Folksbiene Hit Second Avenue Returns to Off-Broadway This Fall

News   Folksbiene Hit Second Avenue Returns to Off-Broadway This Fall On Second Avenue, a tribute to New York's Yiddish theatre legacy, a hit last spring at the Folksbiene Yiddish Theatre, will return for a limited eight-week engagement from Oct. 22 through Dec. 25. Mike Burstyn, a scion of Yiddish theatre performers, will again star.
Mike Burstyn in On Second Avenue
Mike Burstyn in On Second Avenue Photo by Richie Fahey

The show also stars Robert Abelson, Joanne Borts, and Lisa Fishman. Featured in the cast of seven are Elan Kunin, Lisa Rubin and Reyna Schaechter. Second Avenue was, of course, the address of New York's Yiddish theatre community during its heyday in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The street was lined with playhouses from Houston Street to 14th Street and supported the careers of countless Yiddish actors and playwrights.

On Second Avenue was created by Moishe Rosenfeld and Zalmen Mlotek. The bi-lingual English-Yiddish musical revue also stars Joanne Borts, Lisa Fishman and Robert Abelson. It will feature the songs of Yiddish composers such as Abraham Goldfaden, Sholom Secunda, Alexander Olshanetzky and Yosef Rumshinsky, and excerpts from landmark shows.

Burstyn is an apt choice for the project. His parents were Pesach Burstein and Lillian Lux (who died in recent days), both Yiddish stage stars. He performed with his folks as a kid, and, after he grew up, starred in such shows as Barnum and Ain't Broadway Grand.

The 90-year-old Folksbiene is America's only professional Yiddish theatre.

Tickets, which range from $37.50 to $47.50, are now on sale via Telecharge at (212) 239-6200. The show performs at the JCC in Manhattan, 334 Amsterdam Avenue.