A musical theater piece about the story of Hungarian doctor, Ignác Semmelweis, known as the Savior of Mothers, will be performed at the Old Vic Theater in Bristol beginning January 20. The leading role will be played by 62-year-old Tony and Oscar-winning actor Mark Rylance, who along with Stephen Brown, was the creator and co-writer of the project.
This article was originally published on our sister-site, Ungarn Heute.
Confronted by the terrible death toll of puerperal fever after childbirth in 19th century Vienna, maverick Doctor Semmelweis makes a discovery that could save hundreds of thousands of new mothers. But when the medical establishment questions his methods, rejects his theory, and doubts his sanity, the controversial surgeon finds that being a pioneer is not enough.
Years later, he is haunted by the ghosts of the women he failed to save. Is it too late to convince the medical establishment to see the truth? And if he tries, what will be the cost?
This is the description of the play “Dr. Semmelweis,” which tells the story of the world-famous Hungarian doctor Ignác Semmelweis.
Peek into the Dr Semmelweis rehearsal room!
The dancers are soaring, the string quartet are electric, and the cast are acting their flippin socks off. What’s not to love!
📷 Geraint Lewis pic.twitter.com/lY5VeWa75L
— Bristol Old Vic (@BristolOldVic) January 15, 2022
The 75-minute musical-theater work was inspired by the tragic story of nineteenth-century Hungarian obstetrician Ignác Semmelweis), who discovered the cure for a devastating epidemic but could not convince the world of the simple solution, and died alone in an asylum. Dr. Semmelweis had been the first to see an unthinkable truth: that the deadly disease was passing from the bodies of the dead to healthy mothers by the unwashed hands of the doctors themselves.
Literally hundreds of thousands of women were killed accidentally by doctors. It’s an example of an incredible advancement in human understanding that doesn’t land,”
Mark Rylance told The Guardian.
The trailer of the play can be watched below:
For more information about the play, visit the theater’s website, here.
Featured image: Mark Rylance as Ignác Semmelweis. Photo via the play’s website, Doctor-Semmelweis.com