Lives in the Yiddish Theatre
Volume 8



Mihai Ciuca


C. was born on 26 July 1938 in Bucharest, Romania.

He studied at the Institute of  Theatre and Film "I. L. Caragiale”, graduating in 1960. His class professor was Beate Fredanov.

C. first arrived on the stage in 1960 at the Theatre Constantin Tănase in a "review spectacle ".

C. has acted in many plays:

  • Napoleon -  “Nuntă cu miliar… dar”, by Dinu Grigorescu, director Constantin Dinischiotu - 1997

  • Richard  -  “Şi miniştrii calcă strâmb”, by Ray Cooney, director Constantin Dinischiotu - 1998

  • Gherlach - “ Uite tata, nu e tata”, by Franz Arnold and Ernst Bach, director Ion Lucian - 2000

  • Laurenţiu Patraulea  - “O farmacie cu nebuni”, adaptation after Eugène Labiche, director Harry Eliad - 2001

  • Poliţistul, Ringmaster - “The Book of Ruth”, by Mario Diament, director Moshe Yassur – 2002, performed in Yiddish with Romanian subtitles


  • Richard Egli  - “Povestea unei bănci particulare” (Frank al V-lea) by Friedrich Dürrenmatt, director Kincses Elemer – 2002, performed in Yiddish with Romanian subtitles

  • Maiorul - “ Holiday Games” by Mihail Sebastian, director Mihai Manolescu - 2003

  • Lehman - “ Week-end în paradis” by Franz Arnold and Ernst Bach, directorMatei Alexandru - 2003

  • Micu Braun - “ Foc în Calea Văcăreşti” by Dorel Dorian after I. Peltz, director Bogdan Drăgulescu - 2005

  • Nebunul - “ Estera” musical by Octavian Sava and Marius Ţeicu, director Dominic Dembinski - 2005

  • Marusia - “ The Novel of a Businessman” musical by Harry Eliad after Sholem Aleichem – 2006, performed in Yiddish with Romanian subtitles

  • Contele Mancini - “ He Who Gets Slapped” by Leonid Andreyev, director Kincses Elemer - 2006

  • Chaim - “ Wedding and Divorce” musical, from Sholem Aleichem, director  Dan Tudor - 2008 performed in Yiddish with Romanian subtitles

  • Nathan - “Nathan The Wise” by G. E. Lessing, director Grigore Gonţa – 2007, performed in German, English, Arabic  Romanian

  • Peţitorul and  Judecătorul  - “ Ghimpl Netotul”  by Isaac Basevis Singer, director Moshe Yassur – 2006, performed in Yiddish with Romanian subtitles

  • Barbu Bănescu - “Carre de aşi cu valet”, by  I. Valjan, director Harry Eliad – 2007, performed in Romanian

  • Rabinul Remuşcare Scrumbie - “ The King of Schnorers” by Israel Zangwill, director Dan Tudor – 2008, performed in Romanian

  • Mordy- “ Three Sisters on Hope Street”  by Diane Samuels and Tracy Ann Oberman, director Grigore Gonţa - 2008

  • Beiriş Visoker and The Circus Director - "The Magician of Lublin” by Isaac Bashevis Singer, director  Cătălina Buzoianu – 2008, performed in Yiddish with Romanian subtitles

  • Leimach  - “Wise Men of Chelm“ by M. Gherşenzon, director Dan Tudor – 2009, performed in Yiddish with Romanian subtitles

  • Gordon – "Key for Two” by  John Chapman and Dave Freeman, director Dan Tudor – 18.12.2010, performed  in Romanian

  • Duvid Gurkiher – "Yiches” by Sholem Asch – director  Andrei Munteanu – 2011, performed in Yiddish with Romanian subtitles

  • Lenglumé – "L’affaire de la Rue Lourcine“ by Eugène Labiche, director Dan Tudor – 2011, performed in Romanian

C. has acted on non-Yiddish stages, such as:

  • Theatre Bulandra  - “ Scandal la Palermo”, after Carlo Goldoni, director: Cătălina Buzoianu (1997)

  • ARCUB - François - “Puşlamaua” by Pierre Chesnot, director George Motoi (2007)

  • Teatrul Valah Giurgiu - Pampon - “D'ale carnavalului” by Ion Luca Caragiale, director Dan Tudor (2009)

C. has participated in various films, such as:

  • “Dacii”, director: Sergiu Nicolaescu - 1967

  • “Mihai Viteazu”, director: Sergiu Nicolaescu - 1971

  • “Secretul lui Nemesis”, director: Geo Saizescu - 1985

  •  “Harababura”, director: Geo Saizescu - 1990

  • “A doua cădere a Constantinopolului”, director: Mircea Mureşan - 1994

C. has been part of various theatre tours:

  • 2009 and 2011 at the Montreal International Theatre Festival, Canada

  • 2010 Nine Gates Festival of Czech-German-Jewish culture, Prague

Theatre critiques about his theatre performances:

About “Nathan The Wise”: 

“Cornel Ciucă, Mihai Ciucă and Marius Călugăriţa (...) performs with talent in difficult roles, as exponents of three cultures (from Andrei Băleanu, Deutsche Welle, 2008).

‘’The audience  is seduced by Mihai Ciuca’s entries on stage. He is the nice, good, credulous (or maybe intentionally naive) Mordy (…), (by  Natalia Stancu, The Jewish Reality, 2009 about ‘’Three Sisters on Hope Street’’.

‘’The success of the performance replenishes through the notable showing of Miihai Ciucă.‘’(by Natalia Stancu, the Jewish Reality, 2010, about ‘’The Magician of Lublin’’.

"Both lovers, loving special rituals and being satisfied by their erotic fantasies. Both passionate by sadomasochistic pleasures. Gordon, performed by  Mihai Ciucă, the publicity agent who gives to his mistress eggs until satiety (from the hen at his farm) seems to belong, as an animalistic archetype (ancestral sau imaginary) by the world of flying. He is spoiled with appellations like  “chick”, “ duck “ or ”cock”.  He is sweet, airy, hustler, easy to fool, much too confident in the sinner. “ (by Natalia Stancu, The Jewish Reality, about ‘’How to Seduce Women’’)

“The stage director Dan Tudor succeeds another performance as expert in comedy, with great actors, passionate in a dynamic spontaneous acting. The experienced Mihai Ciucă (Gordon) offers a true recital (…) (by Mircea M. Ionescu, about ’’How to Seduce Women’’)

“The atmosphere stimulates the color, the poetry and the humor of the actors’ performing. (…) Remarkably created by Mihai Ciuca, Linda’s husband is the unprofitable investor, always bustling, always on drifting sands. (…) (by Natalia Stancu, The Jewish Reality, about “How to Seduce Women’’)

In “Wise Men of Chelm “:

 (…) Characters create a beautiful ‘’choir " canceling identity, unifying the reactions, mechanizing gestures. All of them (Mihai Ciucă (…) are moving from interaction to a nervous choreographed dynamic, from mime to dance, from reply to musical expression. (…) (by Natalia Stancu,  The Jewish Reality, 2011)

“Amusing and bubbly -by his acting that insists on automatisms and clownish effects is Mihai Ciucă (...) ” (Natalia Stancu, The Jewish Reality, about Yiches, 2012 )

‘’Through the contrast of  rhythm and sonic evolves Mihai Ciucă (Lenglume), who wakes up heavily from his sleep wonders how did he arrive in his own house, lingeringly groping  in the dark after more others puzzles, more alarming. (by Natalia Stancu, The Jewish Reality, 2012, about ‘’L’affaire de la Rue Lourcine’’)

Sh. E. and Sh. E. from Edith Negulici.






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and with the cooperation of the estate of Zalmen Zylbercweig.

Photograph courtesy of Edith Negulici.

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