1895 in Galicia, descended from a very religious
family. When he was young he arrived in America,
worked in shops, was associated with a drama
circle, and finally became prompter in
professional Yiddish troupes, at the same time
writing lebensbilds and melodramas.
According to D.
Miller in his book about Yiddish theatre in
Detroit, there there was staged on 6 October
1933 H.'s lay "Nart nit mayn mame", and shortly
thereafter his play "Far ir shvesters glik".
17 June 1934 -- "Di ershte nakht (The First
Night)" (played with
the participation of Moyshe Oysher and Florence
On 9 January
1934, there was staged (for the benefit of
the director Littman) H.'s play, "2000
In October 1937
in New York, there was staged H.'s melodrama
"In a yidisher heym".
On 26 September
1938 in Brooklyn's "Hopkinson" Theatre,
there was staged "Der eybiker nigun
(The Eternal Melody)" by
Hoffenberg and Simon Wolf (with the
participation of Max Wilner, Chana and
Isidor Hollander, Simon Wolf and Jacob
1939 in Chicago, in the "Douglas Park"
Theatre, there was staged H.'s play "Itsik
zukht a kale"
On 9 October
1943 in the Brighton Theatre, New York,
there was staged H.'s musical comedy, "Ikh
lib dikh" (music -- A. Schwartz).
In December 1947
in the Bronx's "Art" Theatre, there was
staged H.'s musical comedy in two acts and
four scenes "Fraylekhe teg", under the
direction of Max Lasky, lyrics and music --
H. also was a stage
director in the McKinley Square Theatre
(directors -- Herman Yablokoff, Leon Schechter
and Max Lasky), and also participated in the
film taken from Yablokoff's play "Papirosen".
H. also wrote a play
"A brivele der mamen", which was performed by
various troupes and was staged in the "Civic
Playhouse" in Los Angeles, as a musical play in
two acts and five scenes by Oscar Ostroff and
Harry Hoffenberg, adapted into English from
Samuel Rudens, music by Samuel Solomon (with
Rose Wallerstein and Abe Lax in the main roles).
On 1 August 1960, H.
passed away in New York.
"Hoffenberg was what
people call 'a quiet person (shtil mentshl)',
and "a meydl fir ales". He served the
theatre as a prompter, role rewriter, stage
director, a portrayer of a role and mainly he
wrote a whole package of plays, some times he
was forced to taken into the play a partner if
it had changed a director of the troupe where
the play was staged. Some plays were later
performed with small changes, in the name of
ostensibly other composers.
He was a little
closed up and didn't speak about himself. He
didn't remain married. It had ordered (geheysn)
that he had in Detroit a brother who was a
shokhet (ritual slaughterer), but all
efforts to learn more about his offspring or
private life have not been successful.
from Zalmen Zylbercweig.
William Edlin --
A melodrame blumr8sht fun "idishen" leben,
"Tog", N. Y., 23 October 1937.
B. Y. Goldstein
-- "Der eybiger nigun", staged in the
Hopkinson Theatre, same, 8 October 1938.
[--] -- [Dr. A.
Margolin] -- "Itsik zukht a kallah" -- in
doglas park teater "idisher kurier",
Chicago, 7 April 1939.
I. L. Wohlman --
"Fraylekhe teg" -- a naye piese in bronsker
art teater, "Tog", N. YU., 19 December 1947.
-- "Arum der velt mit idish teater", New
York, Vol. II, 1969, pp. 279-280.