The action takes place on the stage of the Dagmar Theatre, in Copenhagen, where Strindberg and his estranged wife, Siri, are preparing the first performance of his short play The Stronger. With Siri is her friend Marie Caroline David, an alcoholic actress whom Strindberg accuses of having a lesbian attachment to his wife. As the rehearsal progresses, the lines of the play being read are cleverly shaded to reflect the bitterness of Strindberg's personal situation: his frustration as an artist; his dismay at the loss of his wife's love; his enmity toward his rival. Ranging from fiery outbursts to moments of high humor, the play builds an uncanny and overpowering portrait of the tortured genius, while achieving a poignancy and sense of truth which are theatre at its finest and most vivid.
First achieving acclaim in the author's native Sweden, this brilliant play went on to successful production by an outstanding American regional theatre and then to Broadway. Centering on the famed playwright August Strindberg and his disintegrating marriage, the play captures the essence of this tortured genius and of his struggle both for professional recognition and for personal fulfillment. "One of the most striking, most touching and dramatic plays I've seen in some time…everything high theatre should be." —NY Post. "…a play that stretches the mind, bares the nerves, challenges the ear, braces the imagination." —Time Magazine.