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Freud's Last Session

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#1 J.A.A. Purves

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Posted 05 February 2011 - 01:17 AM

Alright, has anyone else even heard of this before? The more I read about it, absolutely the more I realize that I MUST see this. Ron Reed was kind enough to mention it to me, and my excitement for it is only growing the more that I find out about it.

Mark St. Germain sounds like a fascinating writer. Years ago he wrote a play called The God Committee. And now his most recent play, Freud's Last Session, according to Wikipedia "premiered in the summer of 2009 at the Barrington Stage Company, MA, and is currently playing at the Marjorie S. Deane Little Theater in New York City. FREUD'S LAST SESSION began previews on July 9, 2010, and officially opened on July 22, 2010." Check this out -

Andy Propst, Theater Mania -

What might have happened if the father of psychiatry, Sigmund Freud, a man who once wrote that individuals who believed in God were suffering from "obsessional neurosis," had had a chance to sit down with theologian and novelist C.S. Lewis? That question is posited by Mark St. Germain in his thought-provoking yet schematic two-hander, Freud's Last Session, now making its New York debut at the Marjorie S. Deane Little Theater in director Tyler Marchant's straightforward production.

... the encounter ... begins with an overly cute misunderstanding between the two men. Lewis (Mark H. Dold) believes that Freud (Martin Rayner) has summoned him to reprimand him about Sigismunde, a thinly veiled caricature of Freud found in Lewis' Pilgrim's Regress. Freud assures the younger man -- who has arrived unfashionably late -- that their meeting has nothing to do with the book, but rather Lewis' conversion from atheism to theism. Soon, the men's debate -- which includes a healthy dose of mutual psychoanalysis on both parts -- is off and running.

David Sheward, BackStage.com -

Playwright Mark St. Germain adds to the popular genre of "what if" literature with "Freud's Last Session," a compact 75 minutes of bristling intellectual debate between the father of psychoanalysis and a young C.S. Lewis, before he gained fame as a religious philosopher and author of "The Chronicles of Narnia." ... A few weeks before Freud's death in 1939, when he was living in London after fleeing Hitler's Germany, the great man received a visit from an unnamed Oxford professor. St. Germain imagines this unknown caller to be Lewis, a passionate convert to Christianity after years of atheism. The two spar over the existence of God, the nature of sex, and the meaning of life. It's a stimulating argument, and St. Germain gives equal weight to both sides, never allowing the high-minded talk to descend into a contest between talking heads.


#2 Ron Reed

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Posted 05 February 2011 - 01:43 AM

I'm intending to read the script tomorrow. Quite intrigued by the idea of staging it. I played C.S. Lewis in our production of Shadowlands a few years back, and another actor in our company played Sigmund Freud in our staged reading of The Last Days of Judas Iscariot. I think it would be a kick to reprise our characters in this show. Though of course I'm about a decade older than my friend, so perhaps we would swap roles. All speculation until I read it, of course. But various people I've come across who've seen it say they really liked it a lot, and a few have recommended it for Pacific Theatre. So I'm optimistic!

#3 Peter T Chattaway

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Posted 05 February 2011 - 03:02 AM

Link to our thread on the PBS show The Question of God: Sigmund Freud & C.S. Lewis (2004).

Edited by Peter T Chattaway, 05 February 2011 - 03:02 AM.

#4 Gina



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Posted 08 February 2011 - 10:46 AM

I've been dying to see that play. Don't know whether I'm going to get a chance to or not, so anyone who does, I want details!! :)

#5 Gina



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Posted 02 May 2011 - 09:53 PM

I got to see it! And it was marvelous. :) My review is here.