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They Graced Our Stages ...

The Yiddish Theatre Troupes, 1910 to 1957


The troupe of "Zol zayn mazl tov (Wish Me Luck)," which played in New York City's Second Avenue Theatre, opening on October 25, 1954.

Throughout the history of the Yiddish theatre, managers have engaged many actors, singers and dancers and brought them together into one hopefully cohesive unit, namely the Yiddish theatre troupe, which would perform in their theatre, and/or play in different places by taking their production “on tour,” or “on the road.”

Yiddish theatre troupes of actors and actresses, young and old, were assembled and performed all throughout the United States, Canada and all over the world. These troupes were sometimes organized by the directors of the troupe or the managers of the theatres, were sanctioned by the Hebrew Actors' Union, or by other means.

Most of the troupes, especially those who performed in the boroughs of Manhattan, Brooklyn and the Bronx in New York City were composed of those who were members of the Hebrew Actors' Union. Conversely, those who spent their season in other big cities and small towns were non-union, although not those troupes that originated in New York City and went on tour, mostly when the regular theatre season was over.

Here, in this exhibition, you will see photographs of nearly fifty Yiddish theatre troupes, which for the most part performed at one time in the United States. When possible, the members of these troupes have been identified, but of course, many remain unidentified to the Museum of the Yiddish Theatre.

The Museum will attempt to furnish interesting details about the troupe, its members, the plays and repertory that they performed, as well as other information that you might find interesting, perhaps making available songs performed by members of the troupes during the particular season. This should be very enjoyable!

Just click on any of the photograph's captions to see (and perhaps here) more ...





People's, September 1910 Moscow Art, February 1923 Yiddish Art, February 1923 Irving Place, February 1923



Second Avenue, February 1923 People's, March 4, 1923 Yiddish Chamber, Moscow, September 23, 1923 Habima, Moscow,
September 23, 1923



Vilna Troupe, January 27, 1924 Palace, Chicago, October 1925 Irving Place, 1926 Habima, December 12, 1926



Liberty, 1926 National, September 23, 1927 Public, September 23, 1927 Second Avenue, September 23, 1927




Yiddish Art, September 23, 1927 Gaiety, September 30, 1932 Hopkinson, September 30,  1932 Liberty, September 30, 1932




Lyric, September 30, 1932 National, September 30, 1932 Prospect, September 30, 1932 Yiddish Art, September 30, 1932




Second Avenue, October 7, 1932 Rolland, October 7, 1932 Prospect, December 1932 Second Avenue, September 1, 1933




Folksbiene, March  27, 1936 Parkway, September 20, 1936 Yiddish Art, October 9, 1938 National, September 24, 1939




Yiddish Art, September 24, 1939

Second Avenue, October 8, 1943

Hopkinson, October 29, 1943

Parkway, October 22, 1943

New Jewish Folks, October 6, 1944

Public, October 6, 1944

Hopkinson, January 14, 1945

Parkway, September 14, 1945


Hopkinson, September 21, 1945

Yiddish Art, October 22, 1948

Bronx Art, September 30, 1949

Parkway, September 30, 1949


National, October 7, 1949

Yiddish Art, October 14, 1949

Clinton, October 21, 1949

New Folks, 1957






List courtesy of YIVO (Yiddish Institute for Jewish Research).

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