In the afterlife, friends Werner Heisenberg, Niels Bohr, and Niels' wife, Margrethe, meet to discuss a question that has been plaguing the group since before they died: "Why did Heisenberg visit Bohr in Copenhagen at the height of World War II?" As a German physicist whose funding was sponsored by the Nazi government, Heisenberg risked his life to visit his long time friend and mentor Bohr, a Jewish physicist. Such a visit could have easily given the Nazis ground to convict Heisenberg of treason and execute him. Theories are proposed and hotly debated as the friends retrace their relationships, and attempt to understand the personal and professional implications their science had amidst the heated world politics of early 1940's Europe. Over the course of the play, the trio finally settles on one idea to answer the question… although they all agree there is no way to actually verify it as the definitive truth. Copenhagen explores the strength of a friendship tested by science, memory, war, and death.
Copenhagen guide sections