to the Yiddish Art Theatre where he played the
role of "gravedigger'" in "A Faraway Corner,"
"the grandfather" in "The Blacksmith's
daughter", "Koltun" in "The Great Prize", "the
father" in "Motke the Thief", "
"Nadziratel" in "Seven Who Were Hanged" and "the
waiter" in "The Inspector General."
In 1924 Strassberg
accompanied the Yiddish Art Theatre to Europe
where he performed in the silent film "Yizkor"
[Remembrance] by Harry Sackler.
In 1925 Strassberg
joined the Hebrew Actors' Union, again performed
in the Yiddish Art Theatre and participated with
Maurice Schwartz in the silent film "Broken
Hearts" by Z. Libin.
Strassberg performed in English, with Edward G.
Robinson, in the play, "We Americans" and
afterwards with Muni Weisenfreund [Paul Muni] in
the same play. In 1927 he performed, in English,
in "Welcome Stranger" in the lead role of
Isidore Solomon with Mildred Leaf and Charles
Eliot and in "Kosher Kitty Kelly" with Mildred
He returned to the
Yiddish Art Theatre and continued appearing
there until 1929. In 1930 he toured with Jacob
Ben Ami and appeared in his repertoire, as "the
father" in "Green Fields" and "director" in
"Samson and Delilah." He stayed over in Los
Angeles for a few months and organized a folk
theatre with Tenenholtz and Zelaza, where they
produced "Income" and "A Faraway Corner." He
performed in English in "Spring Song" with Vera
Gordon and Jean Arthur. Returning to New York,
Strassberg performed in Moshe Richter's Odeon
Theatre where he played comic character roles in
plays by Gordin, Libin and Richter.
Strassberg performed in Boris Thomashefsky's
repertoire at the Brooklyn Lyric Theatre and
also appeared with him in the talking film " Bar
Mitzvah." Strassberg also produced and played
the lead in Leyb Malakh's play, "Leybele tentser"
in Philadelphia. During the 1932-1933 season,
Strassberg returned to the Yiddish Art Theatre
and played the "Lizhiner Rebbe" in "Yoshe
and later toured with the troupe in Western
Europe. At the same time Strassberg tried his
hand at sculpture and created a collage of
characters from "Yoshe Kalb." (Presented by the
artist to YIVO in New York). Later, he sculpted
an entire group of Jewish characters. In 1933
Strassberg again performed in English, in
"Spring Song" in New York, with Frances Larrimore, Helen Zelinskaya, and Sam Levene.
In 1935 Strassberg
joined the Federal Theatre Project, and played
the role of "Grandpa", in English, in Peretz
Hirshbein's "The Deserted Inn", and in Clifford
Odets' "Awake and Sing" with Winston Sherman and
Anna Appel. In 1936 Strassberg played the title
role, in English, in "Professor Mamlock" by
Friedrich Wolf and also played in the film,
"Where is My Child?" with Celia Adler.
In 1938 Strassberg again appeared with the Yiddish Art Theatre in
"Brothers Ashkenazi", "Three Cities," and in the
film "The Cantor's Son" with Moishe Oysher.
Later he appeared in the Second Avenue Theatre
in the Yiddish version of "The Men in White"
(directed by Herman Yablokoff). In 1939 he
appeared with Samuel Goldenberg in the National
Theatre in "The Man of Tomorrow" and in the
Yiddish films, "Tuviya the Milkman" with Maurice
Schwartz, and "Overture to Glory" with Moishe
Oysher and "The Power of Life" with Michal
During the Second
World War, Strassberg left the theatre to work
in a munitions factory. In 1944 he returned to
the theatre and became the stage manager of the
Folk Theatre (under the direction of Jacob Ben
Ami and Joseph Green). Then he returned to the
Yiddish Art Theatre where, in addition to acting
he also became the technical stage director. In
1949 he appeared in the English language film
"With These Hands" with Same Levene and Arlene
Francis, and in 1950 in "The Goldbergs" with
Molly Berg. In 1950 he came to Los Angeles with
the Yiddish Art Theatre where he remained for a
few years. He opened a variety store and
performed with local groups in "The Blacksmith's
Daughters" and "A Faraway Corner." In 1953 he
performed in Y. Elkin's comedy, " Help Doctor!".
Then he moved to the Civic Theatre where he
performed with Maurice Schwartz, in English, in
"Take Now Thy Son" by Camille Honig and
afterwards in "It's Hard to Be a Jew", and " Mr.
Blank's Family" by Sholem Aleichem and in
Gordin's "God Man and Devil." Later, in the same
theatre he appeared in the English-language
comedy repertoire with Leo Fuchs while
performing, at the same time in Yiddish with
Celia Silver in Zylbercweig's dramatization of
Fanny Edelman's "Court Stories."
In 1955 Strassberg
returned to New York and performed in the
Yiddish Art Theatre as both an actor and
technical director of L. Trayster's "The
Shepherd King." He also made the models and
decorations for this play. In 1956 he appeared
on Broadway with Paul Douglas, in English, in
Arnold Schulman's " A Hole in the Head." In 1958
he went back to Los Angeles with Maurice
Schwartz where he made the designs and
decorations for the Ivor Theatre for Moshe Dluzshnovsky's "The Lonely Ship" where he
appeared as "wine steward". He then went to the
Civic Playhouse where he appeared as "Brother
Max" in "A Hole in the Head" with Jesse White.
During the summer
months of 1946, 1947, 1948 and 1955, Strassberg
worked at the Unzer Camp of the Farband as an actor
and designer. He often appeared on the Yiddish
radio, WEVD, and also on English language radio,
MCA, in the series "Goldstein and Bernstein,"
with Mark Schweid and later with Zvi Scooler.
Sidney Gordin (Hayim
Ehrenreich) , "Through a jest a Yiddish actor
becomes a sculptor" , Forward, N.Y. 22
Wolf Mercur, "Merkuyozn",
Philadelphia, 1948, pp 136-139.
Y. Levit, "Two
actors of Art Theatre settle in Los Angeles and
go into business", Forward, N.Y. 22