Lives in the Yiddish Theatre


Karl (Kalmen Tsvi) Marmor


M. was born on 10 October 1879 in Maishigola, Vilna region, Polish Lithuania. His father maintained other landowners [giter], then he was took to becoming an author, and at the end opened a soup kitchen in Vilna, that was a center for revolutionaries.

Until age ten he learned in the shtetl from a teacher and Chumash and Tenach from a religious teacher, writing, then for three years he was in the three-class kroynisher school at the Vilna Yiddish Teacher's Institute, a short time also attending Katsenelenbogen's
school in Vilna, then he learned by himself in Prehn (Suwalki area), reading Haskalah and books of inquiry.

In 1893-94 he studied in the Strashun Library in Vilna the important works of Hebrew literature. In 1894 under the influence of the prophets, he became a socialist, casting away his learning, becoming a turner. He entered into the secret socialist organization. In 1897 he searched for God -- he learned day and night in tefillin and davened "according to Harry Kuns", then he reoriented himself, and in 1898 again took to studying.

In 1899 he studied literature, art, philosophy, history and political economy in the city university, then for three years he studied natural science in Freiburg's university, where he also attended the philosophy facultat.



As a lawyer he was a delegate to the fourth Zionist Congress.

In 1907 he was a cofounder of the "Velt farband (World Association/Union) Poaeli Zion".

In 1914 he entered into the socialist party, and since April 1916 he began to perform for Zionist-socialist politics.

From 1919-21 he was a co-worker in Chicago's "Forward', and then he went over to communism, and he became a member of the editorial board of the communist organ "Naye velt-emes", and then of the "Frayhayt", "Morgn-frayhayt".

M. wrote very many articles about Yiddish cultural matters and about Yiddish theatre. He collaborated and edited many Yiddish periodical editions and especially wrote about Yiddish theatre in Chicago's "Kurier" (1914-15), "Kunst-fraynd" (1916), "Rekord" (1916-17), "Teglikhe velt" (1917-18), and the "Forward" (1919-21) in Chicago.

M. also edited the illustrated weekly "Der idisher kunst-fraynd" (Chicago 1916, 10th volume).

In 1925 M. was president of the Worker's Theatre Union (Artef), and he had gave lectures about dramatists in the drama studio of the "Artef" theatre, and today he is again the president of "Artef".

M. E.

  • Z. Reyzen -- "Lexicon of Yiddish Theatre", Vol. II, pp. 491-500.






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Adapted from the original Yiddish text found within the  "Lexicon of the Yiddish Theatre" by Zalmen Zylbercweig, Volume 2, page 1382.

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