An Evening With John Wilkes Booth — to Know the Man

Hollywood Fringe Festival 2017By Ernest Kearney —  An Evening With John Wilkes Booth by Clinton Case and Lloyd J. Schwartz (who also directs), presents a solid and edifying portrait of the assassin of Abraham Lincoln.

The script is well-crafted, and the narrative skillfully structured, if somewhat by the numbers.

The direction is handled with both intelligence and finesse, though there must be some other way of ending the show than having Booth lying on his Fringe Award-Gold Medal-The TVolutionback up stage looking at his hands.  (Yes, I know it’s historically accurate, but it’s not theatrically sound.)

But what can’t be nitpicked is Stephen Spiegel’s performance of Booth, in which he captures both the charm and madness of the man with magnificent aplomb to easily carry away a GOLD MEDAL.

♦    ♦    ♦

An Evening with John Wilkes Booth

Running During Fringe 2017 at:

the Complex Theatres
6472 Santa Monica Blvd

Remaining Fringe Shows:

Saturday June 17 2017, 7:00 pm
Sunday June 18 2017, 4:30 pm
Saturday June 24 2017, 5:00 pm

Learn More at

For Tickets and Additional Information:

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An award-winning L.A. playwright and rabble-rouser of note who has hoisted glasses with Orson Welles, been arrested on three continents and once beat up Charlie Manson. His first play, "Among the Vipers" was a semi-finalist in the Julie Harris Playwriting Competition and was featured in the Carnegie-Mellon Showcase of New Plays. It was produced at the NPT Theater in Ashland, Oregon and Los Angeles’ celebrated Odyssey Ensemble Theatre. His following play, “The Little Boy Who Loved Monsters” was produced at The Hollywood Actors Theater, where he earned praise from the Los Angeles Times for his “…inordinately creative writing.” The play went on to numerous other productions including Berlin’s The Black Theatre under the direction of Rainer Fassbinder who wrote in his program notes of Kearney, “He is a skilled playwright, but more importantly he is a dangerous one.” Ernest Kearney has worked as literary manager or as dramaturge for among others The Hudson Theater Guild, Nova Diem and the Odyssey Ensemble Theatre, where he still serves on the play selection committee. He has been the recipient of two Dramalogue Awards and a finalist or semi-finalist, three times, in the Julie Harris Playwriting Competition. His work has been performed by Michael Dunn, Sandra Tsing Loh, Jack Colvin and Billy Bob Thornton, and to date, either as playwright or director, he has upwards of a hundred and thirty productions under his belt, including a few at the Bob Baker Marionette Theater as puppeteer. Kearney remains focused on his writing, as well as living happily ever after with his lovely wife Marlene. His stage reviews and social essays can be found at and Follow him on Facebook.

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