Three Sisters (Ruhl)


Three Sisters (Ruhl)

Full-Length Play, Drama  /  5w, 9m

By Anton Chekhov
English version by Sarah Ruhl
Based on a literal translation by: Elise Thoron with Natasha Paramonova and Kristin Johnsen-Neshati

The humor and heartbreak of one of the world’s greatest plays is revealed through the lyricism of a leading voice in contemporary theatre: two-time Pulitzer Prize finalist Sarah Ruhl.

Image: 2011 Yale Repertory Theatre Production (Joan Marcus)

Three Sisters (Ruhl)

  • Cast Size
    Cast Size
    5w, 9m
  • Duration
    More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • SubGenre
    Adaptations (Stage & Screen), Period
  • Audience
    Target Audience
    Adult, Senior, Teen (Age 14 - 18)
  • Sarah Ruhl is the 2003 recipient of the Whiting Award for Drama


Transplanted from their beloved Moscow to a provincial Russian town, three sisters – school teacher Olga, unhappily married Masha and idealistic Irina – yearn for the city of their childhood, where they imagine their lives will be transformed and fulfilled. Three Sisters is the portrait of a family grappling with the bittersweet distance between reality and dreams.
Three Sisters premiered at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park in Cincinnati, Ohio, on 24 October 2009. Directed by John Doyle, the production featured Hannah Cabell as Irina, Alma Cuervo as Olga, and Laila Robins as Masha.
The Prozorov Sisters:

ANDREI – Their brother
NATASHA - His wife
KULYGIN – Masha’s husband
VERSHININ – A colonel
SOLYONY – A staff captain
CHEBUTYKIN – An army doctor
TUZENBACH – A baron and lieutenant
ANFISA – A nurse, 80 years old
FEDOTIK – Second lieutenant
RODE – Second lieutenant
FERAPONT – An old watchman
  • Time Period 1900-1910
  • Setting The Prozorov home. 1900.
  • Features Period Costumes
  • Duration More than 120 minutes (2 hours)
  • Cautions
    • Alcohol


“Luminous!... A crisp, breezy new English version by Sarah Ruhl.” – San Francisco Chronicle

“Sarah Ruhl has a taste for and a way with the classics.” – The New York Times

“Sarah Ruhl's smart new translation... feels just right to contemporary American ears – lean, colloquial and conversation for us, and true to Chekhov's original.” – Cincinnati Enquirer

“Exhilirating! Ruhl doesn't call attention to herself here. Instead she lets the play breathe with a smiple, unmannered approach to the drama that makes it seem shockingly contemporary... There's a naturalness to the way the drama unfolds, the ebb and flow of the emotional outbursts, that leaves you breathless.” – San Jose Mercury News

“Luminous!... A crisp, breezy new English version by Sarah Ruhl. Its fierce beauty suffuses every moment and reaches for immortality.” – San Francisco Chronicle

Three Sisters reminds us that few writers have ever seen into the human soul with more acuity and understanding than Chekhov.” –

“Ruhl seems a good fit to adapt Chekhov, as each writer’s works are playgrounds of bittersweet ambiguity... a rich and sonorous version of the classic play.” – The Yale Herald


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  • Three Sisters (Ruhl) at Yale Rep youtube thumbnail

    Three Sisters (Ruhl) at Yale Rep

  • Three Sisters (Ruhl) at Berkeley Rep youtube thumbnail

    Three Sisters (Ruhl) at Berkeley Rep

  • Chekhov and Me: Sarah Ruhl youtube thumbnail

    Chekhov and Me: Sarah Ruhl


  • Three Sisters (Ruhl)

    Image: 2011 Yale Repertory Theatre Production (Joan Marcus)

Licensing & Materials

  • Minimum Fee: £70 per performance plus VAT when applicable.


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Sarah Ruhl

Sarah Ruhl’s plays include In the Next Room, or the vibrator play, The Clean House, Passion Play, Dead Man’s Cell Phone, Melancholy Play, For Peter Pan on her 70th Birthday, The Oldest Boy, Stage Kiss, Dear Elizabeth, Eurydice, How to Transcend a Happy Marriage, Orlando, Late ...

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