This Christmas, Pushkin House presents the world premiere of “Anastasia” by Marcelle Maurette. Set in a Berlin townhouse, in 1928, 10 years after the murder of the Tsar and his family at Ekaterinberg, rumours circulate among Russian exiles that one of the Tsar’s children survived the firing squad.
Taking advantage of this collective hope, three businessmen plot to gain access to the murdered Tsar’s millions by passing off a disturbed girl as that survivor. The girl is a fast learner, she makes a convincing Anastasia Nikolaevna, they just have to fool the Tsar’s mother – The Dowager Empress Maria Fyodorovna – and the money will be theirs.
This is not a fairy story or a sentimentalised account of the “Anastasia myth”, but an exploration of trauma, suffering, and loss and how the human soul tries to find respite and finally peace from it.