Lives in the Yiddish Theatre


Isidor Zuckerman

Born in 1882 in Krakow, Galicia, [and] as a child was raised in Paris and London. Because he had a beautiful voice, an actor Ferinbakh heard him sing and spoke to him about becoming a chorus singer in Yiddish theatre. This greatly diminished his fantasy about theatre, and at the age of sixteen he entered into the chorus of the troupe, where he played with Jenny Kaiser, Zabolinsky, Finkelstein, Rubinstein, Goldschmidt, Gazovsky, the Feinberg brothers, Feinman, Schilling et al. Then he became engaged to Gelis in Paris, and later on he crossed over to the troupe of Treitler. Carlos Gutentag engaged him for Argentina.

On 5 April 1945 Z. passed away in Buenos Aires.

The actor Benzion Palepade in his book of memoirs, which was filled with complaints abut many actors, also had a negative opinion of him. He wrote:

"It came to the director [dirizshar-sp?]... Abraham Golubcik... (he) already had turned to the theatre administrator Isidor Zuckerman, but Zuckerman had asked Golubcik with astonishment that what it needs is a dirizshar. Golubcik tried to enlighten [him], that a dirizshar shows a little bit when beginning, and he keeps watch and watches the harmony and orchestra with a chorus, but Zuckerman agreed to this statement with his hand, saying that in Buenos Aires this is not nice..."


Further, P shows that when he returned from the provinces, there happened to be two troupes in Buenos Aires: one troupe had played with Aaron Lager Brash, and the other under the direction of Isidor Zuckermaan. Both troupes had played only on Sundays, and both troupes had only a few professional actors [in them].

With time Z. there became not only an actor, but also the manager of a Yiddish troupe until 1925, when he became the director of the "Ambu" Theatre, and engaged two others, the actors Adler, Zaslavsky, Boris Auerbach, Yitskhok Deutsch, Jacob Perlman, Jacob Shefner, Y.M. Warshavsky, et al, until the famous "Argentina Theatre Conflict." Later he played under the direction of Mideliberzon in the "Olympia," during the guest appearance of Samberg, and also with the other guest stars.

Nekhamya Zuker characterized him as such:

"Zuckerman was a pioneer of Yiddish theatre in Argentina, playing together with his wife. He was a comic, and was also in melodramatic youthful roles. In their time (1906-1930), they were very strong. He was theatre director, and for a very long time was "neither play was important, but the the name of the play was," and the last eleven to twelve years of his life Zuckerman, year after year, played the same plays for his benefit evenings, but in those years he crowned the plays with a new name and title..."

The theatre audience of the old immigrants had supported him and filled the theatre for his ceremonial evenings, and when Clara Zuckerman passed away, Isidor said that he had no where to live. In three days he became sick. Doctors determined that he was in order physically, but he ekt zikh bankruptcy. In the hospital they only kept him two days, determining that he did not suffer from any illness, and they sent him home. The doctor of the actors' union visited him every day and only could determine again that Zuckerman went to him like a candle, and so he became weaker and weaker for twenty-eight days, four weeks after Clara's passing, he followed her to eternity.

On his gravestone, the kehilah had, at the wish of the actors' union, inscribed on it rightly: "hanahbim uhneimim a'a'v'."


Sh.E. from Nekhamya Zuker.

  • Benzion Palepade-- "Zikhrones," Buenos Aires, 1946, pp. 365-66, 377-378, 385, 420.






Home       |       Site Map       |      Exhibitions      |      About the Museum       |       Education      |      Contact Us       |       Links

Adapted from the original Yiddish text found within the  "Lexicon of the Yiddish Theatre" by Zalmen Zylbercweig, Volume 7, page 6170.

Copyright Museum of Family History.  All rights reserved.