One of few entertainments the Romanov family had in captivity in Tobolsk, especially during the cold winter months when they could not go outside, was putting on plays. The youngest imperial children were especially enthusiastic about dressing up and memorizing the lines, and had a lot of fun doing it. Grand Duchess Olga was in charge of writing out the scripts and . Some of these scripts written in her hand survived and are currently kept at the Russian archives in Moscow.
Putting on plays was mentioned numerous times in diaries and letters the Romanovs wrote from Tobolsk. Here are a couple of examples, below:
From Anastasia Romanov to A.Vyrubova. 10 December, 1917.
My darling and dear: Thank you tenderly for your little gift. It was so nice to get it, reminding me especially of you. We remember you and speak of you often, and in our prayers we are always together. The little dog you gave [us] is always with us and is very nice. We have arranged our rooms comfortably and all four live together. We often sit at the windows looking at the people passing by, and this gives us distraction… We have acted in little plays for amusement. We walk in the garden behind high planks. God bless you. AN
From Alexei Romanov to A. Vyrubova. 12 January, 1918.
My darling Anya. We are so glad to have news from you, and to hear that you got all our things. Today it is 29 degrees of frost, a strong wind and sunshine. We walked, and I went on skis in the yard. Yesterday I acted a French piece with Tatiana and Zhylik. We are now preparing another piece. We have a few good soldiers with whom I play games in their rooms. Kolya Derevenko comes to visit me on holidays. Nagorny the sailor sleeps with me. As servants we have Volkov, Sednev, Trupp and Chemodurov. It is time to go to lunch. I kiss and embrace you. God bless you. ALEXEI
From the book Russia’s Last Romanovs: In Their Own Words