The Sorceress: A Restored Yiddish Classic Plays Again

Stephanie Lynn Mason, Mikhl Yashinsky Photo: Victor Nechay -

To Dec. 29: The National Yiddish Theatre Folksbiene (NYTF) will present The Sorceress (Di Kishefmakherin), a magical, musical Yiddish fantasy starring an innocent young heroine, her dashing fiancé, a devious stepmother, and a scheming witch. It  will be performed from Dec. 1 to 29 at the Museum of Jewish Heritage, 36 Battery Place.


The musical, written in 1878, is one of the earliest works of Yiddish theater and the first formal Yiddish theatrical production introduced in America by the Thomashefsky family. The fully restored orchestrations are based, in part, on pre-Holocaust musical arrangements which were saved from destruction at the hands of the Nazis by YIVO Scholars in Vilna, who risked their lives to save thousands of unique documents and manuscripts. This fully staged work is the culmination of a project which NYTF began in 2017 to restore this classic.


Tickets for previews start at $49, and regular season tickets start at $59 and are available at The Sorceress will be performed in Yiddish, with English and Russian supertitles.


The Sorceress, written by Avrom Goldfaden, will be directed by Motl Didner, with musical direction by Zalmen Mlotek. The production will be choreographed by Merete Muenter, and D. Zisl Slepovitch will provide additional orchestrations and arrangements.


The performance is part of NYTF’s season of “Spiritual Resistance,” which features artistic and theatrical works that explore themes of struggle against oppression. The programming provides artistic expression concurrent with the exhibition Auschwitz: Not long ago. Not far away. being presented at the Museum of Jewish Heritage.


For tickets to The Sorceress, and other performances in NYTF’s season of “Spiritual Resistance,” visit or call 866-811-4111.