Home > Uncategorized > Adventures in San Diego Jewish History, July 23, 1954, Part 1

Adventures in San Diego Jewish History, July 23, 1954, Part 1

Complied by San Diego Jewish World staff

City Schools Get Gift of Film from B’nai B’rith
Southwestern Jewish Press, July 23, 1954, Page 1

B’nai B’rith of San Diego this week presented to the City Schools a color print of the new film, “The Toymaker”.  The School Depository has been the recipient of many human relations films from the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith in the past.

All these films are made available to any community organization desirous of using them at no charge.

It will be remembered by many students and teachers in our city that the “’Toymaker” was the basis for the city wide Essay Contest held in public schools and sponsored by the B’nai B’rith Lodges and Chapters of San Diego.

“The Toymaker” is the story of puppets and their master who find that their problems can be solved with the help of one another.

Turf Fans Welcome Del Mar Opening

Southwestern Jewish Press, July 23, 1954, Page 1

DEL MAR, Calif. — With the opening of the 1954 summer racing season of the Del Mar Turf Club only days away, Stable Supt. Norvell Snyder will welcome the first of 1100 thoroughbreds here Monday as the swinging wide of the stable gates heralds the July 27 inaugural of the sport of kings.

A new post time of 2:15 p.m. will prevail this summer, Executive Vice-President Walter C. Marcy announced this week.  In prior years, the horses got away in the first race on the program at two p.m. but the later post will enable more fans to arrive in time for the opening event.

A sparkling stakes schedule has been outlined for Del Mar visitors by Racing Secy.  John Maluvius .  Leading off the elaborate slate of added money events will be the $10,000 Oceanside Handicap at six furlongs for 3-year-olds, to be run Saturday, July 31.

Opening day will be highlighted by twin features – the $5000 Inaugural Handicap for fillies and mares, and the $4000 Surf Handicap for aged runners. Both races are at six furlongs.

Labor Committee Sets Annual Picnic-Bazaar

Southwestern Jewish Press, July 23, 1954, Page 1

The Jewish Labor Committee Annual Picnic and Bazaar will be on Sunday, August 15, at Pepper Grove in Balboa Park starting at 12 o’clock noon. This year more than any other year our committees are making the greatest effort to make this affair a day of joy and lots of fun. A variety of home-cooked foods will be served, consisting of baked and Gefilte Fish, Borsht, Salads and many other appropriate dishes for the hot summer weather.

The bazaar will have a large stock of new merchandise donated by our generous San Diego merchants and will be sold at bargain prices.  A $25.00 U.S. Defense Savings Bond will be given away to the lucky ticket holder.

Community Study Group to Begin Sampling of “300”
Southwestern Jewish Press, July 23, 1954, Pages 1, 4

Purposes, techniques and methods of the Community Survey Study were formulated at a meeting of steering committee last week.  Purposes of the study as outlined were: (1) To determine facts that will help to achieve a more integrated life for the Jews of San Diego County; (2) To determine size and age groupings in geographical location of the Jewish population; (3) To explore the social, cultural, social welfare, education, and recreational services and programs in which Jewish people participate in San Diego; (4)  To define the needs of the Jewish Community; (5) To make recommendations in regards to filling these needs.  A Study committee consisting of: representatives of the Center, the Federation, leaders of organizations, the Rabbinate, young groups and the community at large, will be set up in the very near future.

Charles Silverman, president of the Accounting Corporation of America, has been added to the technical advisory committee, which has completed preparation of the questioner to be used by interviewers.  Information is already being gathered by a committee of the Jewish professional social service workers and will include such subjects as Jewish adult organizations, Jewish youth and childrens groups, Jewish participation and leisure time programs under general community or Christian auspices, and the existing facilities under Jewish auspices.

The questionnaire which will be used for the population sampling study, amongst three hundred Jewish families in San Diego, will contain information as to: age, occupation, type of industry, length of time their families have lived in San Diego, veterans, general education, and religious education.

Other questions will relate to Temple and Synagogue membership, organization memberships, both here and the community from which the family came if not a native resident. Additional questions concern feeling on anti-semitism in San Diego and informational question as to knowledge of Jewish agencies in the community. All questionnaires will be held strictly confidential.  Interviewing will begin the last week in July and run through early August.  Those selected to be interviewed by the sampling will be notified by letter and asked to give the interviewers every courtesy and cooperation.

When the basic material is gathered, committees for the study will be appointed. They will include: Community Center committees, Family Service, are for the aged, and Jewish Education.  Their main function will be to analyze the material and to make recommendations for the completed report.

The Steering committee, which has assumed the responsibility for the carrying out of the study at this date consists of the following:  Carl Esenoff, Edward Breitbard, Morrie Douglas, Rodin Horrow, Maury Novack, Sidney Rose, John Ruskin, William Schwartz, Harry Wax, Victor Schulman, Mrs. Gabriel Berg, Dr. Oscar Kaplan, Eli H. Levenson, Dr. A.P. Nasatir, Mack Esterson, Mrs. Saul Chenkin, Milton Fredman, Irving Friedman, Harry Mallen, Mrs. Ted Brav, Ben Ferber, Mrs. Victor Schulman, MRs. Leonard Zlotoff, Mrs. Dorie Kellner, and Leonard Zlotoff.

Fund Drive Leaders to Increase Efforts
Southwestern Jewish Press, July 23, 1954, Page 1

Renewed vigor in solicitations of contributions still outstanding in the 1954 Combined Jewish Appeal of the United Jewish Fund, was promised by chairman Sol Price and his co-chairman, Seymour Rabin.

After taking inventory of the drive thus far, leaders expressed  their determination to carry out their efforts until every possible contribution is in.  Tabulations made this week shnow that more than 1600 pledges have been made totaling more than $153,000 as agaist the same gifts of $150,000 in 1953.

Price and Rabin said, “We are still thousands of dollars away from the minimum requirements of our agencies, though we have almost as many contributors as we had in 1953.”  They pointed out “less than 100 contributors in the classification of $100 and over may well mean the success or failure of the 1954 campaign.  Thee represent over $40,000 worth of contributions which were made in 1953 and have not been made in 1954.”

In achieving the $153,000 figure to date, the tabulations show that men have raised $110,727; women have achieved the remarkable record of $33,088; Christian committee, $8,956; and the young people’s division, $497.

On the basis of last year’s giving and the number of contributors remaining to be secured leaders of the campaign feel sure of achieving a $200,000 figure again in 1954.

If you have not as yet made your contribution to the 1954 United Jewish Fund Campaign please do so immediately by mailing it to the United Jewish Fund, 333 Plaza, San Diego 1, California.

JWVA Poppy Sale To Be Held Friday, August 13th
Southwestern Jewish Press, July 23, 1954, Page 1

The 5th annual Poppy Sale, sponsored by San Diego Ladies Auxiliary No. 185 Jewish War Veterans of the United States of America, will be held Friday, August 13th.  The sale has been put ahead one day, due to the fact that V-J Day falls on the Sabbath this year. Since this is the major fund raising project for the entire year, all members are urged to come out and sell poppies. Sisters who plan to work on this worthy project may call Poppy Day Chairman Ruth Hecht, Atwater 4-0122 or Binnie Brooks, Browning 7-0867.

M.S. Opens Local Office
Southwestern Jewish Press, July 23, 1954, Page 1

William J. Dawsey, Chairman of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, San Diego Chapter. Announced that a local office has been opened at 3733 Sixth Ave., CY-8-5438.

Also, a new booklet entitled, “Mental Health and M.S.” is now available, without charge, to multiple sclerosis patients, upon request directed to the society. This booklet covers various  psychological problems peculiar to this chronic neurological disease, and guidance is given on how to cope with these difficulties.

To See or not To See
Southwestern Jewish Press, July 23, 1954, Page 2

Busman’s Holiday – Even on vacation I can tear myself away from the theatre.  Spent an afternoon last week getting  a tourist’s eye view of the Old Globe (courtesy of Roberta Ridgely) and absorbing a bit of the Shakespeare Festival atmosphere tht prevails and pervades every inch of the grounds and buildings these days,.

Only one week before the opening on July 23, the office phone was ringing constantly, crew members were painting the set on stage, more were building flats in “Siberia” across the Green, shirtless actors were stretched out in the shade of a tree on the grass reading lines, barefoot actors were rehearsing
“Othello” in the midday heat of Falstaff Tavern, and the costume room was filled with talented people cutting, sewing, fitting.

The costume room was the only spot that the faintest amount of bustle (pun, eh?) and deadline hustle could be observed.  But considering that over 125 of the 200 costumes needed for the three plays are being made from scratch right there, we can allow a few cases of hysteria. Even the dancers on the Green will have new costumes this year.

Bob Abel’s designs are exquisite in line, color and feeling for the extravagant and rococo in dress of Shakespeare’s day.  A capable crew headed by scholarship winners Floss Hanratty and Reid Lowden have the not-simple job of executing Bob’s patterns. They’ve a $3,000 costume budget, but can you imagine the yardage required in a Shakesperean gown?  The tirimmings alone—gold and silver braid, fringe, etc., run up into quite a sum and some of the fabrics have cost as much as $4.00 a yeard.

The actual construction of the costumes began at the Globe about 4 weeks ago, but long before that Dottie Chase had made all the dancers’ costumes at home.  Not content with that job alone, she has moved into the costume room and is working on others.

The greatest handicap faced by the costume crew is the limited space in which they must work. When then regular number of 4 to 6 helpers are sewing there’s no room for even a size 10 to squeeze in for a fitting so it’s not unusual to see fitters and levi-bottomed and tunic-topped actors overflowing into the outdoors.

This younger generation of actors must be an entirely new brand—or it can be laid to Craig Noel’s organizational ability—everyone seemed so business-like and self-controlled and calm!  None of that frantic, wild eyed, dazed, nerve-ends-exposed activity generally associated with the week before an opening.  Making it even more wondrous—they’ll be opening with “Othello,” “Twelfth Night” and “The Merchant of Venice” just one day apart.

Amusing Anniversary—
The Jerome Chodorov and Joseph Fields comedy, “Annivertsary Waltz” is the merriest production of La Jolla Playhouse in my memory.  This is perfect summer fare admirably directed for laughs by Norman Lloyd and acted by a faultless cast.

Sex, TV, sex, “modern” children and education, sex, in-laws, and pre-marital relations are the subjects for jest and stage shenanigans in this frisky farce. While it will not make theatre history and is not recommended for children or puritans, it will prove highly entertaining for most theatre-goers.

Howard Duff, with an abandon that delights, rants, stamps, flings his temper in all directions, and kicks in television sets. Marjorie Lord, in a much quieter vein, plays the part of the wife but displays a talent for comedy no less than Duff’s.

As the precocious teenagers David DuVal and Jansje Herbert act with assurance adequate for professionals with ten times their years in the theatre and Lillian Randolph (Birdie of “The Great Gildersleeve”)  as the inquisitive maid, makes every entrance a joy.  No less amusing are Willard Waterman, best known as radio’s “Gildersleeve,” and Helen Ford as the shocked in-laws.

Others in the excellent cast are Pitt Herbert, remembered also for his fine performance as the unlucky suitor in “The Winslow Boy,” Dorothy Patrick as a four-time Reno visitor, and local actors Richard Lustig, Carnell Kirkeeng and Edward Hickok.

Bob Corrigan’s set is cheerful and gay-colored befitting the light-hearted mood of the play.

No Draught-Dodgers These—The Coronado Players are literally “turning ‘em away” with the ever popular “Suds in Your Eye” that will run for at least six more weeks at the Playhouse on the Strand.  Ably directed by Phil Magee, this uninhibited comedy has a particular appeal for San Diegans, dealing as it does with war time San Diego and its familiar gags concerning plumbing, housing and nylon shortages, plus a serviceman’s eye for a pretty girl.

Appearing for the fourth time in as many years as the dames of drink are Henrietta Atkins, Gwen Challacombe and Lucille Parsons, whose tax problems come second to their love for beer.  Miss Atkins gets polluted as delicately as a lady can and is the most engaging blotto female on any stage. Gwen Challacombe and Lucille Parsons become swacked in a boisterous and argumentative fashion respectively.

Non-beer guzzlers in the cast are Lance Elmstrom, Bea Hamby, Kay Rice, Luis Martinez, Joe Roberts, Thea Spencer  and Bob Mather.

Director Magee and R.W. Coffey do delightful bits as police detectives who unwillingly fall under the spell of the intemperate trio and aid the plot in their own fried fashion.

The set by Bobby Ingles and Maury Sherman amusingly represents a war time junk yard and features the now-famous wall of beer cans. The comedy was written by Jack Kirkland from the book by Mary Laswell.
Progress Report—With his current role in “Anniversary Waltz” at La Jolla Playhouse, Dick Lustig makes his fifth appearance on the Playhouse stage. The statistics of the latest characterization, the largest part yet, are 27 lines, 2 good laughs, and a boffo exit.  At this rate, how soon Hollwyo9od?

To Hollywood and Back—Ex-Globite and San Diegan Maria English, who is being groomed for big things in Hollywood, judging by the reams of publicity cropping up everywhere about her, will be among the Hollywood contingent at the gala premier of the Capri Theatre, July 27.


Summer Symphony Pleases in Concert

Southwestern Jewish Press, July 23, 1954, Page 2

Bravos and prolonged applause awarded the participants in this week’s diversified and delightful program arranged by director Robert Shaw of the San Diego Symphony Orchestra.

Felix Mendelsohn’s melodic music, cleverly interwoven with Shakespeare’s witty lines and expertly handled by competent artists wove a spell over the audience which was not broken until the last notes were sounded.

Outstanding in the “Midsummer Night’s ‘Dream” were Maureen O’Sullivan as Titania; Alex Nicol as Oberon; Gene Reynolds as Puck; King Donovan as Bottom; Steffi Sidney as Fairy; and Virginia Williams and Nancy Wustman, soloists.

Outstanding, also, was the chorus from the choirs of the San Diego City and County Schools.

The entire program which included the opening number, Suite No. 3 in D by Bach followed by a provocative piece by Paul Hindemith made for altogether satisfying evening.

–Julia Kaufman

Gala Premier July 27 for New Theatre
Southwestern Jewish Press, July 23, 1954, Pages 2,8

The Capri, San Diego’s new modern first-run theatre, opens Tuesday, July 27, with a benefit program for the San Diego Girls Club and followed by a gala Premiere Wednesday.

Veteran showman, Burton Jones, owner of the Capri, has spent over $100,000 in completely remodeling the old Egyptian at 3811 Park Blvd.

Especially designed as a first-run theatre specializing in single features on an extended run policy, the Capri is catering to a new and popular public trend to single feature operation.

An ultra modern theatre, the Capri boasts of air conditioning with full refrigeration capacity of 35 tons and all new draftless distribution system to handle the refrigerated air. The seating throughout is  the luxurious airflow rocking chair type. Burton Jones says that nothing has been left undone to make the new Capri one of the most modern and comfortable theatres in the San Diego area. Probably the ost interesting and due to be talked about feature of the Capri will be the sculpture by Bernard Rosenthal, a modern abstract style of metal that hangs from the ceiling and throws an interesting pattern of shadows against the lobby wall.  One wall of the foyer will be a picture wall with original paintings by such artists as Matisse and Joan Miro.

The Capri is equipped for any and all types of new movie presentations such as Cinemascope, Vista Vision and Stereophonic sound.

The first vehicle to open the Capri will be Paramount’s “About Mrs. Leslie” starring Academy Award winner Shirley Booth with Robert Ryan in the supporting role.  The benefit showing opens Tuesday, July 27, followed by a gala premier star studded with many Hollywood and local notables. 

Matinees will start at 1:30 p.m. with two shows every evening at 7 and 9:15 p.m.  There is ample parking area.

Karolyi Soloist at Summer Symphony
Southwestern Jewish Press, July 23, 1954, Page 2

San Diego’s famed Summer Symphonies continues Tuesday night (July 27) with the third concert of the season at *:30 p.m. in Balboa Park Bowl.

Under the baton of the internationally known conductor Robert Shaw the program opens with Symphony No. 4 in E Minor by Brahms.

Julian Karolyi, Hungarian pianist and one of Europe’s most outstanding musicians, will be guest soloist.  He will be heard in Dahnanyi’s “Variations on a Nursery Theme” for piano and orchestra.

Concluding work on the Tuesday night program will be Bacon’s “Ford Theatre” which will be narrated by Shaw.

Shaw will also conduct the first of three Friday Evening Chamber Music Concerts Friday night (July 23) at 8:30 in Hoover High School Auditorium.

Opening concert will offer the rarely performed drama ballet, “L’Histoire du Soldat” by Stravinsky, and Beehoven’s “Kreutzer Sonata for Violin and Piano,” featuring Robert Gale, violinist and John Wustman, pianist.

Symphony and Chamber Music tickets are available at Palmer Box Office, 640 Broadway.

Thorough Checker
Southwestern Jewish Press, July 23, 1954, Page 2

Very often a man does not know when he is well off, but the income tax collector always does.

Sabrina Fair’ Next at La Jolla Playhouse
Southwestern Jewish Press, July 23, 1954, Page 2

Joseph Cotton and Arleen Whelan will co-star in another current New York comedy hit, “Sabrina Fair,” at La Jolla Playhouse for a two week run commencing Tuesday, July 27.

Supporting Cotton and Whelan will be a cast of top TV, stage and screen personalities including Rose Hobart, Lamont Johnson and Maurice Marsac.

Johnson, often seen on TV, appeared here last summer in “I Am A Camera,” and as one of the angels in “My 3 Angels.”  Earlier he had been seen in the La Jolla production of “The Lady’s Not For Burning.”  Miss Hobart’s previous appearance was in T.S. Eliot’s “The Cocktail Party,” with which she toured for eight months after leaving La Jolla.  Marsac will be remembered for his delightful characterization of one of the uncles in “Happy Time.”

For Director Norman Lloyd and Cotton the event will also be an important reunion since they had worked together with Orson Welles in the famous Mercury Theatre.

“Sabrina Fair” follows the extremely popular first off-Broadway production of the riotous comedy, “Anniversary Waltz” starring Howard Duff, Marjorie Lloyd and Willard “Gildersleeve” Waterman, which has its last performance Sunday night.

“Adventures in Jewish History” is sponsored by Inland Industries Group LP in memory of long-time San Diego Jewish community leader Marie (Mrs. Gabriel) Berg. Our indexed “Adventures in San Diego Jewish History” series will be a regular feature until we run out of history. 

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