Alla Nazimova



  • (1879 - 1945) Russian actress, who became known as a leadinginterpreter of the works of Ibsen and Chekhov after settling in America.Nazimova began her career with the Moscow Art Theatre beforebecoming leading lady of the St Petersburg theater, which toured Europeand America in 1904. Following six months of intensive study she appearedin the title role of an English-language production of Ibsen's HeddaGabler at New York's Princess Theatre in 1906.

    Nazimova remained in America thereafter. In 1910 the ShubertTheatre Corporation (see Shubert brothers) built andnamed the Nazimova Theatre after her; she opened the theater witha six-week run as Rita in the US premiere of Ibsen's Little Eyolf.After a year the venue was renamed the 39th Street Theatre. In 1918Nazimova won special acclaim in Ibsen's The Wild Duck, thoughher popularity was by this time beginning to decline.

    Nazimova made a number of silent films in Hollywood, includingCamille (1921) with Rudolph Valentino and A Doll's House(1922). Her later work for the New York stage included the 1931 TheatreGuild production in which she created the role of the lethal ChristineMannon in Eugene O'Neill's Mourning Becomes Electra. A yearbefore her death she appeared in the highly successful film TheBridge of San Luis Rey.