Written in 1879 by Scandanavian playwright Henrik Ibsen, A Doll’s House is a true classic of Western theatre. Wherever it was performed in Europe, the program notes that accompany this Globe Theatre production based on an adaptation by Frank McGuiness state, it provoked shock and outrage in audiences.
So what makes the play so scandalous?
By modern standards, probably nothing. But in the late 19th century, its honest and uncompromising dissection of the marriage between Torvald and Nora Helmer was truly ground-breaking. A good provider and dedicated family man, Torvald, at first, seems like the ideal husband. But as the play progresses, the affection and devotion he expresses for his wife takes on a more ominous character.
I won’t go any further in discussing the plot, other than to note that the image above that the Globe is using in its promotional material offers a pretty strong visual cue about the nature of their relationship. Directed by David Latham, the play stars Jeffrey Wetsch as Torvald and Tova Smith as Nora. It runs until May 8.
If you’re planning to attend, at 2 hours and 50 minutes, with two intermissions, be forewarned that A Doll’s House is a bit of a bum-number. But its status as a truly great play is unquestioned.
Also on tonight, the Saskatchewan Filmpool is presenting a Premiere Screening at the RPL Film Theatre at 7 p.m. Featured will short films by over ten Filmpool members, including Dianne Oulette, Brett Bell, Gerald Saul, Preston Kanak, Kelly-Anne Reiss and sometimes prairie dog urban ecology writer Seema Goel.