Forward: Micah Kelber Profiles NY Theater Magnate Erez Ziv

In the Forward this week Micah Kelber profiles New York City theater magnate Erez Ziv. It's a great story about an enterprising person who we know well from Minnesota where he was a diligent student. We returned to New York from the land of the frozen chosen about the same time Erez made the trek east.

Not long ago while walking along 60th street near 5th avenue, we were wondering what Erez was up to these days, whether he was still a carriage master. Now we know. It's clear he's moved on to other challenges. Does our eloquent story author Micah - another diligent student - know Erez from our Minnesota days... we wonder?

We've certainly got connections to this story of inspiring enterprise and accomplishment...
A Horse! A Horse! My Horse for a Theater!

On cold winter New York nights in the late 1990s, Erez Ziv could be seen driving a horse-driven carriage and smiling as big as the moon. A rare Israeli among the otherwise Irish population, he excelled at the act he performed for tourists seeking romantic turns in the park or through Times Square. Regaling them with stories about the city, he made his riders feel like they were in the most important and exciting place in the world. It was an act of generosity, really, because they would have paid just to listen to the clop of the horse beneath them, but he wanted to make their experience extra special.

Before long, Ziv was approached by a friend who dreamed of starting a theater in the East Village. Without any experience in the business (but with a lot in showmanship and customer respect), Ziv traded in his horse and buggy for a partnership in what has become Horse Trade Theater Group. Now solo, he currently owns three theaters — the Kraine, the Red Room and Under St. Marks — and is a stable yet energizing presence in the downtown theater scene...more...

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