Fun and Cathartic “Easy Targets”

Hollywood Fringe Festival 2017By Ernest Kearney — Let us talk the lowest of high concept.

Take the most obnoxious representatives of our society’s ills:

A woman (Rebecca Larsen) obsessed with the entitlement her beauty bestows on her,

A man (Albert Dayan) defending the privileged birthright of those fortunate enough to be born white males,

A painfully annoying “artiste” (Tegan Ashton Cohan) performing her homage to the glory of the menstrual cycle,

And a conservative Republican (Scott Golden) in a modern dance recital bespeaking “making America great!”

Place them in front of an audience.

Arm that audience with sock balls to fling at their discretion.

And there you have in a nut shell the brilliance that is Easy Targets.

One would be hard pressed to find a sillier show or a more therapeutic one.Easy Targets-Burglars of Hamm,

I Feel Pretty directed by Carolyn Almos ­— in which Larsen condescends with aplomb to the beauty-impaired, by moaning to the audience “Ugly girls don’t realize how easy they have it,” — was written by Albert Dayan, who wrote and performed as the proud white male dishing out such truisms as “I deserve everything I have” and “Our lives matter too,” in Pride and Prejudice, directed by Jon Beauregard.

Daughter of the Moon written by Almos, was directed by Jaime Robledo with Cohan performing to absurd perfection.

And finally Town Hall, written and directed by Matt Almos and performed with side-spiriting grace by Golden as the leotard clad representative announces, I am a metaphor” and then goes on to proclaim, “I am the wall, awake and alert as America sleeps.”

Now yes, lobbing sock balls at these “easy targets” is great fun, as well as cathartic, but the monologues were so dead-on funny and the performances so right-on perfect, they easily could have stood without the constant bombardment; especially Daughter of the Moon which is as classic a bit of clowning as I’ve seen in ages.

Platinum MedalBut their show, their rules and producers Golden and JJ Mayes had to be cleaning up on supplying bags full of ammo to the audience at five bucks for twenty sock balls.

And, what can I say, between jotting down a few frantic notes I, too, pitched a few.

As far as 14 karat zaniness goes, this show was a Fort Knox in and of itself.

And for that a PLATINUM MEDAL.

♦    ♦    ♦

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Written by

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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