The Doctor

The Doctor
05 May '24 to 17 May '24
ITA Ensemble / Robert Icke

'Sparkles and fizzes, and also touches deeply on a human level' - de Volkskrant ★★★★★

Robert Icke is referred to as the great talent of British theatre and will be our resident director for the next few years. He has a warm heart for the classics, which he adapts in his own personal and radical way. We have already seen this with Oedipus, Children of Nora and Judas, which he wrote and directed especially for ITA. Once again, he is making a contemporary adaptation, this time of Professor Bernhardi by Arthur Schnitzler.

Run time 165 minutes, incl. intermission
Genre Theater
Language Dutch
Surtitles Thu May 16

In Gesprek Fri May 10 & 17

This performance contains strobing effects

The Doctor

A girl lies dying in a hospital room. A priest wants to enter, but her doctor won't allow it. This is also how Professor Bernhardi from 1912 by the Austrian playwright and general practitioner Arthur Schnitzler begins, on which The Doctor is based. In Robert Icke's adaptation, the Jewish doctor Bernhardi has become a woman, Ruth Wolff.

The incident brings her into such heavy external fire that the survival of her hospital is threatened. At the same time, a colleague takes advantage of the case to bend an internal appointment procedure to his will.

In addition, Icke added the complexity of external opinions and relationships as a story engine. Racial prejudices and hidden agendas make The Doctor a thriller in which conflicting views about ourselves and the world form an explosive cocktail.

The Doctor was selected for the Dutch Theater Festival 2022 as one of the best twelve performances of the previous season. The actors Janni Goslinga and Ilke Paddenburg were nominated for the Theo d'or and Colombina, respectively.

Director Robert Icke (The Doctor) photographed by Jan Versweyveld for ITA (Internationaal Theater Amsterdam).

Robert Icke about The Doctor

"A girl is dying in a room in a hospital. A priest wants to go in, but the girl's doctor will not allow it. So begins Arthur Schnitzler's play Professor Bernhardi, from which The Doctor is adapted. For Schnitzler, the conflicts were simple to lay out: medicine versus religion, and Catholic versus Jew. Yet, in the city of today, in the online age, in a world increasingly polarised, the question of identity is a live one, multi-faceted and endlessly complicated. It’s about identity, about groups and individuals, about the badges we choose and those we don't, and asks how we can ever answer the simplest of questions: who are we?"


de Volkskrant

‘Sparkles and fizzes, and also touches deeply on a human level. (...) Accessible, smooth and often very witty. (...) Breathtaking role of Janni Goslinga.'


'Fascinating essay about gender inequality, racism and class differences.'


‘Impressive production.’


'Wonderful cast, text and staging.’

de Telegraaf

'An overwhelming and interesting piece that invites to a long afterglow. (...) Great acting'.


After the performance, come and think, listen and chat at In Gesprek. We invite a guest to further explore the themes of The Doctor and to exchange experiences. If you have any questions, this is the perfect time to ask them. In Gesprek is free of charge and starts shortly after the performance in one of our foyers, is conducted in Dutch and lasts about half an hour.

Iris Amber Stenger in The Doctor, directed by Robert Icke at ITA (Internationaal Theater Amsterdam). Also with Janni Goslinga, Joy Delima, Maria Kraakman, Bart Slegers and more.


Read more about the production's direction, author, scenography and music in our digital brochure.

Go to the brochure
Janni Goslinga and Nadia Amin in The Doctor, directed by Robert Icke at ITA (Internationaal Theater Amsterdam).

Helpline 113

The production includes a discussion of suicide and describes suicide methods.

If you are affected by any of the issues raised in this production, you can always call the national suicide prevention helpline 113 free of charge. You can call completely anonymously (0800-0113) or chat. The helpline is open 24/7.



Go backstage at the rehearsal process of The Doctor and find out how the show is made.

Janni Goslinga, Joy Delima and Iris Amber Stenger in The Doctor, directed by Robert Icke at Internationaal Theater Amsterdam (ITA).
Robert Icke
Robert Icke

Robert Icke decided to become a playwright and director after he had been torn away from his PlayStation by his father as a teenager and saw a performance of Richard III, with Kenneth Branagh in the title role. He is regarded as a great young talent in British theatre. From 2013 until 2019 he was an associate director at the Almeida in London, the famous theatre that used to be led by Pierre Audi before he came to Amsterdam. From 2019 till 2022 Robert Icke was committed to Internationaal Theater Amsterdam as Ibsen Artist in Residence. This new form of support was created by the Philip Loubser Foundation.

In season 23|24 his directions of The Doctor and Judas will be reprised.

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Janni Goslinga and Nadia Amin in The Doctor, directed by Robert Icke at Internationaal Theater Amsterdam (ITA).
Hildegard Bechtler
Set designer
Hildegard Bechtler

Hildegard Bechtler is an award-winning designer based in London and working internationally. As well as Oedipus and Children of Nora for the ITA ensemble, Hildegard has collaborated with director Robert Icke on the acclaimed Almeida Theatre productions of Hamlet, Mary Stuart and Oresteia (all of which transferred to London’s West End) and Uncle Vanya and Enemy of the People (Park Avenue Armory).

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written and directed by Robert Icke
very freely adapted from Professor Bernhardi by Arthur Schnitzler
translation Aus Greidanus jr.
scenography and costume design Hildegard Bechtler
lighting design Natasha Chivers
sound design and composition Tom Gibbons
original producer Almeida Theater
with Aus Greidanus jr., Bart Slegers, Dewi Reijs, Farida van den Stoom, Frieda Barnhard, Ilke Paddenburg, Iris Amber Stenger, Janni Goslinga, Joy Delima, Maria Kraakman, Nadia Amin, Nina de Jong (muzikant)
assistant director Daniel ’t Hoen, Joshua Higgott, Chloé Harris (intern)
assistant scenography Ramón Huijbrechts, Leanne Vandenbussche (rehearsals)
assistant costume design Leanne Vandenbussche
assistant sound design Johnny Edwards-|-
assistant dramaturgy Maria Luttikhuis
head of technical department Reyer Meeter
head of artistic bureau Loesje Riethof
casting advice Hans Kemna
production leader Kiki Meijerhoven, Edith den Hamer
technical staff Stijn van der Leeuw (stage manager), Boy van Maasakker, Erwin Sterk, Hero Kaspers, Jip van t Veer, Michel Smouter, Paul Meijer, Pepijn van Beek, Pieter Roodbeen, Ruud de Vos, Wouter Pieters
surtitles Suzanne Soeverein
hair and make-up Yara Foster, David Verswijveren
costume department Wim van Vliet (head), Farida Bouhbouh
tailor Suzanne Kollen
photography Dim Balsem
graphic design Sara Fortuin, Studio ITA
publicity Natasa Cvjetkovic


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