Nazimova, Alla

Nazimova, Alla

Nazimova, Alla (nəzĭˈməvə), 1879–1945, Russian-American actress. She turned from music to drama, studying with Stanislavsky and later appearing at the Moscow Art Theater. In 1905 she emigrated to New York City and played Russian roles in her native tongue. She made her English-speaking debut (1906) in Ibsen's Hedda Gabler and thereafter became the foremost interpreter of Ibsen in the United States. In 1910 she took over the Thirty-Ninth Street Theatre, which was renamed the Nazimova. She gave memorable performances in Chekhov's Cherry Orchard (1928) and in O'Neill's Mourning Becomes Electra (1931). Her films include Camille (1921), A Doll's House (1922), and The Bridge of San Luis Rey (1944).

Bibliography

See biography by G. Lambert (1997).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia™ Copyright © 2022, Columbia University Press. Licensed from Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

Nazimova, Alla

(1879–1945) stage actress; born in Yalta, Russia. A leading performer with the Moscow Art Theatre, she debuted in New York in 1905 in a Russian play; within six months she learned enough English to play Hedda Gabler. Credited as one of the first to take a psychological approach to acting, she was best known for her Ibsen and Chekhov roles on stage but later she made a few movies.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.