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Cost This event is free
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It is 1938. Austrian Jewish writer Joseph Roth is in Paris, in exile from the Nazis, living out of a suitcase, reporting on the fall of Europe and drinking himself to death. His books have been banned (and burned) in Germany, his wife is in a sanatorium, his lover has left him and his health is ruined. So why is he writing his most frivolous novel yet?

Roth's exotic, fantastical tale begins in 19th century Persia, with a Shah with an unquiet mind. He goes to Vienna, falls for a countess and demands that she join him for the night. To avert a diplomatic scandal, a prostitute is found to substitute, and in the morning, he gives her a string of pearls. But pearls are unlucky...

Spinning from the hectic pleasures of Weimar Berlin to the high glamour of imperial Vienna, to the chaos of Paris on the brink of war, The Thousand and Second Night is a sparkling and epic new play about despair, escapism and whether art can save us.

The Thousand and Second Night is part of LAMDA's New Writing initiative - an established part of the training intended to increase students' awareness of the responsibilities involved in playmaking. Samantha Ellis and LAMDA alumna Hannah Eidinow have been working with students on the Academy's Two Year Acting Course in a series of workshops to develop this piece. The workshops focused on Roth's life, the lives of his friends and his work.

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Sarah-Jayne Butler
Naomi Sheldon

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