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Cohn was the American president and production director of Columbia Pictures. He was born into a… [More] working-class Jewish family in New York City. Cohn was the last Hollywood movie mogul of the studio system era, and his reputation around Hollywood, at least in some circles, was as a ‘Jekyll and Hyde’ in that he was socially amiable but a tyrant to work for, aka the moniker “King Cohn.” He concentrated a lot of power in his hands and historians state he valued talent above all other traits. He was also famous for his affairs with female movie stars. [Less]
1928: Leon Fleisher
Stein is a Jewish-American child-prodigy pianist and conductor. In the 1950s, Fleisher signed an… [More] exclusive recording contract with Columbia Masterworks. He is particularly well known for his interpretations of the piano concerti of Brahms and Beethoven, which he recorded with George Szell and the Cleveland Orchestra. They also recorded Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 25, the Grieg and Schumann piano concertos, Franck’s Symphonic Variations, and Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini. In the 1960s, Fleisher lost the use of his right hand — at the height of his career. He commenced performing and recording the left-handed repertoire while searching for a cure for his condition, at which time he undertook conducting. In the early 21st century, Fleisher regained the use of his right hand through a combination of Rolfing and botox injections. In 2004, Vanguard Classics released Leon Fleisher’s first two-handed recording since the 1960s, entitled “Two Hands.” [Less]
1971: Joel Stein
Stein is a Jewish-American journalist who wrote for the Los Angeles Times and is a regular contributor to Time.… [More] He was raised in Edison, New Jersey. He began his career as a fact check for Martha Stewart Living and then a columnist at Time Out New York, before moving to Los Angeles. He wrote a controversial column about the effect Indian immigrants have on his home town, Edison, NJ — which stirred national media attention and caused him to be titled xenophobic by some commentators. He is often interviewed on reality TV and Entertainment shows as a social critic. [Less]