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the doctor

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director robert icke
from robert icke
duration 2:45, incl. 1 pauze
premiere 12 Sep 2021


Robert Icke has a warm heart for the classics, which he adapts in his own personal and radical way. We have already seen this with Oedipus and Children of Nora, which he wrote and directed especially for ITA. Once again, he is making a contemporary adaptation, this time of Professor Bernhardi by Arthur Schnitzler.

Icke turned the Jewish doctor Bernhardi into a woman, Ruth Wolff. The priest is now a black man. As a result of the incident, Wolff finds herself so heavily criticised by others that the future of her hospital is at stake. Meanwhile, a colleague uses her misfortune as an opportunity to manipulate an internal appointment procedure in his favour.

Racial prejudice and hidden agendas: it makes The doctor a thriller in which clashing views about the way we see ourselves and the world we live in today create an explosive cocktail.


Robert Icke about The doctor

‘A girl is dying in a room in a hospital. A priest wants to go in, but the girl's doctor will not allow it. So begins Arthur Schnitzler's play Professor Bernhardi, from which The Doctor is adapted. For Schnitzler, the conflicts were simple to lay out: medicine versus religion, and Catholic versus Jew.

Yet, in the city of today, in the online age, in a world increasingly polarised, the question of identity is a live one, multi-faceted and endlessly complicated. De dokter thinks about identity, about groups and individuals, about the badges we choose and those we don't, and asks how we can ever answer the simplest of questions: who are we?’

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