar Quartet,Deeper Dive: A closer look at Small Mouth Sounds,Pink Progression: Sangeeta Reddy and Jodie Roth Cooper,Deeper Dive: A closer look at Private Lives,Front Porch Series Kickoff,Cleo Parker Robinson dances back in the box with Arvada Center,Amplify turns the mic over to local Black women ,Beth Malone bringing 'joy bomb' to Arvada Center oon September 4,Theatre news: Live streaming panel Monday on a big new 'Idea',Deeper Dive: A closer look at They're Playing Our Song,Humans of the Arvada Center: Meet Emily King,Amplify Women Episode 2,Special Book Honors Special Dance Teacher,Arvada Center pivots to radio-play series for fall ,amplify-series-comes-to-powerful-conclusion,Denver Film moving forward with longer, smaller, virtual 2020 festival ,How COVID is impacting individual artists,Take a stroll through 'Sculpture in the Field',Arts In Education Week,Colorado Theatre News: Miscast pivots to CAST ,Essay: Was the Aurora Fox a safe house on Opening Night? ,Lessons from a summer of outdoor theatre in the time of COVID ,Humans of the Arvada Center: John Hamilton,Theatre news of the week: DCPA launches Recovery Fund,Zachary Andrews take a one-man bite out of 'Dracula',Trick Art Treat coming to Arvada Center parking lot ,What to do? Theatre happenings for October 16,Spotlight Manos Soap,Doreen Montalvo in Denver: Compassion and grit,What to do: Theatre happenings for October 23,Betty Hart's presidential promise: Build a bigger tent,Theatre happenings October 30,Virtual theatre sprouts a new branch with Arvada Center's 'The Family Tree',Humans of the Arvada Center: Brenna Clendaniel and Sophia Koop,Theatre happenings November 12,the barnstormers are back,On being Black in Denver and all the colors that it brings,Getting to Know: Dylan Thomas’s A Child’s Christmas in Wales,Theatre happenings November 19: Companies entering cancellation mode,A Married Couple's Christmas in Wales,2021 in live theatre: A look into the Crystal Ball,Senior Art Kits,2020 True West Awards: Buntpivot ,2020 True West Awards: Lily Bradford,2020 True West Awards: The Scenesters,2020 True West Awards: Podcastic,2020 True West Awards: Phamaly takes 'Honk' to Japan,2020 True West Awards: Christine Moore,2020 True West Awards: Alive Inside,2020 True West Awards: Michael Ensminger,True West Awards: They Wrote the Book,True West Awards: Rent-A-Pals,True West Awards: Of Spacious Skies,True West Awards: Christopher Page-Sanders,2020 True West Awards: Suffer the little children,2020 True West Awards: Spirit of Giving,2020 True West Awards: Secret Gardeners,2020 True West Awards: Denis Berkfeldt,2020 True West Awards: Amplify,2020 True West Awards: Reclaiming One Star,2020 True West Awards: William Hahn and Jessica Robblee,2020 True West Awards: Lisa Wagner Erickson,'The Family Tree affords actors rare chance to work during pandemic,SCFD: New picture of COVID carnage on metro nonprofits,New Arvada Center video offers diverse slate of holiday stories,20 for 20,Meet the Frasers,Bev Newcomb-Madden: Colorado's feisty, ferocious fairy godmother passes away ,Lucy Roucis' final act is a gutpunch,Reunite the Arts Collin Parson,Jodie Steeves and Nancy Terry,International Women's Day,Reunite the Arts Lisa Leafgreen,The Con Must Go On,Clear Fork Cider Spotlight,Remembering John Gratkins,Reunite the Arts: From our CEO,Adapting the Great Gatsby,Small Mouth Sounds returns,Arts Advocacy,About Us,Ticketing Policies,Contact Us,Ticket discounts,Accessiblity,Health and Safety,Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Access,Digital Magazine,Volunteer,Careers,Tours,Errors,404,Temp,Virtual Theatre FAQ,New Website ,Pink Progression Events,On Demand Troubleshooting,Blog,Lorem ipsum,Lorem ipsum 2,Newk’s,Steuben’s Arvada,The Family Tree FAQ,Home for the Holidays,Land Acknowledgement,The Family Tree Dining Offers