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Biography

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Overview (3)

Date of Birth 25 February 1907San Francisco, CA USA
Date of Death 2 May 1982New York City, New York, USA
Birth NameWinifred Lei Momi

Mini Bio (2)

Wini Shaw started her showbiz career as child in their parents' vaudeville act. In 1934 she made her first screen appearance in a Hollywood movie and got a Warner contract. Her staring roles were mostly in minor movies, but as a specialty singer she appeared in some of the studio's big production. She is best remembered as the girl who introduced the Harry Warren/Al Dubin song "Lullaby of Broadway" in Busby Berkeley's movie "Gold Diggers of 1935". Surprisingly she made only one record for Decca in 1935 (Decca 408, recorded February 28, 1935). At the end of the 30s her career faded away.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Stephan Eichenberg <eichenbe@fak-cbg.tu-muenchen.de>

Wini Shaw was born Wini Lei Momi in San Francisco, California, in 1907; according to her Social Security records, filed under her Married Name Winifred O'Malley. She was the youngest of 13 children and her parents were of Hawaiian and Irish descent. Her show business debut was in 1915 at the San Francisco Worlds Fair, in her families' Hula Dance act. When the act disbanded in the 1920s, Wini struck out on her own as a singer, dancer and actress. She was married at 17 to Leo Cummins,in 1924 had 3 children. Leo left Wini in 1929, and she divorced him in 1933.She sang in revues and was headlined in The Ziegfield Follies of 1931. She performed in several short run Broadway Plays and Musicals including "Simple Simon".She appeared frequently on Radio in such programs as "The Rudy Vallee Show." In 1934 she arrived in Hollywood and made several films for Fox and Universal before finding a home with Warner Brothers. All together she made 7 musical shorts, 22 films and one cartoon. Wini made at least two appearances in silent film. Wini was used used as supporting player in most of her films with the exception of the staring role in a programmer musical, 'Broadway Hostess". She will always be remembered as the Broadway Baby who introduced the blockbuster song "Lullaby Of Broadway" in "The Golddiggers of 1935" She introduced the song "The Lady in Red" in "In Caliente" the same year. She left Hollywood in 1939 when her film career came to an end. In 1941, she made 4 Soundies for Minoco Productions. She spent the War years in Jack Bennys' USO troupe and also Ed Winns' USO troupe. After the War, she performed in Night Clubs as a headlining singer. In the early 1950s, Wini returned to Broadway and Nightclubs. She toured as the lead in "Call Me Madame" She married William O'Malley in 1955 and retired from show business. She died in New York, May 2, 1982.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Vandersteeg

Spouse (2)

William O'Malley (1955 - 2 May 1982) (her death)
Leo Cummins (? - ?) (divorced) (3 children)

Trivia (6)

Youngest of 13 children.
Year of birth is sometimes given as 1899 and place of birth as Hawaii.
She had an unexpected hit in 1976, when "Lullaby Of Broadway" from Gold Diggers of 1935 (1935) made the British record charts.
Was best friends with Ruby Keeler.
Made only one record because of a clause in her Warner Brothers contract. It was the 78 "Lullaby of Broadway", side A and "I'm Goin Shoppin With You" side B, Decca 408.
At the time of her death she was survived by two children from her union with Leo Cummins: a son, James Cummins; and a daughter, Elizabeth Holding.

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