The Doctor, starring Juliet Stevenson, will visit the Theater Royal Brighton from September 5th to 10th.
The Olivier Award winner plays Professor Ruth Wolfe, a consultant neurologist who founded an institute to study Alzheimer’s and dementia and find a cure.
But when a footage of her refusing to let a priest into the room of a young woman dying of sepsis goes viral, her life is turned upside down.
“She really had to work and toil and prove herself in a world that’s hostile at times,” Stevenson said.
“She’s quite fierce and doesn’t tolerate opposition. She doesn’t suffer from fools.
“She finds it quite difficult to deal with the current world and that’s why she gets in trouble when this incident happens at the beginning of the play, which then goes viral and several different factions take hold of it and it’s on social media and in going to war with the US Press.
“She’s becoming the focus of a huge national hate campaign, and that’s how she copes with it and doesn’t cope with it. There is a personal story that goes on and you find yourself in it, so you see her at home, you see her in the hospital and then you watch this catastrophic destruction of her life and work.”
The Doctor premiered at London’s Almeida Theater in 2019, but its planned transfer to the West End was canceled in 2020 due to the pandemic.
Stevenson said she is “thrilled” that the play will reach a wider audience through its three UK tour dates and West End performance, with Brighton being the play’s first venue.
She used her free time after rehearsals to explore the city further.
“I’m delighted that Brighton is our first tour venue, it’s not a city that I know well,” she said.
“I’ve popped in here briefly sometimes to work with Pier Productions’ beautiful recording studio in Brighton, but that was my only connection to the city.
“So I’m really excited to have just arrived and twelve days of exploring – I’ve already been strolling around by the time we’ve finished work in the evenings and I just love the sea and the architecture and these amazing, funky, interesting little alleys.” and curves and beautiful views.
“And I’ve never acted at the Theater Royal Brighton. I love putting a new theater in my belt! I don’t often find one these days after a long time.
“It’s beautiful, so beautiful – I love it front and back. This beautiful Victorian warm space to play and enjoy backstage life and shabby chic style rooms is truly enchanting.
“I also look forward to the audience here, who I imagine will be very lively, hungry, engaged and receptive to this piece.
“I’m delighted to be here and look forward to having this conversation with the Brighton audience.”
Stevenson, who won a Critics’ Circle Award and was nominated for an Evening Standard Award for Best Actress for her performance in The Doctor, previously worked with director Robert Icke on 2016’s Mary Stuart and 2017’s Hamlet.
“I felt with Rob that we were doing the kind of theater I’ve craved for ages and he’s very dynamic and interested in doing theater right now, which I am,” she said.
“So he wrote The Doctor for me what to do with him, which is very nice.”
Stevenson said the play “offers a debate” about the “bitter culture we currently live in,” including abort culture, identity politics, social media’s “echo chamber,” and “inter-identity wars, the established kangaroo courts.” on twitter”.
“Theatre is a place where you can do that, you can deal with dangerous and difficult issues knowing that it’s just a play but realizing the complexities we have to deal with in our daily lives,” she said.
“It’s an amazing psychological study, it’s an amazing central role for a woman and an older woman – my age!
“Women rarely see older women recounting their experiences on stage.”
https://www.theargus.co.uk/news/20899756.juliet-stevenson-brings-doctor-brighton/?ref=rss Juliet Stevenson brings The Doctor to Brighton