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Kearns (Michael) papers
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Clippings, flyers, manuscripts, photographs, programs, posters, scripts, and VHS videotapes of the works, theatrical performances, and appearances of Michael Kearns; a parent, playwright, producer, director, actor, author, and activist, who is openly gay and HIV-positive.
Michael Kearns was born in St. Louis, Missouri, 1950. He attended the Goodman Theater School in Chicago before making his way to Los Angeles in the early 1970s where he has acted on the stage, in television, and in motion pictures. Since the 1980s he has grown into the profession as director, producer, acting teacher, playwright, and author. Hollywood's first openly gay actor, Kearns has been involved in various theater productions throughout Los Angeles addressing HIV/AIDS while also appearing in mainstream television. In addition to more than a dozen produced plays and solo pieces including The Truth Is Bad Enough (1983), Intimacies (1989), More Intimacies (1990), Rock (1992), Attachments (1996), Tell-Tale Kisses (1998), Make Love, Not War (2005), and Once upon a Time in South Africa (2007), his writings have appeared in a wide variety of publications, including the Los Angeles Times, LA Weekly and Advocate. He has authored seven books: T-Cells & Sympathy, Acting = Life, Getting Your Solo Act Together, The Truth is Bad Enough, The Solo Performer's Journey, The Drama of AIDS, and Life Expectancies. He received the 2002 Playwright’s Arena Award for Outstanding Contribution to Los Angeles Theater acknowledging three decades of his work as an actor, writer, producer, director, teacher, and fundraiser. In addition to his artistic contributions Kearns has been honored for his philanthropic endeavors by numerous organizations. Among his philanthropic accomplishments was the creation of Southland Theater Artists Goodwill Event (STAGE), which since 1984 has raised millions of dollars for HIV/AIDS services and charities throughout Southern California.
15.5 Linear Feet 10 archive cartons, 6 archive boxes, 5 flat archive boxes, and 1 archive shoebox
All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the ONE Archivist. Permission for publication is given on behalf of ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives at USC Libraries as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.
The collection is open to researchers. There are no access restrictions.