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So You Want to Join the Union?
from the Forverts (the Jewish Forward newspaper)

 

 

 

You will no doubt find it interesting to read reports written for the Forverts (the Jewish Forward newspaper), accounts of the meetings of union members at the Hebrew (Yiddish) Actors' Union building at 31 East 7th Street in New York City.

This was where the offices of the Yiddish (later Hebrew) Actors' Union were located, where the actors, actresses et al not only conducted business, but also met socially to play cards, to hold events, to meet and shmooze, and yes, to conduct "probes," which were auditions held by the union periodically, in which the actors who wished to join the union, would usually perform scenes from three plays, in hopes of impressing their judges, i.e. those members of the union who attended the probes.

Subsequently, the many union members would applaud or remain quiet, and each would vote for a particular candidate "yea" or "nay," usually through the use of a private vote dropped into a box.

 

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List courtesy of YIVO (Yiddish Institute for Jewish Research).

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