WHIM – Hell is Other Barnyard Creatures

By Ernest Kearney  —  On September 19, 1783, the Montgolfier brothers inaugurated the French ballooning craze.  Soon, there would be women astride horseback floating over the French countryside and even a duel fought by two antagonists from their separate Montgolfier-style hot air balloons. (The winner shot his foe’s balloon.)

But on a September day, in front of the Palace of Versailles and before a prodigious crowd of onlookers which included King Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette, the first passengers who “slipped the surly bond of earth and danced the skies” were a rooster, a duck and a sheep.

As presented by La Compagnie de la Basse-Cour Royale (The Royal Farmyard Theatrical Company) Vincent X. Kirsch’s re-telling of the “small step for a rooster” moment comes across like a mish-mash of No Exit, Animal Farm and Night at the Opera

Justin Huen (who also directs) aptly portrays Coq the know-it-all Rooster, Dana Schwartz is delightful as Canard the ostentatious duck and Robert Paterno handles the role of Mouton the sheep with aplomb.

This farmyard trio, through the magic of double casting, is joined by members of the Royal court and peasantry; all of whom share, in common, a self-obsession that, completely, blinds them to the wonder and the significance of the event in which they are all a part of. 

All in all, Whim is a delightful little farce that suffers somewhat from a venue that swallows sound thus muddling the rapid-fire text at times; otherwise it is a certified audience pleaser.



Playing During the Hollywood Fringe Festival 2024



916 N. Formosa Ave


Saturday June 22 2024, 9:00 PM | 1hr

Saturday June 29 2024, 11:00 PM | 1hr

Sunday June 30 2024, 4:00 PM | 1hr


For Additional Information Go To www.hollywoodfringe.org


Ernest Kearney - author

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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