Lives in the Yiddish Theatre


Yekutiel Rutenberg


R. was born in Vilna, Polish Lithuania. He completed a real gymnasium. He began to act in Yiddish theatre at the end of his twentieth or at the start of the thirtieth year. In 1936, together with his wife Minnie Boyrns, he acted in the Yiddish Folks Theatre (Buzgan, Rivka Schiller, the Nathan family, Lisa Shlosberg, Chaim Nisentsveyg, Mietek Rotshteyn, Yakov Kurlender et al) in Lemberg, then in Vilna, later with Dzigan and Shumacher. In 1939 again he was with Dzigan and Shumacher in Vilna.

During the outbreak of the Second World War he went away to the Soviet Union, and there became sick and was killed in Vilna. The troupe that acted there now went off to Bialystok, which became the base for the Yiddish troupes. His wife, who was with the troupe in Bialystok, came in [iuln im zen] and returned to traveling.

When R. already was feeling better and wanted to travel to his wife in Bialystok, an epidemic broke out, and people were no longer leaving from the city. Meanwhile Vilna was captured from the Germans and he had, as the other Yiddish population had to, go into the ghetto. A woman, who was saved from the Hitler hell, had later told his wife that there he had given over him his things before led away to the gas ovens. Other versions said that he together with Khatriel Broyda and Shapiro were killed in Klage, near Riga.

Sh. Katsherginski in his book "The Destruction of Vilna" writes:

"Young actor. Together with the known Vilna popular Berl Katsherginski were led away for "Keylim" to Riga, then in Dundage (Latvia). The 8th of August 1944 he was brought to Stuthof, from there to Koenigsberg. He was killed on 27 January 1945 by the Baltic, together with the actors Broyda, Shapiro."

M. E. from Mini Boyns.

Sh. Katsherginski -- "The Destruction of Vilna", New York, 1947, pp. 229-230.






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Adapted from the original Yiddish text found within the  "Lexicon of the Yiddish Theatre" by Zalmen Zylbercweig, Volume 5, page 4092.

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