In Freud's Last Session, playwright Mark St. Germain draws his inspiration from a book of philosophy entitled The Question of God: C.S. Lewis and Sigmund Freud Debate Love, God, Sex and the Meaning of Life. The book's title can also serve as an accurate summary of the entire play, now in performances by always accomplished Fusion Theatre Company.
Dr. Armand Nicholi, the author of St. Germain's heavily leaned-upon source material, argues that Lewis and Freud, two of the greatest minds of the 20th century, offered two diametrically opposed, yet equally rational, interpretations of the human experience. Freud's devout atheism was countered by Lewis' cogent Christian argument. St. Germain takes it one step further with a fictionalized meeting between the two. Though Freud and Lewis' work offer spirited counters to one another, in real life the two never met. Lewis was still a young man when Freud was in his final years, ravaged by the oral cancer which would finally take his life.
“... The play focuses exclusively on the two men's opposing views on love, God, sex and the meaning of life.”
Freud's Last Session is, at its heart, just this: an exchange of ideas, rather than a real story with a clear narrative goal. Fusion Theatre Company has mounted a capable production with performances by both Wagrowski and Scott Harrison as C.S. Lewis that are, as always, top tier. But, while both characters talk about the joy of human existence, that joy is never actually experienced or embodied. In the end, Freud is a provocative yet unusual thing: A play for people who don't like plays, for those who prefer linear, straightforward rationale to dramatic interpretation.