Steve Ben Israel, a Living Theater Performance Artist, Dies at 74
by Paul Vitello
The New York Times
June 16, 2012
The young Steve Ben Israel was a longhaired, card-carrying pacifist, anarchist, comedian and performance artist who toured during the 1960s and “™70s with the Living Theater, an avant-garde repertory group. He had leading roles in many of the company”™s cheerfully seditious productions, including “Paradise Now,” in which the cast, naked, exhorted audience members to seize the theater, form anarchist cells and overthrow the government.
Making anarchist performance art was a hard way to earn a living even back then, when millions of young Americans were dabbling in revolutionary ideas. But Mr. Israel, who died of lung cancer on June 4 in Manhattan at 74, kept at it for the rest of his life, friends said “” a one-man revolutionary cell delivering jokes, stories and poems aimed at undermining capitalist society. He did not advocate overthrowing the government much anymore. He was trying, he told people, to foment a mass uprising of compassion. Continue reading “Steve Ben Israel, Actor, Satirist and Friend… RIP”