Respondent or information from other source:
Louise Asher, Curator Social History at Jewish Museum
Aims, policies, purpose/impetus for project:
Earliest recordings in the Museum's collection date from late 1970s but bulk were recorded after the Museum began in 1984. Aim is to record people talking about different aspects of Jewish life in Britain. Often interviews were carried out in conjunction with a specific exhibition project. The Museum produced an exhibition on Yiddish Theatre in the late 1980s. However only a handful of tapes from a collection of c.450 have anything to do with Yiddish Theatre.
It is a continuing project but interviews are recorded very intermittently. First interviews date from 1986
Key individuals and roles involved:
Have been a mixture of paid and voluntary over the years inc. David & Miriam Mazower, Mrs Debbie Seedburgh.
Paid or voluntary, training in oral history:
Have been a mixture of paid and voluntary over the years.
Project funded by: Museum's revenue budget.
Management of project: By Jewish Museum.
Format of interviews: Audio cassette
How interviewees are selected and located:
Interview running time: Varies, normally 1 - ? hours.
Copyright in interviews. Assignment rights?:
Normally the Museum. Yes the interviewees sign a form.
Location of interview copies. Accessibility to public/format:
At the Jewish Museum London
Yes they are accessible to the public, some are transcribed but not all. Researchers can make an appointment to come and listen to them.
Collection contact details/website: www.jewishmuseum.org.uk
Interview transcripts/lists of topics or other content indexes:
Yes, transcribe them as and when we have the resource to do it.
Cataloguing: Yes but not in great depth.
Future plans for project/interviews?:
Materials used for publications, exhibitions, conferences, radio/TV programmes or performances etc or future plans for this?:
Was part of research for Museum's Yiddish Theatre exhibition.
Project web site
Some extracts in Yiddish Theatre in London by David Mazower (The Jewish Museum, 1987, reprinted 1996)
List on a joint (possibly STR) website: Yes
Join listserv/emailing list/forum:
List of interviewees provided: Yes
Interview with Ruth Schneider
2 cassette tapes on Ruth Schneider and her life from 1938 in Vienna till today in England. Ruth grew up in Vienna. Her parents were Abish and Clara Meisels who were involved in the Yiddish Theatre; her father was a yiddish playright and producer and her mother an actress in his company. They fled Vienna in 1938 and arrived in England and became enemy aliens in 1939. She was part of the British army and after the war became a dress designer and cutter. She married and had children after the death of her parents.
Interviewed by Mrs Debbie Seedburgh,14/07/2005
interview with Sid Spellman
1 cassette tape featuring Sid Spellman who talks about life in the West End during the 1930's. Sid was part of the Great Portland Street Shul Choir and was involved in Yiddish Theatre and Zionist meetings. After the was Sid was trained as a printer and this became his profession.
Interviewed by Mrs Debbie Seedburgh,
interview with Bernard Mendelovitch
1 cassette tape featuring an interview with Bernard Mendelovitch who talks about the Yiddish Theatre
Interviewed by David & Miriam Mazower, 07/08/1988
Interview with David Segal
1 cassette tape featuring an interview with David Segal who talks about the Yiddish Theatre and his life story. David was born in Vilna in 1901. His father was a printer. David was one of 6 children. He joined a youth drama school and studied there for 4 years. He turned professional in 1925 and came to London in 1933 with his wife as guests at the Pavilion Theatre. In 1938 he travelled to South Africa to join a company assembled by Sarah Sylvia. In the 1940's he was a permanent member of the New Yiddish Theatre Company at Adler Hall and Alexandera Theatre. He later joined a company at G. Palais
Interviewed by David & Miriam Mazower, 07/08/1988
Interview with Louis Behr
1 cassette tape featuring an interview with Louis Behr who talks about the Yiddish Theatre
Interviewed by David & Miriam Mazower, 29/10/1986
Interview with Mrs R. Vincent
1 cassette tape featuring an interview with Mrs R. Vincent who talks about the Yiddish Theatre
Interviewed by David & Miriam Mazower,29/10/1986
interview with Surele Lando
1 cassette tape featuring an interview with Surele Lando who talks about the Yiddish Theatre. Surele talks about being in the Pavilion Theatre with Dina Feiman, Jospeh Kewler and Fanny Waxman. She talks about the tours they did in Poland, Paris and South Africa, especially the tours in Warsaw.
Interviewed by David & Miriam Mazower,12/05/1986
interview with Ida Calvert
1 cassette tape featuring an interview with Ida Calvert who talks about the Yiddish Theatre.
Interviewed by David & Miriam Mazower,18/11/1986
interview with Maire Jacobs
1 cassette tape featuring an interview with Maire Jacobs who talks about the Yiddish Theatre.
Interviewed by David & Miriam Mazower, no date
interview with Harry Ariel
1 cassette tape featuring an interview with Harry Ariel who talks about the Yiddish Theatre
Interviewed by David & Miriam Mazower, 07/06/1986
interview with Mrs Sharp, Mrs Harris and Mr Beitler
1 cassette tape featuring an interview with Mrs Sharp, Mrs Harris and Mr Beitler who talks about Yiddish Theatre.
Interviewed by David & Miriam Mazower, 03/05/1986
Interview with Mr Lederman
1 cassette tape featuring an interview with Mr Lederman who talks about Boris. He also speaks about the JC and Yiddish Theatre.
Interviewed by J. Duff, 11/03/1986
Oral History Survey Pages
Index of Projects
21st April 2009