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Adler, Stella (10 February 1901–21 December 1992), actress and acting teacher, was born in New York City, the daughter of Jacob Adler, an actor, and Sara Levitzky Adler, an actress and producer. As part of the first family of the American Yiddish theater, Adler was acting from the age of five. Like her parents and five siblings, she was in constant demand as her parents’ Independent Yiddish Art Company played its ever-expanding repertory to packed houses on the city’s Lower East Side. The child-actor’s schedule allowed little time for formal education beyond reading and theatergoing....

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Boleslavsky, Richard Valentinovich (04 February 1889–17 January 1937), acting teacher, stage and film director, actor, and author, was born Boleslaw Ryszard Srzednicki in Plock, Poland, the son of Valentine Srzednicki, a landowner, and Pani (maiden name unknown). When the family estate was lost, the Srzednickis relocated to South Bessarabia and then to Odessa, where Boleslaw received his education at the Polytechnic Institute of Odessa and the University of Odessa. He joined an amateur theater group in Odessa called the Polish Hearth, which he administered during his college days, in addition to performing leading roles. His first professional acting engagement was with a Russian troupe, sometime around 1904; his career began to flourish in 1908, when he was fully accepted as a student at the Moscow Art Theatre (MAT) and almost immediately was admitted into the acting company. Richard Valentinovich Boleslavsky was his stage name, and he retained it when he immigrated to the United States in 1922....

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Eytinge, Rose (21 November 1835–20 December 1911), actress, author, and teacher, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Her parents are believed to have been David Eytinge, a language teacher and translator, and Rebecca (maiden name unknown). Eytinge was educated at home in Philadelphia and later Brooklyn. After some amateur success in Brooklyn, she began her professional stage career in 1852, at the age of seventeen, with an engagement with the Geary Hough stock company in Syracuse, New York....

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Morgan, Anna (24 February 1851–27 August 1936), speech and drama teacher, was born in Fleming, New York, the daughter of Allen Denison Morgan, a gentleman farmer, and Mary Jane Thornton. After the death of her father in 1876, Anna moved with her family to Chicago, where she studied elocution at the Hershey School of Music. She soon earned a local reputation as a dramatic reader with a naturalistic approach that contrasted with the current fashion of more stilted and stylized speech. Her repertoire included selections from plays by Shakespeare, Schiller, and Maurice Maeterlinck, and poetry by authors that ranged from Robert Browning to ...

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Strasberg, Lee (17 November 1901–17 February 1982), acting teacher, was born Israel Strassberg in Budanov, Austria-Hungary (now Russia), the son of Baruch Meyer Strasberg, a garment worker, and Ida Diner. Strasberg’s father and older siblings immigrated to the United States in 1904; the rest of the family followed in 1908 and settled on the Lower East Side of New York City. Lee’s participation in theater began as a child when he performed with the Progressive Dramatic Club, an amateur Yiddish theater group. He dropped out of high school after his sophomore year when his younger brother died of influenza. To help support the family, Lee took a job as a clerk with a wig manufacturing company, eventually becoming a partner in the firm....