Lives in the Yiddish Theatre


Moritz (Moshe) Edelhofer

Born in Mehren. Had a calling as an upholsterer. Later he abandoned his trade and became a restaurateur in Vienna.

E. had partnered with Moshe Sobel (owner of a hat business), and in 1901 brought over from Lemberg to Vienna a Yiddish troupe (Yonah Reyzman, Moshe Herman and Saltshe Veynberg, Sholom Podzamtshe, Leopold and Sara Kaner, wife and husband Klug), where the troupe performed for one-and-a-half years, known as "Di polinishe".

This took away the best powers from Lemberg's Yiddish theatre director Yakov Ber Gimpel who had furthermore directed, that he also arrived in Vienna to compete with E.'s troupe. In the end Gimpel withdrew and E. continued to perform, but already with not the same success as earlier.

The productions of Yiddish theatre in Vienna were there in 1901 after a break of twenty-two years. But now also the police didn't permit the theatre productions, only variety productions, and therefore they had to had to perform each play as a special one-acter. The situation had been encouraged until around 1912, when Moritz Ziegler received in Vienna the first concession in Yiddish theatre.

An interesting description of E.'s theatre, according to Dr. I. Marmorek, in "Jüdischer Volkskalender", Brün, 1902/3, pp. 99-100.

In the later years, E. became a usher/ticket-taker in a Yiddish theatre and sold programs.

According to Jacob Mestel, who thought of E. as a chief ticket-taker in the Yiddish Stefanie Theatre in Vienna (from around 1907 until 1911), and E. was a lover of his profession, had treated his guest with genuine Viennese courtesy (who always seemed strange in Yiddish theatre), and although he was an assimilated Jew, and he had a great love for his "Polish" actors, who were at times engaged with him. They used to shetsn him due to his good treatment, and also used to give him the title of "Herr director".

From E.'s "Di polnishe" put out a large number of actors for the later strongly popular Viennese "Di budapester" (a variety, which performed in a "fareydlt(?)" German dialect), from which several actors (Eisenbach, M. Rott, et al) were later to become prominent German variety players.

M. E. from Yonah Reyzman, Sh. Urich and Sh. E. from Jacob Mestel.

  • Dr. Jacob Shatzky -- Kleyne arbetn tsu der geshikhte fun yidishn teater, "Archive", pp. 498-99.






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Adapted from the original Yiddish text found within the  "Lexicon of the Yiddish Theatre" by Zalmen Zylbercweig, Volume 2, page 1542.

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