Vienna in 1900 was the most vibrant city in Europe, humming with artistic and intellectual excitement and a genius for enjoying life. A tenth of the population were Jews. A generation earlier, they had been granted full civil rights by the Emperor, Franz Josef. Consequently, hundreds of thousands had fled from the Pale of Settlement and the pogroms in the East and many found sanctuary in the crowded tenements of the old Jewish quarter, Leopoldstadt. Tom Stoppard's new play is a passionate drama of love and endurance, an intimate play with an epic sweep, the story of a family who made good. 'My grandfather wore a caftan,' says Hermann, a factory owner, 'My father went to the opera in a top hat, and I have the singers to dinner.' It was not to last. Half a century later, this family, like millions of others, has re-discovered what it means to be Jewish in the first half of the 20th century. Tom Stoppard's Leopoldstadt premieres at Wyndham's Theatre, London, in February 2020. 'One of Britain's greatest living playwrights to provide his most personal play yet.' The Times 'The news that Tom Stoppard has written a new drama ranks as top-end seismic activity.' Daily Telegraph
Leopoldstadt is Tom Stoppard's latest play, coming 53 years after his sensational debut Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, and after innumerable awards for one of the most distinctive backlists in modern drama, ranging from The Real Thing and Arcadia to his Oscar-winning screenplay Shakespeare in Love.