Brooklyn | 2h 30m | Already closed


From 10 critic and 100 member reviews
Members say: Quirky, Ambitious, Entertaining, Great singing, Clever

About the show

Pipeline Theatre Company presents the NYC premiere of this rock musical about Rasputin, the infamous mystic who helped topple the Russian royal family. Featuring music by Dave Malloy of 'The Great Comet' fame.  More…

Beardo is a Russian indie-rock musical that explores the mad inner workings of Rasputin, who sexed his way to the fall of the Russian monarchy. Experience the mysterious ascent of one of the most peculiar and seductive figures in history. 'Beardo' is staged at a fully operational church in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, where the production makes full use of the venue's high-arched ceilings, stained-glass windows, and fully functioning pipe organ. 


"A wonderfully strange new musical...Overflowing with mystery and mirth, this tragicomic riff on a familiar tale is an unforgettable theatrical experience...Malloy employs an eclectic mix of styles for a score that is both tuneful and daring...Surprises abound in Heyman's earthy production...'Beardo' thrillingly leaves us to ponder what we just saw and to distrust any immediate conclusions we might make about it." Full Review

Daily Beast

"'Beardo' is near brilliant, played with pitch-perfect timing by the cast, particularly Damon Daunno, in a star-making turn...If this is kept from falling into juvenilia, or just pure silliness, it is largely a credit to the tight direction from Ellie Heyman. Comedic stunts like those pulled here can grow tiresome, but they never do...It is pure pleasure, and doesn’t leave the audience with much to argue over on the way out the door." Full Review

On Stage Blog

"An entertaining and fascinating evening of theatre...So much about this production works well...The cast is exemplary...What didn't work for me was nit-picky. The repetition employed throughout the score and book is cute the first time, but I suspect would fall flat with repeated viewings...I'll always seek out a Malloy show from now on. It's a guaranteed unique, high value and immensely original experience." Full Review

New York Theater

"Some of the elements familiar from 'Great Comet' are present, most notably Malloy’s classically tinged, eclectic score offering everything from rock ballads to hearty drinking songs, as well as a game and talented cast. But 'Beardo' feels in comparison like a work in progress. The book and lyrics are playful, sometimes clever, silly, ribald, deliberately anachronistic, joyfully shocking and in-your-face weird. They are too accomplished to be labeled juvenile but 'adolescent' might fit." Full Review

Stage Buddy

"The production is sometimes adventurous, sometimes euphoric, and sometimes downright ludicrous...Craig can be surprisingly clever and sometimes the songs are oddly touching. The cast is terrific in its commitment to the eccentricity of the work...Damon Daunno shines as the protagonist...Even when the book provides no context for the action leaving the audience bewildered, Daunno keeps us grounded. Director Ellie Heyman creates a wonderful atmosphere for the actors to play in." Full Review

The New York Times

"A louche, lewd and assertively weird fantasia on the life of Rasputin...Those lacking familiarity with pre-revolutionary Russian history may find themselves befuddled...This ought to be dark, ribald, rambling entertainment. And it is. But it also isn’t...Heyman approaches the material with gusto, conjuring some visual and sonic surprises, playing down the politics. But art alters as times change, and this show now seems less bouncy, more hollow and more queasy than intended." Full Review

Theater In The Now

"'Beardo' is a dangerously evocative musical that is breaking the mold...There are some flaws. A bunch. Some whiffs in the script. Is there room for trimming? Absolutely...This company certainly had a blast...'Beardo' is a beautiful mess of a musical that knows exactly what it is. And that’s what makes it, well, charming. If you take the show at face value, you’ll likely not get it. If you do a tad bit of research and allow yourself to embrace it for what it is, you’re bound to appreciate it." Full Review

Time Out New York

"Scruffy and messy, which is fun for a bit—before you start yearning for dramaturgical focus and stronger direction to bring out a decent musical...Director Ellie Heyman has fine individual ingredients to work with: Craig’s goofy-eerie dialogue and lyrics, Malloy’s folksy pop and a cast bursting with talent. It’s the integration of those elements and themes that doesn’t work...A novelty-song cycle grafted onto an absurdist historical fable, 'Beardo' needs trimming." Full Review

Lighting & Sound America

"The entire enterprise suffers from a deficit of wit and the absence of a point of view...That 'Beardo' doesn't become entirely tiresome until late in the second act is largely due to Malloy's music...There isn't much that the director, Ellie Heyman, can do to impose any order on such often chaotic proceedings...Neither a comic romp, a pointed satire, nor a gripping historic episode, 'Beardo,' the musical, is little more than a superficial display of look-at-me cleverness." Full Review

Paste Magazine

"Adventurous but unfocused...Two and a half hours of a horny mansplainer who seemed to feel zero compassion for anyone and viewed himself as flawless...Most of the jokes in 'Beardo' go on for far too long...Rasputin has long been the subject of cultural fascination...but modernizing him through adolescent humor and cheap jokes, and making him nothing more than an entitled man-child, is not an effective or creative way to explore this subject." Full Review

Ambitious, Intense, Must see, Masterful, Great staging

See it if SEE THIS SHOW! Absolutely fantastic! The music (of course!) is incredible! The cast is completely amazing! The setting & staging perfection!

Don't see it if You may not enjoy the show because of subject matter: language, sex, violence. It is full of bold choices & lots of risk taking by the cast.

Great acting, Great singing, Great staging, Great writing, Must see

See it if you can take your Rasputin story with outrageously funny lines, amazing music and unconventional setting. Also, if you are a Dave Malloy fan

Don't see it if you get easily offended by strong language and simulated sex acts.

Also Few things recently gave me such joy as this production. From the funn... Read more Read less

Masterful, Intelligent, Must see

See it if Dave Malloy. Incredible dedication and talent. Hopefully, only the beginning.

Don't see it if Need to stick to the conventional

Ambitious, Enchanting, Great writing, Epic, Masterful

See it if you love theatre that's purely fun and unique and just a good time. This is such a FUN show

Don't see it if you don't like musicals about Rasputin?? You should see it anyway...

Absorbing, Entertaining, Edgy, Epic, Relevant

See it if you like ambitious theater from a small company in a unique space.

Don't see it if you are looking for an old-fashioned musical.

Great acting, Great singing, Great staging, Great writing, Hilarious

See it if One of the best shows I have seen in NYC. Amazing talent from the creative to cast to technical elements. If this comes back, don't miss it!

Don't see it if You are a pointless human being.

Clever, Entertaining, Raunchy, Resonant, Riveting

See it if You honestly wanna have a blast in an amazing down to earth venue full of crafty artists.

Don't see it if You are a snob who dislikes grungy theater.

Also "Drown him in the face, drown him in the face" is maybe my favorite ly... Read more Read less

Clever, Great singing, Great staging, Funny

See it if you enjoy musicals performed by actors with great voices and perfect harmonies.

Don't see it if you don't like historical theater (although, this is a loose interpretation) or need to be in an actual theater.

Also The staging made full use of the entire church and the musicians were ... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Raunchy, Quirky, Must see, Great singing

See it if You enjoy Romanov history or Dave Malloy shows. Very quirky and saucy and weird. Fabulous

Don't see it if Sexual dances make you uncomfortable, or shows that make complete historical sense

Clever, Great singing, Great staging, Refreshing, Hilarious

See it if You love creativity

Don't see it if You are too serious

Great staging, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if you would like to see am ambitious, energetic play about Rasputin where the actors give intense performances. One scene where a peasant gave

Don't see it if you do not like raunchy, energetic and ambitious acting, if you do not like a rock score, if you do not like being blown away at times.

Also an unbelievable season purely with her eyes. The surprise of a chorus ... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Enchanting, Hilarious, Quirky, Raunchy

See it if You like history, hot men who can sing like angels (Damon Daunno), interesting storylines, theatre in unique spaces, experimental theatre.

Don't see it if You want a typical musical, or dislike sex/murder onstage.

Ambitious, Delightful, Indulgent, Hilarious, Exquisite

See it if you enjoy irreverent theatre in non-traditional spaces, murder-ballets and tales of insane monks doing dirty things to increasingly odd folk

Don't see it if you're stuffy and strictly believe in the traditional musical form.

Also A remarkably kickass night!

Ambitious, Great acting, Great singing, Epic, Quirky

See it if you want something completely new and innovative.

Don't see it if you're squeamish about sex or violence, you want an accurate biography of Rasputin.

Clever, Absorbing, Enchanting, Entertaining, Great staging

See it if You enjoy historical tales with quirky twists. Some excellent staging, narrative, bizarrely hilarious moments. Great music and atmosphere!

Don't see it if You prefer traditional historical tellings, or are offended by sexually explicit subject matter.

Strong, fierce, new progressive music by dynamically performed with four violins, cello, bass, bells, guitars and more!, star turn by damon daunno - who shines as beardo!, highly satisfying and raucous fun!!!, great singing, ambitious!, Quirky, Raunchy, Edgy, Fun!

See it if ...if sexy, edgy, stylized musicals are for you. It feels like an special 'in' event in the nicely decrepit church. Great sound design!

Don't see it if ...if you will resent it when it 'jumps a few sharks', you are stodgy and conservative.

Also A star making lead role very well played byDamon Daunno. Great support... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Enchanting, Entertaining, Raunchy, Great singing

See it if You liked Great Comet; don't mind dirty themes, lyrics, staging; can embrace the ridiculous sometimes.

Don't see it if You are looking for a traditional kind of show; if you are looking for accurate Russian history/style.

Also I saw this show as a fan of Dave Malloy and he did not disappoint! The... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Clever, Delightful, Enchanting, Funny

See it if you are looking for an off off Broadway experience where the "art of theater" beats out everything else. This is a fun, crazy ride!

Don't see it if you are looking for more commercial, linear story telling

Also Pipeline is one of those non-profit theater companies that really stan... Read more Read less

Entertaining, Edgy, Great staging, Great acting, Quirky

See it if You'd like a sexy historical (maybe-supernatural?) musical staged in a very cool church that's kind of hard to get to

Don't see it if You wouldn't like a sexy musical staged in a church that's kind of hard to get to

Also The second act is nuts and the Tsarista stole the show.

Funny, Raunchy, Quirky, Clever, Entertaining

See it if Biographical farce based on Rasputin. Wonderful music and clever verse. Lots of sexual humor. Original and different.

Don't see it if You don't like raunchy silly comedy. You are looking for something more serious or dramatic.

Also Wish I could buy a soundtrack.

Entertaining, Quirky, Original

See it if You want to watch something interesting, stylish and different. Original music and characters, dialogue was sometimes likes hip poetry

Don't see it if Your tastes are more traditional, you're not into indie stuff

Funny, Intense, Raunchy, Quirky

See it if You enjoy historical stories. You're interested in a Russian setting especially. You enjoyed Natasha Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812

Don't see it if You're uncomfortable with sexual references and four-letter words.

Quirky, Ambitious, Clever, Great singing, Entertaining

See it if for the wonderful innovative score and the hilarious 2nd act. Arrive early to get a seat with a clear view of the stage.

Don't see it if the G train is terra incognito, 3 hours on church pew offends your delicate posterior or historical inconsistencies disturb you.

Dizzying, Entertaining, Hilarious, Quirky, Raunchy

See it if you love absurdist theatre, playful interpretations of Russian history, delightfully lunatic characters, and unusual performance spaces.

Don't see it if you prefer your characters realistic, genuine, and deep. It's also performed in a slightly worn-down church; don't expect a standard theatre

Clever, Entertaining, Great singing, Funny, Slow

See it if you like seeing experimental theatre, if you liked The Great Comet.

Don't see it if you only like your musicals from Disney

Cast & Creatives (26)