2020/2021 Season

Mother Russia

World-Premiere Play

Sheila and Hughes Potiker Theatre

By Lauren Yee | Directed by Tyne Rafaeli

Welcome to St. Petersburg in the 1990s – the Berlin Wall has fallen, the Soviet Union has dissolved and opportunity abounds. But barely-competent government surveillance workers Euvgeny and Dmitri find themselves lost in their strange new world of glasnost, perestroika and McDonald’s. When they’re assigned to track Katya, a fallen pop-star with international allure, a love triangle, mistaken identities and some really shoddy espionage tactics are set in motion. It’s possible they might just make it out of this mess and find happiness – if only they could make a decision. A world-premiere comedy about the curse of freedom and having to choose between the Filet-o-Fish and the Big Mac.

Complete your evening at Mother Russia by making a reservation at our onsite restaurant James’ Place, just steps away from the theatre, or stop by for a drink. Click HERE to reserve your table. James’ Place opens at 5:00 pm.


Cast & Creators
Image of Lauren Yee Lauren Yee Playwright

Her play CAMBODIAN ROCK BAND was produced at La Jolla Playhouse November 12 – December 15, 2019. It premiered at South Coast Rep, with subsequent productions at OSF, Victory Gardens, City Theatre, Merrimack Rep, Signature Theatre, Portland Center Stage and Jungle Theatre. Her play THE GREAT LEAP has been produced at theaters across the country. Honors include the Doris Duke Artists Award, Steinberg Playwright Award, Whiting Award, Steinberg/ATCA Award, American Academy of Arts and Letters literature award, Horton Foote Prize, Kesselring Prize, and the #1 and #2 plays on the 2017 Kilroys List. She's a Residency 5 playwright at Signature Theatre, New Dramatists member, Ma-Yi Writers’ Lab member and Playwrights Realm alumna playwright. Her TV work includes PACHINKO (Apple) and SOUNDTRACK (Netflix). B.A.: Yale. M.F.A.: UC San Diego. laurenyee.com

Lauren Yee Playwright
Image of Tyne Rafaeli Tyne Rafaeli Director

directed La Jolla Playhouse’s world-premiere of Keith Bunin’s THE COAST STARLIGHT. Recent productions include Ming Peiffer's USUAL GIRLS at Roundabout Theater (New York Times Critics’ Pick), Craig Lucas' I WAS MOST ALIVE WITH YOU at Playwrights Horizons (New York Times Critics’ Pick), Martyna Majok’s IRONBOUND and the world premieres of Anna Ziegler’s ACTUALLY and Amanda Peet’s OUR VERY OWN CARLIN McCULLOUGH at Geffen Playhouse, and the New York premiere of Lauren Yee’s IN A WORD (New York Times Critics’ Pick). Her work has also been seen at Classic Stage Company, Atlantic Theater Company, Goodspeed, Juilliard, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Idaho Shakespeare Festival and the O'Neill Playwrights Conference. She is a 2016-18 Time Warner Directing Fellow at the Women's Project Theater and received the 2014 SDC Sir John Gielgud Fellowship for Classic Direction.

Tyne Rafaeli Director
Venue Info

Sheila and Hughes Potiker Theatre

Inagurated in 2005, the newest of the La Jolla Playhouse theatres is the Sheila and Hughes Potiker Theatre, a black box flexible theatre seating up to 450 patrons, and the centerpiece of the 6,500-square-foot Joan and Irwin Jacobs Center.

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La Jolla Playhouse takes action in solidarity with BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color)
artists, audiences and community members in the fight to end racism.
Read our plans here.
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