To Address Historical Society Monday Night
Donna Rifkind will discuss her upcoming book, “The Sun and Her Stars: Hitler’s Exiles in the Golden Age of Hollywood,” at 7 p.m. on Monday, May 13, at the Pierson Playhouse, 941 Temescal Canyn Rd. Admission is free.
The talk, sponsored by the Pacific Palisades Historical Society (PPHS), will focus on Salka Viertell, an actress turned screenwriter who lived on Mabery Road in Santa Monica Canyon.
Viertel arrived in Hollywood from Berlin with her director husband in 1928. She wrote five films for MCM and became friends with Greta Garbo. As the Nazi’s threatened Europe, her home became a refuge for Jews and anti-fascists seeking escape in America.
The house was a gathering place for artists such as authors Thomas and Heinrich Mann, composer Arnold Schoenberg, playwright/poet Bertolt Brecht and many other exiles.
Rifkind’s book (to be published in January 2020) recounts how Viertell, the mother of three, was an avant-garde artist who managed to thrive within the studio system, and who fought against hate with kindness and compassion.
The author is an L.A. native and a longtime book reviewer for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times and The Washington Post.
This talk is the second in the Lorraine Oshins Lecture Series, which was made possible by a generous donation from the family of Lorraine Oshins, who was a Pacific Palisades resident and an active a member of the Historical Society’s board and president from 2001-2003.
Admission is free and refreshments will be served.