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duration 2:15
premiere 22 Sep 2019

In the late 1950s, French philosopher Jean-Paul Sartre wrote The Freud Scenario, at the request of Hollywood director John Huston. Sartre is completely immersed in the subject, that he writes a script for a seven hour movie. Huston reduces the many hundreds of pages to a two-hour film. Because of this, the two get into an argument. Sartre then has his name removed from the credits. Since then this challenging script has remained untouched.

Freud has, perhaps more than anyone else in the twentieth century, determined how we think about what it means to be human. He has had a profound influence on literature, film, and theatre. But how did Freud come up with his theories? Sartre portrays the young psychiatrist as a tormented personality who discovered psychoanalysis almost against his will.

Ivo van Hove: 'The piece is about innovation. We follow Freud at a young age, where he develops rapidly against the views of his influential teachers. With trial and error he discovers dream analysis. Freud was able to think out of the box, to be creative and innovative. He was unique in that he did it not only by observing his patients, but also by confronting himself. Freud's research into mankind was born out of a highly personal need. He throws himself on the scales with everything he has – not only his beliefs but also his doubts, not only his mind but also his heart.'

Ivo van Hove is the first to stage Sartre's extensive script in its entirety, which means that Freud is a world premier. In this co-production with the Toneelhuis (Antwerp), members of the Antwerp theatre collective FC Bergman will also take the stage in addition to the ITA ensemble actors.



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