The occasion for the conversation is the return of Stoppard's play Arcadia, which is now back on Broadway -- in a production directed by David Leveaux -- after a 15-year-absence. "There is a period of years that seems about right," Stoppard said when asked about the appropriate length of time between an original production and a revival, noting, however, that he couldn't come up with an exact number.
While Stoppard doesn't feel that the text is "something that needs to be ripped apart every 15 years," he mentioned that he has always trimmed Arcadia here and there. However, no sizable cuts have been made for this production, which runs just shy of three hours.
Stoppard said his involvement with revivals depends on where the production is located. "If it's happening in a town where I can be completely exposed, I take an intelligent interest in what's going on," he said. Moreover, while he used to give notes directly to actors, he now just talks to the director, but does make himself available to the actors early on in the rehearsal process, in case they have any questions.