Chill the Vodka: New Musical Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812 Aiming for Off-Broadway Return

By Adam Hetrick
17 Jan 2013

Natasha, Pierre & The Great Comet of 1812, Dave Malloy’s critically praised electro-pop opera based on "War and Peace," which played an extended Off-Broadway run last fall, will return to New York this spring.



According to a casting notice, producers Howard and Janet Kagan (Pippin, Porgy and Bess) will present the production Off-Broadway at a theatre-to-be-announced beginning April 1. Director Rachel Chavkin, who staged the ambitious, immersive work at Ars Nova, will again direct.

Here's how the original production was billed: "Lovers are betrayed, society is scandalized and glasses are raised in Dave Malloy’s electro-pop opera ripped from a slice of Tolstoy’s 'War and Peace.' Beautiful, young, and pure as the driven snow, Natasha Rostova arrives in Moscow to await the return of her fiancé from the front lines. When she falls under the spell of the city's most charming rogue, it is up to the disillusioned Pierre, a family friend, to pick up the pieces of her shattered reputation."

Malloy's original score merges Russian folk and classical music with indie rock, electronica and organ-influenced cadences. The staging transformed Ars Nova's theatre into a "Moscow dining club: with no 'stage,' the musicians, performers and audience sit together at tables piled high with dumplings and vodka as the action unfolds throughout the space."

Malloy was also part of the Ars Nova cast. The original creative team included Tony-winning costume designer Paloma Young (Peter and the Starcatcher), scenic designer Mimi Lien, lighting designer Bradley King and sound designer Matthew Hubbs.