Olivia Vinall leads the cast of Tom Stoppard’s new play The Hard Problem at the National Theatre.

It tells the story of Hilary, a young psychology researcher at a brain science institute, who is nursing the question: where do psychology and biology meet? If there is nothing but matter, what is consciousness? This is ‘the hard problem’ of the play’s title and it puts Hilary at odds with her colleagues, including her first mentor Spike, her boss Leo and the billionaire founder of the institute Jerry.

The Hard Problem is Stoppard’s first play since 2006’s Rock ‘N’ Roll, which played at the Royal Court. It is directed by the National Theatre’s Director Nicholas Hytner and marks his final production at the helm of the venue.

Vinall, whose NT credits include King Lear and Othello, plays Hilary alongside a cast that includes Vera Chok, Jonathan Coy, Damien Molony, Lucy Robinson and Parth Thakerar.

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