Lives in the Yiddish Theatre


M. Z. Broida
(Meyer Gruzny)


Born on 4 October 1892 in Sosnitsa, Chernigov Gubernia. Father -- a tailor. Until age twelve he learned in a cheder, at first with a private melamed, then in a Talmud Torah. His father was at times a purimshpiler on an improvised stage in the women's synagogue and used to act as "Joseph" in "The Sale of Joseph." Also his older brother used to participate in the purimshpils. B. learned with them the songs and "speak" (dialogue), brought together several cheder youths and performed "Haman", and he arranged at the age of eleven that play across the houses of the town. Klebndik the "costumes", B. learned a little bookbinding, and then performed as a bookbinder.

Seeing Genfer's troupe in 1905, B. thus became excited to the point that he decided to become an actor, and he went to Poltava to his sister, there often attending the Russian and Yiddish theatre and traveled to Odessa and performed in the Yiddish theatre there. This gives him self and not one(?), and B. began to perform as a declaimer in an intimate evening. Since 1912 he began to perform as a character-comic in one-acters. In 1913 he deserted from military service, and fled to Eretz Yisrael. For a short time he worked in the "Ben-Shimon" farm, after as a bookbinder in Yafu, and here together with Vardi acted in the Hebrew amateur productions, and in wartime together with actor Nachman Zibel he performed in the film halls with declamations in Yiddish, and then (together with Ziebel, Wallerstein and his wife) staged Kh"b Tishrei 1914 in Yafu "Zhidovka" in Yiddish. Not knowing oyf various disturbances, the production became

ibernekhzrt several times. Soon thereafter B. went to Egypt, where he, together with a group of actors in Alexandria, organized several Yiddish evenings, then acted for a short time in Yiddish in Cairo in the Frintane Theatre. From there he migrated to Bulgaria, where B. performed in 1916 with Hebrew declamations, later with Romanian and Bulgarian declamations, and went for a certain time over Bulgaria with a Bulgarian troupe. In 1918 he arrived in the Soviet Union, entered into a Poltava theatre committee as an instructor for nationalized troupes and studied for several months in Kiev's conservatory. In the time of birger krig was director of a drama circle in Snovsk, Chernigrov Gubernia, then acted for several months in the provincial troupe of Sheinfeld, in Kiev with Rakitine, in Poltava with Saslavsky, in Homel with Lichtenstein and Rubin. Then he directed with a drama circle in Glukhov, and there directed in 1922 in his translation Zudermann's "Ere", and participated in "Dos umfarshtendike meydl". Later he acted in Tomni with Guzik, in Minsk with Brandesko, in 1924 was together with Bugova for a short time in Poltava, and soon thereafter in the Moscow Sholem Aleichem Studio, then he entered into the theatre studio "Fraykunst" (director Vershilov), where he has worked until today, and there acted in the title role in Leivick's "Hirsh Leckert."

Sh. E. from L. Dushman.






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Adapted from the original Yiddish text found within the  "Lexicon of the Yiddish Theatre" by Zalmen Zylbercweig, Volume 1, page 241.

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