(EXPERIENCE MAGAZINE) — Burbank, CA — Wednesday, September 22nd, 2021 — The Experience Magazine was in swanky Echo Park to cover the super cool book signing for Michael Kearns’ new book Who’s Afraid of Michael Kearns? an anthology of three of his full-length plays. Michael is an actor, producer, playwright, author and father. We were treated to actress JoNell Kennedy’s monologue from Michael’s play Bang Bang (2015). It was an intense and emotional monologue that deals with abuse and retribution. Michael says that it is from a different time.
Michael loved Edward Albee, the playwright, when he was a teen. Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? is a legendary play in the theatre canon. It’s over three hours long. Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton did an amazing job as George and Martha in the movie that was made in 1966. The play was written in 1962. Edward Albee was famous for not allowing his plays to be cast with people of colour, or he also wouldn’t allow gay men to be in the four roles of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?. So, from a young age, Michael wanted to cast it with four gay men. Michael Kearns would absolutely be at the centre of this storm as he is often considered to be Hollywood’s first openly gay actor. Michael says of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, “I was a teenager in St Louis and I couldn’t wait to be in it.” He said,” People were like, who is this young guy doing Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” Michael said that even though Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? goes into sexuality, it goes into universally human experiences that he wanted to explore. He said he was forced to start writing. He said, “It was my way in and people bought it.”
On LGBTQ, Michael says that he sees a lot of divisiveness inside the movement and all the factions seem to be at war. He said, “My audience used to be gay men, but now I look at individuals.” From looking at the people that came. I would say he is correct.
Michael said, “Acting is about finding what is us in other people. I don’t want to lose that empathy (in any certain character). He also wisely added, “It’s not art if it’s not uncomfortable.”
During the Q and A, Michael was asked, “How do you feel about truth telling?” Michael said, “I don’t know what my truth is. I’m working on it.” Michael added, “I’m working in Homelessness and that’s truth telling.”
The new anthology is intense. If you’re a fan of Michael Kearns and Edward Albee, check out Whose Afraid of Michael Kearns? Find it on Amazon here: https://www.amazon.com/Whos-Afraid-Michael-Kearns-Full-Length/dp/0999869582.