ERC > LEXICON OF THE YIDDISH THEATRE  >  VOLUME 5  >  PEPI URIKH


Lexicon of the Yiddish Theatre
BIOGRAPHIES OF THOSE WHO WERE ONCE INVOLVED IN THE Yiddish THEATRE;
aS FEATURED IN zALMEN zYLBERCWEIG'S  "lEKSIKON FUN YIDISHN TEATER"


VOLUME 5: THE KDOYSHIM (MARTYRS) EDITION, 1967, Mexico City

 


 

Pepi Urikh
(Pearl)
 

Born on 3 August 1908 in Lemberg, Eastern Galicia. Her parents were the Yiddish actors Shamai and Tsile Urikh.

Pepi completed a German-Polish school in Krakow.

She began to act in 1927, together with her parents, in the troupe of Berl Hart. Later she joined the revue theatre "Azazel," which was under the leadership of Joseph Strugatch.

In 1928 she married actor Jacob Mandelblit, and together with him entered into the "Vilna Troupe" to act in Warsaw, then with Lidia Pototcka went on tour across the Polish province, later for a time acting in Lodz's "Ararat" under the leadership of Moshe Broderzon. From there she was engaged in Riga's "Meutim Theatre," where she played with Zygmunt Turkow, Isaac Samberg, Sh. Kutner et al. In 1932 she acted in Warsaw's "Kaminska Theatre," with the guest-starring Berta Gerstin and Ludwig Satz, then with other troupes.

Zygmunt Turkow notes that when he had played in Lemberg, he had met there an entire range of actors who were new to him, among them Urikh with his wife 'and their] "very pretty daughter Pepi Urikh, who with time became a good actress and participated, together with her husband Jacob Mandelblit, during the last season of "VIKT." And that in 1939, before Turkow had prepared himself for the "VIKT" season in Warsaw, organizing his tour across the province with a dreyferzanendiker play "Soydes fun der groyser shtot," adapted by Yitzhak Turkow, with the

 


 participation of Zygmunt Turkow, Jacob Mandelblit and his beautiful, talented wife Pepi Urikh."

Jonas Turkow portrays her last tragic period:

"In the year 1938 Jacob Mandelblit and Pepi Urikh received a contract for America and to herewith travel there. However, they did not receive the American visa, and so they had to remain in Poland. Pepi Urikh was very much a fine actress. She acted in the dramas and operettas. She was very beautiful, had a bright face and possessed a swag with grace and femininity. She captured affects on the stage, just as in life. In the year 1938 Pepi Urikh and Jacob Mandeblit became engaged through Zygmunt Turkow in his "VIKT" benefit. Pepi Urikh especially excelled in Goldfaden's "Shulamis" in the role of "Abigail."

When the war broke out, Jacob Mandeblit and Pepi Urikh fled from Warsaw and killed in Lemberg. (They were supposed to open, with the permission of the German might, a Yiddish revue, but at the last minute the Germans sent their regrets and took back their permission). Pepi's husband was away working as a painter in Yanover Forest, in order to be included in the category of inutslekhe Jews, and after work he used to return to the ghetto with the workers. (Pepi was with child, who was desired together with her parents, the actors Shemai and Tsile Urikh, who had a paper from the German might, that she was released from work, on the basis of her husband's 'oysveyzn,' having had already no "right to life." When the great August "action" broke out in Lemberg in the year of 1942, she kept herself in a cellar, behind coals.) Pepi Urikh with child remained in the home. When the Germans had filled the designated contingent of four hundred Jews, they were not counted with the outgoing "aroysveyzn" and took every available Jew. Thus Pepi Urikh was taken together with child and was sent away to the Belzac death camp. After the "action", when the old Urikhs came out of their hiding spots, they no longer found at home their daughter and grandchild...."


Sh. E.

  • Jonas Turkow -- "Extinguished Stars," Buenos Aires, 1953, Vol. 2, pp. 80-88.

  • Zygmunt Turkow -- "Di ibergerisene skufh," Buenos Aires, 1961, pp. 131, 447.

 

 

 


 

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Adapted from the original Yiddish text found within the  "Lexicon of the Yiddish Theatre" by Zalmen Zylbercweig, Volume 5, page 3718.
 

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