Ellstein, Abraham

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ELLSTEIN, ABRAHAM (Abe ; 1907–1963), composer, conductor, and pianist. Born in New York, Ellstein studied with Frederick *Jacobi, Rubin *Goldmark, and Albert Stoessel, and became the accompanist for Mischa Mischakoff, Michel Piastro, Isa Kramer, and Jossele *Rosenblatt. At the age of 19 he wrote the first of his 33 scores for the Yiddish musical theater. He also wrote the scores for several Yiddish films produced in Warsaw before World War ii and composed over 500 Yiddish songs. In 1957 he turned to composing works for concert, stage, and the synagogue. Among his compositions are Ode to the King of Kings, a cantata in celebration of the tenth anniversary of the State of Israel; The Thief and the Hangman, a one-act opera; Hora Fantasy, for piano; Haftorah, for violin and string orchestra; Negev Concerto, for piano and orchestra; two Sabbath Eve Services; Passover Service; The Redemption, Hanukkah oratorio for chorus, organ, and per cussion; and an opera, The Golem (1962).