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New drama about “cure for homosexuality” at the Arts Theatre

Savage posterThe production team behind West End hit The Tailor-Made Man reunite this summer to present the stylish new drama and love story Savage, which uncovers the tragic tale of a Nazi doctor and his ill-conceived “cure” for homosexuality.

In the late 1930s, Danish doctor Carl Peter Værnet discovered what he believed to be “the cure for homosexuality”: injecting testosterone into the testicles of live human subjects without anaesthetic. Dr Værnet was given a prominent post at the Nazi concentration camp Buchenwald, where he experimented on 17 inmates.

After the liberation by Allied forces, Dr Værnet was arrested as a Nazi war criminal. However, the British major who interrogated him was intrigued by his “cure”, and the doctor was allowed to flee. He then escaped to South America, where he continued to experiment on thousands of live subjects, with the full knowledge of both the British and Danish authorities. He died in 1965.

In Claudio Macor’s new drama, we meet two young men directly affected by Dr Værnet’s experiments – their glamorous, hedonistic life in 1930s Copenhagen as well as the tragic treatment of one of them by the Nazis. Confirmed cast include Alexander Huetson (Phil Willmott’s Encounter, Above the Stag), Gary Fannin (The Reduced Shakespeare Company; Spectre; 24: Live Another Day) and Nic Kyle (The Grand Tour, Finborough Theatre; Closer to Heaven, Union Theatre)

Doctor Carl Peter Værnet is not only one of the forgotten Nazi war criminals, who was never on any most wanted list, but neither the British nor Danish governments have ever apologised for aiding him in his flight, nor for allowing his research to continue. He remains largely unwritten about and unresearched, apart from a ground-breaking piece by Guardian journalist Peter Tatchell in 2015, who will be taking part in a post-show Q & A.

Playwright/Director Claudio Macor
Producer Andrea Leoncini for LWL Investments and Entertainment
Photography Roy Tan
Graphic Design Rob Cook

Alexander Huetson
Gary Fannin
Nic Kyle

Performance Dates June 29th 2016 to July 23rd 2016
Press Night: July 1st 2016, 7.30pm
Above The Arts Theatre, 6-7 Great Newport St, London WC2H 7JB
Box Office Arts Theatre West End:
Twitter @SavagePlayUK


  • Neil Cheesman

    First becoming involved in an online theatre business in 2005 and launching londontheatre1.com in September 2013. Neil writes reviews and news articles, and has interviewed over 150 actors and actresses from the West End, Broadway, film, television, and theatre. Follow Neil on Twitter @LondonTheatre1

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