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This week in City Paper History

Broadway, film and television actor Anthony Rapp isn’t a Pittsburgher. But the talented actor — a star from the original cast of the musical and film version of Rent (and who played Daryl Coopersmith in Adventures in Babysitting, a film beloved by Gen-Xers everywhere) — is no stranger to performing here, particularly at City Theatre. Rapp turned heads in 2003 when he took on the title role in Hedwig and the Angry Inch and turned in a nationally acclaimed performance. A year later, he returned to the venue to work on his brother Adam’s play Gompers. Then in 2012, Rapp returned to City Theatre to portray Andy Warhol in Pop!, a musical about the day Warhol was shot. All great credentials, but why is this a moment in CP history? Because he was featured on the cover of Issue 18 in 2004 and then again in issue 18 in 2012. Need more proof of the stars aligning? Further research shows that Adam Rapp debuted his new play, Blackbird, at City Theatre in 2002. No Rapp on the cover this time, but the theatre’s artistic director, Tracy Brigden, was. Wanna take a wild guess what issue number that was? Consider your mind blown!

Road Music (April 29, 1992)

Writer William Loeffler III relayed the tales of several orchestral musicians who made their living traveling the country playing events. One of those stories involves trombonist Bob Moir, who once played a campaign event for Sen. Teddy Kennedy, in Boston. Kennedy stiffed Moir and the rest of the quartet out of $300 bucks. “I wrote a letter to Sen. Kennedy. I even told him I voted for him and I still didn’t get paid.”

Fifteen Minutes and Then Some (May 4, 1994)

At this point, The Andy Warhol Museum is as much a part of the city’s cultural scene as Heinz Hall or the Carnegie Natural History Museum. But it had to start somewhere and that date would be May 13, 1994. To mark the occasion, CP featured Warhol on the cover and produced a slate of stories on the new museum, as well as Warhol’s net worth, his legacy and even his relationship with music: “He couldn’t be said to love music. It was more an infatuation, marked by brief, intense affairs.”

What Fake Young People Want (May 7, 2003)

There was a time when the burning question on everyone’s mind was: “How do we keep young people in Pittsburgh?” Leaders would constantly ask the question and there would be focus groups of young people to find out what they desired from Pittsburgh. Well, CP was no different, and this issue featured a panel of young residents under the headline: “What Young People Want.” The young professionals were pointed and very frank. “As an artist, I don’t vote. I don’t need to. It’s my job to comment on society, not participate in it,” said Philip Wight, a 27-year-old who recently moved back to the area. And what set our panel discussion apart from all the others? We made it up. Every bit of it was concocted by editor Andy Newman and several staffers, including current staffers Al Hoff and Bill O’Driscoll. Hoff recalls the issue garnered a lot of angry letters — half from people pissed off by the shallow comments made by the panelists and the other half pissed off because the shallow panelists weren’t real.

Doggone Ridiculous (May 3, 2006)

In 2005, during the protest of a military recruitment center, Carole Wiedmann, of Sewickley, was bitten on the rear by a police dog as she tried to disperse as officers ordered. She was then arrested and charged with failure to disperse. Later that year, a city magistrate bounced the charges from court, and Wiedmann prepared to file a federal lawsuit. In this issue, Marty Levine wrote about the police, who in a nearly unprecedented move, re-filed charges against Wiedmann. Her attorney says it was in retaliation for the lawsuit. The charges would again be dismissed, and Wiedmann would reach a financial settlement with the city.

Breakfast With DeNucci   (May 2, 2012)

Charlie Deitch, who’s always had a penchant for writing about professional wrestling, sat down with Pittsburgh wrestling legend Dominic DeNucci, now 84, a week before he was to be inducted into the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame. The piece told the story of a frenetic 90-minute breakfast at a suburban Denny’s and gave insight into an Italian immigrant and furniture upholsterer who found fame in professional wrestling and a quiet life in the area.

Hands off Rafah protest in East Liberty
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Hands off Rafah protest in East Liberty

By Mars Johnson