Audiences who enjoy intelligent and thought-provoking theatre should not miss this historically-themed, award-winning stage-play written by Mark St. Germain, which centres on Sigmund Freud and C.S Lewis, two of the 20th Century’s greatest minds as they debate in an imagined meeting.
“This play basically brings two people with really fiercely opposing world views together under a high stakes situation, which is the announcement of war for the second time in Europe. With that as the backdrop, they talk about big subjects of life such as God, existence, sex, the meaning of life and everything in between,” explained Yannick Lawry who plays the role of C.S Lewis.
The staging is Freud’s study in London just weeks after escaping Nazi Germany with his family. “The couch is very much front and centre. He was the first of the psychoanalysts to popularise this idea of lying down on a couch, feeling at ease so you could speak your mind.”
What seems to be a highly dramatic piece is actually interspersed with comedy. “There are many real light relief moments both from Freud’s and Lewis’ side and you go from light to dark and back again. Lots to think about, lots to laugh about – there’s even a five-minute fart joke section!”
When asked whether there is a winner in the debate Lawry paused momentarily. “I don’t think there is a winner, but I will say that both men represent the views that all of us have, we have to fall somewhere on that spectrum between Freud and Lewis. I think each person’s viewpoint is brilliantly well expressed and the audience must decide – if there is such a thing as absolute truth, who’s telling it?”
Lawry emphasised that this play not only gives audiences a clear picture of these two men and the time they were living in, but also sends out an important message.
“If you have a different viewpoint from somebody else, it’s possible to defend it and still leave the room full of respect for somebody who thinks completely different to what you might have to say.” (MMo)
Until Nov 10. Seymour Centre, City Rd Chippendale. $40-$53+b.f. Tickets & Info: www.seymourcentre.com