The Physicists

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A comedy-thriller by Friedrich Dürrenmatt.

The English translation, by , first produced by the Royal Shakespeare Company at the Aldwych Theatre in 1963. Directed by

Performance history in South Africa

Produced in South Africa in September 1963 by the Langford-Inglis Company in conjunction with the Alexander Theatre. The play's first run was at the Aldwych Theatre in January of the same year. Directed by Robert Langford (Herbert Georg Beutler (Newton) patient) and Margaret Inglis (Fraulein Doktor Mathilde von Zahnd, Alienist) who also played the leads, with Angela Davidson (A Dead Nurse), Helen Braithwaite (Marta Boll, Head Nurse), Frank Douglass (Richard Voss, Inspector of Police), Bryan Bales (Police Doctor and Oskar Rose, Missionary), Hugh Fowler (Guhl, Policeman and Adolf-Friederich, Missionaries' son), Karl Winter (Blocher, Policeman), Leslie Zulberg (Policeman), George Lane (Ernst Heinrich Ernesti (Einstein), patient), Bess Finney (Frau Lina Rose, Missionary's Wife), Don Clifford (Wilfred-Kaspar, Missionaries' son), Allan Zulberg (Jorg-Lukas, Missionaries' son), Gabriel Bayman (Johann Wilhelm Mobius, patient), Mary Miller (Monika Stettler, Nurse), Gilbert Xaba (McArthur, Chief Male Attendant), Billy Rutherford (Uwe Sievers, Male Attendant), Maurice Cinamon (Murillo, Male Attendant). Sets by Roy Cooke, House manager Michael Coulson, Stage manager Karl Winter, Assistant stage managers Angela Davidson and Hugh Fowler. It is a comedy thriller and considered to be "parable" of the time, referred to as comedie-noire. The play examines the moral position of the scientist in a "world shadowed by a mushroom cloud".

Produced by CAPAB, opening in Port Elizabeth on 10 March 1964.

Translations and adaptations


Grütter, Wilhelm, CAPAB 25 Years, 1987. Unpublished research. p 415. (Ms in Centaps archives.)

Programme Alexander Theatre. No 166 September, 1963.

Bosman, 1928: pp

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