Tamara Shayne (born 25 November 1902,[1] Perm, Russia – 23 October 1983, also known as Tamara Nikoulin) was a Russian-born actress long resident in the United States.

Shayne appeared in European films before migrating to the United States in 1929 with her future husband, the actor Akim Tamiroff;[2] the couple married in 1932.[3] On Broadway Shayne appeared in The Cherry Orchard, Judgment Day and These Few Ashes.[2]

Her first role (uncredited) in an American film was in Ninotchka (1939) as Anna, the cellist room mate in Moscow of the lead character played by Greta Garbo. Shayne is possibly best remembered as Moma Yoelson in The Jolson Story (1946) and Jolson Sings Again (1949), though Shayne appeared in nearly two dozen films from 1934 to 1961. Tamara Shayne, the sister of actor Konstantin Shayne,[3] was married to Akim Tamiroff until his death in 1972, and retired then. She died from complications following a heart attack.[4]


  1. John Walker (ed) Halliwell Who's Who in the Movies, London: HarperCollins, 1999 (13th edition), p.375 suggests 1897
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Tamara Shayne, 80, Actress;Was Jolson's Mother in Films", New York Times, 27 October 1983
  3. 3.0 3.1 Doug McClelland Blackface to blacklist: Al Jolson, Larry Parks, and The Jolson story, Scarecrow Press, 1998, p.154
  4. "Biography for Tamara Shayne", TCM website

External links

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