Live Wire Radio | Radio Variety

So you want to come to our next show, eh?  


1)  Copy and paste this link to your Facebook or Twitter and tell your friends why you we are so cool:


2)  Send an email to that says you have completed step #1.


Extra points if you tag Live Wire in your Facebook status update.


(Psssst.... we also have the event listed on Facebook.) 






Show guests:


DAVID GUTERSON - Author of Snow Falling on Cedars and Ed King.

PAULANN PETERSEN - Poet and author of The Voluptuary.

KATE BEATON - Cartoonist for The New Yorker, author of Hark! a Vagrant.



Not feeling so lucky?  Buy tickets here


by Trent Finlay on October 7, 2011 - 11:04pm.

Please come and share an evening of enjoyment with us experiencing some extraordinary and diverse talent, and meet poet Scott Poole at Speak Easy!

Speak Easy! will be a soirée of perverse poetry, palatable prose, and plenty of potions. A book release happening to honor Scott's newest concoction, The Sliding Glass Door, with special guests: Courtenay Hameister, the host of (uh, duh)  Live Wire!, hilarious essayist Stacy Bolt, NY Times bestselling author Chelsea Cain, and songwriting performer Jim Brunberg.

Pre-order the the book in the month of September and proceeds will benefit Live Wire. DO IT.

$35: includes book, entertainment, ticket to Live Wire and hosted bar
$10: entertainment only

Join us on Friday, October 14, 7:00 pm
at the Falcon Art Community, 5415 N Albina Ave
(the corner of N Albina and N Killingsworth),
in Portland, Oregon.




by Trent Finlay on September 28, 2011 - 12:43am.

Yup. Just two steps.  Unless you found this post via our Facebook, Twitter or newsletter.  In that case, clicking the link to get here counts as a step.  

1)  Copy and paste this link to YOUR Facebook and/or Twitter and say something about how cool we are. Or aren't.  Either way:


2)  Send an email to that says you have completed step #1.

by Trent Finlay on September 27, 2011 - 11:58pm.


Here at Live Wire Radio we are thrilled to announce a partnership with our newest sponsor, Burgerville, and welcome you to thank them for supporting us. We are happy to announce this as they launch BV radio, a streaming radio station in all of their restaurants featuring music from Northwest artists and performances by musical guests on Live Wire Radio.
The picture below was taken at our very first VIP party with our sponsors from Dave's Killer Bread, New Belgium Brewing, Whole Foods and Burgerville.

by Trent Finlay on September 27, 2011 - 5:05pm.

In therapy after scrolling down through this comic.

Very impressive how something this simply done can still be "new".

by Sean McGrath on September 2, 2011 - 12:17pm.

We've done it before. Invited you to one of our rehearsals. Well, we're doing it again. Our writers have been furiously penning some epic sketches for our fall season, and we're hoping to get some feedback in the form of laughter or, in the worst-case-scenario, angry pummeling with purses and bike chains.

Here are the deets:

What: Live Wire's Fall Sketch Rehearsal, a.k.a. "Does This Sketch Make Me Look Fat?"

Where: Mississippi Studios, 3939 N. Mississippi Ave., Portland

When: Friday, August 26 from 12:30-1:30 p.m.

Price: $0

Grab some food and drink from bar bar next door, take a seat and enjoy! Just remember, this isn't a performance...what you're seeing here is our figurative underwear*...we'll be stopping and starting as needed and there might be swears and angry exchanges between our actors and our new director, who we recruited from the David O. Russell school of actor communication. (<--language totally NSFW)

Hope to see you there!

*Real underwear must be negotiated separately with cast members.

by Courtenay on August 25, 2011 - 12:23pm.

Live Wire Radio Seeks Comic Voice Actors.

- Do you have an agile voice and quick wit?
- Do you enjoy performing LIVE in front of an audience?
- Are you easy-going, with a one-page performance rider that includes a tuna sandwich and a hug?

Live Wire is seeking one male voice, preferably with radio or voiceover experience, to add to the cast of Faces for Radio Theater (our sketch comedy troupe) as well as other voices to fill in when needed. Faces for Radio perform 6-8 sketches per 2.5 hour taping.

We’re looking for experienced voice actors with strong comic timing and a stable of voices in their back pocket. Sketch comedy veteran? Great! Have some improv training? Even better! Enjoy pigs in a blanket? SO DO WE!!

If you’re interested in auditioning, please send an email to with the following:
- a jpg of your headshot and your acting/voice resume (cut/paste text as opposed to an attachment)
- an mp3 attachment or link to your voice or film reel
- a link to your favorite video of a cat falling off of something

We will then contact qualified applicants to set up an audition time.

If you haven't heard a show, we highly recommend listening before auditioning to get a better idea of what we do. Just choose "podcasts" from the pull-down menu of the website or visit iTunes and search for "Live Wire Radio."

Commitment: 2 shows a month on a Friday or Saturday night from Sept.-December and February-June. (Fall show dates are listed on our website.) Each show requires 1-2 rehearsals. Live Wire is a non-equity, non-AFTRA show.

More about our show:
Live Wire is a radio variety show that records in front of a live audience twice a month, and airs on OPB, and various stations in California, Washington, Ohio and Pennsylvania. The show features music, interviews and original sketch comedy, and reaches almost half a million listeners a year.

by Courtenay on August 9, 2011 - 5:34pm.
Lizz Winstead leads the workshop.If you were one of the people at the workshop, you know that we couldn't shut up. At least our fingers couldn't shut up...writing, writing, writing, editing and writing like crazy people right up until the doors opened at...well, at 8:30. So 8 1/2 hours. So sue us.

An experiment in speed writing.
This was a new experience for Lizz, and for the 20 writers who attended. Start brainstorming at 12:30, have a show structure by 1, then first drafts of sketches by 3, and final drafts at 5:30. Oh. That'll be easy. No problem.

Weeeeelll. Okay, first draft by 3:30, final versions. By 6. No, wait...7. 7:30. Final drafts by 7:30!!!  We mean it!

Lizz was taking no prisoners. If she asked for suggestions once we had a show structure and you raised your hand and suggested a new show structure? Shut down. First rule of writing under the gun: Make a decision and STICK WITH IT. Be decisive.

Unless a better idea comes along. We'd decided the show structure would be Sarah Palin's bus tour traveling the country...and we'd meet all the people around it in various places. Then Live Wire writer Tyler Hughs suggested that when we got to Wasilla, we should see a historical play by the Wasilla Community Players, wherein they covered various historical events from Palin's perspective.

"Brilliant. That's the new structure of the show," said Lizz.

So, lesson 2: Be willing to change your mind when lightning strikes. Got it.

The deepest cut.
If your sketch wasn't in first-draft mode by 2:30, it was cut and you were absorbed into another group. If your sketch wasn't in good enough shape by 4:30 or 5, it was cut. Ouch. Seriously, ouch. Lesson 3: sometimes your sketch doesn't make the cut. In that case, jump in and help others edit their pieces. A mind is a terrible thing to waste.

The show.
After the audience had waited for an extra half hour, "Sarah Palin's People's History of the United States" went up. Donald Trump's ancestor in a "Coonskin Combover" (TM Tyler Hughs)? Check. Ronald Reagan curing AIDS? Check. Paul Revere delivering a Dirty-Harry-esque monologue, wondering if he'd reloaded his musket? Check.

All in all, a great day and a discovery that even someone who's never written a sketch, given the right leadership and a terrifying ticking clock, can churn out some great material in no time at all.
by Courtenay on June 14, 2011 - 11:35am.
If you were hoping to spend the weekend with Lizz Winstead, writer, comic, co-creator of The Daily Show, well, you're in luck!

Lizz is coming to Portland for our show Friday 6/3, which is fun enough. (More info on that here.) But wait, THERE'S MORE. On 6/4, Lizz will perform her new standup show at the Alberta Rose (get tickets here.) But wait, THERE'S EVEN MORE!

What's the point of a writer's workshop if you don't come out of it actually having written something? And what if that something were a show? That you performed? THE NIGHT OF THE WORKSHOP? 

Holy cripes. Is it a lesson in working under a deadline? Uh, yeah. Is it a once-in-a-lifetime chance to have the former Head Writer of the Daily Show be your head writer and director for a day? Pretty much. Will it be a crazy, intense day of learning and work? Absolutely. You should come!

Date: Sunday, 6/5
Time: 12-8 workshop, 8 p.m. SHOW!
Cost: $75
Sign up here!


As co-creator and former head writer of The Daily Show and Air America Radio co-founder, Lizz Winstead is one of the top political satirists in America. As a performer, Lizz brought her political wit to The Daily Show as a correspondent and later to the radio waves co-hosting Unfiltered, Air America Radio's mid-morning show, where she brought on board Hip Hop legend, Chuck D and political big brain Rachel Maddow.

Lizz's talents as a comedian and media visionary have been recognized by The New York Times, The Washington Post, Entertainment Weekly's 100 most Creative People issue and has brought numerous television appearances, including Comedy Central Presents, weekly segments on The Ed Show on MSNBC and The Joy Behar Show on Headline News and is blogging regularly at The Huffington Post.

Currently Lizz is developing shows for television, touring the country with her standup and writing a book of personal essays for Riverhead Press due out in late 2011.

by Courtenay on May 27, 2011 - 6:04pm.
Haiku Hottie We asked Mike Russell, cartoonist, film reviewer, man-about-town to come to our show on Friday and draw it LIVE! Mike had done great work at the inspired Comics Night at the Opera, and he had drawn me previously for the Cort and Fatboy show, so it seemed to make sense to see what he might do for an entire Live Wire show.

It was a great night for him to come to the show: sex-positive feminist icon Susie Bright was there, as was humor writer Mike Sacks, storyteller Beth Lisick, poet Matthew Dickman and musical guests David Bazan and Celilo. He captured the night pretty perfectly. Just click and you'll see. Thanks SO much, Mike!!
by Courtenay on May 2, 2011 - 8:53am.

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