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A Monthly Culture Matrix For the Cosmopolitan Traveler

The Doctor


Duke of York's Theatre / London / Stage

Having updated Henrik Ibsen, the writer and director Robert Icke now takes on Arthur Schnitzler’s The Doctor, first performed in 1912. In the original, a Viennese Jewish physician refuses to allow a Catholic priest to perform last rites. Icke’s update transforms the doctor into a secular Jewish woman, stunningly played by Juliet Stevenson. As in the original, she denies a priest’s request, but here the patient is a 14-year-old girl, dying from a self-induced abortion. News of the incident breaks, and the violent cultural reaction sets off spasms of distress for those involved. This unsettling revision pulls Schnitzler’s play into some of the most complicated questions of our time. —C.J.F.

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Duke of York's Theatre St Martin's Ln, Charing Cross, London WC2N 4BG, United Kingdom
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