Cinema screening: The Hard Problem

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16 April 2015

Tom Stoppard presents his new play The Hard Problem at the National Theatre.

NT Live screening The Hard Problem
The Hard Problem

Acclaimed playwright Tom Stoppard presents his new play The Hard Problem at the National Theatre, directed by Nicholas Hytner.

The Hard Problem is Tom Stoppard’s first play for the stage since Rock ’n’ Roll at the Royal Court in 2006, and his first for the National Theatre since his trilogy, The Coast of Utopia, in 2002.

Olivia Vinall stars as Hilary in the play alongside Vera Chok, Jonathan Coy, Damien Molony, Lucy Robinson and Parth Thakerar.


Hilary, a young psychology researcher at a brainscience institute, is nursing a private sorrow and a troubling question at work, where psychology and biology meet. If there is nothing but matter, what is consciousness? This is ‘the hard problem’ which puts Hilary at odds with her colleagues who include her first mentor Spike, her boss Leo and the billionaire founder of the institute, Jerry. Is the day coming when the computer and the fMRI scanner will answer all the questions psychology can ask? Meanwhile Hilary needs a miracle, and she is prepared to pray for one.

The Hard Problem is broadcast live from the National Theatre on 16 April 2015.


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