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Landauer, Otto F.

  • Personne
  • October 3, 1903-September 19, 1980

Otto Landauer was born to Jewish parents in Munich on October 3, 1903. He was the second son of Simon Landauer and Senta Seller. There was an older son, Leopold, and a third son, Albert. An only daughter, Johanna Henrietta, was born in 1912. She was named after her paternal and maternal grandmothers, and was always called "Hansi."

Landauer moved first to Portland Oregon in 1941, before moving to Vancouver in 1945. On October 1, 1946, Landauer completed the purchase of the Leonard Frank Photos (Leonard Frank passed away February 1944). Otto continued in the business until he passed away September 19, 1980. His last photographs were taken September 12, 1980, at the Marine Institute.

Ehrmann, Sarah

  • Personne
  • [ca. 1930 - ]

Shirley Gurevich was born approximately 1930 and was originally from Vancouver. Shirley married and is now known as Sarah Ehrmann and lives in Israel. She attended Habonim Camp Miriam in ca. 1949-1950. Habonim Camp Miriam began in 1948 when they purchased land on Gabriola Island. However, while the Camp was being built, Camp Miriam held it's first year at Camp Hatikvah on Crescent Beach. Camp Miriam is a vital part of the Habonim program, where its ideals are practiced by living them.

Habonim was founded in 1929 in Great Britain and over a period of years, spread to all English-speaking countries. Each country developed its own independent version of the original movement whilst sharing the core ideology of being a Jewish Socialist-Zionist cultural youth movement. Dror was founded in Poland in 1915 out of a wing of the Tze'irei Tziyon (Zion Youth) study circle. The majority of Tze'irei Tziyon had merged with a group called Hashomer in 1913 to form Hashomer Hatzair, and those who remained outside of the new group formed Dror. The group was influenced by the teachings of the Russian Narodniks. Habonim Dror (Hebrew: הַבּוֹנִים דְּרוֹר, "The Builders-Freedom") is the evolution of these two separate Jewish Labour Zionist youth movements that merged in 1982.

Kopelow, Ben

  • Personne
  • 1927-

Ben Kopelow was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba on July 10, 1927. The family was raised in Central Winnipeg where his parents operated a chain of grocery stores. The close-knit Kopelow family was comprised of four sons and one daughter. From the age of six, Ben was interested in theatre and he appeared in a number of school and amateur theatrical productions, writing, directing and producing skits and plays from a young age. Ben also worked at the YMHA (Young Men’s Hebrew Association) as a group worker in charge of teen town activities.

Ben worked in the family grocery until his father decided to move the family to Vancouver in April, 1948. Upon arrival his father opened a Super Market on West Broadway; Ben managed this store for two years. In 1950, Ben returned to Winnipeg to be a group worker with teenagers at the YMHA, writing and directing amateur musicals. He returned to Vancouver in 1951 to assist his ailing father. In 1957 it was discovered that his father was too sick to continue working, forcing the closure of the grocery store.

In 1954 Ben married Dolly Halpern. Before long, they had two children: Gordon and Bryna.

From his earliest days in Vancouver Ben became involved with the local theater scene. He joined Repertoire Productions and Vancouver Little Theater Association, where he met his long-time associate Max Power. Both were aspiring actors and producers. Ben’s first appearance was in Three Men on a Horse followed by Vancouver Little Theatre Association’s production of Room Service (1953). He also played Harry Shapiro in Vancouver Little Theatre Association’s 1954 production of “Stalag 17” at the York Theatre.

In 1956 Ben Kopelow, Max Power, and Doug Hellier formed The Barnstormers Theatre Company which produced a number of professional stage plays in the Georgia Auditorium and Queen Elizabeth Theatre. Among these productions were Stalag 17 (1955), The Diary of Anne Frank (1958), Once More, With Feeling (1959), plus a number of other stage productions including fashion shows, revues and melodramas, including A Night in the Nineties (1960) at the Cave Theatre Restaurant.

The Barnstormers disbanded around 1960, but Ben and Max continued to work as a comedy act, successfully auditioning as actors for Theatre Under the Starts (TUTS). The two appeared in four TUTS productions Annie Get Your Gun (1955 and 1960), Kiss Me Kate (1957), and Guys and Dolls (1961).

Ben was also involved with Totem Theatre, Vancouver Repertory Players, Burnaby Clef Society, CBC Radio, and CBUT Television. Ben was also well-known in business circles; he was associated with Roc Ventures Limited, managing the New La Salle Bowling Alleys and was a member of the Vancouver Tourist Bureau and the Vancouver Board of Trade.

In 1959 Ben was appointed the Public Relations and Advertising Director and Promotions Manager for The Cave Theatre Restaurant and during the course of the next couple of years worked with such stars as the Mills Bros., Tony Martin, Jane Russell, Marie McDonald, Dennis Day, Tommy Sands, Johnny Cash, Jim Reeves, Ford and Hines, plus many other showbiz personalities.

In September 1961 Ben established Pacific Show Productions Limited – an agency involving all aspects of stage and theatre production. Ben was the managing director with Max as his partner. Ben received the first franchise in British Columbia to book and produce entertainment using American Guild of Variety Artists (AGVA) performers and also, a franchise from the American Federation of Musicians. Ben produced and booked the following noteworthy productions: IBM Sales Conference – Vancouver (1968) Nassau (1969); Dawson City Gaslight Follies (3 years); Kelowna Regatta (4 years); Penticton Summer Theatre (3 years); Golden Garter Saloon Entertainment (Expo 67 Montreal); Kitimat July 1st Celebration (3 years); P.N.E. Water Safety Show; Victoria Exhibition (3 years); Rolf Harris shows (7 years); New Westminster May Festival (3 years); and over 500 major conventions in Vancouver.

While working to get Pacific Show Productions Limited of the ground, Ben continued on as Publicity and Public Relations Director for The Cave and doing publicity for Theatre Under the Stars.

After his retirement in 1992, Ben decided to nourish his interest in art. He enrolled in classes with watercolour artist Mona Goldman. Goldman commented on Ben’s love of colour and encouraged him to pursue more formal studies. He took an 8 week beginners’ art course at the University of British Columbia (UBC). The professor was impressed by Ben’s passion for art and encouraged him to continue his studies. Ben then enrolled in part time studies at Emily Carr University and, over the course of four years, received two years’ worth of credits in the study of art.

While painting, Ben shard studio space in the Dominion Bank Building on Hastings Street with his daughter-in-law and her friends. All of them were capable artists in their own right and Ben learned from them.

Ben’s passion for art took him beyond Vancouver. He travelled to Florence, Italy to attend a drawing course. He also travelled to an estate outside Lyon, France, where a Capilano College professor teaches painting and drawing. In both cases, his wife Dolly came along to enjoy everything these cities had to offer.

Ben was forced to stop painting in 2010 when he was diagnosed with macular degeneration. Since then, he has volunteered as a practice patient for medical students at UBC. He also enjoys listening to audio books from the local library.

Groberman, Marjorie

  • Personne
  • 1919-2011

Marjorie was born in Edmonton, Alberta in 1919 to her parents Harry and Betty (Babe) Frome. She moved with her parents and brother Alan, to Vancouver in 1937. In 1941 she married Cecil Groberman, son of Morris and Hilda Groberman. They had 2 children, Jeffrey, born in 1945 and Hildy, born in 1949. Jeffrey has 2 children: Aviva Mandelman, BA and Elan Groberman, an electric engineer. Hildy Barnett has 2 children: Joel, BA and Mira.

Marjorie became very active in Hadassah-WIZO and in 1952, originating and chairing the first bazaar and exposition open to the general public at the Seaforth Armoury. For the next 10 years she traveled across Canada teaching 12 other cities how to set up their own bazaar and exposition.

In 1964 Marjorie was invited to Israel to set up the first ever bazaar and exposition at the World WIZO conference in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.

She rose to become president of Vancouver Hadassah-WIZO, then National vice president and eventually a member for 4 years of the World WIZO executive in Israel.

One of the highlights of her community work was organizing the national convention of Hadassah-WIZO in Vancouver in January 10-14, 1997.

In addition to Hadassah-WIZO, Marjorie opened the first Vancouver office of the Israel bonds and co-chaired its first bond drive. She was also chair person of the women’s division of Combined Jewish Appeal and served as a board member of Jewish Federation for many years (both her mother and daughter served as chairs of the Combined Jewish Appeal). Her latest community work has been with the seniors department of the Vancouver Jewish Community Centre, serving on their board of directors. Marjorie and her father, Harry Frome, were honoured at a Negev Dinner in 1966. On April 28, 2010 Marjorie received from the government of British Columbia a community achievement award.

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