HERMAN SHTIFT (b. 1880)
A playwright and author of music books, he was born in Loyvitsh (Lowicz), Poland. His Jewish given name was: Hirsh-Perets. Against the wishes of his pious father, he left for Berlin to study music and in 1890 moved to London, before returning to Lowicz. He wrote: A metod tsu lernen shpiln fidl (A method for learning to play the violin) (London, ca. 1903), 100 pp.; Di metode tsu erlernen shpielen mandoline (The method for learning to play the mandolin) (Warsaw, 1915), 23 pp.; Shtifts egzamen und dueten bukh, oys tsu ibn di finger baym shpielen (Shtift’s exam and duet book, to exercise the fingers for playing). His plays: Di milkhome tsvishen foter und zohn, oder der kampf tsvishen den fanatizmus un tsivilizatsyon, an original bild fun yudishen leben in 4 akten (The war between father and son, or the struggle between fanaticism and civilization, an original picture of Jewish life in four acts) (Warsaw: A. Boymritter, 1905, 1907), 41 pp.; Algemayner strayḳ in russland oder royber durkh noyt, a muzikalishe melodrame in 4 akten (General strike in Russia or robber by virtue of need, a musical melodrama in four acts) (Warsaw: Y. Edelshteyn, 1906), 60 pp. Both plays were staged.
Sources: Zalmen Reyzen, Leksikon, vol. 4; Zalmen Zilbertsvayg, Leksikon fun yidishn teater (Handbook of the Yiddish theater), vol. 6 (Mexico City, 1969).