Lives in the Yiddish Theatre


Harris Stambulka

Born on 15 July 1876 in Warsaw, Poland. Father -- owner of a print shop. He learned in a cheder and sang in synagogue together with the future actors Adolf Berman, S. Krause, R. Zilberberg, H. Feigstein. Later he learned in Zakse's shul. Through this, S.'s father used to print theatre posters, and S. had the opportunity to participate as a child in the children's chorus of the operettas, which were then performed in Yiddish theatre.

When in 1886 it became forbidden to perform in Yiddish theatre in Warsaw, S. had with the oybndermonte (together  with the future actors Titelman, Shtrasfogel, Rotshteyn) give heymishe children's productions. 1889 -- S. participated in the Russian-Malorusian-German quartet and duet groups, which migrated across Poland S. performed there as "Pesele" in Shomer's "Treyfniak", and in Goldfaden repertoire. 1892 -- he was the initiator for the organization of the Yiddish troupe under the direction of Olginskaya. Then he brought to Warsaw Shliferstein and his wife Briya. 1893 -- he toured with a troupe across Bialystok and Grodno, then in Warsaw and received at first the possibility to act in Yiddish in many cities, where earlier it had been forbidden to perform in Yiddish (Such as Ores, Lublin Gubernia et al.)

1898 -- S. acted in Warsaw's Odeon Theatre, then across the Polish province. 1900 -- participated for four months in a German-Russian-Yiddish quartet in the Paris exposition, and from there traveled in1901 to Buenos Aires, where he opened the Yiddish theatre with Shomer's "Der yidisher prits". After performing for two weeks in a hall and evoking protests by the Yiddish press, which regarded the theatre as harmful to yidishkayt, and the productions in time were blocked. Soon however they again were renewed, and S. acted there for a season.

Then S. traveled to London and Paris and put together a new troupe (Akselrad and Berta Gutentag, Auerbach, Morris Zager et al.), with whom he performed again a season in Argentina and (with several adtors) four weeks in Brazil. Later S. settled in the United States, where he was active as actor and manager across the American province.

1912 -- he toured as a manager with Malvina Lobel across Poland.

1913 -- together with Charles Nathanson, Kaner, Bliefeld, and Leon Berger, he guest-starred in London, Manchester, Warsaw, Vilna and Lodz, and then he returned to traveling, to Americ where he took up business.

M. E.






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Adapted from the original Yiddish text found within the  "Lexicon of the Yiddish Theatre" by Zalmen Zylbercweig, Volume 2, page 1462.

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