Drama Page 89

Puellae (Or the Truth About Chips and Other Things)Puellae (Or the Truth About Chips and Other Things). By Nalini Chetty. In Nalini Chetty’s comic drama two friends meet in a wine bar during the Edinburgh Festival before going to see a show on the Fringe. Sixteen years after leaving St Myrtles School for Girls, Neve and Tess gossip about their school-days, diets, old boyfriends and political ideals, lost or discarded. As one bottle of wine leads to another – and with the Fringe show forgotten – the veneer of contentment at their well-balanced lives gradually disintegrates.
 
 

RingRing. By Koji Suzuki. Psychological Japanese horror about a video tape that, once seen, causes death. To get the full sensory experience of this binaural edit, it’s recommended you listen to this version with a good pair of headphones.

British journalist Mitchell Hooper lives in Tokyo with his wife Toni. When he begins investigating the mysterious deaths of four teenagers, he discovers a nightmarish secret. They all died after watching the same video tape. When Mitchell watches the tape himself, he is cursed to die in seven days. And so as the countdown to death begins, he must solve the riddle of the curse.

‘Listen. Watch. Until the end. You will be consumed by the lost.’

The Stone TapeThe Stone Tape. By Matthew Graham and Peter Strickland. Based on the original TV play by Nigel Kneale. In 1979, a team of scientists moves into a new laboratory in a Victorian mansion. When Jill Greely hears a strange disembodied scream, the team decides to analyse the phenomenon, which appears to be a psychic impression trapped in the wall. The scientists begin to realise that their work has disturbed something hidden beneath the stone, something ancient and malevolent.
 
 

Methuselah's Children.Methuselah’s Children. (R) By Robert A Heinlein. Families are able to live for hundreds of years thanks to the work of the Howard Foundation. Paul Birchard reads from the sci-fi thriller by Robert A Heinlein.
 
 
 
 
 

Selling HitlerSelling Hitler. (R) By Robert Harris. True story of the most sensational publishing fraud in history – the forging of Adolf Hitler’s diaries. Read by Nigel Anthony
 
 
 
 
 

Saint MazieSaint Mazie. By Jami Attenberg. More than 90 years after Mazie Phillips – the proprietress of famed New York City movie theatre, the Venice – began her diary, it is discovered by a documentarian in search of a good story. So who was Mazie Phillips? Diary extracts, interwoven with voices from past and present, paint a picture of her adventurous life – played out during the Jazz Age, when romance and booze were aplenty. But the Great Depression looms.
 
 

The GambleThe Gambler. By Fyodor Dostoevsky. A comic drama based on Dostoevsky’s experiences as a young man, is a portrayal of the power of love and money. Glyn Maxwell’s new version takes us deep into the mind of Alexei Ivanovich, a young tutor, just as he realises he’s falling in love with the strikingly beautiful but unobtainable Polina.
 
 
 

Scumdog MillionairesScumdog Millionaires. By Mike Walker. Financial thriller. FSA fraud investigator Angela Chapman works to expose the existence of a secret bank whose debts threaten the entire the world financial system. When disgraced City trader Tim Ng is offered immunity from prosecution by the FSA, he is alarmed to discover what it is they want in return.
 
 
 

1606 William Shakespear and the Year of Lear-11606: William Shakespeare and the Year of Lear. By James Shapiro. In 1606, Shakespeare was writing for a Royal Family hungry for new entertainment while the threats of plague, insurrection and rebellion threatened English society. At the peak of his powers, he was writing for actors who he knew well within a theatre company with which he had been involved for more than a decade. 1606: William Shakespeare and the Year of Lear traces Shakespeare’s life and times from the autumn of 1605, when he took an old and anonymous Elizabethan play, The Chronicle History of King Leir, and transformed it into his most searing tragedy, King Lear.

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A Play for the Heart - The Death of ShakespeareA Play for the Heart – The Death of Shakespeare. By Nick Warburton. A Play for the Heart – The Death of Shakespeare recreates what might have happened on Shakespeare’s last day, with a series of encounters filtered through his fevered imagination. What do his many visitors want? Who is the pale boy? And the man with bloody hands? Recorded entirely on location in Mary Arden’s farm and touching on all aspects of his life, it’s a play about memory and regret, life and art, fidelity and legacy and it gives new insights into the inner life of the greatest writer of all time.

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Shakespeare Henry at AgincourtShakespeare Henry at Agincourt (1956 Richard Burton). sequence from William Shakespeare’s Henry V devised for broadcasting on the eve of St George’s Day 1956. Stars 30-year-old Richard Burton as King Henry V, a role he had practised atop a mountain in his native Wales as a teenager. Alongside him, as the Chorus, is another celebrated Shakespearian actor – John Neville, who along with Burton dominated the London Old Vic in the 1950s. This dramatic extract concentrates on the Battle of Agincourt which was fought on Friday, 25 October 1415 (Saint Crispin’s Day), near modern-day Agincourt, in northern France. We join the scene the night before battle, with “a dreadful note of preparation”. First broadcast on the BBC Home Service – Sunday 22 April 1956.

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Shakespeare's PubShakespeare’s Local – Six Centuries of History Seen through One Extraordinary Pub. By Pete Brown. Pete Brown’s history of pubs as seen through the story of one remarkable London inn, the George in Southwark, said to be the one-time local of Chaucer, Dickens and Shakespeare. The George Inn is one of the few remaining galleried coaching inns, and lies a few minutes’ walk from the Thames. ‘Shakespeare’s Local’ takes us on a literary pub crawl through the history of this pub, from its regulars – the watermen, merchants, actors, craftsmen, writers and coachdrivers – as well as the many incarnations of the pub itself – from lawless Southwark tavern to coaching inn, theatre pub to Victorian drinking den, unfashionable boozer to tourist attraction. This isn’t only a history of half a century of pubs and drinking, but also a paean to the importance of the now declining pub to British society. Today: the George’s early days as a Southwark drinking den in the lawless neighbourhood south of the City.

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Shakespeare's London.Shakespeare’s London. Writer Iain Sinclair walks the streets of London in the company of Shakespeare scholars and archaeologists, to seek out echoes of Shakespeare’s city in the London of today.

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Shakespeare's Restless WorldShakespeare’s Restless World. Neil MacGregor, the Director of the British Museum, looks at the world through the eyes of Shakespeare’s audience by exploring objects from that turbulent period. Neil uses objects to explore the great issues of the day that preoccupied the public and helped shape the works and considers what they can reveal about the concerns and beliefs of Shakespearean England. Contributing to the programmes will be Shakespeare scholars, historians and experts on witchcraft and warfare, fencing and food, luxury trade and many other topics. They discuss the issues these objects raise – everything from exploration and discovery to violence, entertainment and the plague.

01-20 England Goes Global. How Sir Francis Drake’s circumnavigation of the globe changed the way Shakespeare’s audiences viewed the world and their country’s place on it. For the first time, England was engaging with the whole world.
02-20 Communion and Conscience. The communion cup that Shakespeare may well have used sheds light on the dramatic religious changes that came in the aftermath of the Reformation
03-20 Snacking Through Shakespeare. A luxury fork discovered on the site of the Rose theatre helps explain what people were nibbling on when they first heard: “Is this a dagger I see before me?”
04-20 Life without Elizabeth. Painted in 1571 to justify and celebrate Elizabeth I’s position in the Tudor succession, by the 1590s, with no direct Tudor heir, this image had very different implications.
05-20 Swordplay and Swagger. The essential accoutrements of any self-respecting gentleman illustrate the extent of violence in Elizabethan London – both onstage and off.
06-20 Europe Triumphs of the Past. As a tourist attraction in Westminster Abbey, Henry V’s instruments of battle reflect the view of English history as depicted on the Elizabeth stage.
07-20 Ireland Failures in the Present. A rare woodcut offers a equally rare visual impression of the troubles and tragedies of Elizabethan Ireland.
08-20 City Life, Urban Strife. The life of London’s apprentices and Shakespeare’s groundlings told through a rare woollen cap.
09-20 New Science, Old Magic. Dr Dee’s Mirror was actually a highly polished disk of black obsidian from Mexico but it reflects the Elizabethan fascination with the new sciences of cosmology and astrology.
10-20 Toil and Trouble. The differences between Scottish and English witches are revealed by a model ship, made to be hung in a church.
11-20 Treason and Plots. A tabloid history of Shakespeare’s England, told through a collection of contemporary accounts of plots to murder Elizabeth I and James I.
12-20 Sex and the City. A delicate glass goblet reveals the twin seductions of Venice: its sought after luxuries and its equally sought after lecherous women.
13-20 From London to Marrakech. Sunken gold from West Africa sheds light on the complex relationship Elizabethan England had with the Moors of the Mediterranean.
14-20 Disguise and Deception. Deception and religion, cross-dressing and travelling salesmen are all unpacked via a pedlar’s trunk.
15-20 The Flag That Failed. The problems in uniting Scotland and England and in creating a Great Britain are encapsulated in a set of designs for a common flag.
16-20 A Time of Change, a Change of Time. A rare domestic clock with an equally rare minute hand and quarter-hour chimes reveals the changing relationship Shakespeare’s audiences had to time.
17-20 Plague and the Playhouse. May 1603 saw not only a new king but the worst plague outbreak since the Black Death. Its impact and reach is told through a series of early seventeenth century proclamations.
18-20 London Becomes Rome. A set of designs for the Coronation Procession of James I reveals the extent of classical knowledge amongst Shakespeare’s audience.
19-20 The Theatres of Cruelty. A human eyeball in a silver setting provides a striking insight to the theatre of cruelty in Elizabethan and Jacobean Britain.
20-20. Shakespeare Goes Global. The publication of the First Folio of Shakespeare’s collected plays in 1623 began the process of turning an early modern playwright into a global phenomenon. An annotated copy of the Collected Works of Shakespeare reveals the extent to which Shakespeare has inspired and influenced audiences across the globe and through the ages.

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Shakespeares FireShakespeares Fire. Queens, fools and bickering playwrights set the world alight on the Jacobean South Bank. Jane Horrocks, Adam Gillen and Jasper Britton star in this original comedy by New Generation poet Glyn Maxwell about the burning of the Globe Theatre in 1613. On a hot summer afternoon, the Kings Men in Southwark are performing John Fletcher and William Shakespeare’s Famous History of the Life of Henry VIII. On that scorching day in June, the jewel of London’s playhouses, The Globe, burnt down. So much we know – we have eye witness accounts. Many questions remain unanswered though. Are rumours of royal involvement to be credited? Did the Burbages really do well out of the fire? What is the connection between these events and the end of the career of England’s most illustrious playwright? And where do a clown’s trousers come into all this?

More Shakespeare in the Authors Pages.

Shakespeares Vortigern and RowenaShakespeares Vortigern and Rowena. Comedy by Melissa Murray. In 1796, at Drury Lane theatre, Richard Sheridan puts on a guaranteed hit: a production of a ‘lost’ Shakespeare play. What could possibly go wrong?

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The AmbassadorsThe Ambassadors. By Henry James. The original American in Paris. This dark comedy, seen as one of the masterpieces of James’s final period, has all the elements of great writing, brilliant plot and gorgeous setting: An Edwardian gentleman from the States arrives in seedy and sophisticated Paris to rescue his wayward future step son. But his innocent American background has not prepared him for such seduction…
 
 
 

The Beach.(R) By Alex GarlandThe Beach. (R) By Alex Garland. The desire to find something real, to connect with something or someone, is what drives Richard, a young American backpacker who arrives in Thailand with adventure on his mind.
 
 
 
 
 

The Blast of WarThe Blast of War. By Michael Symmons Roberts. A British soldier fighting in Afghanistan is sent on a journey of atonement after a comrade is killed in one of the last military actions of 2015. Unwittingly he has been transported back to Gallipoli in 1915, then Waterloo in 1815, and then six hundred years to Agincourt in 1415. Each time he must fight and relive the horror of war.
 
 
 

The Call of the WildThe Call of the Wild. By Jack London. Kidnapped from wealthy California, a pet dog becomes the exceptional leader of a pack of wolves in the Yukon.
 
 
 
 
 

The Third GentlemanThe Third Gentleman. By Ian Rankin. As the Press Gang roams the streets looking for likely lads to fight Napoleon, and while the Town Guard finds themselves baffled by a spate of wine cellar murders, Cully gallantly rushes to the assistance of a young lady in distress.
 
 
 
 

The TorchbearersThe Torchbearers. By Simon Armitage. In the aftermath of the Olympic Games, The Torchbearers tells the stories of five people whose lies and obsessions come within touching distance of the eternal flame. Can an illness be cured? Can a death be undone? Can the past start haunting the present? As their loved ones struggle to cope with their lies, a blazing torch passes through their worlds and changes things forever. Strangers meet in unexpected places.
 
 

The Windbear.The Windbear. By David Ashton. Taxidermist George feels closer to his work than his wife, so police fear the worst when she goes missing.
 
 
 
 
 
 

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