Festival Fringe Time in Hollywood 2018, Part II

By Ernest Kearney  —  This is Festival Fringe Time in Hollywood 2018 – Part II. Being the Hollywood Fringe, one should expect a few shows dealing with the lure of fame and the pitfalls of its pursuit.  

And here’s a few –


Tucker Rayl is the “Reality Star”

What is the secret shame of America in the 21th century?  No, not the guy in the White House, I’m talking Reality TV.  REALITY STAR tells the story of a disfigured actress whose disfigurement propels her into reality show fame.  Written and directed by Tucker Rayl.

Find More Show Information Here:  http://hff18.org/5037


Ai Yoshihara solos in “My Own Private River Phoenix”

Growing up in Japan Ai Yoshihara dreamt of coming to America and marrying River Phoenix and nothing was going to stop her.  Not even his death in front of the Viper Room in1993. The persistence of dreams provides for a “surprisingly messed up story” in MY OWN PRIVATE RIVER PHOENIX.

Find More Show Information Here:  http://hff18.org/5175


Melinda Grace assumes nearly a score of different characters in CONFESSIONS OF A HOPEFUL SOUTHERNER… IN FRONT OF STRANGERS

Tales drawn from the streets of New York, a young actress is shown the city by her private tour guide, Tennessee Williams.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5095

Okay, just gonna toss some your way now, fast and furiously –

Cooper Bates weaves threads of his own life in BLACK WHEN I WAS A BOY, a tale of a teenager coming to manhood during the 70’s in the clogged artery of the American heartland and its redneck Mecca the state of Kansas.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/4990


Tyrell Pickett (“Tell Me About Your Daddy”)

In TELL ME ABOUT YOUR DADDY, Tim the Twink, Jared the ex-Mormon Jock, the fabulous Luscious, and closeted SugarDaddy Don find themselves under the Freudian spotlight as Tyrell Pickett delights in deconstructing a medley of gay archetypes.  What should you expect?  “Playful, thought provoking…some penis jokes. A lot of penis jokes.”

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5129


Writer/Director of “House of Tales,” Changting Lu

Changting Lu directs an ensemble of Chinese actors (natives and “hyphenated”) in HOUSE OF TALES which will explore the history of China via its folktales and myths. More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/4948

Bill Posley Performs in Solo Show “The Day I Became Black”

Actor Bill Posley states your identity “is on trial” when growing up biracial in America. In THE DAY I BECAME BLACK, Posley gives us a glimpse into the “melting pot” of America, and a segment of our population that is expanding three times in excess of the national average.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5310

T.S. Eliot’s, The Wasteland became the mantra of the disillusioned youth of the 1920’s, so possibly UNREAL CITY, (an immersive/interactive staging of Eliot’s poem) will find resonance with today’s Proto-YZ Millennials types.  Or, if not, maybe it will at least answer the question “bang” or “whimper?”

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5383

Keith Blaney, Creator/Performer – “F*ck Fiction : True Tales of Life and Death in Paradise”

Written and performed by Keith Blaney, F*CK FICTION: TRUE TALES OF LIFE AND DEATH IN PARADISE won the 2017 NOHO Fringe Award for Best Storytelling Show.  Let’s see how he fares on this side of the hill.  With live musical accompaniment by Nikki Kelly.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5214

THE ACTOR’S NIGHTMARE, Christopher Durang’s breakthrough one-act, turns every actor’s worst dream into a full-out laugh-fest.  This is likely your last chance of seeing it before it’s designated as a “classic.”  Directed by Liisa Evastina.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5258

Misty Monroe Clark Stars in “Unapologetically Black”

Misty Monroe, in trying to walk the line of “acceptance” between her black friends and her white friends, created for herself a model persona that was rejected by both and hid the struggles and failures of herself and her family.  UNAPOLOGETICALLY BLACK  tells her battle to win back her “authentic self.”

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/4935

For those who like their cultural intake to come with a side order of goosebumps, there’s a few shows that hold the possibility of boldly going where no Fringe has gone before….


SURVIVAL CHECK seems to offer that ever-classic combination of “chicks and creatures.”  Four Millennials come across strange and sinister artifacts — Oh, no! The Evil Dead!  Parts I and II!! — while on a camping trip.

Egads! Never go on camping trips!

Didn’t any of them see Friday the 13th??  Or Friday the 13th Part 2 or Friday the 13th Part III ?  Or Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (they lied!), or Friday the 13th: A New Beginning, Friday the 13th, Part VI: Jason Lives, Friday the 13th, Part VII: The New Blood or Friday the 13th, Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan?  How could they miss Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday (yeah, yeah they lied again!), or Friday the 13th, Part X: To Hell and Back or Freddy vs. Jason or Jason Conquers Germany? (seriously, I kid you not)

Well, of course, our heroines open a doorway to an unearthly realm and from some unspeakable pit of unimaginable foulness comes spewing forth – The Trumps!!!  Oops!  Hold on. My mistake. No, Trumps! Just vicious bloodthirsty monsters. (Who probably voted for Trump!)

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5209

And no Fringe would be complete without a vampire popping up somewhere and in DRACULA’S TASTE TEST that somewhere is Glendale.  Dracula has had himself shipped to L.A.; and why?  To be in the Hollywood Fringe of course!  Séances, sing-a-longs and special ghoul stars – I mean “guest” stars at each show.  With your host, the Lord of the Undead himself!

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5257


THE WITNESSING is an immersive theatre-offering that sounds like one of those dreams which when waking up from you find yourself wallowing in the relief that it was only a dream, after all.  Directed by Lola Kelly and written by Sterling Powers the audience will find themselves amidst the fearful flotsam of a paranormal event.   Not for children or the faint of heart.

More Show Information:   http://hff18.org/5083

David M. Beach in the title role of “Doctor Zomba”

For devotees of Jeepers Creepers Theatre (KCOP 1962-1963) and the late, great Bob Guy, DOCTOR ZOMBA’S GHOST SHOW OF TERROR puts forth a modern reworking that promises spooky magic, a séance, monsters unleashed, and other ghoulies, ghosties and things that go bump in the night!***M***  And we are told that one unsuspecting audience member will be the lucky winner of a “real dead body!” With David M. Beach as Doctor Zomba.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/4842

For fans of The Twilight Zone, SPACEMAN may be worth checking out.  One night during a violent storm, a woman with her mother and daughter bring into their home a man who’s on the verge of death.  As he regains his health, the women are startled by his announcement that he is a “spaceman.”  And the question is not “from where,” but “when.”

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5042

“Jane Austen’s Emma Frankenstein” Ensemble

Also offered for the more refined fans of horrors and horribleness there is JANE AUSTEN’S EMMA FRANKENSTEIN….  Cumber Sandwiches and reanimated body parts grafted together from cadavers. Enough said.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5339

Creator and Performer, Maddie Patrick stars in “From Toilet to Tinseltown”

 FROM TOILET TO TINSELTOWN offers a twist on the usual tale of the ghost goes West, as Moaning Myrtle (portrayed by Shirley Henderson in the Harry Potter films), opts to leave the girls’ bathroom she’s haunted at Hogwarts castle, since her murder there in 1943, in order to seek stardom in Hollywood.  Written and performed by Maddie Patrick actress and Harry Potter Junkie.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5314

There are classics for the classically-minded:

Ungovernable Theatre Company will be presenting a new adaptation of Homer’s recounting of Odysseus’ trials and tribulations to return to his sweet Penelope with AN ODYSSEY written by Patrick Denney with Turner Munch directing.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5093

In 415 B.C.E. Athens was in the midst of the Peloponnesian War. So, what does it say about a society that during the Dionysus Festival of that year it awarded the top honor to one of the most intensely anti-war plays ever penned?  Euripides’ TROJAN WOMEN tells the bitter story of those on the losing side of history.  Olivia Buntaine and her Project Nongenue will introduce this timeless story to a time sorely in need of it.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5123

Patrick Censoplano, Richard Abraham in “The Importance of Being Oscar”

From his release from Reading Gaol Prison in 1897 to his death in 1900, Brandie June relates the fate of the great Irish playwright and writer in her THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING OSCAR, through three final meetings with friends during his last days. Featuring performances from Richard Lucas (Bono and the Edge Waiting for Godomino’s), with Cyanne McClairian (I Died…I Came Back… Whatever) as his wife, Patrick Censoplano as Dorian Gray and Richard Abraham as Oscar.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5152

Dream Walker presents a new rendering of Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen’s 1881 masterpiece, GHOSTS: A WHOLE NEW IMMERSIVE THEATRE.

Jonghee Woo directs an international cast in Ibsen’s scathing assault on the rot that moral hypocrisy inflicts on a society.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5318

Laura Jo Trexler mingles Shakespearean ballads with contemporary tunes in PLAY ON! A MUSICAL ROMP WITH SHAKESPEARE’S HEROINES,

a musical romp through the Bard’s great women from sweet Juliet to bloody Lady Macbeth.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5402


And for those like me who can never get enough of that dude from Stratford-upon-Avon, The Pretend Theatre presents their inaugural production of  HENRY V.  Director Chris Chapman’s intention is to recreate an experience such as the “groundlings” would have had at the Old Globe. Offering a free glass of wine or mug of beer with every ticket is a darn good beginning.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5061


And as a major history junkie I have saved the best for last, productions based on historical events or personalities

Now one of the misconceptions about Los Angeles is that it is a city without history.  The truth is L.A.’s history is more bizarre than people might imagine, but this city has always been where one came to escape their past and reinvent their future.  In the process, L.A.’s history was lost. ***    ***

“The City Underneath’s” Evan Lorenzetti

Evan Lorenzetti’s one-man show, THE CITY UNDERNEATH will present an aspect of L.A.’s past, as he intertwines the lost history of downtown with realities of today’s invisible homeless who wander its streets.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5008

Kelly Mullis’ one-woman show MARILYN MONROE: THE LAST INTERVIEW.  is based on Marilyn’s last interview with Life magazine’s Richard Meryman in 1962, shortly before her suicide. Odalys Nanin of West Hollywood’s Macha Theatre directs.

More Show Information:

Director/Writer/Producer, Davia Schendel

Writer/director Davia Schendel intends to take her audiences on a jazz fueled trek through New York in the ‘50s during the rise of the Beat Generation in BEATNIKS.  Here was the first rumbling of a cultural earthquake that would result in the counterculture movements of the ‘60s.  Schendel will guide us through the world and works of Diane di Prima, Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg. A fascinating time.

More Show Information:

Writer, Manny Hagopian

An all female cast will be paying homage to aviator Amelia Earhart in Manny Hagopian’s musical, EARHART: MORE THAN A F-ING MYSTERY (A MUSICAL FLIGHT) which proposes to present to audiences the full story of one of America’s first feminist role models.

More Show Information:

History that is newly unearthed tends to provide the most captivating stories.   Along the lines of Hidden Figures, playwright Ailema Sousa has reclaimed from obscurity another group of African American women who confronted the double headed ogre of racism and sexism.  Set during the Second World War, FORT HUACHUCA tells of a group of black nurses assigned to an army camp in Arizona.

More Show Information:

Before Geraldine Ferraro and Hillary Clinton there was Victoria Woodhull (1838 – 1927) first woman stockbroker on Wall Street, newspaper editor, high priestess of spiritualism (Cornelius Vanderbilt sought the business advice of the spirits she contacted), champion of free love, con artist, prostitute and the first woman to run for President of the United States of America (with Frederick Douglass as her running mate), and feminist.  In THE TERRIBLE LEGEND OF VICTORIA WOODHULL, playwright Theo Salter has pretty rich ore to mine.  Ashley Ford stars as one of the most scandalous figures of 19th century America.

More Show Information:

And finally the show I’m most excited by is “INGERSOLL SPEAKS – AGAIN!”

Robert Ingersoll (1833-1899) demanded equal rights for women, opposed capital punishment, denounced lynching in the South (“They are a disgrace to our country, our century and the human race.”), rebuked the Chinese Exclusionary Act of 1898 (“These Chinese laborers are inoffensive, peaceable and law- abiding….  Some of them play games of chance, but at least they are not members of the Stock Exchange.”)  He was the inspiration behind the United Nations and the birth control pill, and he was the most outspoken foe of organized religion and the clergy this country has ever known, earning him the nickname: “The Great Satan.”  Back by popular demand a full hour based on speeches from the Greatest American You’ve Never Heard of.

More Show Information:  http://hff18.org/5062

Well there you have it… 68 shows out of the 368 being offered at the 2018 Hollywood Fringe.  My apologies to those we weren’t able to include, but we here at thetvolution.com we promise to see and review as many shows as is humanly possible.

You are all an amazingly talented lot.  Let us all rejoice in and celebrate that talent in this comradeship of creative do-daring we call the 2018 Hollywood Fringe!

♦     ♦     ♦

For Festival Fringe Part I click HERE.

 * FYI John Hinckley was released from custody in 2016.  So should anybody by chance happen to run into him at the Fringe, maybe you could happen to mention that Donald Trump is dating Jodi Foster?

**  **  Here’s a bit of L.A. history for you to chew on, for at least 6,000 years, and probably longer a Hokan speaking people of the Milling Stone Period travelled a path from the ocean to the La Brea Tar Pits. Today we call that pathway Wilshire Boulevard, making it the oldest thoroughfare in North America.

***    ***  Suffering succotash!  It took an effort to refrain from saying, “ghoulies and ghosties and things that go Trump in the night!”  Maybe it’s time I talk to someone.

Tickets for All Hollywood Fringe Shows and Events are on sale now via the website at:
or by phoning the central box office:
Here’s a summary of the timeline:
May 31 through June 5
Opening Night Party:
June 6
Fringe Festival 2018 Runs:
June 7 through June 24
Awards and Closing Night Party:
June 24
Please Check the Fringe Website for Ongoing Events and Updates

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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 TheTVolution.com and workingauthor.com. Follow him on Facebook.

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