When Was A Doll’s House First Performed?

It didn’t take long for the play to go out to the public. A Doll’s House was first performed in December 1879, the same year Ibsen finished it. The Royal Theatre in Copenhagen was honored to offer the stage for it. Even though Henrik Ibsen was quite popular, this play didn’t meet such a massive success as people might think.

Ibsen had already published several dramas that were successful enough to make him famous. Therefore, when A Doll’s House was published, all the copies were sold quite quickly. It was only two weeks before the premiere. The play was performed for the first time in December 1897. We can’t be sure if it was a coincidence, but the Christmas setting matched the time perfectly. There was nothing excessive on the stage in terms of the decorations, and Betty Hennings was the first one to play Nora. 

Unlike someone might believe, Ibsen’s play didn’t go on the international arena immediately. Only a couple of years later, it was staged in European countries and even more before it was seen in America. The author also faced some criticism for the choice of the play’s outcome. In the Victorian age, women were supposed to be obedient and dependent wives. Any other behavior was considered unacceptable by social norms and sometimes even illegal. Therefore, it shouldn’t be surprising that Nora’s actions were called scandalous. Moreover, when the play was about to be performed in Germany, the lead actress refused to play until Ibsen changed the ending since Nora leaving her family was against her beliefs.

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