Rado, Reno and Erin the Red: The Theater for the New City was the place to be this past weekend for an exciting and dizzying smorgasbord of incredible performances. We stopped by the East Village venue on Saturday night, and were lucky enough to see James Rado, co-author of “Hair,” performing the American premiere of the song “Hippie Life.” The number never made it into the groundbreaking ’60s musical’s American production but was done in the European tour. Rado was joined by a crew of cavorting flower children onstage, and they all, of course, grooved to “Aquarius / Let the Sunshine In” for the finale. Reno — accompanied by cute canine sidekick Edie — provided some sharp comic relief. She savaged country life, plus related how she recently went out and personally calmed traffic near the Holland Tunnel after police declined to respond, saying it wasn’t their job.
Torch singer (and Marilyn Monroe performer) Louisa Bradshaw wowed, hitting all the right notes.
Morton Millen, a singer / songwriter from the East Village by way of England, wearing a snazzy white suit and hat reminiscent of a better-dressed Boss Hogg, played some beautiful songs on guitar accompanied by Ben Shapiro improvising runs on electric guitar.
The gothic group Ondyne’s Demise enveloped the audience in entrancing dark melodies as Erin The Red mesmerized with sultry fire dances. Inma Heredia’s flamenco comedy was both hilarious and sensuous, while — in shades or Daniel Rakowitz — Rhonda Hansome told a story about how her mom convinced her to eat a stew allegedly made of her husband. Crystal Field, the theater’s artistic director, shared emceeing duties.
D.l. donnybrook: Village activist/psychologist Gil Horowitz recently announced that he intends to challenge incumbent Arthur Schwartz for Democratic district leader in this fall’s upcoming election. Speaking to us a couple of weeks ago after the community forum on the new 75 Morton St. middle school, Horowitz proclaimed there are “1,000 reasons not to vote for Arthur Schwartz” — which he’ll get into in more depth as the campaign progresses. Plugging his cred as a gay activist, Horowitz said he was at “the second night” of the Stonewall Riots, and has been in the Village for 60 years. Also, he said, if elected, he’d make a great team with Keen Berger, the Village’s female district leader. “We’re both psychologists,” he noted. Also, Horowitz warned, that while he was going easy on Schwartz for the moment, he would definitely “go negative” later and get down and dirty. All that said, things got off to a pretty rocky start for Horowitz last week when the Village Independent Democrats club voted to endorse Schwartz for re-election. The tally was 13 for Schwartz, 9 for no endorsement and 0 for Horowitz. Apparently, Horowitz’s pledge to rein in the negativity didn’t last very long. “V.I.D. endorsed me despite a blistering negative attack from Gil,” Schwartz told us afterward. One of the upstart’s main attack points is a comment he claims Schwartz made at a meeting of the Village Reform Democratic Club about “six lesbians.” Basically, he alleges that Schwartz said he could easily find a number of candidates to run against Assemblymember Deborah Glick, Schwartz’s political nemesis. But the district leader vehemently denies uttering it. “I welcome the challenge,” Schwartz said of Horowitz. “I have been on the frontline of numerous Village battles for 24 years, from Hudson River Park and funding local parks to fighting inappropriate development, keeping a Costco off of 14th St. and gaining a Y, returning the newsstand to Jerry Delakas at Astor Place, and on and on. Of late, I have gotten two seniors out of nursing homes that they didn’t belong in and am suing the Catholic Church to keep Nazareth Nursery School in Chelsea open. Perhaps most importantly, I was a core member of Zephyr Teachout’s team; I was her treasurer. Gil is a nice guy and has almost always been a supporter, but I don’t think he can touch my record.” Horowitz conceded that Schwartz is a “brilliant” attorney. “I do not question your brilliance — nor mine,” he told Schwartz. Horowitz claims that Berger recently asked him to withdraw from the race, but he declined. He declared, “As Herman Gerson, former district leader, often says: ‘Let the voters decide.’ ”