A Khasene in Shtetl

A Khasene In Shtetl

A Khasene in Shtetl

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A Khasene in Shtetl (Yiddish for A Wedding in the Village / A Village Wedding, also called A Shtetl Wedding / A Wedding in the Shtetl, Yiddish: אַ חתונה אין שטעטל (סעגיל-װאָל) is a Yiddish musical theater play written, and often directed and acted in, by Pesach Burstein, a Jewish Polish American who was involved with the Yiddish theater.

Burstein's troupe, and most notably his immediate family - his wife Lillian Lux, and later also his son Mike Burstyn and daughter Susan Burstein (all part of the advertised Four Bursteins) went around the globe performing the theater to Yiddish speaking diaspora. While panned by critics, the play was able to reach out to a vast variety of audience, in locales as diverse as East Europe (pre-Holocaust), Israel, Latin America and the United States.

The play was one of several Old World counterparts to Al Jolson's The Jazz Singer. The play depicts the trials of a rabbi's son going on stage. Pesach Burstein was well acquainted with Al Jolson, as he had signed up for a contract with Columbia Records sometime before. The play was probably also based on some autobiographical elements, as Burstein ran away from his Polish family to join a mobile Yiddish theater group.

Extensive footage of the play, and information regarding it, are presented in the 2000 documentary about the Burstein family - The Komediant. The Komediant, New Yorker Video, New York, 1999


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