"Freud’s Last Session" Marks Dubuque Debut at UD’s Babka Theatre

Sep 21, 2018

DUBUQUE, Iowa – University of Dubuque’s Heritage Center kicks off season two of its B.I.T.E. Size Series with Freud’s Last Session on Friday, Oct. 19, at 3:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. in Babka Theatre.

B.I.T.E. stands for Babka Intimate Theatre Experiences. The new series of events showcases one-person or small cast performances in the intimate setting of Heritage Center’s black box venue. With maximum capacity of about 200, Babka Theatre offers general admission and stadium-style seating.

            WHAT:              Live at Heritage B.I.T.E. Size Series – Freud’s Last Session

            WHEN:             Friday, Oct. 19 – 3:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

            WHERE:           Babka Theatre, Heritage Center, University of Dubuque

            TICKETS:         Adult $19 advance/$24 day of show; UD Alumni/Military $15 advance/$20 day of show; Child/Student $9 advance/$14 day of show.

Steve Koehler and Alan Atwood star in this riveting play by Mark St. Germain. Koehler, best known for Guys on Ice, recently played Atticus Finch in Children's Theater of Madison's To Kill a Mockingbird and has been seen on many stages around Southeastern Wisconsin. Atwood has performed his one-man national touring shows for Moody Bible Institute, Joni and Friends, and churches throughout the U.S.

Set in Freud's London home on the day England entered WWII, Freud's Last Session is an imaginary meeting between Sigmund Freud, the father of psychotherapy, and C.S. Lewis, Chronicles of Narnia author and Christian apologist.

On playing Lewis, Koehler said, “I’m thrilled and a little daunted by his intellect and his eloquence, but Mark St. Germain has more or less removed that fear from me with his brilliant, lively, and evenhanded dialogue set against the horror of a world at war.”

Atwood, who plays Freud, said, “Investigating Freud's life has been fascinating intellectually for me and attempting to embody him has been a real eye-opener. I’ve come to admire him for his brilliance, courage, and intrepid spirit.”

About the play script, Atwood added, “The thing that drew me to the play was its balanced investigation of the questions every human being struggles with: Why are we here? What’s wrong? And how do we fix it? Freud believes in science, as he puts it – ‘the dictatorship of reason.’ Lewis believes that there is a God out there who loves us and is revealing Himself to us. But Freud has the tougher road, at least in this play. He is dying, planning to commit suicide, and must face the reality of his beliefs much sooner than Lewis.”

Freud's Last Session is a hard-hitting game of verbal and intellectual chess, with both Lewis and Freud bandying wits, beliefs, and desires. Assisted suicide, the afterlife, and the power of myth enter into the conversation. Even as they debate, Freud is tortured by the excruciating pain of his oral cancer which evokes a compassion in Lewis, deepening a bond already begun with the men's shared humor. Throughout the tough exchange is woven a lightness of nuance and comic moments, balancing this intense and provocative drama, performed by Go Fish Productions of Brookfield, Wisconsin.

A Q&A discussion with the actors follows the performance.

Discounted B.I.T.E. Size Series season ticket packages (all four events) are available at $60 for adults, $50 for UD alumni or those with a military-affiliation, and $30 for non-UD students and children.

Season ticket packages or tickets for Freud’s Last Session can be purchased Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the Farber Box Office, Heritage Center, University of Dubuque, 2255 Bennett Street; by phone at 563.585.SHOW; or online at www.dbq.edu/heritagecenter.

Patrons are encouraged to purchase tickets in advance. New for 2018-2019, all tickets increase by $5.00 beginning at midnight the day of performances.