Following the logic of a dream, in which characters merge into each other, locations change in an instant and a locked door becomes an obsessively recurrent image, Strindberg's A Dream Play written in 1902 is an amazing amalgam of Freud, Alice's Wonderland and Strindberg's own private symbolism. As Strindberg himself said, he wanted "to capture the inconsistent yet ostensibly logical structure of a dream. Everything can happen...Time and Place do not exist." Caryl Churchill's spare and resonant new version will premiere at the National Theatre in repertoire from mid-February 2005, coinciding with the big Strindberg exhibition at Tate Modern.
August Strindberg (1849-1912) is best-known for his misogyny and as the author of Miss Julie (1889). His first success came as a novelist and autobiographer - his plays (and he wrote over sixty) were deeply controversial in their time and still are to some extent. They range from a bold naturalism (eg The Father, 1887) to an impenetrable expressionism (eg The Ghost Sonata, 1907). Caryl Churchill (1938-) is probably the most respected woman dramatist in the English-speaking world. She is the author of some twenty plays including Light Shining in Buckinghamshire, Cloud Nine, Top Girls, Serious Money, The Skriker, Blue Heart, Far Away and A Number - seen and admired all over the world. Most are published by NHB.