TV: First Look at Natascia Diaz & More in Signature Theatre's BROTHER RUSSIA!

By: Mar. 12, 2012
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The story of the controversial "Mad Monk," Grigori Yefimovich Rasputin is now the subject of the new rock musical Brother Russia, which is making its world premiere at the Tony Award®-winning Signature Theatre. The new musical features Music by Dana Rowe and Book and Lyrics by John Dempsey - the award-winning creators behind The Fix (1998) and The Witches of Eastwick (2007).

Directed by Signature's Artistic Director Eric Schaeffer, the production stars John Lescault (Signature's Art and The Lieutenant of Inishmore) as the infamous and enigmatic Rasputin, Natascia Diaz (Kiss of the Spider Woman at Signature, and Savage in Limbo at MetroStage), Doug Kreeger (Signature's The Visit), Amy McWilliams (Signature's The Witches of Eastwick and Urinetown), and Tracy Lynn Olivera (Les Misérables and Merrily We Roll Along at Signature). Erin Driscoll, Stephen Gregory Smith, Rachel Zampelli, Russell Sunday, Kevin McAllister, and Christopher Mueller round out the cast. The production is playing the Signature's MAX Theatre through April 15, 2012. 

Check out performance highlighs below!

Brother Russia features an award-winning creative team that includes Jodi Moccia (choreographer), Misha Kachman (set designer), Kathleen Geldard (costume designer), Colin K. Bills (lighting designer), and Matt Rowe (sound designer). Gabriel Mangiante is the Music Director, and Orchestrator August Eriksmoen will conduct the 7-piece band.

In a desolate potato field north of Omsk in southwestern Siberia, a comically fourth-rate Russian theater troupe sets up its ratty tents and wows the local farmers with rock-fueled adaptations of from great Russian writers such as Tolstoy and Dostoevsky. Tonight, however, the company tosses classic literature aside to showcase the life story of their impresario and star, the seemingly immortal Brother Russia - more commonly known as Grigori Yefimovich Rasputin. Yes, that Rasputin: the hypnotic mystic who seduced and ruled the Tsar and Tsarina in the waning days of Imperial Russia.

Recipient of the 2009 Regional Theatre Tony Award®, Signature Theatre is a non-profit professional theater company in Arlington, Virginia dedicated to producing contemporary musicals and plays, reinventing classic musicals, and developing new work. Under the leadership of co-founder and Artistic Director Eric Schaeffer and Managing Director Maggie Boland, Signature has presented 37 world premiere productions and is renowned for combining Broadway-quality productions with intimate playing spaces.

In addition to hosting the finest talent from the DC metropolitan area and New York, Signature has been home to such theatre luminaries as Chita Rivera, George Hearn, Hunter Foster, Emily Skinner, Marc Kudisch, Judy Kuhn, John Kander and Fred Ebb, Cameron Mackintosh, Terrence McNally, and the company's signature composer, Stephen Sondheim. Since its founding in 1989, Signature has won 72 Helen Hayes Awards for excellence in the Washington, DC region's professional theater and has been honored with 293 nominations.