Thomashefsky, Boris


Thomashefsky, Boris
(1868-1939)
   Boris Thomashefsky was born in Kiev, Russia, immigrated to the United States in 1881, and found work in a shirt factory. He began acting in Yiddish theatre in a revival of Avrom Goldfadn's The Witch on the Lower East Side of New York. He tried his hand as a producer, playwright, and theatre owner, but lacked the ambition to provide the sort of challenging dramas his colleague Jacob Adler regularly offered.
   Known for his good looks and melodic voice, Thomashefsky starred in numerous Yiddish operettas, including Moshe Zeifert's The Little Spark of Jewishness (1909). The romanticized roles he played onstage, enhanced by his frequently publicized offstage love life, elevated him to stardom. His wife, Bessie Baumfield-Kaufman (1873-1962), often costarred with him in Yiddish versions of literary classics such as Uncle Tom's Cabin, Hamlet, Faust, Hedda Gabler, and Parsifal. Thomashefsky occasionally performed on Broadway, notably in The Singing Rabbi (1931). He also acted in Yiddish-language motion pictures.

The Historical Dictionary of the American Theater. .

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  • THOMASHEFSKY, BORIS — (1868–1939), U.S. actor and stage director. Thomashefsky was a pioneer of the Yiddish theater in America and one of its most active figures for nearly 50 years. The son of Pincus Thomashefsky, a Yiddish actor and playwright, he left his native… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Thomashefsky, Boris — (1866 1939)    American Yiddish actor, of Ukrainian origin. He went to the US in 1881. He produced, wrote, adapted and acted in many plays performed at New York s Yiddish theatres. He also initiated the visit of a Yiddish theatre company from… …   Dictionary of Jewish Biography

  • Boris Thomashefsky — (18681–1939, sometimes written Thomashevsky, Thomaschevsky, etc.) was a Ukrainian born (later American) Jewish singer and actor who became one of the biggest stars in Yiddish theatre; born in Tarashcha ( Yiddish :Tarasche), a shtetl near Kiev,… …   Wikipedia

  • THOMASHEFSKY, BESSIE — (1873–1962), renowned Yiddish actress and comedienne. Thomashefsky, who was born Brokhe Baumfeld in Tarashcha, Ukraine, to a Talner ḥasidic family, settled in Baltimore with her family in 1883. She was an enthusiast of English language theater,… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Bessie Thomashefsky — infobox actress birthdate=1873 deathdate=death date|1962|7|6 occupation=Stage actress spouse=Boris Thomashefsky children=Ted ThomasBessie Thomashefsky (aka Bessie Baumfeld Kaufman) (1873 ndash; July 6, 1962) was a Jewish American singer and… …   Wikipedia

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