(Michael Billington's article appeared in the Guardian, 12/10.)

Attention must be paid to Tom Stoppard’s engrossing play, but it proves nowhere near as baffling as many people claimed when it premiered London in 1988. That is partly because plays like Michael Frayn’s Copenhagen and Tom Morton-Smith’s Oppenheimer have made audiences more scientifically literate and partly because of the clarity of Howard Davies’s excellent revival.

Stoppard himself has always insisted that the play’s espionage plot is simply a metaphor for the exploration of scientific principles. Once you have grasped the idea about the dual wave-and-particle nature of light, however, I suspect it is the spy story that will keep you hooked.


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