Yiddish dialect in the theatre
Interviewed for the Jewish Museum of Australia on 30 July 1992 (in English and Yiddish)
It’s true we have a huge problem with our Yiddish dialect, since we come from a variety of towns and each one has its own language. The Lodz Yiddish is different from Warsaw Yiddish. I am a Litvishe Yid from Lita – Latvia. If you give me the opportunity to speak in my Yiddish – my “Oxford Yiddish” – I feel at home, at ease. There was a Volhynia Yiddish, which was accepted in Poland. This Yiddish is more understandable for people.
The problem was that people came from different places and the dialects were mixed. When I arrived in 1939 we worked with Waislitz and he tried hard to bring in the Volhynia Yiddish. Waislitz wanted to bring a unifying theme. We did try it on the stage as much as we could. In the end he told us to go our own way.