Born in 1855 in Iasi,
Rumania. His strongly religious father had wanted to
make him a shokhet (ritual slaughterer); he
however became a cantor and music teacher in a Yiddish
school. H. wrote many songs and by himself composed
music for them: a part of those songs wer taken into the
repertoire of the old Yiddish theatre and several of
them, such as "Ishmkhu", "Tsyuns tsua", "Gedenk zshe
yenkl", "Ervad, isralik", are up until today very
popular in Rumanian and were sung as folksongs.
H. had printed up to two
hundred songs (all under the pseudonym of "Hazman") with
and without melodies. It also includes the songs that
were taken into Kornfeld's Yiddish translation of "Zikhrunus
lbit dovid" (printed in Kornfeld's "Folkslat", Iasi,
H. also wrote Hebrew songs,
issued in Iasi the "hmbshr -- beletristishe monatshrift
fir tsiunizmus, kultur, interesante nakhrikhten, kunst
und unterhaltung", and as the editor of the socialist "Veker"
(1896), he wrote many publicity articles.
In 1890 H. began to act in
the Yiddish theatre (together with Aaron Rosenblum),
across the Rumanian province. Aba Schoengold then took
him to America, where he acted under the pseudonym "Helmanesko"
in New York's Roumanian Opera House, in Gordin's "Sholomo
khokhem (Solomon the Wise)" (together with Adler,
Schoengold, Feivel Fridman, Tornberg and Moshkovitsh),