He was the "Red Diaper Baby" of staunch communist parents; now he's playing a historical figure all-but-identified with the American flag. Monologist Josh Kornbluth recently transferred his solo, Ben Franklin: Unplugged, from San Francisco's Ira & Leonore Gershwin Theatre to the Z Space Studio. The new run began June 19 and will finish its run there Aug. 16. The show was originally scheduled to run May 26-June 28, just at the Gershwin, and then to July 19 at the Z Space. Kornbluth came to New York attention with his autobiographical Red Diaper Baby, which told of his life as the child of Eugene V. Debs and Emma Goldman fanatics. Kornbluth also relates his own experiences to the life of author/inventor Franklin. (Theatrically, it's been a good year for the discoverer of electricity; he was just on Broadway as one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence in 1776.)
Kornbluth's other pieces include Haiku Tunnel (at Off-Off Broadway's Watermark Theatre in 1995) and The Mathematics of Change with John Bellucci at PS 122. Venue spokesperson Ron Lasko (of the Zeisler Group) notes that Ben Franklin: Unplugged will come to P.S. 122 in spring 1999. Kornbluth has also taken part in several of SF's Solo Mio Festivals.
For tickets and information on Ben Franklin: Unplugged at the Z Space Studio, 1360 Mission St., call (415) 543-9505.
-- By David Lefkowitz