Lives in the Yiddish Theatre
SHORT BIOGRAPHIES OF THOSE INVOLVED IN THE Yiddish THEATRE
aS DESCRIBED IN zALMEN zYLBERCWEIG'S "lEKSIKON FUN YIDISHN TEATER"

1931-1969
 

Hillel Leyb Epstein
 

 

E. was born in 1879 in Berdichev, Ukraine, to poor parents. He learned in the local Talmud Torah. At age eleven he was for a short time a choir boy with Nisan Belzer. For several years he learned in a yeshiva, but due to the death of his father he had to become a tradesman. During military service in Warsaw he had the opportunity to [visit] the Yiddish theatre, and he had been so excited from this, that he returned home from military service and organized a dramatic circle that put on several productions with E. as manager and prompter.

Due to revolutionary activity he had to in 1911 immigrate to Canada (Toronto), where he entered into work in a factory. Soon however he became known to the Yiddish troupe (with Mr. and Mrs. Kroner at the top), and there he became a prompter and role rewriter, later a prompter in the Franklin Theatre in Philadelphia, then again in Toronto, Detroit, Cleveland, Chicago and New York.

Working in Yiddish theatre in Detroit and Chicago, E. wrote several tseyt-bilder ("time pictures"), which were staged there. In 1928 in Philadelphia there was produced E.'s pla "Dos harts fun a gengster", which in June 1928 was produced by Joseph Kessler in London, and on 20 October 1931 by Sam Gertler in New York's National Theatre, under the name "Korbones fun lebn".

E.'s daughter, Sara, acts on the Yiddish stage.


M. E.


 

 

 

 


 

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Adapted from the original Yiddish text found within the  "Lexicon of the Yiddish Theatre" by Zalmen Zylbercweig, Volume 2, page 1588.
 

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