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Summary

Rosmersholm

By Henrik Ibsen

Translated by Charles Archer

Presented by the Online Stage

Rosmersholm is a play surrounding the deep and intense political and cultural change in Norway in the middle of the 1880s, a period during which the traditional ruling class were forced to relinquish their right to impose their ideals on the rest of society. We follow Johannes Rosmer, a pastor who has resigned from his position; Rebecca West, a woman who sees Rosmer's potential and believes she can help him to realize his dream of creating a world of "happy, noble people"; and Headmaster Kroll, Rosmer's former best friend, who takes it upon himself to deliver some home truths to the other two. Rosmer's view of life is seriously challenged by his interactions with Rebecca, which lead to a shattering conclusion.

This production is part of a project by The Online Stage to record all 26 plays by Ibsen.

Cast
John Rosmer - John Burlinson
Rebecca West - K. G. Cross
Headmaster Kroll - Alan Weyman
Ulrik Brendel - Peter Tucker
Peder Mortensgaard - Ron Altman
Madame Helseth - Michele Eaton

Stage directions read by Denis Daly

Afterword composed and read by K. G. Cross

Public Domain (P)2016 Voices of Today

What listeners say about Rosmersholm

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Great play, wooden performance

I listened to this to prep for seeing the stage show. Some if the performances were incredibly wooden, almost as if the actors were not in the same room and the voices were then edited together - they did not seem to be genuinely reacting to each other.

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  • D. R. Greenfield
  • 05-11-21

A haunting performance

This is one of Ibsen's masterpieces, along with the Wild Duck, but this is a very very different bird. There is very little action in this play, and very few characters. A great deal of the play revolves around the dialogue between Rebecca West and Johannes Rosmer. The two actors that play these characters are absolutely masterful in their roles. The performance (especially when played slowly at around 80 to 85 percent of its standard speed) is astonishingly good. The two characters are not what they seem, and as the 19th century social conventions are slowly peeled away, we see two very very different characters emerge and tangle with one another. It's a haunting performance that will stay with you for a long long time.

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  • Franchesca
  • 09-04-21

Great play, okay performances

You won’t believe this was written about Norway in the 1880s! So many themes apply to the US in 2021. Complex and critical play. The performances, especially by the men, are just ok. Would love to have an audiobook of the 2019 revival in London.