Born on 7 December 1897 in
Odessa, Ukraine. Father -- a Chasid. Owner of a
boot-stitching business. He learned in cheders and sang
with cantors. His parents immigrated to Warsaw, Poland
and Y. remained with his grandfather in Brisk, where he
learned in a yeshiva and in various Beit HaMedrashim.
1912 -- he arrived in
Kishinev, Bessarabia, singing with Cantor Fusman, and he
took to performing in Yiddish theatre with "amateurs"
under the direction of Itsele Schwartz, then with
Sadigurski in Fuklman's theatre. 1913 -- returned to
Brisk and organized an amateur group with whom he acted
as the "rabbi" in "The Brothers Lurie", and "Uriel Mazik"
in "God, Man and Devil". With the outbreak of the first
World War, he was sent away to Penza, Russia, later
becoming a soldier who was sent to the Austrian Front.
In the Duna Serdziel (?), he met the late actor Ben Zion
Katz, and with several Yiddish actors organized a troupe
in which Y. acted in main roles in Gordin repertoire.
1918 -- returned to Brisk and directed with a local
dramatic society, where he directed and acted in the
main roles in "Di shkhite", "Di shvueh", "The Jewish
King Lear", "Di gblh", "Tkiet khf", "Dorfsiung", "God of
Vengeance", "Uriel Acosta" and "Der yeshiva bukher".
1921 -- arrived in America,
taking part in episodic roles in the Yiddish Art
Theatre, later as a bass-cantata sang in the chorus in
Yiddish theatres and participated in sporadic
art evenings (Lumet et al). In the 1924-27
seasons, he was again with the Yiddish Art
Theatre. In 1929 -- in the Rolland Theatre with
Misha and Lucy German. At the end of the same
season he was with Menasha Skulnik, the
Hollanders and William Schwartz in the Hopkinson
Theatre, and then in the province. 1930 -- in
Brooklyn's Lyric Theatre with Fishel Knapov.
1931-32 -- in Williamsburg's Amphion Theatre
with Louis Kremer, then in the McKinley Square
Theatre (in the Bronx -- ed.) 1934 --
worked in city Yiddish theatre projects, and was
an assistant "supervisor" for the troupes that
had performed Gordin's "Jewish King Lear" under
the direction of B. Thomashefsky. [The play also
was performed in English, the translation and
direction by Harry Thomashefsky]. 1935-36 --
acted in the revue "Gelebt un gelakht"
(directors Bleich-Scooler-Barzel, for the
Federal Theatre Project). Then he worked with a
part of the actors of the "Vilna Troupe" in
other theatres. 1938 -- performed three times a
week with Boaz Young on a Yiddish radio program.
1939 -- acted in the role of "Rabbi" in the film
"Di kliatshe", from Mendele Mokher Sefarim.
1939-40 -- in the Parkway Theatre with Dinah
Halpern, Bleich, Bardzel and Michael Rosenberg.
1940-41 -- in the (Yiddish) Art Theatre; 1941-42
-- in the Second Avenue Theatre with
Menasha Skulnik, Michal Michalesko and Miriam
Kressyn; 1942-43 -- in the Jolson Theatre with
Molly Picon, and later with the (Yiddish) Art
Theatre across the province. Since 1941 Y. is
the stage director and technical director of the
"Folksbiene", where he has also come to
participate in the productions as an actor.
Y. is a member of
the Yiddish Actors Union.
Boaz Young -- "Meyn
lebn in teater", N. Y., 1950, p. 379.
Y. Wolf -- Der "umbakanter
soldat" fun der folksbine, "The
Daily Morning Journal", N. Y., 25 December 1953.
folksbine", Book of collections, N. Y.,
1955, pp. 76, 130, 158, 182-187.