WEICHERT, MICHAEL


WEICHERT, MICHAEL (1890–1967), Yiddish theatrical producer, who worked in the Warsaw ghetto during World War II. Born in Galicia, Weichert studied drama in Vienna, and in Berlin under Max *Reinhardt. After World War I he returned to Poland and joined the *Vilna Troupe, which by then had moved to Warsaw. Among his productions for them was his dramatization of Sholem *Asch's Kiddush ha-Shem (1928). He also helped to run a Yiddish drama school, and when the Vilna Troupe broke up continued to work as teacher and producer, introducing Jewish audiences to modern social drama. When the Germans invaded Poland in World War II, Weichert accompanied the Jewish masses into the Warsaw ghetto and played an important part in organizing Jewish life while this was still possible. He left an account of his work there in Yidishe Aleynhilf 19391945 ("Jewish Self-Help"), a two-volume work published in 1962. He survived the Holocaust, and in 1957 went to Israel, where he wrote his memoirs in three volumes (Zikhroynes, 1960–63).

BIBLIOGRAPHY:

Z. Zylbercweig (ed.), Leksikon fun Yidishn Teater, 1 (1931), 676–8.

[Joseph Leftwich]


Source: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.