Readings — From the January 2013 issue

Russian Unorthodox

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From Natasha, Pierre, & the Great Comet of 1812, an electropop opera by Dave Malloy based on Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace, which ran last fall at Ars Nova in New York City.

pierre: There’s a war going on / Out there somewhere / And Andrey isn’t here.

all: There’s a war going on / Out there somewhere / And Andrey isn’t here / And this is all in your program / You are at the opera / Gonna have to study up a little bit / If you wanna keep with the plot / ’Cuz it’s a complicated Russian novel / Everyone’s got nine different names / But look it up in your program / We’d appreciate it, thanks a lot / Da da da / Da da da / Da da da / Natasha!

natasha: Natasha is young / She loves Andrey with all her heart.

all: She loves Andrey with all her heart / Natasha is young / And Andrey isn’t here.

sonya: Sonya is good / Natasha’s cousin and closest friend.

all: Natasha’s cousin and closest friend / Sonya is good / Natasha is young / And Andrey isn’t here.

marya: Marya is old-school, a grande dame of Moscow / Natasha’s godmother, strict yet kind.

all: Natasha’s godmother, strict yet kind / Marya is old-school / Sonya is good / Natasha is young / And Andrey isn’t here / And this is all in your program / You are at the opera / Chandeliers and corsets / The war can’t touch us here / And it’s a complicated Russian novel / Everyone’s got nine different names / But look it up in your program / We’d appreciate it, thanks a lot / Da da da / Da da da / Da da da / Anatole!

anatole: Anatole is hot / He spends his money on women and wine.

all: He spends his money on women and wine / Anatole is hot / Marya is old-school / Sonya is good / Natasha is young / And Andrey isn’t here.

hélène: Hélène is a slut / Anatole’s sister, married to Pierre.

all: Anatole’s sister, married to Pierre / Hélène is a slut / Anatole is hot / Marya is old-school / Sonya is good / Natasha is young / And Andrey isn’t here.

dolokhov: Dolokhov is fierce, but not too important / Anatole’s friend, a crazy good shot.

all: Anatole’s friend, a crazy good shot / Dolokhov is fierce / Hélène is a slut / Anatole is hot / Marya is old-school / Sonya is good / Natasha is young / And Andrey isn’t here / And this is all in your program / You are at the opera / Gonna have to study up a little bit / If you wanna keep with the plot / ’Cuz it’s a complicated Russian novel / Everyone’s got nine different names / But look it up in your program / We’d appreciate it, thanks a lot / Da da da / Da da da / Da da da / Minor characters!

bolkonsky: Old Prince Bolkonsky is crazy.

mary: And Mary is plain.

mary & bolkonsky: Andrey’s family, totally messed up.

balaga: And Balaga’s just for fun!

all: Balaga’s just for fun! / Balaga is fun / Bolkonsky is crazy / Mary is plain / Dolokhov is fierce / Hélène is a slut / Anatole is hot / Marya is old-school / Sonya is good / Natasha is young / And Andrey isn’t here / And what about Pierre? / Dear, bewildered, and awkward Pierre? / What about Pierre? / Rich, unhappily married Pierre? / What about Pierre? / What about Pierre? / What about Pierre?

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