Justin Fleming’s unprecedented piece on Richard Wagner, Adolf Hitler and the responsibility of Art is the third play in our #StudioRep season ‘You knew that from the beginning of time, worlds rise and worlds crash…And life is born and life is burned’ In 1838, poverty-stricken and on the run from creditors, Richard Wagner writes his first successful opera, Rienzi, which is performed at the Dresden Opera House in October 1842. In 1907, a 19-year-old Adolf Hitler watches a performance of Rienzi, which becomes a powerful obsession for the young, serious Austrian. When Adolf’s fleeting attempts at opera fail dismally, he embarks on a new mission – to “save the German people” through political action. How do two men derive inspiration from the same source – one, which leads to an extraordinary act of creation – the other, a murderous act of destruction? The New Actors Company produced a staged reading of Dresden in 2017 and it went on to receive its world premiere at the Kings Cross Theatre in Sydney, Australia in 2018. We are very proud to be able to give the play a London home and its European premiere.