Clayton’s Corner: Steve Ben-Israel in Hospice

Posted on: May 31st, 2012 at 10:30 am by

Clayton Patterson shares the following depressing email he received regarding the health of prominent local elder statesman Steve Ben-Israel.

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I am sad to let you know that Steve Ben Israel is in hospice at home. I don’t think he will be speaking much on the phone so please send him all your good wishes for his peaceful transition.

For many years Steve Ben Israel was a leading actor with The Living Theatre, touring the United States, Europe, North Africa and Brazil. He’s a poet and a comedian, and he’s a fixture in this town. A 2007 Obie Award winner, Steve recently performed Frederick Rzewski’s Attica at Carnegie Hall.

Not much else is known about the situation.

Steve Ben-Israel is Brooklyn-bred and originally hit the Greenwich Village scene in the 1950s. The seventy-four-year-old was a fixture at Commons, Bitter End , Café Wha and the Gaslight, meeting Dave Van Ronk, Lou Gossett Jr., Gary Davis, Paul Stookey, Dylan and Lenny Bruce.

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