Cotton Club buddies

Rubinoff Concert Review of the 1930’s

Rubinoff Concert Review of the 1930’s. The short article below, at the Ted Lewis Museum,  offers some reasons why Rubinoff was so popular with the public. I do not have its exact date. It is from the Depression era of the 1930’s. First, he was primarily popular because he brought melodic and beautiful music to America when the country needed it the most. The public rewarded him. He made as much as $500,000.00 annually.  Joseph Rubin is the curator of the Ted Lewis Museum. I found this abbreviated article below on Joseph’s museum website.

Image may contain: 1 person, smiling
Dave was a matinee idol in the 1930’s.

What is the Ted Lewis Museum about? First, and most important me, Joseph brought me to Circleville for a Rubinoff commemoration concert this last June 2, 2018. It also was sponsored by the Ted Lewis Museum.  I got a chance to perform the works I arranged with Rubinoff live with concert violinist, Steven Greenman.

The museum is located in “the Capital of the World,” Circleville, Ohio. The Ted Lewis Museum attracts thousands of visitors of all ages.  They come from nearby and around the world.  Educational Outreach programs are offered free of charge to Pickaway County schools. These programs bring the history and music of Ted Lewis to life.  For schools and students, it featurs a 5-piece jazz band.  Scholarships are annually offered to graduating Pickaway County high school seniors planning to pursue a degree in Music or the Performing Arts.

With your support, the Museum will continue to offer free admission to all visitors and expose a new generation to the  timeless music of Ted Lewis and the greats of a by gone great American era.

The Ted Lewis Museum, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization.  All donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.  All donors will be listed in the Ted Lewis Museum event programs. They will also receive the Ted Lewis Museum Newsletter in the mail and VIP seating at events.


For the record, John Philip Sousa set Rubinoff on the school concert road. The article mentions Dave was a protege of the late Victor Herbert. – I, Dave Ohrenstein, worked for 15 years with Rubinoff. He employed me as both an arranger and a piano accompanist. Dave had a genius for publicity stunts and gags. In the featured picture Jimmy Durante playing Dave’s violin. Dave Rubinoff, as part of the gag, is at the piano.

 Rubinoff concert review.

Rubinoff concert review from the 1930's
Rubinoff concert review explains how he brought joy to so many.
Image result for picture on DSOworks of John :Philip Sousa and Rubinoff
I worked for 15 years with Rubinoff. Here he is pictured with Sousa. Sousa encouraged and helped Rubinoff to give of his violin playing talent to the American public schools.

Below is a link to my own website. Check it out. Musical events are upcoming. Many posts are about Rubinoff. Click on all posts.

Rubinoff and His Violin Sort of Was My Grandfather


Hollywood nineteen thirties

Sampling Forgotten Music of Rubinoff

Sampling Forgotten Music of Rubinoff is now possible. How do you revive any quality music? First, you must sample what the quality music was. Thanks to the tireless efforts of musical conductor Joseph Rubin, this is now possible. The Maestro’s  concert has an incredibly fine youtube link below.  Conductor Rubin’s orchestra consisted of quite a number of the finest musical professors from top universities around Ohio. Maestro Rubin is also the curator of the Ted Lewis Museum in Circleville, Ohio. He actually opened the museum across the street from where Ted Lewis lived. Joseph is a testimonial to how one man with vision, and hard work, can make wonderful dreams come true. Joseph contacted me to be an important part of this unforgettable concert. I had already posted a number of blogs about “Ruby”. He saw them.

sampling forgotten music at the Ted Lewis Museum
I, blogger David Ohrenstein, actually have a tiny picture and mention in this incredible museum. That is from the program of the June 2 2018 concert.

Busy Making Millions

Busy Making Millions During the Great Depression

Busy Making Millions During the Great Depression. That’s what a violinist I worked with was doing. My picture with him is on the lower right corner on the program. The program also has pictures (from upper left to right) of him with Fritz Kreisler, Eddie Cantor, Will Rogers, and Bing Crosby. Dave holds the record for concert attendance. 225,000 at Grant Park in Chicago. That was in the year 1937. Rubinoff proudly asserted: “They turned away another 25,000 at the door.”

Picture of Grant Park in Chicago where Rubinoff played for 225,000 in 1937. You can see how Rubinoff was busy making millions.

He also conducted the orchestra for the Paramount Theater and Paramount Pictures. His stage name was Rubinoff and His Violin. His name is featured above on the movie marquee. Thanks a Million is a 1935 musical film produced and released by 20th Century Fox. It was directed by Roy Del Ruth. It stars Dick PowellAnn Dvorak and Fred Allen.  Musicians featured were Patsy KellyDavid Rubinoff, Paul Whiteman and his band with singer/pianist Ramona. That movie was featured just before a concert I gave. It is mentioned on the picture above. The entire event commemorated his memory.The orchestra was conducted by Maestro Joseph Rubin. Maestro Steven Greenman was the violinist I accompanied. Before the concert I gave a lecture on my association with Dave Rubinoff.

So Why Have So Few Today Heard of  Him if He was Busy Making Millions?

I think the answer is resentment. Also, everyone was jealous. The average musician was struggling to make a living. Especially during the Great Depression. Rubinoff was a perfectionist. He was adamant in his interpretations. He was incredibly precise. This created even more resentment and jealousy. Just listen to the youtube sample below. As a matter a fact, listen to everything available about Rubinoff and learn.  I think the picture below speaks miles. Regardless, I am honored to have my photo with Rubinoff in the Ted Lewis Museum. The museum is an outstanding tourist attraction.

Rubinoff gave America hope during the Great Depression. Americans loved him.


Rubinoff and His Violin Concert – June 2, 2018 – YouTube
Nov 5, 2017 – Uploaded by The Ted Lewis Museum

The Ted Lewis Museum presents Rubinoff and his Violin “Pops” Concert, Saturday, June 2, 2018 at 7 PM at …

Resourceful Conductor Joseph Rubin Inspires His Orchestra

Resourceful Conductor Joseph Rubin Inspires His Orchestra. Maestro Rubin assembled an elite group of 28 musicians for a special concert. The musicians included the top instrumental professionals and instructors from leading universities around the state of Ohio. It was held  was on June 2, 2018. The concert commemorated a violinist/compose/conductor that I worked with, David Rubinoff. His popular name was Rubinoff and His Violin. I arranged and accompanied him for some 15 years. Rubinoff was the conductor of the Chase and Sanborn Orchestra in the 1930’s. The orchestra is pictured below. Rubinoff is standing stage center in this most rare photo.

Image may contain: one or more people and indoor
Rubinoff with his Chase and Sanborn Orchestra in the 1930’s

The  music had a gamut of expression: From tragedy to comedy. From lento to ultra fast…..Under Rubin’s baton the orchestra played every note with  great unity of purpose. They played Rubinoff’s incredibly difficult pieces to perfection.

In the concert I also played piano for violinist Steven Greenman (pictured below).  We played the special arrangement I had made with Dave Rubinoff  of the Fiddler on the Roof  decades earlier. Steve, has performed around the world. He and I received bravos and 3 standing ovations for the Fiddler on the Roof. Yes, Rubinoff, like Tevye, was from Russia.

Image result for picture of Steven Greenman and David Ohrenstein
Violinist Steven Greenman and I played the Rubinoff/Ohrenstein arrangement of the Fiddler on the Roof.

It Took a Resourceful Conductor to put this Concert Together


To the left are 2  internal links. They talk about my association with Maestro Rubinoff.

Rubinoff Experience is Wonderful and a Bit Wild – DSO Works

Rubinoff and His Violin Archives – DSO Works

Maestro Rubin is also the curator of the Ted Lewis Big Band Museum. That alone amply shows his high degree in executive and organizational ability.

Rubinoff’s music is not easy to play or properly conduct as Maestro Rubin did. Dave hired the finest arrangers in America. They arranged  for the finest musicians of his time. Resourceful conductor Maestro Rubin  saw my blogs about Rubinoff. Consequently, he flew me with my wife Sharon up to Circleville, Ohio for the concert. That was a most considerate gesture! In the not too distant future, the concert will be posted on youtube. Keep watching. Many surprises are in the making.



Happy Birthday Ted Lewis

Happy Birthday Complete with Clarinet, Cane and Top Hat

Happy Birthday Complete with Clarinet, Cane and Top Hat. Whoever has a birthday can enjoy this post. Please share it with all your friends! I (blogger David) have just return from a once in a lifetime experience: A visit to the Ted Lewis Museum in Circleville, Ohio. Ted Lewis was famous for his saying: “Is everybody happy?”Joseph Rubin is the museum curator. He invited me and included my wife to be part of a commemoration concert.

Happy Birthday Ted Lewis
Here I am (blogger David). I’m seated at the piano. Maestro Steven Greenman is playing violin. We are playing the Rubinoff and Ohrenstein (me the piano) arrangement of the Fiddler on the Roof .  The orchestra is on break.

The concert was to honor the man I worked with for some 15 years: Rubinoff and His Violin. He was also a part of the Big Band scene even though he played the violin. He also was part of the Hollywood scene. America loved his music. This was in the 1930’s. Then, he was grossing an income as high was $500,000.00 yearly.  I think the Ted Lewis Museum is every bit as good as the museum featured in the movie, National Treasure. It has a lot of spirit, thanks to Joseph Rubin. This gracious curator has a solid musical background. He founded the Canton Comic Opera Company. The Maestro states “Some people today don’t even know what a revue is.”

Happy Birthday also to Rubinoff thanks to Joseph Rubin

Rubin spent months sorting and translating countless cigarette-burned, taped-together pages of music.  They “looked like they went through a war.” For this purpose he used composition software.


Image may contain: 1 person, playing a musical instrument
Rubinoff at his prime. His violin playing was as sharp as he looks in this picture.

The hoopla is about to begin. Great things are in the making. However, here and now you can enjoy Rubinoff and I playing our arrangement of the Fiddler on the Roof. Steven Greenman and I played this same arrangement in concert. Below are Rubinoff and I playing in  New York in 1984. The performance was given in the Catskills at Scott’s Oquaga Lake House. Let joyfulness and festivities begin!

Lost Concert “Rubinoff and His Violin” on Oquaga Lake, 1984 – YouTube

Lecture magic in Circleville, Ohio

Lecture Magic for Me in Circleville Thanks to Rubinoff

Lecture Magic for Me in Circleville Thanks to Rubinoff and His Violin. Life can spin out of control. Sometimes this can be in  wonderful ways. Sometimes events can spin badly.  In Circleville it was very good. First, I will define key words in this blog. First word to define  is Circleville, Ohio. The featured picture was taken at the lectern in the auditorium at Circleville High School.  Date was June 2, 2018. A concert honoring Rubinoff and His Violin was about to take place.  I am standing at the podium for two reasons;

  1. To give a lecture. It covered high points of my 15 year association with Rubinoff and His Violin.
  2. I will be performing on the piano. My position will be to accompany violin maestro Steven Greenman. We were set to play several arrangements I made with Rubinoff.

Also included was a 28 piece high powered orchestra. Assembled for the performance were top instructors. They were  from leading musical programs at top universities around Ohio. This performance was the vision of the conductor, Joseph Rubin. He is also the curator of the Ted Lewis Museum in Circleville. Please keep checking my posts. Samples and segments from the concert will soon be available on youtube.

Image result for Pictures from the Ted Lewis Museum in Circleville, Ohio
With his trademark battered top hat and clarinet, Circleville’s own Ted Lewis drew standing room only houses. He sold millions of records He starred in every entertainment medium from Vaudeville to Television. His career spanned five decades.

Lecture Magic in Circleville, Ohio

So what’s magical about this concert? An element of the mystical is found in the very town of Circleville. The city’s name is derived from its original layout. It was created in 1810 within the 1,100 ft (340 m) diameter of a circle. Many future blogs will be appearing about this  1100 foot diameter. It will illustrate a connection to prehistoric cultures. The Hopewell tradition earthwork dates back to the early centuries of the Common Era.

Dave loved the American Indian tradition. I specify this in my lecture magic. He, like many Europeans, was enchanted by Indian ways and wisdom. The decor of both of his homes amply illustrate this great love. It is most fitting  that he will be honored at the Ted Lewis Museum. Ted was from Circleville. The Museum is actually almost directly across the street from his residence. I had a personalized museum  tour. Wow!

Image result for picture of the Ted Lewis Museum in Circleville
#1 spot in American to visit if you love music!

Here are some internal links.  They will  illustrate connections between Rubinoff and His Violin and myself. There are many more posts on DSOworks on this subject. Feel free to explore them. Dave became enormously wealthy playing the violin and conducting. This was throughout the Great Depression.  His annual income was as high as $500,000.00.

Rubinoff and His Violin Sort of Was My Grandfather – DSO Works

Will Rogers and Rubinoff and His Violin- My Story – DSO Works

Lots of exciting posts are in the making. The fun has just begun. Please feel free to share this.

new artistic cycle forecasted by Rossini

New Artistic Cycle as per Rossini in 1868

New Artistic Cycle as per Rossini in 1868.  His words apply to now. I  thus begin this blog with the quote by opera composer, G.Rossini.  It is from his  letter dated June 21, 1868. It states: ” Delight must be the basis and aim of this art. Simple melody-clear rhythm.” My source is Serious Music-and All That Jazz. It was written by Henry Pleasants. He contributed articles on European musical events to The New York Times. He also wrote regularly for Opera Quarterly.  He alsowas London editor for the magazine Stereo Review. He also was the London music critic for the International Herald Tribune.

Pleasants contributed articles on European musical events to The New York Times. He wrote regularly for Opera Quarterly.   In addition, he was London editor for the magazine Stereo Review.  For 30 years, beginning in 1967, was the London music critic for the International Herald Tribune.

I, blogger, David, just gave a concert at under the sponsorship of the Ted Lewis Museum. I am also a composer of opera. My book writer and lyricist is my wife, Sharon. Our opera, to be announced, uses melody in a big way. Rhythm, of course, must always be solid . However, in our opera it will take a back seat to memorable melodies.

Check out the internal link right below. I worked with Rubinoff for 15 years. Rubinoff and His Violin made up to $500,000.00 yearly in the 1930’s. His secret was playing beautiful melody  better than anyone else.  Yes, “There’s gold in them thar hills”

Ted Lewis Museum Paves the Way for Melody’s Big Return – DSO Works


Henry Pleasants
American music critic Henry Pleasants.jpg
BornMay 12, 1910
Wayne, Pennsylvania
DiedJanuary 4, 2000 (aged 89)
London, England
NationalityAmerican, British
OccupationSpymusic critic

Henry Pleasants (May 12, 1910 – January 4, 2000) was an American music critic and intelligence officer.

New Artistic Cycle Foreshadowed in Another Quote

Pleasants relates a 2nd applicable quote. Joseph Addison wrote the following the The Spectator. It is dated April 3, 1711: ...Taste is not to conform to the art, but art to the taste. The public is longing for what is beautiful. As stated in the lyrics found in the musical ‘ Ain’t Misbehavin:

Find out what they like, and how they like it, and let him have it just that way
Give them what they want, and when they want it, without a single word to say

Three cheers for melody!

Ted Lewis Museum is opening Colombus Ohio area!

Ted Lewis Museum Paves the Way for Melody’s Big Return

Ted Lewis Museum Paves the Way for Melody’s Big Return. We all need the quality of “happy”. One man has picked up the” torch of happiness.” He is charging ahead, full speed. His name is Maestro Joseph Rubin. This man is worthy of all the support we can give. Please contribute to this tax deductible event. Maestro Rubin is the curator of a new museum. Even with such a worthy cause, funds are tight. It is called the Ted Lewis Museum. It is located in Circleville, Ohio. The museum is epoch making.

Ted Lewis was very good friends with Eddie Cantor and of course Eddie and Rubinoff co-starred on the Chase and Sanborn program.

The Ted Lewis Museum Marks the Official Return of Beautiful Music!

Theodore Leopold Friedman (June 6, 1890 – August 25, 1971), known as Ted Lewis, was an American entertainer, bandleader, singer, and musician. He fronted a band and touring stage show.  His act presented a combination of jazz, comedy, and nostalgia. Ted was a hit with the American public before and after World War II. He was known by the moniker “Mr. Entertainment” or Ted “Is Everybody Happy?”


 Now, my tie in with Ted Lewis. I worked for some 15 years with David Rubinoff and His Violin. Dave hired me as his arranger and accompanist. We worked all summer, every summer on arrangements. Here is a happy story taken from Rubinoff’s autobiography, Dance of the Russian Peasant. It was written down by his  most wonderful wife, Dame Darlene Rubinoff. I quote her book below:
Ted Lewis Museum to feature me playing with a world renowned violinist for the opening ceremonies.
Rubinoff and myself posing with the watch presented to him by Will Rogers.

“Sometimes during the early thirties, I (David Rubinoff) was doing a benefit for one of the big hotels in San Francisco along with Ted Lewis and Benny Goodman. We teamed up just for fun and marched through the lobby of the hotel.  Lewis was in the lead with his top hat and cane. He was singing, Me and My Shadow. The guests loved our shenanigans. We had lots of fun in those days.”

It about time we all started to have fun! This is a once in lifetime  event. I (David Ohrenstein) am honored to be part of it:  On June 2, I will accompany world renowned violinist, maestro Steven Greenman. Our concert will include a special arrangement I made with Rubinoff of the Fiddler on the Roof. Also on June 2, I will lecture about my association with Rubinoff and His Violin. The lecture will take place at 6:30 PM. Questions from the audience will be entertained. To hear the finest music and have a wonderful time, you don’t even have to go abroad.  Also, in Florida from Christmas 2017  to Easter 2018, I will be featured on the wonderful newly rebuilt Steinway Grand at the Gasparilla Inn located on the isle of Boca Grande Fl. The engagement is for six nights weekly. It will be my 9th year. Above all, please come to Circleville where the real musical fireworks will take place.




Saturday, June 2, 2018 at 7 PM
Circleville High School Auditorium
3810 Clark Drive Circleville, OH 43113
Tickets will go on Sale in March

“Rubinoff and his Violin”; a name that brings back fond memories for anyone who remembers the golden age of radio. Before Andre Rieu, violinist and conductor David Rubinoff captured the hearts of millions on the air and record crowds of 225,000 at live concerts.

Ted Lewis Museum will bring back a cornucopia of memories

Rubinoff was discovered by Victor Herbert at the Warsaw’s Royal Conservatory in 1911, who brought the prodigy to the US. In 1931 Rubinoff was signed by NBC to join Eddie Cantor on the Chase and Sanborn radio program, where his orchestra included Benny Goodman, Tommy Dorsey and Glenn Miller. Inspired by his friend John Philip Sousa, Rubinoff dedicated his life to promoting a love for music in young people, performing at thousands of schools including a benefit for the Circleville Lions Club in 1959. A Columbus resident for 15 years, Rubinoff was guest of honor at the Ted Lewis Museum’s opening in 1977.

Now you can experience Rubinoff’s musical memories live for the first time in 80 years, featuring violin virtuoso Steven Greenman and a 28-piece orchestra conducted by Joseph Rubin. You don’t want to miss this “Pops” concert featuring selections by Jerome Kern, Irving Berlin and more, all in Rubinoff’s original arrangements saved from destruction by “The Ambassador of the American Songbook,” Michael Feinstein.