Theater Talk: Activist Larry Kramer dead at 84; Lorna C. Hill is going home

Jun 5, 2020

Playwright (THE NORMAL HEART), novelist, in-your-face AIDS activist Larry Kramer, described as "one of America's most valuable troublemakers" passed away last week. During the 1980s he criticized Ronald Reagan, Dr. Anthony Fauci (they later became friends), as well as gay culture and behavior. He was a major influence on Tony Kushner to write ANGELS IN AMERICA. In other AIDS related news


Larry Kramer at home in 1989, a year after he learned that he was H.I.V. positive.
Credit Sara Kurlwich in The New York Times

a YouTube event, airing a 2013 fundraiser starring Chita Rivera for "Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS" last week raised over $100,000 for COVID-19 relief. It turns out those legs "have legs!" (Earlier in the month, Broadway Cares had donated $5 million for COVID-19 Actor's Fund relief). Source: https://playbill.com/ which is a good place to go for theatrical updates at any time.

Arts organizations continue to offer on-line entertainment, incuding last week a 30th anniversary event for MusicalFare, the third installment of "That's Shawbiz" involving many of the actors who would have been onstage this summer in GYPSY, and the final installment of the Alleyway Theatre's "Buffalo Quickies" which was the Maxim Mazumdar Award winning entry for 2020. Those plays are all available for viewing either at the website, or, as is proving more nimble and useful, all the venues' Facebook pages.

Speaking of fundraising, "Bengala," Buffalo State College’s annual Foundation Scholarship Gala—this year known as "Bengalathon"— was held in a virtual format on Sunday, May 31, and although obviously hampered by logistics on the other hand was able to avoid the usual costs (catering, etc.) associated with a gala. 

Lorna C. Hill, founder of Ujima Theatre Company, has decided to be home with friends and family.
Credit Facebook

And friends and family of Lorna C. Hill, founder of Ujima Theatre Company, have mounted a GoFundMe campaign titled "Lifting Lorna Home" as Lorna, with cancer, has made the decision live out her final days at home.

Click here to listen to Paul Robeson sing "Going Home" (melody by Antonin Dvorak, lyrics by William Arms Fisher).

Going home, going home
I am going home
Quiet like, some still day
I am going home

It's not far, just close by
Through an open door
Work all done, care laid by
Never fear no more

Mother's there expecting me
Father's waiting too
Lots of faces gathered there
All the friends I knew
I'm just going home

No more fear, no more pain
No more stumbling by the way
No more longing for the day
Going to run no more

Morning star light the way
Restless dreams all gone
Shadows gone, break of day
Real life has begun

There's no break, there's no end
Just living on
Wide awake, with a smile
Going on and on, going on and on

Going home, going home
I am going home
Shadows gone, break of day
Real life has begun
I'm just going home