Friday, June 19, 2015

The Fairytale Lives of Russian Girls

Play #124 - The Fairytale Lives of Russian Girls by Meg Miroshnik

Well, it's clear that my "play a day" endeavor has fallen by the wayside. But I still have an awful lot of plays to read, so I'm going to keep going and see how far I can catch up! And that starts with a very cool little play that made my Russian heart happy! I was supposed to be in Moscow this month for my fifth summer, but life intervened... and this little play made me feel just a little less homesick for dear Москва!

The story starts out with Annie (the Americanized version of her Russian name Anya) who had come to the US when she was just a child with her mother Olga. Now, Olga is sending her back for a few months to improve her Russian and to "reap her rewards." While there, she will be staying with her not-really-Aunt Yaroslava Yanovna. While she's there she meets Masha, Katya, and Nastya who all have their own skazka (fairy tale) to tell. But, as is often the case in fairy tales, things are not always what they seem. Auntie Yaroslava may well be the fairytale witch Baba Yaga. Masha may not be exaggerating when she calls her boyfriend a bear. And things never go well for the evil queen, now do they? Deliciously contemporary twists on old stories skip back and forth across the stage (along with some dastardly enchanted potatoes... for realsies), and we can't help but wonder what it really means to live "happily ever after"... or if anyone ever does.

The play is full of stories and fantasy. It bends reality, asks for some creativity in staging, and it's written for six women, which is always a plus in my book. The dark tone is so affectionately and authentically Russian, it would be such an exciting journey for the cast and the audience alike! 

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