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TAKING OFF THE GLOVES

Rhoda Herrick, whose eponymous foundation underwrote the commercial Off Broadway transfer of Charles Busch’s “You Should Be So Lucky,” only to see its $400,000 investment go down the toilet when the manager of the Westside Theater invoked the stop clause and kicked out the company when box office receipts dropped, is fighting back. Last week she filed a demand for arbitration, seeking the return of her $400,000, plus unspecified punitive damages, from Westside manager Peter Askin.

In the complaint, Herrick charged that Askin kicked out “Lucky” despite indications that the show was rebounding. He was in cahoots with the producers of David Mamets “The Cryptogram,” she wrote, to make way for that show even prior to the exercise of the stop clause, so as to “accommodate a production by a famous writer in an attempt to receive prestige and curry favor with important and powerful producers.” Sounds like Broadway! At any rate, Askin has maintained he was merely protecting his theater by keeping it booked.

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