North America

April 29, 2024

Tsvishn Falndike Vent: An Interview With Avram Mlotek, Zalmen Mlotek, and Motl Didner

Last November, the National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene opened its final production of 2023, a musical revue called Amid Falling Walls (Tsvishn Falndike Vent): Unveiling Resilience and Hope During the Holocaust. The production was curated and written by Avram Mlotek, with music curated and arranged by Zalmen Mlotek, and directed by Motl Didner. The Folksbiene’s website explains […]
January 5, 2023

Osherowitch and Rumshinsky on the Piety of Regina Prager

Regina Prager was one of the first leading ladies of the Yiddish stage, known for her extraordinary operatic voice and her continued Jewish observance throughout her life.
September 12, 2022

Vos flist durkhn oder: A conversation with playwright Mikhl Yashinsky on his new play

Mikhl Yashinsky’s new one-act Yiddish play premiered at the Lower East Side Play Festival at the Stanton Street Shul in New York City on July 25, 2022.
June 20, 2022

How I Got Five Thousand Dollars from a Theatre Customer

In his memoirs, Menashe Skulnik recalled the many years when he performed in cities outside of New York – including six years in Philadelphia, which he considered to be a theatrical purgatory.
August 21, 2021

Khonen in Drag: Cross-Dressing in Two Productions of The Dybbuk during the 1920s (Plus, a Review of One of These Productions)

What was the “trouser role”?
June 29, 2021

A Timeline of Yiddish Drag

Yiddish theatre…the gayest theater?
June 21, 2021

The Bird of COVID

Chava Rosenfarb’s Der foygl fun geto (The Bird of the Ghetto) had its Yiddish-language premiere April 18 to 22, on the Folksbiene’s video channel.
April 12, 2021

Why Wikidata is Good for Yiddish Theatre Research

Part two of two on how the digital humanities can inspire the world of Yiddish theatre.
March 15, 2021

Wikidata, Yiddish Theatre Posters, and the World

Der dibek, 1975, Israeli Yiddish entertainment posters, 1930-1981, Department of Special Collections and University Archives, Stanford University.
February 11, 2021

When Corona Came to The Party

What do you do when Coronavirus comes to your birthday party?
December 30, 2020

An Interview with Ellen Perecman

DYTP contributing editor Alyssa Quint interviews Ellen Perecman about her new collection of translations, Ten Yiddish Plays in Translation.
July 15, 2020

Teaching with the Digital Yiddish Theatre Project

Yiddish in the time of COVID.
April 21, 2020

“S’iz nisht dos vos amol iz geven”: Max Perlman (1909-1985)

Of all the Yiddish entertainers to have visited South Africa after the Holocaust, Max Perlman is virtually the only artist who is still remembered today.
March 11, 2020

Biz 120: The Yiddish Artists and Friends Actors’ Club at 85

85 years of the Yiddish Artists and Friends Actors’ Club…
January 23, 2020

Interview: Alicia Svigals and Donald Sosin on Their Film Score for The Ancient Law

Alicia Svigals and Donald Sosin on scoring a Weimar-era film about a backwoods Jewish boy whose talent leads him to show business success and possible romance with a well-placed Gentile woman.
December 20, 2019

Magic and Melody Delight in a Yiddish Fairytale Reborn

An evil stepmother. A brave heroine in danger. A handsome fiancé. A conniving sorceress. A plan foiled. A fairytale wedding.
November 6, 2019

Theatre: A Sketch

Jessica Kirzane’s translation and introduction of ​Miriam Karpilove’s “Theatre.”
August 21, 2019

An Interview with Daniel Galay

Daniel Galay is a prolific playwright, composer, and pianist living in Israel.
June 29, 2019

“A Piquant Curiosity”: The Gender-Bending Drama Yo a man, nit a man

Read about the gender-bending play Yo a man, nit a man (Yes a Man, Not a Man).
May 17, 2019

Grand Opera for Yiddish Speakers in Early Twentieth-Century America! Who Knew?!

In the spring of 1904, New York witnessed the unlikely spectacle of a musical-dramatic adaptation of Richard Wagner’s Parsifal—in Yiddish.
December 21, 2018

Why Does Muni Weisenfreund Play “Shund”?

The career of the young actor Muni Weisenfreund is noteworthy, practically legendary.
October 12, 2018

Hatuey: Memory of Fire—An Interview

As part of our coverage of the recent premiere of Hatuey: Memory of Fire, Joel Berkowitz interviewed members of the production’s creative team about the work’s genesis and influences and much more.
October 2, 2018

A Yiddish Poet, a Cuban Revolutionary, and a Historical Legend Walk Into a Bar: A Review of Hatuey: Memory of Fire

A brand-new opera, sung partially in Yiddish and partially in Spanish—and sometimes in both languages at the same time.
August 2, 2018

How Jewish Can One Fiddler Be?: Reflections on the Folksbiene’s Fidler afn dakh

DAVID LEARNED ABOUT the Yiddish production of Fiddler on the Roof from his husband’s non-Jewish aunt, who lives on the Upper West Side. Auntie Kay, as we call her, has the pulse on Jewish New York like no one else, even though she’s not Jewish. He then emailed his culture-maven colleague in New York, Rebecca Kobrin, to see […]
July 26, 2018

A Yiddish Homecoming for Fiddler on the Roof

Fifteen years ago, I played violin in the pit orchestra for a high school production of Fiddler on the Roof in Sheldon, Iowa, a town whose five thousand residents were overwhelmingly white, Christian, and politically conservative. As the only Jew in at least a fifty-mile radius, I wondered how the show would resonate with the audience, most of whom […]
July 17, 2018

A fidler afn dakh: Fiddler on the Roof in Yiddish

Before there was Fiddler, there was Tevye.
May 9, 2018

Yiddish Theatre Stars & Matinee Girls on the Move

You didn’t need to be the Great Gatsby to have a good time in the Roaring Twenties.
March 12, 2018

Curtain Falls on the Sunshine Theatre

One of the last remnants of the Second Avenue Yiddish Theatre District will be demolished to give way for a “boutique” office building.
January 9, 2018

Revival and Homage Productions of Yiddish Theatre

There’s something about the popular entertainment of the 1880s-1930s that draws people to fool around with creative ways of making it contemporary.
December 11, 2017

Goodbye, Columbia: A Yiddish Playwright and the German Stage

Pinski came to prominence as a Yiddish writer and playwright, yet his connection to German theatre and cultural life was strong.
September 24, 2017

Something Special for the High Holidays

Kol Nidre on Broadway, a cantor with a voice that sounds like fifty canaries, and other High Holiday gigs in turn-of-the-century New York City.
July 20, 2017

The Grand Street Theatre: A Modern Playhouse Built for Old-fashioned Shund

“A note of patriotic fervor, mingled with the pride of local achievement marked the opening of the new Grand Theatre, at Chrystie and Grand streets, last night,”
April 27, 2017

Scoring Indecent

Lisa Gutkin details the living and breathing aspect of music composition, what it means to strike the right tone, and how melodies appear, disappear, and reappear.
April 18, 2017

The Stones Outtake

An outtake from the play Indecent
April 6, 2017

Yiddish Drama on the Broadway Stage

From its beginnings, New York’s Yiddish theatre intersected with the mainstream English-language stage.
March 22, 2017

​“I would have run away, but there was only one path for me – onto the stage”: Bertha Kalich at the Romanian National Theatre, Part II

When I finished the performance, I kept asking Spachner and Hirsh, “where did the rotten onions go?”
February 28, 2017

10 Things You Need to Know About God of Vengeance

A Twitter summary of its production history would read something like this: “admired, translated, parodied, panned, banned, prosecuted, withdrawn, forgotten, revived, celebrated.”
January 16, 2017

Sholem Asch: God of Vengeance is Not an Immoral Play

Because of the wrong interpretation of my play, *The God of Vengeance*, now running at the Apollo Theatre, I wish to make the following statement…
January 7, 2017

Brothel Intrigue, with a Modern Twist: Got fun nekome at the New Yiddish Rep

The New Yiddish Rep’s production is no period play. The play itself feels remarkably modern, even 110 years later, and the New Yiddish Rep has given *Got fun nekome* a production to match.
December 23, 2016

Mending The Torn Curtain: A Documentary Film About the First International Yiddish Theatre Festival

Montreal prides itself on being the city of festivals. It is home to the world’s largest, if not the most prestigious, jazz festival, and the largest, and maybe the most prestigious, comedy festival.
September 29, 2016

A Yiddish Musical That Never Was

Camp Boiberik opened in the 1920s and closed in 1979, and if you will indulge a momentary digression from the topic, allow me to illustrate the importance of this camp for our subject.
September 16, 2016

When History Belonged to the Opera Writers

History belonged to the opera writers. First Goldfaden, and later Hurwitz and Lateiner and their followers, owned the franchise on Jewish history.
August 31, 2016


My first real-life encounter with Fyvush Finkel coincided roughly with my entry into the world of New York Yiddish theatre.
July 27, 2016

How I Rediscovered Di goldene kale (The Golden Bride)

Michael Ochs on rediscovering the 1923 Yiddish operetta Di goldene kale by Joseph Rumshinsky.
April 26, 2016

Lekoved pesach

Adapting to the abundance of the New World, Passover developed into a secular festival for shopping and entertainment.
April 13, 2016

Should a Married Woman Visit a Yiddish Music Hall?

. Why would it be a problem if someone went to a music hall simply to have some fun? In the early 1900s, the answer was complicated.
February 8, 2016

Uncle Ed, Yiddish Theatre Impresario

“My Uncle Ed was a Yiddish theatre impresario,” my friend Martha mentioned casually, as we were busy prepping for an event at our local Yiddish organization.
January 19, 2016

A Tribute to Sonia Lizaron

Arnold Zable is an award winning writer, storyteller, educator, and human rights advocate.
January 4, 2016

Boris Thomashefsky and Aaron Lebedeff

A few years ago, while roaming the open stacks of the Stanford University Libraries, I came across a copy of Thomashefsky’s memoir.
December 17, 2015

Interview: Indecent Playwright Paula Vogel and Director Rebecca Taichman

Joel interviews Paula Vogel and Rebecca Taichman about the drama Indecent, which premiered at the Yale Repertory Theatre.
December 4, 2015

Six Degrees of Yankev Blayfer

Yankev Blayfer. Sonia Alomis. Leola Vendorf. Baruch Lumet. Wolf Barzel. Who are these figures and what is their place in history?
October 26, 2015

Yiddish Lives, Smirks, and Breathes: Restoring Community Theatre into Yiddish History

Diving off of the raised proscenium stage, I don a fish mask and begin to swim through the audience. “Vu zaynen di fish?” (Where are the fish?).
July 2, 2015

A Lost Film, Found

I’d never heard of him before, but I’ve found out a few things about Mark Schweid since February.
May 18, 2015

Audiences are Idiots

One of the hardest problems in theatre studies is understanding audiences response.
April 28, 2015

Matzah and Melodrama: Nahum Stutchkoff’s Yiddish Song Lyrics

Nahum Stutchkoff (1893-1965) was a beloved Yiddish radio personality, playwright, lyricist and linguist who created dramas and commercials for WEVD radio.
February 4, 2015

Goldfaden’s Rules for Yiddish Actors

In 1888, the first school for Yiddish actors was supposed to open in New York. It never did.
January 29, 2015

Ola Lillith’s Edgy, Avant-Garde Yiddish Cabaret

I first discovered Ola Lilith while researching for my band Mappamundi’s Cabaret Warsaw CD.
January 21, 2015

The Talented Mr Rotblat and His Micrographic Tribute to Jacob Gordin

This is the story behind an exquisite portrait of a Yiddish dramatist.
January 13, 2015

Yiddish Theatre Posters of the 1890s

The New York Public Library’s Digital Collection includes Yiddish theatre posters dating back more than a hundred years.
January 5, 2015

The Chasidim Ball

Between 1921 and 1933, a “Chasidim Ball” was held to raise funds for Poale Zion, or for the Peretz Shule. But why?
December 15, 2014

Advice from Sidney Lumet’s Yiddish Actor Dad

Sidney Lumet was a legendary director. He was also a child actor in the Yiddish theatre.