Joseph Green (actor)
Joseph Green (April 23, 1900 – June 20, 1996), born Yoysef Grinberg, a.k.a. Josef Grünberg, Joseph Greenberg and Joseph Greene, a Polish-born Jew who emigrated to the United States in 1924, was an actor in Yiddish theater and one of the few directors of Yiddish-language films. He made four Yiddish films that he shot on location in Poland, beginning in 1935: Yidl mitn fidl (Yiddle with his Fiddle; 1935), Der Purimspiler (The Jester; 1937), Mamele (Little Mother; 1938), and A brivele der mamen (A Little Letter to Mother; 1939). He also wrote the screenplays for the films, except for Mamele.
Born in Łódź (Poland), then in Congress Poland, part of the Russian Empire, he attended a traditional Jewish cheder, or elementary school, and then a state gymnasium (high school). In 1915, during the First World War, he trained at the drama school of German theater director Walter Wassermann, who was then heading the Deutsches Theater in Lodz, and in 1916 he made his debut as an actor with the Lodz-based amateur troupe of Zalmen Zylbercweig.
Green had small roles in The Jazz Singer, in 1927, and A Daughter of her People, in 1932. Also in 1932 he provided the Yiddish-language dubbing for the silent Italian film Joseph in the Land of Egypt.
Green was interviewed in the 1985 British documentary on Yiddish Films, Almonds and Raisins.
- Zylbercweig, Zalmen, with Jacob Mestel, Eds. (1931). "Grinberg, Yosef". Leksikon fun yidishn teater [Lexicon of the Yiddish theatre]. New York: Farlag "Elisheva". col. 532. English translation/adaptation available online at the Museum of Family History.
- Blumenthal, Ralph (June 22, 19960. "Joseph Green, 96, Creator of Yiddish Film's Heyday". New York Times. nytimes.com. Retrieved 2017-06-23
- Robboy, Ron (March 3, 2000). "Victor Packer". Mendele moderated mailing list for Yiddish language and literature. Vol. 09.068. Available as downloadable text file in the Mendele archives. Retrieved 2017-06-23. Robboy, a scholar of Yiddish theater music, recounts that "Yoysef Grinberg", who acted with the "Undzer Teater" experimental theater group in New York in 1925, "later changed his name to Joseph Green for his work as director of several classic Yiddish films", including A brivele der mamen and Yidl mitn fidl.
- Sandrow, Nahma (1986). Vagabond Stars: A World History of Yiddish Theater. New York: Limelight Editions. p. 331.
- "A Letter to Mother / A Brivele der Maman". The National Center for Jewish Film. jewishfilm.org. Retrieved 2017-06-23.
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