The_Father_Logo

by August Strindberg
a new version by Laurie Slade

“It is a play that demands complete attention”
New York Times

An uneasy stand-off exists between the Captain and his wife Laura. But a disagreement over their daughter Bertha, triggers an all-out war. Laura will stop at nothing to gain control of her daughter’s future. When she suggests to the Captain that he may not actually be the girl’s father, she sets a chain of events in motion that cannot be stopped.

In a thrilling new production, this bold re-working of Strindberg’s masterpiece comes to Trafalgar Studio 2 for a strictly limited run. Starring Alex Ferns (EastEnders, Joyeux Noel, Making Waves) and June Watson, (winner of the 2014 Clarence Derwent Award) with direction from rising star Abbey Wright, and text from Laurie Slade.

It is a battle of the minds, but is it a battle either can win?

Laurie Slade’s critically acclaimed version of Strindberg’s text was first presented by The Belgrade Theatre, Coventry in 2012 and then broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in 2013. A visceral and imaginative new interpretation, The Father returns to London’s West End stage after a fifty-year absence.

The Father had its premiere in Copenhagen in 1887, and was a triumph in Paris in 1894, hailed as the first indisputable victory there for Scandinavian literature! It marked a turning point in the evolution of western drama. Strindberg was ahead of his time, anticipating modern trends in theatre. He dispensed with naturalistic detail and conventional backstories, insisting that the essence of a play lies in the intensity of the action onstage and the psychological truth and interaction of the characters.

Previous notable productions of the play starred Michael Redgrave, Trevor Howard, Grace Kelly and most recently Frank Langella on Broadway – though even that was 20 years ago.

A hundred years after Strindberg’s death, The Father is still traumatically alive!