Two Stars of Hair Are Back In Show As Feud Is Ended
by Sam Zolotow
The New York Times - April 18, 1969

The week-old feud involving Gerome Ragni and James Rado, authors and leading performers in Hair, and Michael Butler, producer of the musical hit, was settled yesterday.  This was confirmed last night by Mr. Ragni and Mr. Rado in their dressing room at the Biltmore Theater, and by Mr. Butler, who was there, too.

As a result, Mr. Ragni and Mr. Rado appeared in last night's performance and their rights as authors were restored.  They had threatened to revoke Mr. Butlers rights in Hair, and have them revert to the creators.  A plan to submit the case to arbitration next week was dropped.

The dispute began after the April 9 evening performance when the authors were barred by Mr. Butler from entering the theater as either authors or players.  The producer charged that the collaborators were making unauthorized revisions and that mr. ragni, as a performer, had strayed from the script with improvisations.

The overture for a settlement came from Mr. Butler. he had invited the authors and the show's composer, galt MacDermot, to meet with him yesterday afternoon at the home of a friend, peter yarrow, of Peter, Paul, and Mary, the folk singers.

The authors suggested to Mr. Butler that the conference take place at the Sheep Meadow in Central Park near the zoo.  They met there in the late afternoon and resolved their differences during a two hour session.

Mr. Ragni termed it  "a good healthy and honest confrontation."

Later, mr. Butler was asked why he had barred the authors when the changes he had complained about had been inserted five months ago in the Los Angeles production, in which they appeared.  He said he was not opposed to alterations to improve the show, but objected to not being notified.  Some of the new material was used last night.

Copyright The New York Times Company. All rights reserved.

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