himself to the Yiddish
theatre as a manager of his wife's productions. In
1908-9 he managed a London theatre, to which he
gave the name "Lipzin Theatre."
In the summer of 1904
he -- according to Ab. Cahan -- was the issuer of "Di
dramatishe velt," which Jacob Gordin had edited.
Due to bad business from his
theatre, M. on 14 April 1912 committed suicide in New
York, and was buried in Washington Cemetery [in
Ab. Cahan characterized him
this way: "When they speak about Madame Lipzin,
they often mention her husband Michael (Mikhail) Mintz.
An actor he was not; as his wife's manager and
"publicity man," he had however played a role not only
in the development of her career, but also in the
development of Gordin's career. ... He met Madame
Lipzin in New York. He was very violent, but
good-hearted. With an open hand, and with a mass of
energy, he was devoid of a passion, a zealot for his
wife and her theatre interests, and with this devotion,
with his great fire he helped to make a name for her as
well as the plays in which she excelled. And that was
central to Gordin's plays."
His life ambition -- writes
Z. Kornblith -- was to have a theatre where they would
play transparent literary works. He was the most upright
and most passionate follower of Jacob Gordin, and had
laid out many thousands of dollars staging Gordin's
plays one after the other, for half-empty houses till he
had accustomed theatre goers to the best and highest
sort of pleasure that Gordin's plays offer. Apart from
Gordin, he did not recognize any Yiddish author, and
when Gordin passed away, he decided to present in his
theatre the best work of Ibsen, Andreyev and others, and
he hoped that the press would support him and help him
to win over the Yiddish public to the modern, European
drama. However, in this hope he was bitterly
disappointed. Then he threw the press down and began to
shake his hand and not worry anymore about what they
wrote about his theatre. ...A huge, active spirit and a
wonderful power carried the activities and overcame all
of the difficulties. However his But his wildness, and
to a certain degree his eccentric ambitions, had always
undermined everything that he had built with wonderful
energy. ...He hadn't any religion and no God, but he had
a goddess, who was his wife. He shunned her as an
artist. ..In all the twenty years that he had lived with
her, he never for one minute not doubted that she is the
greatest stage artist who the world has possessed."
The actor Morris Moskovitch
has a similar account, which plays under his direction:
"But her husband has Mrs. Lipzin had to make a living
for the success of her career. ...Due to her he used to
read and borrow money and used to maintain a Yiddish
newspaper, and if she could have the unabashed
"publicist." Because of her he also neglected his
business, and the newspapers, which he controlled, like
"Di tsayt," "Yidisher herald." Except for her, nothing
existed for him, and for that reason he later shot
Leon Kobrin writes: "When he
(Mintz) was director of the Thalia Theatre, and he had
brought over Madame Kaminska from Russia, so she should
play in his company, he often was desperate when she
took off in a play. It turned out that she failed, and
he rejoiced for a moment. Because of this, he lost
money, his business was completely gone -- but it didn't
matter to him, though Keni Lipzin would remain the
greatest actress, and not Ester Rokhl Kaminska. ...His
high ideals was in her talent. Under the extreme gravity
and former indignity there lived in him a prestigious
artistic soul. He always yearned for a more beautiful,
even better stage. How he understood it; [He] hired the
best actors, and he was the first to take the
highest-paid Gordin for his plays. But one thing, he
kept it up: his Keni should always stand out among the
actors and in the play. A nit have the short
plays. After Gordin's death, for a certain time, he had
staged in the Lipzin Theatre Solotorefsky's plays, they
had brought in a lot of money. However, he was unhappy,
shot himself, Solotorefsky, the actors and the entire
world. He was simply ashamed to show up to people. ...
he has made better plays again in his theatre. He had
put on Andreyev's plays and more like that. They did not
have any success. But he did not submit. He didn't want
to put on any shund (trashy) plays. And so he
brought his business almost to bankruptcy."
After M.'s death, Keni
Lipzin expressed herself:
"Mintz shot himself out of
fear, due to bankruptcy. Every cent of the ten thousand
dollars of debt, which Mintz had, I will pay. ...With
the death of my husband, Michael Mintz, until I remained
lonesome and lonely. "
Z. Reisen -- "Lexicon
of Yiddish Literature," Vol. 2, pp. 420-21.
Necrology in the New
York Yiddish Press, 15 April 1912.
Z. Kornblith --
Michael Mintz, "Fraye arbeter shtime," N.Y., 20
Keni Lipzin -- The
Theatre Public Here and in the Country," "Di varhayt,"
N.Y., 5 Dec. 1915.
-- "My Life Story," N.Y., 1916, p. 237.
J. Entin -- Madame
Lipzin and the Golden Epoch of Yiddish Theatre in
America, "Di varhayt," N.Y., 13 Oct. 1918.
A.M. Rubin -- A
gutmutiger, naiver un tsorndiger ferleger, "Der
tog," N.Y., 23 Nov. 1924.
Leon Blank -- "Erinerungen
fun a yidishn dramaturg," N.Y., 1925, pp. 145-162.
B. Kalich --
[Memoirs], "Der tog," N.Y., 24 Oct. 21925.
Ab. Cahan -- "In di
mitele yorn," N.Y., 1928, pp. 289, 353.
Y.L. Fein -- Di
lebensgeshikhte fun dem yidish-englishn shoyshpiler
morris moshkovitsh, "Forward," N.Y., 26 Dec. 1929.