“After spending more than a decade in a clumsy tango with my fringe career and my mainstream career, AIDS erupted: the catalyst for me to define myself and begin a journey to achieving an artistry that would resound beyond the soundstages and backlots of Hollywood, embracing a world full of infinite stories.”
In The Drama of AIDS: My Lasting Connection with Two Plays That Survived the Plague, Michael Kearns weaves a remarkable tapestry that casts the theatre as a metaphor for how life unfolds in ways that are both beautiful and theatrical. Kearns shares the real, uncensored story of his intimate relationship with two plays—James Carroll Pickett’s Dream Man and Robert Chesley’s Jerker—a relationship that has spanned more than twenty years.
First and foremost, Kearns writes about the theatre and its transformative powers. His is a book about putting on a show; it is a book about loss and love; it is a book about being an openly gay and publicly HIV-positive artist during the years when AIDS has unabatedly affected the world stage, literally and figuratively. It is a book about the brotherhood that the theatre engenders. The Drama of AIDS is also about immortality; how memory lives in the theatre and can be gracefully passed from one generation to another. About life in the theatre—and life, period.