The home of innovative feature-making.
|A Glass Case||19961000||by Jane Draycott and Elizabeth James|
|Mark Russell introduces a specially mixed performance of the symphony, reflecting its impact on the aural landscape of the late 20th century.|
With contributions from Dai-Chi and Valentin (pianos), the training orchestra of the Central Music School, Oxford, Professor Peter Schickele, Walter Murphy's `A Fifth of Beethoven', Les Quatre Barbus, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Roaring Jelly, singing dogs, Leonard Bernstein and many, many more.
Technical presentation Marvin Ware.
Devised and produced by Alan Hall.
|Heartsong||19980110||19990809||In a drama documentary by Sarah Woods, three men tell their real-life stories of love.|
When they meet three fictional women, obsession, betrayal and true love follow.
With Victoria Worsley, Haydn Gwynne and Adjoa Andoh.
Music by Anders Sodergren.
Director Claire Grove
|Gilde||19980117||19990816||In a major new work by playwright Meredith Oakes and composer Gerald Barry, Janet Suzman and Sally Dexter struggle with identity and opposition in a bold exposition of a body under pressure.|
Clarinettists Anthony Lamb, Victoria Medcalf, Robert Ault and Andrew Webster.
|Gould, Tobacco, Bach||19980124||19990823||To boldly go where no pianist has gone before was the lifelong mission of the eccentric Canadian, Glenn Gould.|
Since his death 15 years ago, his recording of a Bach Prelude and Fugue continues its mission aboard the Voyager spacecraft.
This programme recreates a 17th-century experiment for calculating the weight of tobacco smoke in an attempt to calibrate Gould's genius.
Meanwhile, old Bach weighs up the statistical risk of his own pipe-smoking.
|Out Of The Blue||19980131||19990830||The scene is an office.|
Two people are sitting facing each other.
An event is about to happen which will propel one of them into a drama which is unexpected, short and shocking.
It is the moment when a relationship ends.
People remember the dramatic turn of events which signifies redundancy.
|Anniversary||19980207||19990906||The fifth of six experimental radiophonic features is a song cycle, `Anniversary', conceived as a celebration of the unremarkable events of a perfectly imperfect day and compiled with recordings made on Friday, 7 February 1997, and today, a year on.|
The composers are Laurence Crane, Errollyn Wallen and Andrew Toovey.
The performers are Melanie Pappenheim, Margaret Cameron, Daniel Hale, Robert Chevara, Jacqueline Parker and Errollyn Wallen.
With contributions from the people of LONDON going about their business on 7 February, and reference to the day's news.
|The Human Voice||19980214||19990913||by Jean Cocteau.|
As an antidote to Valentine's Day, an updated version of Cocteau's classic monologue, translated by Anthony Wood.
Harriet Walter stars as the abandoned woman speaking to her ex-lover on the phone, with electronic sound composition by Robin Rimbaud (scanner).
|The Devil Writes To Hildegard Of Bingen||19980509||20011222||The first of six newly commissioned experiments in creative radio marks the nine hundredth anniversary of the birth of composer and mystic Hildegard of Bingen.|
The Devil - fabricated by writer Richard Gaskell and impersonated by Bob Peck - fires off seven deadly letters to distract the visionary abbess from her mission of harmony and heavenly revelation.
Meanwhile, another anniversary celebration heads calmly toward an iceberg of unfathomable proportions, as Robin Guenier, executive director of Taskforce 2000, and David Atkinson MP explain.
|Please Believe Me||19980516||20011229||The second of six experiments in creative radio.|
A voyage through the history of the BBC voice and its close cousin, received pronunciation; a pilgrimage back to the days when announcers had to pass a stringent audition, including ten verses of the Bible and reading in Italian and German.
Discover which chancellor of the Exchequer declared that that mispronouncing `Thetis' deserved a whipping, why fears that Cockney was the future of ENGLISH surfaced in 1949, and how redbrick voices infiltrated the airwaves.
|The Night Stairs||19980523||20020105||The third of six experiments in creative radio.|
`The Night Stairs'.
So many feet have passed up and down the flight of stairs that runs from the monks' dormitory to the transept of BRISTOL Cathedral that the stone looks like the waves of the sea.
Joining the monks on parallel night journeys on all kinds of staircases are an astronomer, a stairmaker, a political prisoner, a nightwatchman, an old soldier, a police night squad, a tower block chorus, a historian, and the Cistercian monks of Caldey Abbey.
|A S D F G||19980530||20020112||When novelist Charlotte Cory's grandmother died, she inherited a typing course on scratched 78rpm records and a set of chipped willow pattern Chima which inspire this exploration of the connections between how we think and how we write.|
With Kathryn Stott and Vincent Duggleby
|I'll Be Watching You||19980606||20020119||The third of six experiments in creative radio.|
The unblinking eye of the surveillance camera now keeps a perpetual watch over high streets, shopping centres and road junctions.
This is an an audio journey through the world of hidden cameras, webcams, surveillance shops and beyond, with guidance from novelist Iain Sinclair
|Procession To The Private Sector||19980613||20020126||The last of six experiments in creative radio.|
`Procession to the Private Sector'.
The first production of a surrealist film scenario written in 1936 by the poet David Gascoyne, the most prominent ENGLISH writer of that movement, and rewritten by him in the 1980s after the manuscript was found in the British Library.
Adapted as a `film for radio' by Sean Street, with new music by John Surman, it features Simon Callow as the Camera.
The story - of the vicissitudes of a pair of lovers - springs from a dream of Gascoyne's and is dramatised through symbol, myth and startling imagery.
NB for the repeat - In commemoration of poet David Gascoyne, who died late last year, another chance to hear his surrealist `Procession to the Private Sector' in a radio adaptation by Sean Street
|The Voluptuous Tango||19980830||An operatic radio drama which throws together dancer Isadora Duncan and founder of Italian futurism F T Marinetti.|
Written by David Zane Mairowitz with music by Dominic Muldowney.
First broadcast in `Between the Ears'.
With Maria Friedman as Isadora Duncan, and Alan Belk as Marinetti.
|Virtual Spires||19990213||The first of six newly commissioned experiments in creative radio.|
Richard Coles trawls the World Wide Web in search of its new empires.
Virtual communities the size of California, with no gravity, few laws, and no restrictions on how you look.
What sort of society develops when reality and imagination collide? And who rules the new city-states of cyberspace?
|Eating At Coopers||19990220||The second of six newly commissioned experiments in creative radio.|
`Eating at Coopers'.
By Rod Tinson.
With mango sauce on the wall, a partner allergic to food, and a mysterious commis chef, will Cooper ever get his two stars in Hershel's restaurant guide? With Anton Lesser, Belinda Sinclair, Cathy Sara and Simon Carter.
Music by Rod Tinson.
Director Sue Wilson
|At The Window||19990227||The third of six newly commissioned experiments in creative radio.|
`At the Window'.
Glimpses of the Chicago pianist Jimmy Yancey through one of his greatest blues, the voices of his family and friends, the magic of baseball, and the sounds and music of his city.
|The Church Of Lanza||19990306||The fourth of six newly commissioned experiments in creative radio.|
`The Church of Lanza'.
Mario Lanza had a singing career that lasted ten years, and he cancelled almost as many concerts as he gave.
He was a boxer and a gargantuan eater who only ever sang one complete opera in public.
Lanza died 40 years ago this year, an obese, bloated and exhausted young man, yet he remains one of the most celebrated and execrated tenor voices of the century, idolised across the world.
In an original sound piece for Radio 3, Jakko Jakszyk weaves the voices of Lanza's family, friends and acolytes into a contempltation of the man and the myth.
|Brick Lane||19990313||The fifth of six newly commissioned experiments in creative radio.|
A journey through the heart of one of the oldest parts of LONDON.
Voices of people who live and work on Brick Lane are woven into Bryony Lavery's story, with music by Graeme Miller.
With Dillie Keane and Shamsa Omar.
|Grosse Fuge||19990320||A special double bill to conclude the series of newly commissioned experiments in creative radio.|
A tapestry woven from public speeches given by speakers including Winston Churchill, JFK, Gandhi, Margaret Thatcher, Jesse Jackson and Brian Keenan.
|The Patchwork Planet||19991120||The first in a new six-part series of experiments in creative radio.|
Today, seven producers from around the world respond in different ways to the passing of time in a patchwork of sound pieces, which interweave fleeting human encounters with the music of ancient landscapes.
Contributing producers: Siri Kathrine Rude (Norway), Cathy Peters (Australia), Sushmita Sen Gupta (INDIA), Helen Thorington (USA), Veroniker Brvar (Slovenia), Mai Nishiyama (Japan) and Alan Hall (UK).
|Gone Fishing||19991127||A remix of the 1960 classic radio documentary `Singing the Fishing', which was about the romance of the sea.|
Now a less romantic view of the sea emerges, reflecting the fact that British trawlermen now fight for their livelihoods in the European courts, that the fish have gone and the fishing communities have been bulldozed by well-meaning town planners.
|Three Women||20000108||One of the first poems in the language to explore PREGNANCY and childbirth, Sylvia Plath's powerful, long poem for three voices describes three different experiences, using characteristically strong, stark language.|
Lindsey Duncan (The wife), Harriet Walter (Secy), Amanda Root (The girl).
With a specially composed electronic soundtrack written and performed by Robin Rimbaud, better known in the electronic music world as Scanner.
|Underground||20000115||20150607 (R4+)||4 Extra Debut. South Crofty was the last tin mine to close in Cornwall - and Europe. Voices of miners woven with Nick Darke's text. From January 2000.|
South Crofty Mine in Cornwall closed in 1999.
Tin had been extracted here since Tudor times.
This is not only the last tin mine to close in Cornwall but the last working tin mine in Europe.
Voice of miners and the families are woven into a text by Nick Darke and music by Jim Carey.
Charles Barnecut (Charlie), Eddy (Carl Grose).
Director: Claire Grove
|Thirteen Ways Of Looking At A Blackbird||20000701||20010520||An aural kaleidoscope in 13 parts evoking the blackbird - one of the most familiar and best-loved birds with one of the most beautiful songs in the world.|
|Three Places In New England||20000708||20020330||A meditation on the music, ideas and character of Charles Ives - insurance salesman and godfather of modern American music - focusing on his orchestral triptych about New ENGLAND which portrays Boston Common, Putnam's Camp in Connecticut, and the Housatonic River at Stockbridge, Massachusetts.|
With conductor James Sinclair, Danbury tour guide Nancy Sudik, playwright John Grissmer and and composer Richard Boulanger.
|A Parisian In Paradise||20000715||20020316||It is Paris 1943, and two parallel worlds collide - the inner musical visions of Olivier Messiaen and the public noise of war, collaboration, resistance and impossible love.|
From the debris of this encounter, a cycle of seven movements is born - `Creation', `Stars', `Agony', `Desire', `Angels', `Judgement' and `Consummation'.
With additional music performed by Bing Crosby, George Formby and Dooley Wilson, and the voices of Winston Churchill, C S Lewis, Kathryn Oswald, Peter Ustinov and many others.
|My Month With Carmen||20010127||20020323||Against the Kafkaesque background of a busy hospital ward, Lou Stein combines drama, music and documentary in a sound diary drawing on his experience of a month spent with his dying mother, interweaved with extracts from C S Lewis's `A Grief Observed', read by Julian Glover.|
With Lou Stein (son), Mirian Colon (Carmen), Ed Bishop (Dr Williamson), Andrew Sear (Dr Veetash), Prof Stanley Dische (as himself), Stuart Milligan (Dr Lang) and Barbara Rosenblat (Nurse/Trixie).
Music by Deirdre Gribbin
|Everything Will Be Alright||20010203||20020330||A selection of asylum seekers' stories.|
With Sara Barr (interviewer), Sofia Buchuk (Elvira) and Vladimir Vega (Juan).
Music from Sofia Buchuk, Murat Kaya and Salah Dawson Miller.
Written by Rib Davis, and directed by Jeremy Mortimer
|Monogamy||20010210||20020406||An investigation into the hypothesis that `for some of us - perhaps the fortunate, or at least the affluent - monogamy is the only serious question'.|
With Adam Phillips, who throws down a challenge to society's traditional values in his book `Monogamy', and Russell Davies, who responds with an exploration of infidelity and commitment `in the animal kingdom, in marriage and in music'.
|An Insular Motet||20010217||20020413||By David Pownall.|
In the year 1213, Pope Innocent issues an edict proscribing any form of music in the churches of England, and a beleaguered King John commissions a young composer to write a form of music without music.
With Gerard Murphy (King John), Lizzie Mcinnerny (Madge), Hugh Ross (Frank), Tim Mcinnerny (Dawson) and Ben Crowe (Hedley).
Directed by Eoin O'callaghan
|Protest Song And The Exeter Riddles||20010224||20020420||1: `Protest Song' by the Fratelli Brothers.|
A musical celebration of the tradition of British protest, including readings by Suzannah Hirst, Ian Kelly and Malcolm Ridley, and music by Ted Barnes, Ewan MacColl and Andrew Lovett.
2: `The Exeter Riddles' by Jeremy Arden.
Four aural riddles inspired by the linguistic games of Anglo-Saxon kennings.
Featuring Lore Lixenberg (alto), Jozik Kok (baritone), Liz Cowdrey (violin), G B Arden (speaker) and Tom Hollander (speaker).
|I Send You This Cadmium Red||20020119||A collaboration between artist John Christie and writer John Berger, with music composed and performed by Gavin Bryars and his quartet.|
|Another chance to hear British artist Tacita Dean's mystically autobiographical work for radio - Berlin Project, first broadcast on BBC Radio 3 in 2002.|
Tacita Dean's is the chosen artist to create this year's Turbine Hall exhibit at the Tate Modern which will be unveiled later in October.
Dean's audio artwork Berlin Project is constructed out of a variety of sound recordings and created sound artefacts including street sounds recorded live in Berlin, specially created sound effects, some spoken word, and brass band music, all combining to produce an audio portrait of Berlin.
She worked with producer Roger Elsgood and sound designer John Hunt to make her first work for radio.
Artist Tacita Dean's audio artwork, Berlin Project, based on the sound of the city.
A sound work by artist Tacita Dean about herself and a city in which she now lives.
|Three Shorts||20020209||20030525||: `Listening to Lists', `The Colour of Sound' and `In a Child's Ear'.|
|Extraneous Noises Off||20020216||20030601||Winner of a Sony Silver Award in the Feature category.|
Forensic phoneticians are called in by the police when it's too late.
They analyse idiosyncrasies and accents of unknown villains captured unwittingly on tape recordings.
They perform acoustic wizardry removing noise and echoes.
They spend days listening to a single word.
Dr Peter French takes us for a tour of his extensive sound arcHIVe and we drift into other worlds with music specially composed by Philip Pinsky.
|The Silent Key||20020223||20030608||A feature about short-wave radio hams following the trail of an enthusiast who as a teenager in 1957 contacted other buffs throughout the world.|
|The Maze||20020302||20030615||A soundscape tour of the infamous H-Block of HMP Maze, the jail in Northern IRELAND that housed paramilitary prisoners during the Troubles and now stands deserted.|
|Homecoming||20020309||20030622||A journey across the sonic landscape from the heart of the city to a place called home.|
|The Peggy Carstairs Report||20020407||20021201||New York theatre company the Wooster Group present a radio feature that strips bare the group's real-life characters, interweaving personal confessions, banal chatter and music.|
|The Watchers||20020421||20030323||Joby Talbot's work for radio sets a documentary look at CCTV within a musical landscape which evokes the creeping paranoia which this `fifth utility' can generate / Radio 3's showcase for adventurous radio offers another opportunity to hear Joby Talbot's specially commissioned piece for radio.|
The Watchers takes documentary material about CCTV and the culture of surveillance in which we live and presents them within a musical landscape that evokes something of the creeping paranoia that this fifth utility can generate.
With contributions from security consultants, civil liberties activists and voices from the BBC Sound ArcHIVe.
Performed by Billiardman With additional programming by Jon Gardner Mixed by Mark Wylie ".
|Down Red Lane||20020505||Timothy West and Roy Hudd star in the radio premiere of B S Johnson's innovative play about a man and his stomach.|
|The Rise And Fall Of The English Cadence||20020519||Jeremy Summerly exposes the ENGLISH Cadence for what it is - neither ENGLISH, nor a cadence.|
|Beckham Crosses, Nyman Scores||20020630||20030504||A musical recreation of ENGLAND's World Cup football match against ARGENTINA at last year's World Cup.|
Seaman saves, Campbell tackles, Scholes passes, Owen is fouled and Beckham takes the penalty.
Michael Nyman composes the action into a musical drama, interweaving leitmotifs for the individual players whilst reflecting back at the agony of the meeting between the teams in the previous competition - focusing on the 'five who figured four years ago'.
With the voice of commentator John Motson and original music by Michael Nyman played by the Duke Quartet.
|My Father Fading Out A Lake Of Shadows||20020804||20030420||"A man who said nothing of himself" Ken Smith listens for evidence of his father.|
Born Donegal 1904, died 1971; John Patrick Smith was not a happy man: "No hobbies.
No small talk.
Easily given to anger.
Rather than go to the dentist, he once took out his aching tooth with pliers" "Ah, John.
Requiescat in pace." Music by Geoff Nichols.
|The Singing Postcard||20020818||: Alan Dein explores the days of the sound postcard, when holiday memories were put on the gramophone, and he recreates an audio mailbag from these cards.|
|Transfigured Night||20020825||An exploration of how Arnold Schoenberg led the way in into a new music world with Verklarte Night.|
|Jellyfish||20020908||Irish artist Dorothy Cross and her zoologist brother Tom discuss jellyfish and the achievement of amateur zoologist Maude Delap, who bred them 100 years ago on Valentia Island.|
|Palio Accelerando||20020915||A feature on the horse race known as the Palio, held twice a year - in July and August - in the Italian city of Siena.|
|Dark Sounds For Dark Nights||20021013||American sound artist Gregory Whitehead introduces imaginative material from broadcasters around the world.|
|Learning The Lines||20021103||Glenn Paterson follows the streets of Belfast to offer his impressions of a city crossed with lines of demarcation, of configuration and of division.|
|Voices From The Flames||20021117||A feature exposing the suffering of young Chinese women workers based on letters discovered in the wake of a terrible fire at a toy factory.|
|Angel Horn||20021215||Philip Nanton explores the life and work of Shake Keane - the jazz trumpeter and poet from St Vincent.|
Reader Bert Caesar
|It Was A Very Good Year||20021229||Composer and lyricist Ervin Drake, now 83, looks back on his life, while saxophonist Iain Ballamy improvises on the Drake song It Was a Very Good Year.|
|Tramuntana||20030112||Neil Mccarthy sets out from Salvador Dali's hometown of Cadaques to find out more about the force of the legendary wind that blows across the Catalan landscape.|
|The Book Of Disquiet||20030126||A feature on Portuguese poet Fernando Pessoa (1888-1935), who wrote under a series of pseudonyms as well as under his own name.|
|New Ways To Mountains||20030209||Colleen Campbell, Barry Blanchard and Craig Richards explain how mountains have come to dominate their beliefs, relationships and lives.|
|Identifications||20030223||A featuring exploring the development of human personality over using the sounds of young voices and music by Anders Sodergren.|
|Shorts||20030406||A special Between The Ears showcase for three linked features which evoke different worlds of language, sound, colour and hearing.|
Listening To Lists Whispering chains of lists rise and fall from the surface of a feature which investigates how writers, artists and film-makers have used lists in their work.
With Peter Greenaway, Don Paterson and Emma Kay.
The Colour Of Sound The composer Jonathan Harvey paints with sound, the painter George Dannatt depicts sound with colour.
Peter White, blind since birth, considers his own perception of colour based on sound and music.
Woven through their music, sounds and words, a poem by Sean Street moves through darkness and shades of colour towards light and silence.
In A Child's Ear At twenty weeks in the womb, the foetus' ears have formed, and so begins the journey to aural consciousness.
In the company of audiologists and poets, In A Child's Ear examines the process by which we learn to make sense of the barrage of sound that greets our ears when we leave the womb.
|Those From Below||20030608||A soundscape of interwoven voices, songs and stories recorded by activist Katharine Ainger, documenting the experiences of marginalised people affected by economic globalisation.|
|A Britain Of The Mind||20030615||A composition by veteran radio producer Marjorie Van Halteren invoking the imaginary Britain of a group of French students who share a dream of this country.|
|The Lord's My Shepherd||20030622||Written by committee in 17th century Edinburgh, the metrical Psalm 23 has been sung at weddings, funerals, rugby matches, and as the political response to a military coup.|
Those who still sing it in many places, and to many tunes, tell its story of God, sheep and cultural repression.
|Killing Time||20031129||20050312||British artist Cornelia Parker explores the indeterminate nature of waiting.|
|A House Is Not A Home||20031206||From within it's an oasis, a refuge, a place for family, friends, arguing, loving.|
From without it's an estate agent's fantastic opportunity, a financial adviser's risk, a first-time buyer's dream, a lender's asset.
For those caught on the knife edge of debt it's a nightmare.
With singer/songwriter Lorraine Bowen as the new homeowner, and the experiences of advisers, estate agents and the repossessed.
|The Museum Of Lost Keyboards||20031213||Prepare yourself for a musical mystery tour - an audio guide to a museum of keyboard instruments which exist only in the imagination.|
Armando Iannucci is the museum curator, and has written the official guide, with original music composed and performed by Django Bates
|The Last Of The Blind Piano Tuners||20031220||Blind piano tuners are now dwindling in number, and composer Adrian Lee and poet Sean O'brien reflect on the passing of a great tradition.|
|The Long Time Ago Story||20031227||By Rose English and David Sawer.|
Filtered through the reverie of a modern-day child, fragments of romantic ballet stories are distilled into a musical fabric of toy sounds and toy musical instruments to make an imaginary radio ballet.
|Radio Tarifa Calling||20040103||20040807||For half an hour Radio 3's frequencies are borrowed by another station - Radio Tarifa.|
Tarifa is the southernmost village in Spain and clearly visible from its shores are the mountains of Morocco.
For 15 years three musicians Faín S.Dueñas, Vincent Molino and Benjamin Escoriza have been exploring the origins of Spanish culture - the music of the medieval Moors, the chansons of French troubadours and the poetry of Sephardic Jews, as well as Flamenco.
They took their name from a radio station which would, if only it existed, broadcast this music.
In Radio Tarifa Calling that station comes on the air.
Tuning in to concert and studio recordings, interviews and readings, from anonymous romances about the Moors to Lorca, these musicians build a radio montage exploring their identity.
|The Cocktail Party Effect||20040110||By Liz Webb and Sheila Goff Our ears receive all the sounds reaching them, but our brains decide which to register and which to disregard.|
This psychoacoustic phenomenon is called The Cocktail Party Effect.
In this experimental play, PhD student Jennifer Rigby is trying to explain this phenomenon at a university cocktail party, when she starts to experience the effect first hand.
Jennifer....Debra Stephenson Patrick....Kim Wall All other parts - Sue Elliott Nicolls, Simon Greenall, Debra Stephenson and Kim Wall Composition and Sound Design by Nina Perry Studio Management by Colin Guthrie Directed by Liz Webb
|Kindertotenlied Song On The Death Of Children||20040117||Nothing touches us quite like the death of a child.|
For a parent, it's the worst thing that can happen, almost too painful to contemplate.
But artists have nevertheless been drawn to reflect on the loss.
The son of violinist David Harrington died suddenly on Easter Day 1995.
Terry Riley composed a 'Requiem for Adam' for David's group, the Kronos Quartet to perform in his memory.
Evie Clarke began writing poems after being diagnosed with a tumour in the spring of 2003.
Her father Nigel now treasures his 8 year old daughter's poetic legacy.
Inspired by Mahler's settings of poems on the deaths of two of the poet Rückert's children, Kindertotenlied reflects on how art can help confront the inexpressible.
|King's Cross To Connemara||20040207||On location in LONDON and IRELAND, the artists Richard Wentworth and Dorothy Cross explore each other's territories and collaborate on a work that highlights their experience of beauty, of intense looking and of being an artist.|
|Funeral Of A Bell-ringer||20040214||An audio portrait of the bell-ringing life and legacy of bell-ringer Bernard Mann interspersed with an account of the casting of a new bell.|
|Brainwaves||20040221||Up close and personal with the creative process, BRAINWAVES follows a group of would-be writers on two sweltering Saturdays in Sydney, Australia as - under the direction of novelist Sue Woolfe - their brains are stretched, scrambled and jogged into producing a short story.|
|Music Tastes Like Roast Beef||20040228||In his music workshops for deaf-blind people at the Royal National Institute for Deaf People at Polmead near Bath, Tony Heyes works in a world where sound becomes texture, where physical contact replaces the easy distance of speech and where music can be experienced as vibration and even taste.|
Tony invites listeners to experience the joy and subtle communication of his work.
|Brahms's Beard||20040306||Think of Johannes Brahms and it's impossible to disentangle the image from the beard.|
He wears a full Olympian (or Patriarchal) facial growth - a Marx-ist beard with a Jimmy Edwards moustache.
But does the beard obscure also our view of the composer's music? Until his mid-40s, Brahms was a handsome clean-shaven 'progressive', looking to extend the tradition of Bach, Beethoven and Schumann.
Soon after growing the beard, the academic conservative image took over.
The composer Hugh Wood, sculptor Manfred Sihle-Wissel, Wolfgang Sandberger and Cord Garben of the north German Brahms scene, author Michael Musgrave, image consultant Pat Henshaw, Frank Dobson MP, Phil Olsen of the World Beard Championship and Keith Flett of the Beard Liberation Front review our sense of Brahms, his music and his beard.
With extracts from Brahms's Clarinet Quintet and musical decoration by Steven Faux.
|Notes From The Rainforest||20040313||From the po-po-po of a passing riverboat to the complex song of a tiny bird, the Uirapuru.|
With sounds like these, Brazilian musician Albery Albuquerque Junior has created an exploration of the richness of the Amazon rainforest.
Includes a specially commissioned piece for BBC Radio 3.
|Speaking In Tongues||20040320||Turner prize winning artist Steve McQueen explores the boundaries of vocal expression with actor Billie Whitelaw, sound poet Cris Cheek and linguistics professor William Samarin.|
|A Pebble In The Pond||20040327||20041113||A radiophonic meditation on memory and winner at this year's Prix Italia.|
The philosopher would say that there is some danger of confusion as to the nature of memory: the image is in the present, whereas what is remembered is known to be in the past.
With words by Eva Hoffman and music by Michael Zev Gordon, performed by The Composers' Ensemble conducted by Richard Baker.
Featuring Michael Mears and the voices of Ruth Posner, Christopher Phillips and Michael Simpson
|Walking Against The Wind||20040612||20050702||A radio poem written by Bonnie Greer and mixed by Antony Pitts.|
What is it that a stranger knows? Walking through grey days, grimy streets, wandering, wondering - playwright and critic Bonnie Greer keeps moving through the streets of London and across the geographical unconscious to the beat of broken language, foreign voices, and untold stories.
|Zooms||20040626||The man who mislaid his wife, a medieval leper girl and an actress falling apart in an interview do not intersect as we zoom from story to story in a vertiginous manner.|
With David Holt, John Rowe and Fiona Henderson.
Music effects by Joe Acheson
|Trimming Pablo||20040703||20050122||SHEFFIELD, 13th November 1950 - What was left behind? Memory, history and imagination.|
The Second World Peace Conference was a disaster - condemned by the government and reduced to a single night of speeches.
The only communist from abroad allowed to attend was Picasso.
In Trimming Pablo, Dave Sheasby has written and compiled a cubist entertainment using arcHIVe, drama and music which recalls the artist's one night in SHEFFIELD.
|No Ball Games||20040710||Collaboration between Canadian author Douglas Coupland, Scottish visual artist Martin Boyce and the Burt Raymond MacDonald Quartet in search of the modernist revival.|
|Words Per Minute||20040717||20050219||A portrait of a British call shop - a place of phone booths and cut price calls, where people from all over the world gather to make long distance phone calls, cramming in the maximum 'words per minute' to family and friends back home.|
Conversations overheard give a fleeting and poignant insight into immigrant life in Britain today, in turns both touching and disturbing.
Told through the spoken word with new works 'overheard' from Kapka Kassabova, Imtiaz Dharker, Choman Hardi, Yang Lian, Malika Booker and Dorothea Smartt, and the personal emotions of recent asylum seekers.
|Hearing Voices||20040724||20050625||A 'composed documentary' by sound artist John Wynne which features recordings of several click languages from the Kalahari Desert in Botswana.|
The sounds of these amazing languages provide material for subtle electro-acoustic manipulations as the piece moves seamlessly between documentary and abstraction, language and music.
Hearing Voices weaves together interviews, field recordings and music in a compelling and adventurous exploration of languages on the verge of extinction.
|I Made Pizza For Kim Jong Il||20040814||20050226||Come on a journey to the corridors and kitchens of power of the world's most secretive state.|
Italian chef Ermanno Furlanis was recruited to work in a seaside pleasure palace, making and baking pizza for the "Dear Leader", Kim Jong il.
His story is contrasted with the harrowing tale of North Korean student Kang Hyeok, as he searches for food amidst the country's continuing famine.
He meets starving children, grain thieves and degraded beggars who know nothing of their leader's magnificent banquets.
|The Way The Truth||20040828||Israeli artist Keren Amiran maps the city of Jerusalem as a physical place and a spiritual construction.|
|Connecting||20040904||Go where only your ears can take you.|
This is the story behind the first computer hackers, told in their own words, and featuring the voices of such legendary figures as Captain Crunch, Joy Bubbles, Mark Bernay and cofounder of Apple computers Steve Wozniak.
Back in the late 1960s and early 1970s, big changes were taking place in the US phone network: armed only with a telephone, a little technical knowledge and a lot of curiosity, kids across America were exploring the phone system, discovering how it worked and what else it could be made to do.
The first and original hackers, these 'phone phreaks' now talk candidly about the early days of hacking: the highs and lows, the clashes with the law, and how their early experiments contributed directly to the phenomenal rise of the home computer during the 1980s.
Connecting makes extensive use of arcHIVe recordings made by the actual phreaks themselves to document party lines, long distance conversations and prank calls.
Hear what it was like to be one of the original phone phreaks, working your way around the telephone system back in the early 1970s - hear intercept messages and system noises from the time.
Written and presented by Ken Hollings, with music by Simon James.
|Project Jericho||20041106||20060225||Dramatist Gregory Whitehead uncovers the latest attempts to harness sound as a weapon as Between the Ears decodes the sonic meaning of Jericho.|
Dramatist Gregory Whitehead uncovers the latest attempts to harness sound as a weapon.
|Egil's Last Days||20041120||As a prelude to tonight's Hear and Now concert, Gavin Bryars has devised a binaural fantasy exploring the Icelandic saga of Egil: Viking warrior, poet, philosopher, drinker.|
Recorded entirely on location in the sea caves of the Faroe Islands and featuring the voice of Faroese bass Rúni Brattaberg.
|The Abandoned Road||20041127||20050820||Near the French home of the writer Adam Thorpe lies a three-kilometre vestige of the former main road to the nearest village.|
Abandoned a hundred years ago, this old Languedoc road is now the haunt only of badgers, shepherdess and her brother and the memories of former times.
Adam Thorpe's walk along the abandoned road is the starting point for a meditation in words and sound on the significance of roads and what it means when they fall into disuse.
|Don't Wear A Hat||20041204||The residents of two care homes in Glasgow - David Cargill House and New Cleveden Lodge - give their opinions on the world as it is now: space travel, electricity, hair, manners, how they feel when they wake up in the morning, how to get to heaven, and how to make the perfect cup of tea.|
|By The Rivers Of Babylon||20041211||The story of the unlikely collaboration between the already famous Lord Byron, and Isaac Nathan, a young, unknown Jewish musician who persuaded His Lordship to write lyrics to some ostensibly ancient songs of David.|
The venture was a publishing success, and a critical disaster.
Byron's poems eventually inspired several composers much greater than Nathan.
By Judith Chernaik.
Commentary by the conductor Charles Mackerras.
|A Strange Eventful History||20041218||20050903||One man in his time plays many parts, his acts being seven ages...|
From Shakespeare's infant through schoolboy, lover, soldier, judge, and pantaloon to second childishness, the passing of time is made audible in the hopes, fears and regrets of seven everymen.
With a double soundtrack of music tracing the arch of Western civilisation and golden songs from the last seventy-odd years.
Devised and produced by Alan Walker and Antony Pitts
|Criss-cross||20050108||Mixed race children are Britain's fastest growing ethnic group, but how do they see themselves? This programme explores the joys and the challenges of mixed race identity.|
|Strata||20050129||Voices mix with sound and music to tell the story of the landscape of South YORKshire.|
|Ports||20050305||20070630||In Paul Farley's evocative radio poem, three ports - Carthage, LIVERPOOL and Rotterdam - speak to each other across the centuries and down the sea lanes.|
From the ruins of the great Phoenician harbour, we follow the radar-blip of commerce as it travels on from the abandoned LIVERPOOL dockside to the cranes and containers of Europe's busiest port.
|Pliny's Naturalis Historia||20050326||20060311||Pliny the Elder was passionate about directly observing the natural world.|
So passionate, in fact, that he was killed when he got too close to Vesuvius in AD 79.
Two years earlier, however, he had completed his Naturalis Historia, which included four volumes of observations of the animal kingdom.
In this programme, Sean Barret and Mia Soteriou read the Latin text, accompanied by a soundscape of specially composed music, mixed with animal recordings gathered from Bristol's famous Natural History Unit.
Pliny's Naturalis Historia
So passionate, in fact, that he was killed when he got too close to the erupting volcano Vesuvius in AD 79.
Sean BarretT and Mia Soteriou read the Latin text, while a soundscape of specially composed music, mixed with animal recordings gathered from Bristol's Natural History Unit, provides the translation.
Adapted and produced by Kate Mcall.
Music by Adrian Lee, Simon Rogers and Sylvia Hallett.
|The Darkest Place In England||20050604||20060325||Poet and writer, Lavinia Greenlaw goes in search of darkness - nowadays banished as much from our imaginations as from our night skies.|
Is there anywhere truly dark left in England? How can we live without the dark? Can we recover its pleasures and its perils?
With photographer Garry Fabian Miller and literary critic Alan Downie
|The Third Generation||20050611||How do the grandchildren of Holocaust survivors come to terms with the experiences of their grandparents as they reach young adulthood? Anne Karpf talks with medical student Shoshana Burke, rock musician Sam Fluskey and musicians Simon, Benjamin and Jo Wallfisch.|
The programme climaxes with a piece of music, Requiem, specially composed by Benjamin Wallfisch, and performed in the studio by his brother Simon, his father, the distinguished cellist Raphael Wallfisch, and his grandmother, Anita Lasker-Wallfisch, whose cello-playing famously saved her life in Auschwitz.
|Gateshead Multi-storey Car Park||20050618||20060617||As Gateshead's brutalist car park and shopping centre face possible demolition as part of the town's ongoing redevelopment, Between the Ears presents an unlikely journey through the concrete building, created entirely out of the sounds and personal perspectives found there, manipulated and processed on analogue tape.|
|Doing The To Do List||20050709||20060729||Get up, do tax, extend overdraft, give pills to cat, explore foreign rights, check diving charts, book honeymoon, pack knickers, have baby - anything and everything can go on The To Do List.|
Trying to make sense out of the busy muddle that makes up our lives is a vital part of survival for many.
And ticking off the items is a blissful joy, while the un-ticked glower back and are moved on to the next page.
Whether it's a nuclear submarine commander remembering his medals, or a poet sorting out the polystyrene under the sink, or the comedian just trying not to lose it, 'Doing The To Do List' taps into people's need - sometimes their obsessive need - to put order into the threatening chaos of their lives.
Hold tight for a bumpy ride through The To Do List.
|Peter Blake's Mystery Tour||20051112||20060923||British painter Peter Blake takes listeners on a magical journey in an old char-à-banc bus.|
He is joined by characters who have peopled his imagination over the years - Elvis, Ian Dury, Frankie Howerd, Kim Novak to name a few...one in particular though is the White Knight played by John Hurt.
|A Very English Ganges||20051119||20060722||Every Hindu traditionally wishes to have their ashes scattered on the holy waters of the Ganges.|
But what of the British Hindu community who have made their homes here?
While many make the long trip to India with the ashes of a loved one, others have adapted this ancient ritual to modern life in this country, and have quietly found an alternative 'English Ganges' closer to home.
Poet Debjani Chatterjee portrays Hindus scattering ashes on British rivers.
She takes us on a poetic journey - of the soul and of a generation finding new ways to uphold tradition, based on the Hindu belief that ultimately all rivers become one.
|Sound Relations||20051126||20060819||Is our voice something we inherit from our ancestors? And do we sound like relatives who died decades ago and who we never met?|
Oral historian Alan Dein tries to plug the gap in our self-perception in a series of sound experiments.
He listens to fathers, cousins, grandmothers and great-grandfathers as far back as sound recording goes, on archive, home-made cassettes and through personal memories.
Through them he traces the evolution of distinctive intonation, pitch and timbre in a number of very different families.
And with the results, he creates a home-made audio family tree.
|Jan Kerouac||20051203||A portrait of poet Jan Michelle Kerouac (1952-1996) made by her friend Marjorie Van Halteren in remembrance of her astonishing spirit.|
Jan Kerouac met her famous father Jack Kerouac only twice.
When she was a teenager, he said to her "Write a book.
Use my name".
But in the end his name turned out to be the last part of him that she really needed.
She took up writing of her own accord and it became her lifeline.
Towards the end of her life, Jan even talked of changing her famous name so that she could continue to do what she loved above all in peace - to write.
But her grip on health loosened and her life ended in the midst of the kind of confusion that the estates of famous writers too often come to today.
Her identity was overshadowed by a drama made up of all the greed and obsession concerning Jack's papers and works.
Marjorie Van Halteren was crushed by Jan's untimely death aged just 44.
In this programme, Marjorie has tried to evoke the last time she saw her friend, acting on a desire to bring Jan back for the listener.
|The Pembrokeshire Underground||20051210||20060826||What do you think of while travelling on the Tube? Writer Dan Anthony has several thoughts.|
Join him as he takes a ride on the train line of the mind, heading west on The Pembrokeshire Underground.
Featuring the voices of Phil Rowlands, Gillian Elisa Thomas, Alun Owen, Alun Lewis and Gary Jones
|Guest + Host = Ghost||20051231||20060805||A journey into one man's isolation: written and narrated by Peter Blegvad, with readings by Nick Cave.|
The narrator consigns himself to a flotation tank in an attempt to beat the world record for sensory deprivation.
He is visited by doubtful guests of the mind as his desire for solitude collides with his social instincts and thoughts of his lost love, Esperanza.
The programme uses Edward Gorey's tale The Doubtful Guest and other literary illustrations to explore the ambiguities of disengagement, using musique concrete techniques specially developed by the producers Felix Carey, Iain Chambers and Philip Tagney.
|Virgins And Virginals: The Shadowy World Of John Bull||20060107||20060812||The life of the keyboard composer John Bull is cloaked in mystery.|
He's glimpsed only fleetingly as a player in the murky secret theatre of the court of Elizabeth I.
In this free elaboration on Bull's life, his times and his music, expert witnesses - including the virginalist Sophie Yates, the writer Charles Nicholl, the scholars David Smith and Martin Souter - offer a portrait of the man and his art within a musical frame composed by Steven Faux and featuring the saxophone of Will Gregory.
|A Ship Of Voices||20060304||20060416||A celebration of the white vessel that is BBC Broadcasting House in London, including the voices, sounds and music that inhabit its walls.|
|Not In My Name||20060318||written and composed by Antony Pitts and Gary Watt.|
Featuring John Crook, Christopher Gunness and Sally Phillips
|Maysles In The Dakota||20060603||20070721||Paul Mccartney and Martin Scorsese explore the life and times of Albert Maysles.|
Along with his brother David, Maysles played an important role in the mid-20th Century documentary film-making revolution.
He developed the genre of 'direct cinema' with his classics What's Happening!, The Beatles in the USA in 1964, Salesman and the controversial Gimme Shelter in 1970 - which explored the Rolling Stones' tour of America.
|Flotsam||20060610||Film-maker Tessa Sheridan was born on a London barge.|
Since then the dark and seductive Thames has exerted a profound tug on her imagination.
As the hustle and bustle of city life gives way to the still of night, she goes in search of the sounds and secrets hidden within the river's murky depths.
|Occasional Offices||20060624||20070217||A collaboration between Roger Elsgood and audio artist Scanner.|
It features words from the Occasional Offices of the 1662 Book of Common Prayer, delivered by the Reverend Dr Peter Mullen in actual services, woven into a soundscape of voices and scored with music by Scanner.
|Artist Crawls To Canterbury||20060701||On Boxing Day 2005, performance artist Mark McGowan started his epic crawl from Southwark to Canterbury.|
Why did he do it?
|Steamboat Kurt||20060708||20070224||Kurt Schwitters, the Dada artist and sound poet, left Nazi Germany, was interned on the Isle of Man, and spent his last years in Ambleside.|
He worked as a portrait painter but created some of his most radical work there, transforming a farm building into an environment called the Merzbarn, and writing an anti-Nazi satirical play, The Family Plot.
Ian Mcmillan searches for traces of Schwitters' life in Ambleside, hears his poetry and talks to those who knew him or know about him.
Ian stages a scratch performance of Schwitters' play on a Windermere steamboat, and makes a radio collage in homage to this radical artist in the genteel lakeside town.
Ian Mcmillan searches for traces of the life of Kurt Schwitters, Dada artist and sound poet, who left Nazi Germany, was interned in the Isle of Man and spent his last years in Ambleside.
Ian also hears his poetry, talks to those who knew him or know about him and stages a scratch performance of his play on a Windermere steamboat.
|Horse Whisperer||20060902||20070714||Stephen 'Yarmy' Dyble is a familiar figure at Newmarket Racecourse, generally known by trainers to be the man to turn to when only his horse whispering talents will calm difficult thoroughbreds.|
After months of following the training techniques of Yarmy, director Lou Stein and composer Deirdre Gribbin create an impressionistic portrait of the horseman and his almost magical ability to turn problem horses into champions.
Stephen 'Yarmy' Dyble is a familiar figure at Newmarket Racecourse, known by trainers as the man to turn to when only his horse whispering talents will calm difficult thoroughbreds.
|Three And The Third||20060930||20061230||Alan Hall brings together voices from 60 years of BBC cultural broadcasting to celebrate the anniversary of the start of the Third Programme.|
Alan Hall presents voices from 60 years of BBC cultural broadcasting to celebrate sixty years on from the start of the Third Programme.
This irreverent but affectionate feature is crammed full of highlights and hiccoughs, familiar characters and flaming controversies.
|Affirmation||20061104||As part of Radio 3's Free Thinking Festival of Ideas for the Future, New York artist Julianne Swartz introduces a specially commissioned version of her Affirmation sound installation in Liverpool.|
The building comes alive with the sounds of disembodied voices, allowing the public space to become an arena for private moments.
|Cloudscape||20061111||A composer, an artist, a meteorologist, a glider pilot and a cloud-chaser reflect on the meaning and inspiration of clouds.|
Sometimes they are flocks of celestial sheep herded across the sky on a summer afternoon, others sail majestically overhead like battleships while some are stratospheric wisps of angel hair.
Too often maligned or ignored, clouds are nature's poetry.
So is it really so bad to have a cloud hanging over you?
|The Soldiers' Poet||20061118||Wilfred Owen wrote that he was a 'poets' poet'.|
He also wrote, in the preface to War Poems, 'Above all I am not concerned with Poetry.
My subject is War, and the pity of War'.
He is, then, a soldiers' poet.
In the concluding programme of Wilfred Owen Week, serving soldiers - including one who joined as a boy soldier, a woman corporal, a major who, like Owen himself, was awarded the Military Cross, and General Sir Richard Dannatt, Chief of the General Staff - each choose an Owen poem to read.
They speak of the impact it has on them, and on soldiers who have served in Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Sierra Leone and Iraq.
|Tiles Of The Alhambra||20061125||This experimental feature celebrates the extraordinary tiles which adorn the Moorish palace of The Alhambra in Granada.|
Each room has elaborate tiles which are full of precise symmetries, different patterns, colours and geometric complexities.
The feature presents an aural picture of six tiles from the simplest repeated square pattern to the explosion of shapes and patterns in the Hall of the Ambassadors which seem to represent infinity itself.
Weaving through the feature are the sounds of the Alhambra with fountains, channels of water, the sumptuous gardens and the reflection of tiles in pools of water.
With contributions from art historians Michael Jacobs, Robert Irvin and Dalu Jones, and mathematician Marcus Du Sautoy.
Featuring music specially commissioned for the programme by the Spanish composer Carlos Miranda.
|The Edge||20061202||Dermot Healy's home is disappearing into the sea.|
|Bread On The Waters||20061209||A look at the theory and practice of Bottle Evangelism, in which the word of God is sealed in glass flasks and floated across the oceans.|
|The Charming Mr Kharms||20061216||A look at the life and career of Daniil Kharms, a Russian absurdist who wrote hilarious microscopic playlets about the silliness of the human condition.|
He continually fell foul of the authorities and died in prison in 1942.
With music by Haflidi Hallgrimsson.
|The Sleepover||20070616||20091219||Shut away for 20 hours in a humble house and barn beside a creek, Judith Kampfner explores Jackson Pollock's domestic world.|
|Blackpool: The Greatest Show Town||20070623||20071222||Film-maker Ken Loach returns to Blackpool to recollect the summer shows of his boyhood.|
Focusing on the comedy acts and the working class resort he remembers, he paints a picture of the northern holiday town at the peak of its popularity in the 1940s.
|Ivories In The Outback||20070804||A radiophonic survey of pioneer pianos, harmoniums and organs which have arrived in outback Australia since white settlement.|
Australia's very first piano was dumped on the beach at Sydney cove in 1788, just after arriving on the first fleet from England.
In 1888, it was estimated that there were 700,000 pianos already imported into Australia: that's one piano for every three people then living on the fifth continent.
This programme consists of a series of cameos featuring various instruments and their stories.
Historic texts are spoken by actors, while contemporary voices from outback Australia 'sing up' the stories surrounding the selected keyboard instruments.
There are interviews with the collectors, the accidental finders and the small but dedicated group of improvisers actively seeking ruined instruments.
|Communicating Underwater||20071027||Lisa Walker is a classically trained musician who has taken her music out onto Pacific waters to collaborate with musicians of the underwater world - humpback whales.|
Combining Lisa's music with her journey into scientific exploration of the whales' song, the programme dives into the haunting yet magical underwater musical world of the humpback whale.
|Rock's Dna - Portrait Of A Guitar Chord||20071117||20080823||Embedded in the riffs to Purple Haze and Foxy Lady there's a guitar chord that's saturated in the blues, that's jazz-inflected and inclined to funk but, above all, speaks of rock.|
The Jimi Chord, a conflicted major-minor chord with a flattened seventh, unlocks the window into the soul of rock music and much more besides.
With contributions from famous axemen such as Steve Howe (Yes), Bernie Marsden (Whitesnake), and John Campbell (Are You Experienced?).
|Dreaming Of Osama||20071124||He has a way of lying low, just long enough for you to almost forget about him, and then when you do, he makes an unwanted reappearance.|
Osama Bin Laden.
Usually the strangely mild-mannered man appears on videos, uploaded to radical Moslem sites, but since 9/11 he has also been appearing in people's dreams all over the West.
Pejk Malinovski's soundscape of real dreams and reflections on security gauges the impact of the 'War on Terror' on our collective unconscious.
|The Refuge Box||20071208||20081213||Half way between Holy Island and the mainland of Northumbria, a flight of steps leads to a wooden cabin on stilts.|
It is the Refuge Box, built to save people cut off by the tide from being swept away and drowned.
This is the focus of a new radio poem by Katrina Porteous, whose poetry, recorded all over Holy Island and in the Refuge Box itself, is interspersed with other voices, including island fishermen who remember rescues and tragedies, the coastguard and lifeboat crew, the bird warden, the Franciscan vicar of Holy Island, and a refugee who fled her West African homeland to seek sanctuary in Britain.
Beyond the human voices is the poetry of the place itself, the seals singing, the wheeze of swans flying over Holy Island, sudden jet fighters protecting this sanctuary yet violating its peace and, always, the wind and the sea.
|Jazz Ghosts In The Bronx||20071215||20080912||A tour of the vast Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx, New York, which is the final resting place for numerous jazz luminaries including Duke Ellington, Miles Davis, Coleman Hawkins, King Oliver and Max Roach.|
With contributions from historian Susan Olsen, novelist Laura Shaine Cunningham and musician Maxine Roach, daughter of Max Roach.
Plus original music by Iain Ballamy and Ashley Slater.
|Dream Astronomy||20080105||20091229||In the early years of the 20th century, letters arrived at the Mount Wilson Observatory in California written by people from all over the world who wanted to tell the astronomers information about the universe that they had acquired without using the observatory's giant telescope.|
The letters contained details of experiments, observations and intuitions, and read like an alternative history of space.
With John Moraitis, Kerry Shale, Barbara Barnes and Jennifer Lee Jellicorse, plus the music of Olivier Messiaen and Urmas Sisask.
Letters sent by people who had gleaned information about the universe without a telescope.
|Behind God's Back||20080126||20080905||Nagyrev was a sleepy village in a remote part of Hungary - until a spate of mysterious poisonings made it big news.|
Nearly 50 of the town's men lay prematurely dead in the cemetery.
Their bodies were found to be full of arsenic - and the suspects were their wives.
What caused the women of Nagyrev to poison their husbands? Was it, as commentators at the time suggested, the impact of World War I or of social change? Was it revenge for their husbands' drinking and violence?
The programme reconstructs the facts of a baffling mass-murder with archives from the trial, press reports and the memories of one Nagyrev resident still living who remembers the case.
|The Wall Of A Million Bricks||20080202||20080315||In September 1969, Lieutenant-General Sir Ian Freeland, the most senior figure of the occupying British Forces in Northern Ireland, said that peace lines - solid walls separating communities - would be a temporary affair.|
Today, despite relative harmony in Northern Ireland, there are over 40 peace lines keeping Catholic and Protestant neighbourhoods apart.
Belfast-born DJ and film composer David Holmes weaves a soundtrack through stories told by people on both sides of the ever-continuing divide.
|Mobius Strip And The Confidence Trickster||20080216||Forensic Psychiatrist Anne MacDonald, architect Cecil Balmond and the fiance of a compulsive liar try to understand the process of psychological manipulation in humans using the mathematical concept of the Mobius Strip - a piece of paper with only one side.|
|Symphonies Of Wind Turbines||20080308||20080816||A sonic meditation on wind turbines and their place in today's environment, recorded in Norfolk and the Fenlands.|
Including contributions from poet Kevin Crossley-Holland, architecture critic Jonathan Glancey and local residents, along with music created from the sounds of the turbines themselves.
|Out Of The Mouths||20080510||A soundscape of the acquisition of language from a baby's viewpoint, concentrating on the way in which cries become sounds, then babbles, words and then sentences.|
The programme features fly-on-the-wall observations of several children at various stages in their linguistic development alongside contributions from language and child experts.
|A Map Of Paradise||20080524||An impressionistic feature on the notion of paradise - lost, sought and found.|
In 1442, a Venetian cartographer in 1442 firmly situated paradise at the most eastern edge of India.
For a young film company location scout, it is indistinguishable from the beach at Applecross on the west coast of Scotland, whereas others recognise it in the English country garden at Sissinghurst, Kent.
For one of the architects responsible for a new retail experience in Paradise Street, Liverpool, it can be glimpsed in the joy in existence he feels with each new dawn.
|The Wash||20080531||Poet Laureate Andrew Motion explores the great wilderness on the east coast of the country, known as the Wash.|
|Staring At The Wall||20080607||20090606||Alan Dein captures the sounds and thoughts of everyday life just outside the walls of Pentonville prison in North London, building up a portrait of enclosure, freedom and imagination.|
He talks to Bob, who was born close to Pentonville and grew up in the area.
Bob rented a flat across the road with his girlfriend, became an inmate himself and watched her comings and goings on the street outside.
Now a free man for many years, he lives just feet from the prison wall, but this time on the outside, staring at the wall first thing in the morning and last thing at night.
Alan Dein captures the sounds and thoughts of life outside the walls of Pentonville prison
|Uk Crossfade||20080614||20100403||From the Oxford English Dictionary:|
cross-fade: to 'fade in' one sound or picture while 'fading out' another.
This 'Between the Ears' charts a journey in sound through the UK, moving from west to east, and north to south, in a series of long, very slow and sometimes almost imperceptible fades from one location to another.
This is a journey in sound alone - a journey without a presenter, interviews, or script.
At the heart of the programme are location recordings and sound-scapes from a wide range of places across the country - from the morning boats in a Devon harbour to an evening on the seafront in Skegness, via the daytime streets and quads of Oxford and a street parade in Spalding, to the sounds of rural Scotland and urban Lancashire.
The journey follows a simple pattern, which listeners are invited to puzzle out for themselves.
Producers: John Goudie and Alan Dein.
A journey in sound, moving across the UK in a series of fades from one location to another
Charting a journey in sound through the UK, moving from west to east, and north to south, in a series of long, very slow and sometimes almost imperceptible fades from one location to another.
|Hearts, Lungs And Minds||20080621||20091228||An experimental documentary by sound artist John Wynne, who spent a year as artist-in-residence with photographer Tim Wainwright at Harefield Hospital, one of the world's leading centres for heart and lung transplants.|
Using recordings of patients, the devices some of them were attached to, and the hospital itself, the piece weaves together intensely personal narratives with the sounds of the hospital environment, exploring the experiences of transplant patients and the important issues raised by this invasive, last-option medical procedure.
Sound piece about the experiences of Harefield Hospital's heart/lung transplant patients.
|When Silence Sings||20081122||20091230||A sonic reflection on the city of Venice, which is portrayed through the ears of some of its residents, including Tonie, a Norwegian psychologist who has been deaf from birth.|
She leads us down alleyways and into hidden little pockets of the city, all the while meditating on what role not being able to hear has played in her life and, in turn, inviting us to reflect on how we listen to our everyday lives.
A sonic reflection on Venice, portrayed through the ears of its residents.
When Silence Sings
|Crossing The Same River Twice||20081129||Dramatist and theatre director Lou Stein draws upon the many sound recordings he has made during his life in a distinctive audio journey that explores the tensions between selective memory and identity.|
It takes him from his South Brooklyn childhood to citizenship in the UK, via Belfast and the Outer Hebrides, to becoming the father of a child born with Down's syndrome.
Randomly recorded sound, Lou has found, is an very precise trigger for memory.
|Mole Jazz||20081206||A portrait of the late Ed Dipple, an obsessive collector who ran what has been described as the world's greatest second-hand jazz shop in a shabby corner of London's Kings Cross.|
Ed's widow Leni, a poet, interviews old friends such as saxophonist Bobby Wellins and drummer Spike Wells.
|In Memoria||20081220||20090502||A sound-collage created by Edward Wickham and Anthony Pitts, originally inspired by a visit to the tunnels of the National Mining Museum near Wakefield.|
It includes early music group The Clerks performing inside Crossness Pumping Station in Bexley, as well as children's songs, poetry, real life stories, a new motet by Pitts for three pairs of two voices, and medieval motets by Ockeghem, Dufay, Obrecht and Josquin.
A sound-collage created by Anthony Pitts, inspired by the National Mining Museum tunnels.
It includes early music group The Clerks performing inside Crossness Pumping Station in Bexley as well as children's songs, poetry, real life stories and a new motet by Pitts for three pairs of two voices.
|Woven In Time||20081227||20100529||An evocative and poetic story about black female identity as told through the words of poets Zena Edwards and Khadijah Ibrahiim, and the lives of women in an Afro-Caribbean hair salon: a place where women congregate over several hours to shape their outer selves with intricate new hairstyles of corn rows, dreadlock and weaves, and share their inner selves as they socialise and ponder the trials of life.|
Taking the themes of woven hair and woven lives, of history and culture, the programme explores the link between the changing politics of black female identity, notions of black beauty, and how this has been expressed through hair to the present day.
Zena Edwards has been commissioned to write new poetic narratives for the programme.
Producer: Ella-Mai Robey
A story about black female identity told through the words of poets.
A story about black female identity as told through the words of poets Zena Edwards, Khadijah Ibrahim and Jean Binta Breeze, and the lives of women in an Afro-Caribbean hair salon.
Taking the themes of woven hair and woven lives, of history and culture, the programme examines the link between the changing politics of black female identity, ideas of black beauty and how this has been expressed through hair.
|Weather Reports You||20090110||American artist Roni Horn proposes that 'when you talk about the weather, you talk about yourself'.|
She brings together individual stories and reflections about the weather, recorded across the county of Norfolk to create a collective portrait.
|Empty Ocean||20090516||20100123||Residents of Fair Isle, Britain's most remote inhabited island, talk about the loss of fishing and seabird colonies caused through over-fishing by trawlers and global warming. They also speak about the loss of traditions that bind the community together and have been handed down from generation to generation.|
With music by composer Damian Montagu and Fair Isle musicians, including his collaboration with singer Lise Sinclair on the song Empty Ocean. It sets Paul Rich's poem The Halibut Fisher's Saturday Night, about the great hauls of the past compared to today, where the ocean is empty of fish and the seabed smooth from over-fishing. There is also Sinclair's poem Silent, portraying the disappearance of seabirds from the skies because of the lack of sandeels for feeding.
Residents of Fair Isle, Britain's most remote inhabited island, talk about the loss of fishing and seabird colonies caused through over-fishing by trawlers and global warming.
They also speak about the loss of traditions that bind the community together and have been handed down from generation to generation.
With music by composer Damian Montagu and Fair Isle musicians, including his collaboration with singer Lise Sinclair on the song Empty Ocean.
It sets Paul Rich's poem The Halibut Fisher's Saturday Night, about the great hauls of the past compared to today, where the ocean is empty of fish and the seabed smooth from over-fishing.
There is also Sinclair's poem Silent, portraying the disappearance of seabirds from the skies because of the lack of sandeels for feeding.
Islanders on Fair Isle lament the loss of fishing.
And music performed by local musicians.
Plus music performed by local musicians
|Vapourtrain||20090523||Harry Willis Fleming explores how in the Victorian era the advent of steam train travel influenced travellers and chroniclers of the time.|
|Ghost Town||20090620||A portrait evoking vanishing towns in the American Southwest, blending music, ambient sound and anecdotes from residents past and present.|
|A Wireless Revelation||20090704||20101120||At the back of the Bible hides perhaps the most misunderstood but profoundly influential little book of them all: the Apocalypse of St John, also known as the Book of Revelation.|
The Apocalypse - which means "unveiling" - is a breathless and intense sequence of visions given to the exiled John on the Aegean island of Patmos, 70 miles or so from Ephesus in what is now Turkey, at the end of the first century AD.
Although it's well-known for being a challenging read, Revelation compensates right from the start with an explicit blessing on both reader and listener.
Thereafter its twenty-two chapters are packed full of pictures and patterns that have inspired artists and composers (and scientists, kings, and politicians) down the nineteen centuries since it was written: seven seals and seven trumpets, a beast with seven heads and ten horns, a woman with a crown of twelve stars on her head, and a Hallelujah chorus! However, the book also ends with a curse on anyone tampering with its text, so this radiophonic collage presents the complete text from mysterious beginning to epic end - in a communAl Reading from a number of translations old and new (including echoes of New Testament Greek as well as Mandarin, Arabic, Persian, and Urdu).
John Ashenfelter reads from the English Standard Version of the Holy Bible; additional voices include the Reverend Alan Walker, the Reverend Clifford Hill, Ekene Akalawu, Kathryn Knight (presenter), the former Bishop of Rochester Michael Nazir-Ali, and the Reverend Richard Coles.
Decorating and illuminating the sacred text as it unfolds are iconic fragments from Handel's Messiah and every movement of Messiaen's Quartet for the End of Time, as well as choral music by Hildegard of Bingen and Antony Pitts, who also mixed this extended version.
Radiophonic version of the text in the Book of Revelations.
Radiophonic version of the text in the Book of Revelations - from mysterious beginning to epic end - in a communAl Reading from a number of translations.
Decorating and illuminating the sacred text, as it unfolds, is an array of music - including iconic fragments from Handel's Messiah and Messiaen's Quartet for the End of Time.
|Tennyson In Skegness||20090815||20100605||An exploration of a little-known connection between Tennyson, one of our greatest poets, and the brash and brassy seaside town of Skegness in Lincolnshire.|
Tennyson spent much time on the coast there, with its landscape providing a good source of inspiration.
The programme combines the sounds of Skegness with the voices of locAl Readers interpreting a range of Tennyson's works and features excerpts from Charge Of The Light Brigade, Maud, The Miller's Daughter and Break, Break, Break.
Exploring Tennyson's connection with Skegness, where he wrote some of his best-known verse
|Salvado||20091107||20100612||The story of a remarkable encounter between Spanish monks and the native inhabitants of Western Australia in the mid 19th Century.|
In 1846 Spanish bishop, Rosendo Salvado arrived in the Australian outback to establish New Norcia, a Benedictine monastery.
Despite the intention of the mission to bring salvation to the savages", records show that Salvado's interest and respect for the indigenous Nyangara, though patronising, was truly enlightened for the time.
This programme reveals Salvado's views on the Nyangara people, customs, and music, as documented in his memoirs.
We also hear reconstructions of the Aboriginal New Norcia String Orchestra, Brass Band, and Choir.
The programme features the sounds of the bush and the acoustics of the New Norcia monastery.
Produced by Jon Rose.
Spanish monks encounter native inhabitants of Western Australia in the 19th century.
The programme reveals Salvado's views on the Nyangara people, customs, and music, as documented in his memoirs.
There are reconstructions of the Aboriginal New Norcia String Orchestra, Brass Band, and Choir, as well as the sounds of the bush and the acoustics of the New Norcia monastery."
|A Season In Hell||20091114||20100619||Une Saison en Enfer" was written between April and August 1873 in London and France, when the eighteen-year-old Rimbaud was in the throes of an intense, transgressive and destructive relationship with Verlaine.|
It's one of the most remarkable pieces of prose poetry ever written; a mixture of autobiography and enigmatic dream sequence in which Rimbaud looks back in despair over his life as a poet.
It combines lucid self-appraisal with demented vision and moves with extraordinary agility between hyper-realism and hallucinatory surrealism; in its synthesis of sounds, colours, odours and intensely visual images it one of the highest achievements of symbolist writing.
The twenty-five pages of 'A Season in Hell', here cut to a third of its length, are both a staggering testimony to and a tortured recantation of Rimbaud's poetic credo, the 'disordering of all the senses'.
Narrated by Carl Prekopp.
Composer Elizabeth Purnell has created a soundscape for the work which includes composed music, field recordings and processed sound in a raw response to the words.
She set the poems specifically for Robert Wyatt whose voice in its high, delicate register suggests a beyond-the-grave alter-ego to the young Rimbaud.
This version is a fierce abridgement of the original, but offers a startling insight into its power and beauty.
It contains some language that might now give offence.
Producer Sara Davies.
Setting of Rimbaud's hallucinatory prose poem.
Contains language that might cause offence.
An abridged radio reworking of Rimbaud's intense masterpiece of spiritual disillusionment, narrated by Carl Prekopp with a soundscape by Bristol composer Elizabeth Purnell and poems sung by Robert Wyatt.
A Season in Hell was written between April and August 1873 in London and France, when Rimbaud was 18, and in the throes of an intense, transgressive and destructive relationship with Verlaine.
It is regarded as one of the most remarkable pieces of prose poetry ever written - a mixture of autobiography and enigmatic dream sequence in which Rimbaud looks back in despair over his life as a poet.
Combining lucid self-appraisal with demented vision, it moves between hyper-realism and hallucinatory surrealism, blending sounds, colours, odours and intensely visual images.
The 25 pages of A Season in Hell, here cut to a third of its length, are seen as both a testimony to and a tortured recantation of Rimbaud's poetic credo, the 'disordering of all the senses'.
Elizabeth Purnell's soundtrack for the work includes composed music, field recordings and processed sound in a raw response to the words; she set the poems specifically for Wyatt, whose voice in its high, delicate register suggests a beyond-the-grave alter-ego to the young Rimbaud."
|Melting Point||20091121||20100814||explores both the human experience and musicality of ice as it melts.|
This "composed feature" by Nina Perry (whose previous BBC productions include the acclaimed Sounding Post and Mirror, Mirror) explores the icy landscapes of Greenland, Iceland and the Highlands of Scotland through recordings of environmental sounds, interviews with people going about their day to day lives and gathered music that expresses cultural and emotional connections to the weather.
The winter thaw into spring is a time most often associated with renewal and hope, yet paradoxically in light of climate change melting ice has taken on the more ominous connotation of disappearing ice mass and rising sea levels.
Among the voices heard are an Icelandic writer, a Greenlandic fisherman, a drama therapist for whom an ice cube provides a telling metaphor and an ice-climbing fiddle-playing mountain rescuer from the Cairngorms.
Their words are interwoven with spectacular recordings of the Greenland ice sheet as it calves and destroys and a specially composed musical soundscape to reveal the dichotomy and emotional resonance of the thaw.
Feature on the environmental, cultural and musical significance of several icy landscapes.
A feature by Nina Perry exploring the environmental, cultural and musical significance of the icy landscapes of Greenland, Iceland and the Highlands of Scotland.
Featuring the words of an Icelandic writer, a Greenlandic fisherman, a drama therapist and an ice-climbing fiddle-playing mountain rescuer interwoven with spectacular recordings of the ice sheet as it calves and a specially composed musical soundscape.
|Bal Bazaar||20091128||20100710||Award winning British-Indian poet Daljit Nagra's new poetic narrative inspired by his uncle's two shops in west London - where Muslim, Sikh and Hindu workers share a tiny working space and have between them created a small working community - Bal Bazaar.|
It's a journey through the shop and through Indian cultures in Britain - both real and imagined.
Daljit Nagra's new poetic narrative inspired by his uncle's shops in west London.
Award-winning British-Indian poet Daljit Nagra has written a poetic narrative inspired by his uncle's two shops in west London, where Muslim, Sikh and Hindu workers have created a small working community in a tiny shared space - Bal Bazaar.
Bal Bazaar is a journey through the shop and through Indian cultures in Britain, both real and imagined.
Shop owners tell their stories: a hairdresser snips her way through the day, while a Muslim butcher explains how he is really an IT worker covering for his brother who has cancer.
Bal Bazaar hints at the religious and political - a story of faked Halal meat - and a world of religious festival and song.
It also tells the common human stories of food, hair cutting and the every day, domestic life within the shopkeepers' community.
Readers/Daljit Nagra and Sudhar Buchar.
|Paul Klee, A Balloon, The Moon, Music And Me||20091205||20110402|
A fantastical encounter with Swiss painter Paul Klee, in an imaginary Klee-world of twittering machines and dream landscapes, singing colour polyphony and scribbling violin.
Composer and writer Ergo Phizmiz wanders through Klee's paintings in the company of their creator, evoking their vivid colours and whimsical humour in intricately composed soundscapes.
Klee takes Ergo on a hot-air balloon ride which, like a magic carpet, miraculously flies them to Tunisia, the land where he 'became a painter'.
Their voyage also passes through paintings of strange gardens, mountain carnivals, and abstract colour gradations, before they finally ascend to the moon, a dream-world populated by lunar monkeys, peculiar birds and trees bulging with seeping paint.
Ergo Phizmiz's fantastical encounter with Swiss painter Paul Klee.
|The Great Bell||20091212||20110409|
When the historian Arnold Toynbee heard the Great Bell of Toudaiji he exclaimed, "That is Japan".
Sony-award-winner Stephen Gill captures the physical and symbolic power of tons of suspended bronze, struck by a swinging tree-trunk, and follows the ancient manufacturing process of a bonshou, the huge bell that every Buddhist temple has.
This bell is not hidden in a belfry, but housed in an open wooden tower.
They don't have clappers, but are struck by huge tree trunks, suspended from ropes, swung against them from outside.
Each Old Year is rung out with 108 booms from every bonshou throughout the land.
Each has its own voice and character.
Every Japanese person has the right to one strike, which consumes the sins of the old year and purifies them for the new.
These great bells are essential to Japanese identity, which, through them, Stephen Gill explores.
We hear the New Year bells, recorded in the city and the countryside.
There is the Gion bonshou, which at 80 tons (six times the weight of Big Ben) is the heaviest in the land - it takes 20 monks to swing the beam to sound it.
Ikkō Iwasawa, who runs the foundry that cast the largest bell in Japan, explains the mystery of creating such huge bells as one is being cast.
The Rev Eishou Kawahara, the head priest of Rengein, whose the bell can be heard for 40 kilometres, reveals their spiritual meaning, and the impact they have on people.
Stephen Gill has lived in Japan for many years and speaks the language fluently.
He weaves into the recordings stories of famous bells, haiku poems about them and, most importantly, the sounds of all these bonshou, each of which has its unique voice.
Producer: Julian May
Stephen Gill depicts bonshou, bronze bells in every Buddhist temple in Japan.
Using stories, poems and sounds, Stephen Gill presents a portrait of bonshou - Japanese Buddhist temple bells - which are considered essential to the country's national identity.
Bonshou are housed in an open wooden tower instead of in a belfry.
They do not have clappers and are struck by huge tree trunks, suspended from ropes, swung against them from outside.
Each Old Year is rung out with 108 booms from every the bell throughout the land.
Every Japanese person has the right to one strike, in order to consume the sins of the old year and purify them for the new.
The Gion bonshou, at 80 tonnes (six times the weight of Big Ben), is the heaviest in the land and it takes 20 monks to swing the beam in order for it to sound.
Ikko Iwasawa, who runs the foundry that cast the largest bell in Japan, explains the mystery of creating such huge bells as one is being cast.
The Rev Eishou Kawahara, the head priest of Rengein, whose bell can be heard for 40 kilometres, reveals their spiritual meaning and the impact they have on people.
|The Chekhov Challenge - The Sound Of A Breaking String||20100130||20110423||One of the most enigmatic stage directions in all drama appears in Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard:|
'A distant sound is heard. It appears to come from the sky and is the sound of a breaking string. It dies away sadly.'
Between the Ears focuses on the many attempts to produce this sound, ranging from musical saws to gun-shots. Guests include Paul Arditti, who mixed industrial, musical and bird sounds for the production by Sam Mendes, and musician Leafcutter John, who accepts Radio 3's own Chekhov Challenge, recording his experiments to find a resonant breaking string sound for the 21st century.
'A distant sound is heard.
It appears to come from the sky and is the sound of a breaking string.
It dies away sadly.'
Between the Ears focuses on the many attempts to produce this sound, ranging from musical saws to gun-shots.
Guests include Paul Arditti, who mixed industrial, musical and bird sounds for the production by Sam Mendes, and musician Leafcutter John, who accepts Radio 3's own Chekhov Challenge, recording his experiments to find a resonant breaking string sound for the 21st century.
Exploring attempts to produce a famous stage direction in Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard.
The challenge to find 'the sound of a breaking string' demanded in The Cherry Orchard.
|The Haunted Moustache||20100327||Musician David Bramwell delves into the world of Victorian psychic phenomena, modern witchcraft and mind altering states in the search for the story behind an inherited moustache.|
In the early summer of 1991 I inherited a moustache from my Great Aunt Sylvia.
She made it to the over-ripe age of 96 before sailing out of this world, fag in hand, leaving behind an unfinished jigsaw of the Eiffel Tower and a forlorn cat..."
Obsessed with finding out the identity of the moustache's owner - an unlikely inheritance from his Great Aunt Sylvia - musician David Bramwell sets off on a quest to record sťances and psychics, the effects of mind altering Amazonian plants, hippies and phantom orchestras - a soundtrack pulling the audience into the world of a Victorian deceased freak show host - Ambrose Oddfellow.
The Haunted Moustache is a meditation on one man's obsession with freak shows, synchronicity, the occult and the existence or not of a spirit world.
Drawing on the tales of Victorian spiritualist fakery from magician Paul Zenon, the gothic charms of The Last Tuesday Society, the magical early electronica of musician Sarah Angliss, not to mention a cup of tea shared with a Wiccan Priest in suburban Shoreham, Bramwell travels from the wilds of Woodhall Spa in Lincolnshire, where the moustache's owner is recalled on the stage of the magical 1920's Kinema in the Woods, before ending in a Brighton council flat, with Dali muse Drako Oho Zarhazar, sharing the messages concealed in his tattoo.
David Bramwell probes Victorian psychic phenomena as revealed by a false moustache."
|The Mosque At The End Of The World||20100410||20110430||Djemaa el Fna may be a common tourist destination for the international hordes who descend on Marrakech but it remains a very sacred and special place for Moroccans.|
It was also one of the first spaces to be proclaimed a 'Masterpiece of the oral and intangible heritage of humanity' by UNESCO, and one which should be protected.
In this "Between the Ears" on Radio 3 the critically acclaimed writer Tahir Shah, who has made Morocco his home for the past six years, explores the square from the inside out in search of its centuries old primal energy.
In a meditation drawing together the storytellers, transvestite players, boxers, master musicians, cigarette sellers, snake charmers, medicine men and many more, Shah explores the halkas, or circles, where they gather their crowds to enchant and engage.
The sounds of the square tell their own story and as he moves between night and day and circle to circle, he looks for order beneath the apparent chaos; within it he finds an oral tradition and an ancient life force defying the onslaught of mass tourism and globalization.
Writer Tahir Shah explores the square Djemaa el Fna in Marrakech.
In this Between the Ears" on Radio 3 the critically acclaimed writer Tahir Shah, who has made Morocco his home for the past six years, explores the square from the inside out in search of its centuries old primal energy.
|Intensive Care||20100417||Film director Terence Davies has often been hailed as one of Britain's greatest living film-makers.|
His acclaimed works include 'Distant Voices, Still Lives', 'The Long Day Closes' and the recent BAFTA nominated 'Of Time and the City', a stunning visual poem, narrated by Davies himself who wrote a masterful script and displayed an untapped ability to present.
Inspired by 'Of Time and the City', the production company Unique approached Davies after hearing of his passion for radio and especially for Radio 3, and encouraged him to develop his first radio feature.
The result is 'Intensive Care', an intensely personal memoir of his mother combined with a self-portrait of an artist as a young man.
Davies writes and narrates this autobiographical piece which covers his early years at drama and film school & the making of his first film 'Children'.
Threaded through this narrative, Davies also describes his relationship with his mother, her decline into old age and her eventual death that was to have such a devastating impact on him.
Terence's mother is evoked in the programme by the songs he heard her sing during his childhood.
They have been especially performed by the actress Lorraine Ashbourne who played the part of Maisie in 'Distant Voices, Still Lives' and works with Davies for the first time since 1988.
As Davies meditates on the passing of time, memory and mortality, he also reads some of the poetry that has touched and inspired him: Auden, Betjeman, Sassoon.
The programme's soundtrack is a personal selection of classical music: Shostakovich, Webern, Debussy.
'Intensive Care' thus becomes a unique insight into emotional and artistic life of one of Britain's great auteurs.
|The Glass Piano||20100424||20110709||Writer and poet Deborah Levy considers the true story of Princess Alexandra Amelie of Bavaria, 1826-1875 who at the age of 23 was observed awkwardly walking sideways down the corridors of her family palace.|
When questioned by her worried royal parents, she announced that she had swallowed a grand glass piano.
The Princess is played by Emily Watson.
The piece is structured between the Princess's dialogue as she walks through the palace and the conversations Levy has to find out what's wrong with her.
Our key contributors are the psychoanalyst Susie Orbach, historian Erin Sullivan and Consultant in Emergency Medicine, Dr Fiona Lecky with music composed and arranged by Chris O'Shaughnessy.
This is a magical tale on the one hand and a partial history and analysis of mental delusions on the other.
We follow the 23 year old Alexandra Amelie as she walks sideways around the doors and ornaments of the royal palace.
She is wearing a white dress, certain colours and smells distress her.
Delusions of being made from glass were quite popular in the 16th century.
The stories are extraordinary and include "The Lawyer Made From Glass", by Cervantes which tells of a man who believed his body was made from glass.
He wears loose clothing, sleeps in straw, walks in the middle of the road to avoid injury from falling roof tiles, and is so scared of people approaching him when they give him food, he fixes a bucket to the end of a pole so fruit can be deposited in it.
For Levy, Alexandra Amelie is a sort of early cyborg, a collision of flesh and technology.
Woman and piano have merged, the piano being an instrument of communication.
Deborah Levy considers the life of the princess who thought she'd swallowed a glass piano.
The stories are extraordinary and include The Lawyer Made From Glass", by Cervantes which tells of a man who believed his body was made from glass.
|Other Mothers||20100515||20110702||Parenthood isn't just about watching your kids.|
Sometimes it's about watching each other.
The writer Kate Clanchy asked women across the country to talk about the other mothers around them:
"Other mothers never spend the day watching Spongebob."
"Other mothers walk past me without a glance."
"Other mothers get what one of those days is."
The result is a dark, funny radio poem which explores our deepest divides - and our brightest areas of unity.
with Adjoa Andoh and Zita Sattar.
Research by Matilda James.
Additional material by Emily Waples.
Produced by Jonquil Panting.
Writer Kate Clanchy hears women talking about the other mothers around them.
Other mothers never spend the day watching Spongebob."
"Other mothers walk past me without a glance."
"Other mothers get what one of those days is."
Kate Clanchy won both the 2009 BBC National Short Story Award and the VS Pritchett Memorial Award with THE NOT-DEAD AND THE SAVED.
Her books include ANTIGONA AND ME, a bruisingly perceptive account of the political and domestic fallout of her friendship with a Kosovan refugee which won the Writer's Guild Award for Best Book of 2008, and three award-winning collections of poetry: SAMARKAND, SLATTERN and NEWBORN.
She is also a frequent broadcaster, a regular contributor to The Guardian and has written several notable plays for Radio Four, including THE CURRS; MICHAL, SAUL'S DAUGHTER and ABISHAG THE VIRGIN (Part of the Kings serieS); ALL THE BIRDS OF THE AIR, THE TRUELOVE FILE, and a dramatisation of Dorothy Porter's verse novel THE MONKEY'S MASK.
For the BBC Poetry Season, she co-presented with fellow poet Paul Farley an exploration of Larkin's verse on a train through 'Larkinland' in CHILDREN OF THE WHITSUN WEDDINGS.
|Summer Sesshin||20101030||20110723||The challenge of carrying silence into daily life|
Andy is a typical London taxi driver, and his daily life involves navigating through the choked streets of the capital.
But Andy is also a monk who will take us to a totally different world of a Buddhist retreat and what is known as a 'summer sesshin'
'Sesshin' is a Japanese word which means 'touching the heart - mind' and involves a period of intensive meditation in a Zen monastery.
In this Between the Ears we hear from those who have to balance stressful lives with their Buddhist outlook.
Along with Andy we meet a young Polish student who exchanges her work behind one of the noisiest city bars for the silence of the Buddhist retreat and a chip shop owner who attempts to escape the chaos of a Saturday night by attending a sesshin.
Can they manage to carry the silence of the sesshin back into their daily lives?
As we discover their lives we hear the precise, beautiful sounds mark the timing of daily rituals such as wake-up, meditation, meal and work times.
Documentary about people balancing stressful lives with the silence of a Buddhist retreat.
|The Man With The Blue Guitar||20101106||20110827||Between the Ears:The Man with the Blue Guitar|
The Man With the Blue Guitar - Kerry Shale performs the Wallace Stevens poem, inspired by Pablo Picasso's painting 'The Old Guitarist', with new music for blue guitar by Martin Simpson
In 1903, during his blue period, Picasso painted 'The Old Guitarist', an image of a musician who despite his destitution - he's in rags and looks starved - continues to play.
This picture inspired the American poet Wallace Stevens and in 1937 he published 'The Man with the Blue Guitar', his long, musical poem reflecting on the role of art and the imagination.
"You do not play things as they are", he writes, to which his musician replies "Things as they are/ Are changed upon the blue guitar."
In the 1970s David Hockney, who already knew the painting, came across the poem and was inspired to create a series of etchings 'inspired by Wallace Stevens, who was inspired by Picasso.'
This edition of Between the Ears takes the process of a inspiration step further; it's a performance of the poem by Kerry Shale, with new music for 'blue guitar' composed and played by the great guitarist Martin Simpson ('England's Ry Cooder').
There are thoughts on the poem and the painting from the American poet and critic Dana Gioia*, who was until recently the Chair of the National Endowment for the Arts; Sue Hubbard, the British poet and writer on visual arts, and David Hockney himself.
These elements are melded to create a new piece for radio - 'Between the Ears: The Man With the Blue Guitar'
Producer: Julian May.
The Man with the Blue Guitar.
Wallace Stevens and Pablo Picasso were two great modernists who had much in common: rather than representing the world in their art they transfigured it.
They said, "You have a blue guitar,
You do not play things as they are."
The man replied, "Things as they are
Are changed upon the blue guitar."
Meaning is something created - like the playing of a song or the painting of a picture.
In Picasso's painting the old guitarist is gaunt and his clothes ragged - yet he plays.
The poem is playful, but like the painting melancholic in tone.
It quietly rhymes, it is subtly rhythmic, the theme is stated then variations are played on it.
The poem is the guitarist's music, a blues.
This programme realises all this in music and language, as a collaboration between actor, musician, artist - even critic.
Martin Simpson is an extraordinary guitarist, 'the nearest Britain has to Ry Cooder' (Mojo) and has made a dozen CDs, including 'Righteousness and Humidity', a homage to the great delta blues players.
He lived in the US for 15 years and combines British, Afro-American and old-time music.
The poem is wonderfully musical in its language, but somewhat elusive.
So Dana Gioia, American poet, essayist and until recently Chair of the National Endowment for the Arts, offers ideas about the poem and Wallace's poetics.
The poem and the comments are mixed with the new music by Martin Simpson, inspired by the poem itself and the painting.
Kerry Shale reads the Wallace Stevens poem The Man with the Blue Guitar.
|A Moment Of Mishearing||20101113||20111224||Indian novelist, critic and Professor of Contemporary Literature at UEA Amit Chaudhuri, also a classically trained singer of Hindustani music, presents a Between the Ears in which he reflects on the nature of music and how it has a common root in both eastern and western traditions.|
"I could hear certain Indian ragas in what Hendrix was playing - like Dhani, Jog, Malkauns - not because I'd gone looking for them, but in a way that one becomes aware, one day, of another dimension to an outline: like, for instance, the duck-rabbit, Wittgenstein's famous mutant"
He explores his own musical education, weaving in references to Tagore, Wittgenstein, Cage, Magritte and Frankie Goes to Hollywood - "an excellent song; but, to my ears, noise, and noise I still wouldn't have any idea what to do with."
and tells how chance mishearings of popular western tunes led him into the world of MySpace and YouTube and a second career as a successful recording and performing artist
"The typical hotel Indian classical muzak was my ambience - the santoor, whose tinny, glossy notes I was trying successfully to ignore, when it seemed to launch, without prior notice, into 'Auld Lang Syne'.
I listened intently; but, in a few moments, the music had gone back to being the raga it was, Bhupali, a pentatonic identical to the Highlands scale from which the Scottish melody was derived.
My project had such non-serious beginnings".
Amit Chaudhuri on how music has a common root in both Eastern and Western traditions.
|The Nightfishing||20101127||20120519||WS Graham's poem adapted for radio by Jonathan Davidson. With Siobhan Redmond and David Rintoul.|
An attempt to make some sense of a difficult and elusive modern masterpiece. The poem was published in 1955. It tells of a fishing trip after herring but much else including the difficulties of writing and of turning experience into words. Its fresh-made language has found it many admirers but it also kept it from many other readers. Perhaps a radio adapatation can unlock it.
WS Graham's poem adapted for radio by Jonathan Davidson.
With Siobhan Redmond and David Rintoul.
An attempt to make some sense of a difficult and elusive modern masterpiece.
The poem was published in 1955.
It tells of a fishing trip after herring but much else including the difficulties of writing and of turning experience into words.
Its fresh-made language has found it many admirers but it also kept it from many other readers.
Perhaps a radio adapatation can unlock it.
|On The Trail Of The Snail||20101211||Five celebrated radio producers from around the world contribute their personal responses in sound to Henri Matisse's The Snail, the iconic paper cut-out collage that hangs in Tate Modern, London.|
This collaborative edition of Between the Ears explores radio's capacity for re-presenting art.
It evokes through sound the primary colours, elemental spiralling shape and gastropodic allusions of an image that's at once playful and melancholy.
Late in his life, ill-health forced Matisse to work with a new technique, directing assistants to arrange coloured paper cut-outs on his studio wall - The Snail of 1953 is the most celebrated example of this period.
The "On the Trail of the Snail" audio collage consists of:
Chris Brookes (Canada) - "?The Snail Trail in the White House" (with reference to The Orlons 1962 hit The Wah-Watusi and Alma Thomas' homage to Matisse, Watusi)
Dinah Bird (France) - "Helix" ("The spiral is a spiritual circle.
In the spiral form, the circle, uncoiled, unwound, has ceased to be vicious; it has been set free." Vladimir Nabokov)
Sherre DeLys (Australia) - 'Chromatic Composition'.
(Sherre and sculptor Joan Grounds reflect on Matisse's use of colour as they walk through a north American woodland.)
Pejk Malinovski (USA) - "A Snail is a Snail is a Snail is an Artist", featuring the voices of Gertrude Stein and biologist Ronald Chase.
Kari Hesthamar (Norway) - "Tramp" ("The first step in any trip or journey is always a footstep - the brave or curious act of putting one foot in front of the other." The Norwegian author Tomas Espedal walks - to collect stories and to survive.)
Curated by London-based producer Alan Hall
|Sounds Of The 70s||20101225||20110730||Record collector and DJ Jonny Trunk creates a new work made up entirely of BBC Sound Effects records from the 1970s.|
An unlikely sonic adventure into the lost world of Geiger counters, Routemaster buses, typewriters, vintage bells and windscreen wipers, all extracted from the original seven-inch vinyl pressings of recordings made between 1970 and 1979.
A radio composition by Jonny Trunk created from BBC Sound Effects recorded in the 1970s.
BBC SFX USED
Crowds in Woolworths
Atmos in Shopping Centre
Quiet Park Atmos
Covent Garden Market
1 Metal Crash
Hammering Iron Fence
Wooden Crash Made with Battering Ram
Door Being broken Down
Hammering Fence Posts
Atmos - Royal Albert Hall before concert, chamber orch tuning
Twangs On A Metal Ruler
Jews Harp Sequence
Typing With Three Hands
Busy Workshop Atmos
One Man Continuous Snoring
Ice Creaking And Cracking
Bottle Top Tester
Petrol Station pump
Bedford Van Hooter
Bedford Van Indicators
Various Bedford Van Internal Sounds
Sqeaky toys 1, 2, 3
Children’s Bells and Toys
Various Household Objects
Breaking Ice In A Bucket
Industrial Blow Torch
Various Electric Shavers
Toys 1, 2, 3, 4
Squeakers 1, 2, 3
Triumph Motor starting
Triumph Motor ticking over
Triumph Motor boot opening and closing
Triumph Motor windscreen wipers
Phone Box 1, 2, 3
Victoria Station Buffett
Power Station Interior
Compressed Air Pump – Petrol Station
Air Pressure Drill
Another Air Drill
Air Tyre Deflating
Air Tyre Inflating
Single Tone Horn
Computers Playing 0 And X
Radio Link Operating
Walking Through Undergrowth
Chopping Down Trees
Walking – Stairs
Walking Through Wet Sand
Two Walking Through Undergrowth
Footsteps Start And Stop
Two Men Start And Stop
Stone Throwing And Splashing
Water Running Into Sink
Various Light Switches
Humming Top 2
Firestation Bell and Engine
Post Office Telephone signals
Heathrow Terminal 3 Interior
Motor Boat Departs
Small Rowing Boat 1, 2
Letter Sorting Machine
Seawash On Shingle
Lift Doors Opening and Ventilation
Geiger Counter with Buzzer
|Out Counting Sheep||20110115||20111231||Poet James Crowden experiences the wide range of sheep communication at lambing time in the dead of night, the interaction between ewe and lamb and birth itself, often in a sheep shed where up to 1,000 can be lambing at once. Also the talk between shepherds and their sheep and their interesting methods of counting sheep..|
In the early 1980s James Crowden worked as shepherd. Some of his sheep kept escaping onto ground owned by the conductor and maestro John Eliot Gardiner. In the end John Eliot bought the sheep off James and at lambing time employed him to work as a night shepherd alongside his own shepherd Walt Pitman. It was whilst working here on the long dark nights in the lambing shed that James started to write his first book, Blood Earth and Medicine. To see a flock of 500 lambing is quite extraordinary and in the quiet of night the noises of sheep can be very illuminating - a strange language that works its way into the shed and us.
Interspersed with the sheep noises voices of shepherds talking to the sheep. Calling them, the wide variety of sheep counting systems up and down the country.
Yan Tan Tethera etc: links with old Celtic language systems + Anglo Saxon and Norse systems Wonderful variations from Rathmell to Teesdale. Also modern sheep countings shearing by the score and the sheep terms themselves gimmer, hogget, tup, ram, shearling, yo, ewe, teg, chilver, grass ewe, draft ewe, suck lamb, weather.
Poet James Crowden experiences the wide range of sheep communication at lambing time.
Poet James Crowden experiences the wide range of sheep communication at lambing time in the dead of night, the interaction between ewe and lamb and birth itself, often in a sheep shed where up to 1,000 can be lambing at once.
Also the talk between shepherds and their sheep and their interesting methods of counting sheep..
In the early 1980s James Crowden worked as shepherd.
Some of his sheep kept escaping onto ground owned by the conductor and maestro John Eliot Gardiner.
In the end John Eliot bought the sheep off James and at lambing time employed him to work as a night shepherd alongside his own shepherd Walt Pitman.
It was whilst working here on the long dark nights in the lambing shed that James started to write his first book, Blood Earth and Medicine.
To see a flock of 500 lambing is quite extraordinary and in the quiet of night the noises of sheep can be very illuminating - a strange language that works its way into the shed and us.
Interspersed with the sheep noises voices of shepherds talking to the sheep.
Calling them, the wide variety of sheep counting systems up and down the country.
Yan Tan Tethera etc: links with old Celtic language systems + Anglo Saxon and Norse systems Wonderful variations from Rathmell to Teesdale.
Also modern sheep countings shearing by the score and the sheep terms themselves gimmer, hogget, tup, ram, shearling, yo, ewe, teg, chilver, grass ewe, draft ewe, suck lamb, weather.
|The Cost Of Coal||20110122||20120526||The media's fascination with mining disasters is nothing new. In 1936 in Moose River, Canada, a mine entrance collapsed when a tree fell over the shaft. It was assumed the men were dead. Five days later a faint tapping was heard. Canadian radio sent a journalist, J. Frank Willis, to start a live hourly broadcast from the head of the mineshaft, which was carried on 650 radio stations across North America. This was three quarters of a century ago and a turning point in radio history.|
In 2010, there were times when it was hard to remember that the situation at the San Jose copper mine in Chile, where 33 men were awaiting rescue, was reality, rather than reality TV. The media circus that descended on the Atacama Desert - setting up camp at the top of the mine - created an atmosphere, at times, almost of a game show. Yet the mine disaster in New Zealand that followed shortly afterwards, with its tragic outcome, disappeared swiftly from the front pages and TV headlines of the world. The thought of such confinement underground is almost unthinkable, unless a splinter of light can pierce its darkness - bringing home to the audience the possibility of salvation.
The fear and exploitation of fear of being trapped underground - from real life to the stories of Edgar Allan Poe - is reflected here, using sounds, media archive, the words of the mining poet and blogger Mark Nowak
(http://coalmountain.wordpress.com), coal miner Willie McGranaghan, and Newfoundland sound man Chris Brookes. The very natural fear nascent in all of us of being buried alive, and the contradictions in the low-status dangerous work of the miner, and the treasure it produces, are powerful themes which create the most compelling horror fiction and news stories alike.
Producer Sara Jane Hall.
75 years ago, 100 million people were held spellbound as a broadcaster working for the Canadian Broadcasting Commission relayed the latest news from a mine where two men were trapped - live, to 650 radio stations across North America and Europe.
It put radio on the map as a transmitter of news, and the tale of the two men's horrifying situation gripped those listeners.
There were times, last autumn, when it was hard to remember that the situation at the San Jose copper mine in Chile, when 33 men were awaiting rescue, was reality, rather than reality TV.
The media circus that descended on the Atacama Desert - setting up camp at the top of the mine - created an atmosphere, at times, almost of a game show.
Yet the mine disaster in New Zealand that followed shortly afterwards, with its tragic outcome, disappeared swiftly from the front pages and TV headlines of the world.
The thought of such confinement underground is almost unthinkable, unless a splinter of light can pierce its darkness - bringing home to the audience the possibility of salvation.
This fascination in the media with mining disasters is nothing new.
In 1936 in Moose River, Canada, a mine entrance collapsed when a tree fell over the shaft.
It was assumed the men were dead.
Five days later a faint tapping was heard.
Canadian radio sent a journalist, J, Frank Willis, to start a live hourly broadcast from the head of the mineshaft, which was carried on 650 radio stations across North America.
This was three quarters of a century ago and a turning point in radio history.
The fear and exploitation of fear of being trapped underground - from real life to the stories of Edgar Allen Poe - is reflected here, using sounds, media archive, the words of the mining poet and blogger Mark Nowak
(http://coalmountain.wordpress.com), coal miner Willie McGranaghan, and Newfoundland sound man Chris Brookes.
The very natural fear nascent in all of us of being buried alive, and the contradictions in the low status dangerous work of the miner, and the treasure it produces, are powerful themes which create the most compelling horror fiction and news stories alike.
|Child Of Ardoyne||20110507||Ardoyne, in north Belfast, lies at the heart of 'murder mile', the working class community where there were more deaths per capita than anywhere else in Northern Ireland during thirty years of 'the Troubles' And at the centre of Ardoyne are the Holy Cross primary schools, one for girls and one for boys.|
Of the ninety-nine people killed in Ardoyne between 1969 and 1997 by the army or by nationalist or loyalist paramilitaries, two-thirds attended these schools.
Children like Philip McTaggart used the burnt-out houses abandoned by Protestant families in 1969 as their playground.
Others like Karen McGuigan leapt from their bicycles and ran for cover as gun battles broke out between republicans and the army.
A generation later - and three years after the Good Friday Agreement - Karen and her daughter Christine, who was then in her last year at primary school, became embroiled in the Holy Cross dispute.
This protest by loyalist residents against their Catholic neighbours' route to the school shocked a world that had been lulled into thinking the worst of Northern Ireland's troubles was in the past.
In this 'composed meditation', residents of Ardoyne - Catholic and Protestant, nationalist and loyalist - remember growing up during the conflict and, together with children of today, seek an understanding of the legacy that's been bequeathed to the children of tomorrow.
A meditation on 'the Troubles' from the viewpoint of north-Belfast children.
|Anatomising A Portrait: An Epileptic Journey||20110521||20130406||Wander the rooms of London's National Portrait Gallery and amongst pictures of the great and the good you will come across a new display - radical in approach and subject.|
Artist Susan Aldworth was commissioned to make a series of artworks reflecting epilepsy for St Thomas' Hospital in Westminster, now on display. In the pursuit of one portrait in particular she placed centre-stage her close friend Max Eilenberg and we follow her on this journey.
Through audio diaries and interviews with Max, we hear her become closer to her subject and her friend. She talks with him about philosophical notions of personal identity in relation to the impact of the absences which define epilepsy.
"If you're blind, you're blind. You don't have blindness. If you've got a cold, you've got a cold. You are not cold. I have got epilepsy and I am epileptic. It's a constituent part of me in the same way as if I'd been born with one leg." Max Eilenberg.
She also talks to neuroscientists and gets the chance to hear the sound of a seizure in the brain.
A haunting experience.
The sound of epilepsy is not a jagged rasping, not spikes of sound - but more like the sound of whale song, a plaintive cry for help, a call in the wild. How does an artist go about creating a work of art to reflect this?
Her own particular interest in the relationship of The Self to the physical brain came after seeing inside her own brain, real time, during a diagnostic brain scan ten years ago on Christmas Day.
Disturbing stuff. But just for a moment, share what it feels like to go through the devastation of a brain turning on its carrier.
Producer: Sara Jane Hall
First broadcast in May 2011.
Epilepsy affects 1 in 200 people but there are many public misconceptions and prejudices about the condition.
In recent years neuroscience has begun to find out more about the brain's activities, and now it is possible to hear the sound of a brain having a fit.
The sound of epilepsy is not a jagged rasping, not spikes of sound - but more like the sound of whale song, a plaintive cry for help, a call in the wild.
How does an artist go about creating a work of art to reflect this?
Artist Susan Aldworth has been commissioned to make a series of artworks reflecting epilepsy for both St Thomas' Hospital in Westminster and the National Portrait Gallery; and in the pursuit of one portrait in particular she has placed centre-stage her close friend Max Eilenberg:
"If you're blind, you're blind.
You don't have blindness.
If you've got a cold, you've got a cold.
You are not cold.
I have got epilepsy and I am epileptic.
It's a constituent part of me in the same way as if I'd been born with one leg."
This programme follows Aldworth as she goes about finding more about her friend, his epilepsy, and the way the condition is being studied.
"You are lying on a bed looking up at your brain scan live on a bank of monitors.
You are seeing the inside of your brain with your brain.
You are thinking about what you are seeing with what you are seeing on the screen.
You are looking inside your head whilst thinking, seeing, feeling - your brain is working whilst you are looking inside it.
But where is the "me" in all this?" (Susan Aldworth)
Through her own audio diaries and interviews with Max, we hear her become closer to her subject and her friend.
She talks with him about philosophical notions of personal identity in relation to the impact of the absences which define epilepsy.
"It is an assault, and an insult to everything I would like to think of as myself.
I can't therefore say that my brain and myself are identical, I have to say that my brain wipes my sense of self clean." (Max Eilenberg)
At the University of Newcastle she visits the neuroscientists, Dr Fiona Le Beau and Professor Miles Whittington, who have recorded for the first time the sound of a brain having an epileptic episode, before confronting Max with the portrait of himself.
Slightly disturbing stuff.
But just for a moment, share what it feels like to go through the devastation of a brain turning on its carrier.
|Playing The Form||20110528||The Form in Tai Chi is a set number of precise moves which Tai Chi participants play in sequence.|
Each move has a martial application although Tai Chi is often practised more for healing and meditative purposes.
Many of the moves have wonderfully evocative names such as Embrace Tiger Return to Mountain, White Crane Spreads its Wings, Grasp Sparrow's Tail.
In this programme Westerners describe ways in which playing the Tai Chi Form has, over time, changed their lives.
Murray took it up initally to heal damage he'd caused to his back from being a baker.
Alec started in order to overcome shyness.
Johkim began when both of her parents died and she wanted to change the direction of her life.
Bruce Frantzis describes the way in which playing Tai Chi healed his broken back after a car accident.
Over time, Playing the Form altered the path of each of their lives.
There is a sense that the Short Form is being played throughout this programme, with accompanying soundtrack from composer Simon Hall.
Producer Rosie Boulton.
Westerners describe ways in which playing T'ai Chi has changed their lives.
|On The Rubble Of My Home I Played My Flute||20110611||20120721||Guo Yue is a master of the Chinese bamboo flute. His father was an ehru (Chinese violin) player and from birth he was immersed in the rich soundscape of a musician's compound in old Beijing; neighbours practising traditional music; Beijing opera; as well the music the sounds of the hutong, the courtyards and alleys of old Beijing - songbirds in cages, street cries, chopping vegetables and cooking.|
Yue was eight when the Cultural Revolution began. Red guards almost killed his mother and took her away. Yue and his 12-year-old brother Yi were left alone. He spent his time - hoping to make his mother proud on her return - sitting in the compound practising his bamboo flute. Yue saw terrible things, yet remembers the revolutionary songs with affection - and still sings them. The brothers, and their sister were involved in a performance in Tiananmen Square in front of Mao himself.
Sent out of Beijing with the military, Yue managed to avoid regular army duties by leading the marching on his flute. At 16 he won a place as flautist in an army orchestra and travelled the country playing for the soldiers.
In his early twenties, Yue left China to study at the Guildhall in London. He performs across the world and can now return to Beijing. His hutong is still there but on a recent visit he found that his house had been knocked down. So he stood on the rubble and played his flute.
In this Between the Ears, memories, music and sounds work in several ways simultaneously. Street noises and chopping prompt Yue's memories - and these prompt him to play his flutes. New performances as well as the sounds of Chinese life, Cultural Revolution songs,recordings of rallies and parades and Guo Yue's reminiscences cohere to create a memoir of his life.
Producer: Julian May
First broadcast in 2011.
Gue Yue is a master of the Chinese bamboo flute.
His father was an ehru (Chinese violin) player and from birth he was immersed in the rich soundscape of a musician's compound in old Beijing; neighbours practising traditional music; Beijing opera; as well the music the sounds of the hutong, the courtyards and alleys of old Beijing - songbirds in cages, street cries, chopping vegetables and cooking.
Yue was eight when the Cultural Revolution began.
Red guards almost killed his mother and took her away.
Yue and his 12-year-old brother Yi were left alone.
He spent his time - hoping to make his mother proud on her return - sitting in the compound practising his bamboo flute.
Yue saw terrible things, yet remembers the revolutionary songs with affection - and still sings them.
The brothers, and their sister were involved in a performance in Tiananmen Square in front of Mao himself.
Sent out of Beijing with the military, Yue managed to avoid regular army duties by leading the marching on his flute.
At 16 he won a place as flautist in an army orchestra and travelled the country playing for the soldiers.
In his early twenties, Yue left China to study at the Guildhall in London.
He performs across the world and can now return to Beijing.
His hutong is still there but on a recent visit he found that his house had been knocked down.
So he stood on the rubble and played his flute.
In this Between the Ears, memories, music and sounds work in several ways simultaneously.
Street noises and chopping prompt Yue's memories - and these prompt him to play his flutes.
New performances as well as the sounds of Chinese life, Cultural Revolution songs,recordings of rallies and parades and Guo Yue's reminiscences cohere to create a memoir of his life.
A memoir in sound by Chinese flautist Guo Yue.
|Horse||20111126||'Horse' is a new poem for radio by the Northumbrian poet Katrina porteous and the composer and electronic music pioneer Peter Zinoviev.|
It was commissioned by Radio 3 for Between the Ears, its series for innovative feature making, for the first time performed and recorded in front of a live audience, at the Free Thinking Festival in The Sage, Gateshead.
The poem is inspired by a 3,000 year old figure of a horse, cut into the chalk of a hill near Uffington, that leaps across the Oxfordshire landscape.
It is scored for two voices, the poet and the actor Steven Hawksby, and two computers, played by Zinoviev, who developed the machine that made Dalek voices possible and the synthesizer used by Pink Floyd on 'Dark Side of the Moon'.
He has also worked with Stockhausen and Harrison Birtwistle.
All the sounds used in the music are derived from recordings which Peter Zinoviev made of King Harry Ferry, which crosses the River Fal in Cornwall on huge chains.
Katrina Porteous found rhythms and word-sounds in Zinoviev's initial recordings, and he responded to these as he manipulated the recordings, so the music and words grew out of the same source.
'Horse' is a poem of many voices - performed by two.
Actor Steve Hawksby shadows the leading voice of Katrina Porteous.
There are echoes and chants, electronic and spoken, derived from Northumbrian dialect words associated with farming and metal-working.
These suggest an older language buried beneath this one, which at moments emerges out of music into speech then sinks back into music.
The piece connects the horse with its chalk landscape, which is itself a huge natural auditorium, with the sky and stars - especially the constellation we know as the Plough, of which the figure can seen as a reflection, and its Bronze Age past.
The site is associated with the legend of Wayland the Blacksmith, who gives his name to a nearby Neolithic burial cairn.
'Horse' contains the echoes and distant fires of metal-working.
Immediately beside the Uffington Horse is the hill where St George is said to have slaughtered the Dragon.
At sunset around the time of the winter solstice, a dramatic winged figure seems to emerge from the ridge of that hill, cutting across the exact spot where the horse is carved.
So the piece evokes the metamorphosis of Horse into Dragon and the ambiguity of these two figures.
The poem also chronicles the place of horses in English culture, how and why horses are still so imaginatively important.
Although the poem recalls 3,000 years of human history around the horse, it places this within the much deeper history of the chalk landscape, created millions of years ago beneath the sea.
The overall sense of 'Horse' is that these massive creative processes are still at work all around us, and also within us.
Producer: Julian May.
A poem by Katrina Porteous and composer Peter Zinoviev inspired by the Uffington Horse.
|Use It Or Lose It||20111203||Dame Harriet Walter and David Horovitch appear in Use It Or Lose It, a radiophonic play created by Peter Blegvad and Iain Chambers, charting the failing memory of a fictional GP, Charles Proctor (Peter Blegvad).|
Combining narrated fiction with observations from the world of history and culture, the programme uses radiophonic music and sound design to take us inside Charles Proctor's mind.
As Dr Proctor descends deeper into amnesia, we hear voices reflecting on memory: Walter de la Mare, Rabbi Ben Ezra, Alfred Lord Tennyson, Emily Dickinson, William Wordsworth, Luis Bunuel, Harold Pinter, Francis Galton, Rene Descartes, W.B.Yeats, and Elvis Presley.
And we encounter a new age healer, Madam Aladdin (Harriet Walter), a radical who advocates going with the disease.
She entreats Dr Proctor to join her Lamp Camp and Illumination Showroom, and embrace amnesia as a way of "extending the boundaries of the self - of becoming someone else".
Producer, Iain Chambers.
A Falling Tree production for BBC R3.
A play by Peter Blegvad and Iain Chambers charting the failing memory of a fictional GP.
|Ghost Lines||20111210||Having undergone the gruelling process of IVF and failed to sustain a pregnancy, poet Julia Copus recounts her experiences in a moving and wittily honest personal testimony and through a series of short poems exquisitely read by actress Hattie Morahan.|
The poems and prose were especially written for this Radio 3 programme.
The mood of the pieces is lyrical and poignant, celebrating the mysteries of conception while not flinching from the mechanistic and occasionally surreal business of medical intervention.
The words are accompanied by the specially created music of Jacob Shirley, composed for electric cello.
Julia Copus won the Poetry Society award for best poem in 2010.
Her first two collections were published by Bloodaxe and she has just been adopted by Faber and Faber, who are to publish her next collection.
Jacob Shirley studied composition at Trinity College of Music and is a full time composer and musician.
Produced by John Taylor
A Fiction Factory production for BBC Radio 3.
Poet Julia Copus recounts in verse and personal testimony her experience of IVF.
|Tap City||20111217||Three remarkable personal journeys are intertwined to show how New York has become the capital of a global experiment in rhythm, music and dance.|
Communicating through the language of rhythm, dancers and musicians are taking the art-form into exciting new areas.
Jason Samuels Smith is a native New Yorker, from Hell's Kitchen.
He's an Emmy award-winning dancer at the heart of the 1990s African American revival of tap dance through the infusion of hip hop beats.
Jason tells us how he pioneered a unique collaboration with renowned Indian Kathak dance master Pandit Chitresh Dash.
They've challenged each other to interpret their moves and grooves in a live show of taps versus bare feet and bells, drums, sitars and rap tunes, on an acclaimed US tour.
Roxane Butterfly, the first person to be granted a green card to work as a professional tap dancer, was brought up in France by her Romansh-Swiss father and Moroccan-born mother, she lives an itinerant existence.
Proclaimed 'the John Coltrane of Tap' by the New York Times, Roxane studied tap dance in New York with the legendary Jimmy Slyde - an inheritance she'll always treasure - although it hasn't stopped her blending jazz-tap with Moroccan DJellaba grooves and Cameroonian moves.
Max Pollak is a master of rhythm, from tapping feet to drumming to body percussion.
Born in Austria, he came to New York in the 1990s to work on a choreography with jazz bassist Ray Brown.
After meeting members of the Tito Puente band, he created RumbaTap, bringing new life to traditional Cuban folk stories and culture with his own dance style.
A bold exchange of world rhythms in the world's capital city of tap.
Three dancers describe how they are taking tap-dancing into new areas.
|Obituary Notice||20120107||20120728||Nestled in the foothills of the Appalachian mountains, three times a day local radio station WPAQ 740AM proudly broadcasts obituaries of local people. Established by Ralph Epperson in 1948, WPAQ was founded to preserve a wholesome way of life on the airwaves, broadcasting local Old Time and Gospel music, firebrand local preachers, and the daily reporting of obituary notices. Today, to an outsider it seems a morbid anachronism, yet people across the town of Mt Airy tune in on a daily basis, especially to catch news of those who have died.|
As well as exploring the Radio's archive to build a picture of this wholesome way of life over the last 60 years, local people talk about how the town has changed since the obituary reading began. From a famed and thriving industrial town making socks, farming tobacco, building furniture and mining granite, Mt Airy has witnessed the decline of the American South, and the flight of jobs from its rural areas. Almost all the industry has gone and the town is struggling to find its place in a new non-industrial economy. Those who live there are concerned about the future for the town's young people, but are full of nostalgia for the past, and love the close knit community.
Whether the daily Obituary Notices are for the local individuals who pass each day, taking with them another chapter of this part of America's unique rural history, or whether they are a collective sigh for a disappearing way of life is not clear - life in some form will go on in the American South, and WPAQ will still broadcast obituaries.
All the material for this programme was recorded in and around the town of Mt Airy, North Carolina. Drawing heavily on local field recordings, the reminiscence of local people, and the archive of WPAQ 740AM, to create an aural portrait of a community of people united by a slowly disappearing way of life.
Produced by Peter Meanwell.
Documentary about the daily obituary readings on North Carolina radio station WPAQ 740AM.
|Cowdust Time||20120114||An evocative sound portrait of Indian "cowdust time".|
Dust rises from the hooves of cattle returning to a village at sunset. Smoke from open fires wreathes in ribbons across the fields. As the evening shadows begin to lengthen, people, animals and birds all return to their homes to rest.
This time of day is known in India as "godhuli bela", or "cowdust time". It is the sacred time when Lord Krishna brought his own cattle safely home. In paintings, he is often seen meeting his beloved Radha in the evening, as peacocks call, bright green parakeets chatter loudly in the neem trees, temple bells and muezzins call people of different faiths to prayer.
There are many devotional songs and poems devoted to this twilight hour. It is seen throughout India as an auspicious time for engagements, weddings, even business ventures. But it's also the time when mothers call their children home, to avoid evil spirits. And when those same children are told not to whistle, for fear of inviting evil in.
In this hypnotic sound tapestry - recorded in Gujarat, the Kumaon hills and Madhya Pradesh - we hear cows and other animals being brought back to their village, the loud clamour of birds, the eerie noise of crickets.
"It is that fantastic time of day," says writer and academic Rajendrasingh Jadeja, "when the cowdust raised transforms the scene from stark, sharp light to a fantasy world."
That fantasy world has been captured in art, music and literature. Painter and art critic Amit Ambalal, poets Jayant Parmar and Mahek Tankarvi, and musician Sugna Shah, are among those who talk about the religious and cultural significance of twilight. We also hear the poetry, prayers, lullabies and ragas depicting this magical time "when the earth does yoga".
A sound portrait of Indian twilight, known as 'cowdust time'.
|Not Quite Cricket||20120121||In 1868, the first Australian cricket tour of England took place; the team was made up of Aboriginal men from the western plains in the state of Victoria. Based on historical documents, Not Quite Cricket tells the story from the Aboriginal team's perspective, in particular through the experience of Yanggendyinanyuk - a Wotjobaluk warrior (named Dick-a-Dick by the colonial management).|
Richard Kennedy is Yanggendyinanyuk's great great grandson, and it is through him and his family that some of the text was translated and spoken (by Richard) in the Wergaia language. This language is currently being reconstructed from 19th century sources; over 100 years of silence marks the destruction of the Wergaia peoples and their culture.
Although a punishing schedule of cricket matches was played, there were other more sinister motives for the trip.
Are the patronising racist attitudes heard in Not Quite Cricket a distant harmless memory of the 1860s, or were they inherent in the development of the pseudoscience of eugenics and its aftermath?
Richard Kennedy (Yanggendyinanyuk, Wergaia translation), Warren Foster (Aboriginal cricket team narrator), Andrew McLennan (Master of Ceremonies).
Hollis Taylor (violin), Anthony Pateras (piano), Rishin Singh (trombone, tuba), Laura Altman (clarinet, whistle), Jon Rose (violin, piano, voice).
Text written by, music composed by Jon Rose.
Additional contributions from Jane Ulman, Nick Shimmin, Corinne Vernizeau, Adam Mountford.
The 1868 Aboriginal cricket tour of England, re-imagined by Jon Rose.
|When You're Gone, You're Gone||20120128||20121117||English composer Jocelyn Pook leads a poignant and engaging piece in which she explores what happens when we die. With especially composed music and compelling recordings of local shop keepers and friends, an Irish mystic and, not least, a conversation she had with her mother, before she died last year, this programme will captivate believers and non believers to ponder.|
A feature focusing on the arts and culture.
|Invisible Cities||20120602||20130518||Inspired by Italian writer Italo Calvino's novel "Invisible Cities", on the 40th anniversary of its publication, this Between the Ears explores the hidden, fantastical and surreal stories caught between the cracks of the modern city.|
With contributions from writers, urban explorers and mapmakers we explore the imaginative possibilities held within cities, their secret folds. How does the layout of a city's streets, underground passages and the glittering spires of its skyscrapers capture our desires, our fears and our memories?
From the ghosts contained in a cavernous lost property office deep underground to the view from the top of an abandoned warehouse - what impression does the structure of a city leave on its inhabitants?
See also the Sunday Feature: Suspended in Air, which explores Italo Calvino's writing.
Produced by Eleanor McDowall
A Falling Tree Production for BBC Radio 3.
Inspired by Italian writer Italo Calvino's novel "Invisible Cities", this Between the Ears explores the hidden, fantastical and surreal stories caught between the cracks of the modern city.
|In Search Of The Balinese Scarecrow||20120609||20130525||Fire flies glimmer over the paddy fields. Water trickles through volcanic irrigation canals. On the edge of a palm tree fringed field, Balinese farmer, and composer Bapak I Dewa Arnawa stands silent under the shooting stars, listening to the frogs calling back and forth, back and forth.|
This is where he draws his inspiration.
"Just like gamelan", he says. And it was.
On the Indonesian island of Bali, music is not just entertainment; it is fully integrated into everyday life. Behind the elaborate walls of family compounds and villages, away from tourist eyes, gamelan orchestras practise daily, slit gongs, called kulkul, call the children to school, and music is offered to the Gods in every ceremony of life. Often a bewilderingly chaotic style of music for the Western ear, gamelan in context can make so much more sense.
Even the scarecrows make music here; from bamboo chimes and whirring clackers, to rusty tin cans and elaborate the plastic bag mobiles, shaken by the farmers and the wind; all to rid the valuable rice fields of the birds.
In the search for the music of scarecrows we encounter not only the natural and concrete sounds found in gamelan; the toads, birds, geckos, frogs and ducks, but also the new generation of composers and choreographers who are inspired by these sounds to create new music and dances. Farmers are still reputed to make the best composers.
Using the scarecrows, wildlife and the gamelan of Bali, "In Search of the Balinese Scarecrow" explores where the music stops and the sounds of nature begin.
Music included in the programme included compositions by Bapak I Made Arnawa, Pak Dewa Allit, and I Dewa Putu Berata, a musician, composer , and the founder of √Éudamani , one of Bali's most innovative new gamelan ensembles.
Emiko Saraswati Susilo is a dancer, singer, and musician who has been active in Balinese and Javanese arts for 25 years. She is artistic director of Gamelan Sekar Jaya, a San Franciscan based group, and associate director of Cudamani in Pengosekan, Ubud, Bali, running International Summer schools for people interested in learning gamelan.
Musical specialists advising on the programme are:
Andy Channing, the UK's foremost teacher of Balinese Gamelan
And jazz musician and composer Ray Sandoval, who is writing his doctoral thesis on Canadian composer Colin McPhee. Thanks to Emiko, Pak Dewa, all those recorded for the programme and also Gregory Ghent, D'Lo, Anjali, Ida, Danu, and all those who taught, played and were part of the Cudamani Summer School 2011
Producer: Sara Jane Hall
First broadcast in June 2012.
Music included in the programme included compositions by Bapak I Made Arnawa, Pak Dewa Allit, and I Dewa Putu Berata, a musician, composer , and the founder of √áudamani , one of Bali's most innovative new gamelan ensembles.
|The Houses That Fall Into The Sea||20120616||Lyz Turner's house, in the East Yorkshire town of Withernsea, is falling into the sea. "My house has started talking to me," she says. "It produces haunting sounds like far-off women wailing."|
This programme, combining interviews with music and the sounds of the sea, the wind, the land, the dying houses, explores how people cope with natural calamity: with anger, stoicism, distress, and art.
One winter, Ron and Judith Backhouse watched as first their fence, then their shed, and finally three trees slipped over the cliff at the bottom of their garden on a private estate above Scarborough. "The crack is running up towards our next door neighbour's house," says Ron. "It's maybe five or ten metres away from his bungalow now and we're connected to him. So if he goes, we go, too."?
Artist Kane Cunningham bought a condemned bungalow on the same estate so that he could live in it, use it as an artistic installation and document its demise. Since he moved in, the neighbouring three houses have been demolished for safety reasons, and he reckons his is next.
"You can't fight Nature," he says, "so you may as well celebrate its destructive force. Houses aren't immortal, and neither are we, despite what we may want to believe."
"As I listen to the soft wailing through the wall," says Lyz Turner, whose family have lived here for three generations, "I feel the house knows what's coming. Since Domesday there's been a dwelling where I live, and it seems all the voices of the past, whoever lived here, all the people from the lost villages under the sea, are crying for us now.".
|The Odyssey Of Eels||20120623||20130601||A moonlit night on the River Parrett; James Crowden waits with secretive netsmen for the elver run. Each spring these tiny creatures, glass eels, wriggle in their millions out of the Atlantic. No one can afford to eat elvers now; they are bought live for restocking Europe's rivers. James eavesdrops on deals struck behind vans as elvers are sold for hundreds of pounds a kilo.|
Those that elude the fishermen, scale the weirs, and escape the herons, grow to maturity in the rivers of England. A decade later, on an autumn night after rain, as silver eels, they begin their return journey to the seaweedy Sargasso sea. What happens next no one knows but no one has ever caught an eel that has spawned, so theymust breed, and die.
James Crowden, Somerset poet, traces their odyssey. Among his informants are Michael Brown of Thorney, who spent 25 years elver dealing and smoking eels. James sees the workings of a smokehouse, its design based on the brick privies European Jews found when they arrived in London's east End.
Brendan Sellick, lives near Hinkley Point Nuclear Power Station.He has been fishing for eels all his life, pushing his 'mud horse', a kind of sledge, out half a mile to the nets at low ride. He remembers glatting: hunting for eels at low tide with dogs.
Andy Don of the Environment Agency displays an ingenious eel pass, allowing the fish to pass obstacles to their migration such as flood barriers - vital as the eel population has plummeted.
At Mick's Eels, near Billingsgate, the whole mystery of jellied eels is revealed - gutting, chopping, boiling - and eating.
'The Odyssey of Eels' is full of water, mud, slime and fire. And full of voices, from west and east, and the past. Eel poems by James Crowden writhe through it. (Repeat)
Producer: Julian May
First broadcast in June 2012.
'The Odyssey of Eels' is full of water, mud, slime and fire. And full of voices, from west and east, and the past. Eel poems by James Crowden writhe through it.
|Saying Goodbye Again And Again||20120630||"Quietly I leave, as quietly as I came here."|
Each year thousands of Chinese tourists visit Cambridge, not to see the usual sites, but to pay homage to a poem they all had to learn by heart in school - Xu Zhimo's 'Saying Goodbye to Cambridge Again'. Few non-Chinese speakers will have heard of it.
"Saying Goodbye again and again" takes a sonic journey along the River Cam capturing the voices of teachers, students, tourists, punt chauffeurs, a tour guide, a translator and experts on early 20th century Chinese poetry. Also visiting Cambridge are two poets from two very different backgrounds - Sean Street and Xin Zeng - who muse on the life of Xu Zhimo and explore the hidden depths of a poem which used ideas from the English romantics to help break the strict rules of classical Chinese poetry.
Producer: Andy Cartwright
A Soundscape Production for BBC Radio 3.
|Belongings||20121124||20130713||Decisions about what possessions to keep and what to throw away can be agonising, raising fundamental questions about their true value. In Belongings we follow three people over six months as they make some painful decisions, move house and start again somewhere smaller. The outcomes are often unexpected.|
Mike and Sue need to find a bungalow so Mike, who recently had a stroke, doesn't have to cope with stairs. The belongings he desperately wants to keep, although perhaps now unnecessary, symbolise both his past fitness and his potential future happiness.
Nina is moving to a retirement flat and prides herself on a life free of attachment to material things, but over the years she has amassed a fascinating collection of possessions that hold powerful memories for her.
Patricia was a successful soprano, and now in her 80s has many boxes full of treasures from her career. She finds it hard to throw things away, they are as she says: "my life".
For many people possessions are just "stuff". The stories of Pat, Mike and Nina are interspersed with those for whom the disposal and moving of belongings is how they make their living. We hear the detached comments of auctioneers, removal men and estate agents. The intention of Belongings is to make the listener lose themselves in the lives of the downsizers, but also to make them think "what do I value most?".
|The Disequilibrium||20121201||January 2010. Nick Ryan, award-winning sound designer, composer and binaural maven, wakes dizzy, nauseous, destabilized. Despite medication and his GP's assurances, the feeling persists. Nick is working on something intricately difficult and entirely new. He's building a game-world entirely from sound through which players must navigate using only their hearing.|
'Disequilibrium' is a meditation on the nature of sound and hearing. It traces Nick's experience of his balance disorder as it morphs his world into a space nearly as alien as the one he's creating. And it explores the process of making a world out of sound and how this work is affected by, and affects, his condition.
With contributions from Cath Le Couteur, Gillian Ryan, Jeremy Corcoran, Paul Bennun, Rahul Kanegaonkar, Rachel Ritchie. The GP is played by Neil Bennun.
The music featured in the programme includes 'Brain Waves' by Mira Calix and 'As Above so below' by Nick Ryan
With special thanks to the staff of the Balance Clinic, Guys Hospital, and Mira Calix.
Disequilibrium was made by Lisa Gee and Nick Ryan and produced by Jeremy Mortimer
Nick Ryan is a composer and sound designer. He holds top industry awards in technical and creative fields for his unique approach to sound and music for film, radio and TV drama and documentary, interactive media, animation and orchestral composition. In 2004 he received a BAFTA for 'The Dark House', a groundbreaking interactive radio drama that he devised and scored, broadcast live on BBC Radio 4 in September 2003.
Lisa Gee wrote Stage Mum (Arrow 2009, Hutchinson 2008), Friends: Why Men and Women are From the Same Planet (Bloomsbury 2004) and edited Bricks Without Mortar: the selected poems of Hartley Coleridge (Picador 2000). She writes, edits and creates video content about books, music and other cultural stuff for a variety of print and online outlets. She has trained as a sound engineer.
|The Art And Craft Of Approaching Your Head Of Department To Submit A Request For A Raise||20121208||All office workers will have pondered how to ask for a raise but it took Georges Perec, in league with a computer programmer, to come up with a flowchart (later an amusing novella) on the precise method.|
Paris-based sound artist Dinah Bird records some peculiarities of ultra-hierarchal French office life and composes her version of Perec's process which at times has shades of comedian Jacques Tati's film Playtime.
Translation: David Bellos
Narrator: Alain Mayor
Mix: Jean-Philippe Renoult
Producer: Dinah Bird.
|My Life In The Ghosts Of Bush||20121229||Bush House, once the buzzing home of the BBC World Service, now stands empty and silent, stripped of fixtures and fittings. Shortly before the building was handed back to its landlords, Between the Ears invited former Bush House broadcasters to revisit their offices and studios, for a final glimpse at significant spaces in their lives.|
Yuri Goligorsky, formerly of the Russian Service, returns to the site of the Bush House dormitory, where night-shift presenters were offered a bed - although Yuri found the snoring unbearable. He also remembers one of the landmark programmes he produced - a phone-in with Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, broadcast live to the Soviet Union.
Hamid Ismailov takes one last look at the small office where he was once the first and - at that time - only Uzbek in the building, and Michael Goldfarb recalls the unique sound-world of the building, with its many languages, signature tunes, and hardened smokers.
Between the Ears also hears Bush House memories from correspondent Mark Tully, Irini Roumboglou of the Greek Service, which was closed in 2005, and Najiba Kasraee, once of the Pashto Service. Bush House studio manager Robin Warren reveals how he captured and mixed the sounds of the building's marble stairwells, and composer and musician Matthew Herbert, now director of the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, reflects on Bush's unique sound world - and why it's vital to record it.
Producer John Goudie.
|The Scalpel And The Bow||20130112||Musicians and surgeons seem worlds apart. But are they really? This feature explores the similarities between them by using cutting-edge simulation developed by two professors in a unique collaboration between music and surgery. The pressures of the operating theatre and concert hall are recreated so we can share what it feels like as the abstract inner world of the musician and surgeon are explored in tandem.|
The challenges they face become apparent as we follow cellists undertaking a simulated concert with their string quartets and at the same time surgeons going through a simulated vascular procedure. A collaboration between Roger Kneebone, Professor of Surgical Education in the Department of Surgery and Cancer at Imperial College London and Aaron Williamon, Professor of Performance Science at the Royal College of Music in London.
The simulated environments have been recorded binaurally from the point of view of each surgeon and cellist so wearing headphones will enhance your experience.
Surgeons and Performers:
Primary surgeons: Dominic P. J. Howard, Alexandra Cope and Yousuf Salmasi.
The patient is played by Norma Jones.
Other members of the surgical team: Dr Aynkaran Dharmarajah (consultant anaesthetist), Kathy Nicholson (scrub nurse), Lilli Cooper, Kat Ford and Howard Tribe (surgical assistants), Alexander Harris (clinical research fellow) and Zinah Sorefan (research technician).
Cellists: Jane Lindsay, George Ross and Linden Ralph.
Other members of the string quartets: Agata Darashkaite, Brigid Coleridge, Christine Anderson, Magdalena Loth-Hill, Louisa Tatlow, Itamar Rashkovsky, Sarah Baldwin and Elijah Spies.
Bioharness readings were taken by Lisa Aufegger.
The sound designer and producer was Lucinda Mason Brown and executive producer Karen Rose.
A Goldhawk Essential production for BBC Radio 3.
|Space Ham||20130119||Sound artist Caroline Devine sends Between the Ears into orbit in this celebration of amateur radio and space exploration|
Since the dawn of the Space Age, amateur "ham" radio has eavesdropped on our exploration of the cosmos. From Sputnik to the International Space Station, radio enthusiasts with homemade kit have been able tune into the distant sounds of space and talk to those exploring it. Caroline Devine, found space-sound artist, creates a composition from the ethereal sounds of space and the space hams and sends Between the Ears into orbit.
Owen K. Garriott reveals why he was the first astronaut to take amateur radio into space, opening up, for the very first time, the channels of communication with ordinary people back on Earth, a tradition still maintained on the International Space Station to this day.
And we hear newly released archive of US radio ham Roy Welch, who immediately after Sputnik's launch rigged up a makeshift station, looking up to the night sky as the satellite's eerie beat found voice in his ramshackle equipment.
Radio brought us Neil Armstrong's first transmission from the Moon and afforded ham operator, Larry Baysinger, the chance to intercept the radio transmissions between the astronauts. His recordings include the moment President Nixon transmitted his message of congratulations to them.
Interwoven with these are Caroline Devine's artful reworking of other cosmic sounds picked up by ham receivers from across the world to create an ethereal and magical journey, a momentary re-ignition of the childlike wonder of space.
Producer: Rose de Larrabeiti
Space Ham is a Whistledown Production for BBC Radio 3.
|Mighty Beast||20130126||20140720||Sean Borodale's long poem, Mighty Beast, was created using interviews, a range of voices and overheard conversations he gathered from many visits to cattle markets in towns across Somerset, where he lives. This radio documentary version is told in the voice of the auctioneer: a brilliant, shifting stream of patter that is by turns harsh, lyrical, cajoling, admonitory and consoling. Through this tour de force of poetic writing come the real voices of some of the people who inspired the poem, men whose memories are of the gradual gaining of skills and experience, of childhoods spent in a landscape that has changed beyong retrieval, and the deep love for the animals who provide their livelihood. These voices, real and imagined, are given a rich and lyrical soundscape created by composer Elizabeth Purnell.|
The auctioneer is played by Christopher Bianchi
The poem is written by Sean Borodale
The soundscape is created by Elizabeth Purnell
The Producer is Sara Davies.
|A Is For Aardvark||20130202||A for Alan Dein begins at the beginning with a nation of Aardvarks encountering those who come first in the directory. The first name in any trade directory for over a century has been Aardvark. It's the first word in the dictionary after A - the name for what the South African Africans call an Earth Pig, because of its burrowing habits.|
Alan Dein is astonished by the Aardvarks in directory-land. Turn to or click on the first page, and it begins: Aardvark Archery, Aardvark travel (proprietor: Aaron Aardvark), Aardvark renewable energy, the Aardvark Pub, Aardvark mobile disco, Aardvark Tea Rooms, Aardvark Ceilidh band. Just who are all these Aardvarks, and what makes them really believe that they should be pulled out of the hat first? Dein interviews our nation's Aardvarks, and at the same time ponders the real, amazing Aardvark, with its stout body, arched back sparsely covered with coarse hairs, with its greatly elongated head and short thick neck and huge ears. Why would any business want to be named after a creature that not only looks like that, but has a long thin snakelike protruding tongue that is capable of grasping tens of thousands of termites or ants in a day?
Producer Mark Burman.
|Sebald's Apocalyptic Vision||20130608||20140412||This Between the Ears offers an insight into one of the strangest and most original writers of the 20th Century, W. G. Sebald.|
Polymathic and profound, the intricacies of Sebald's writing cannot be summarised or explained. But this programme hopes to explore a few of the themes that most preoccupied Sebald in his life and writing: in particular, memory, history and landscape.
A voluntary emigrant from Germany to England, Sebald settled in East Anglia in 1970. The Rings of Saturn, a book first published in German in 1995, recounts a long walk down the coast, from Somerleyton to Orford. The narrator is a man who seems to be partly based on Sebald himself.
Last year, the acclaimed theatre director Katie Mitchell put The Rings of Saturn or Die Ringe des Saturn on stage - not in England but in Cologne, Germany.
This programme follows her as she takes her German actors to East Anglia to experience at first-hand the landscape in which Sebald was writing and walking. They explore a coastline, which - as Sebald was acutely aware - looks out towards Germany, across what used to be known until the late 19th century as "the German Ocean".
The trip along the coast precipitates the actors' personal reflections and memories of their grandparents' generation during the Second World War and the way the history of that time has been handed down to them.
The programme introduces The Rings of Saturn through beautiful readings by the actor Stephen Dillane, interspersed with music by composer Paul Clark, and sounds recorded on the Suffolk coastline; but it also shows Sebald's contemporary importance in a world in which the significance of history, time and place can so easily be dismissed.
First broadcast in June 2013.
|It's Just Where I Put My Words: A Voice Remembered||20130615||Sebastiane Hegarty explores voice, recording and memory in a sound portrait of his mother.|
The artist Sebastiane Hegarty explores voice, recording and memory in a sound portrait of his mother, who died in 2011. For more than four decades, Sebastiane made tapes of their time together, from a coin operated record booth in Liverpool in the late 1960s to their final recorded conversation in a care home. His mother became an essential part of his sound field, a voice and character woven into his work. This programme is a new piece, a journey with a voice through selected recordings and sound pieces. And, as he goes through his audio snapshots, Sebastiane turns to Camera Lucida, Roland Barthes' final book, in which the author contemplates photographs of his recently deceased mother. Failing to find "the truth of the face I had loved", Barthes ends up questioning the ability of photographs to "speak". But in his recordings, Sebastiane suggests, he does find his mother, her essence, in "the hesitations, inflections, stutters and errors."
Producer: Chris Ledgard.
|Time Travelling In Italy - Finding My Religion||20130629||20140927||In 1979, in the Italian Alps, a fledgling community of 28 people (calling themselves Damanhur) began secretly digging into a mountain at night. Their purpose: to build the world's largest underground temple, the equivalent in size to St Paul's Cathedral. Thirty years on, the 'Temples of Humankind' continue to grow. Despite being described as the Eighth Wonder of the World, this is not the most interesting thing about Damanhur.|
Now a thousand-strong eco-community, Damanhur also claims to have conquered time travel, taught plants to sing, visited Atlantis and saved the planet from destruction. Its residents take part in bizarre rituals and regularly work throughout the night in service to the group, yet many still hold down highly-paid professional jobs in the outside world.
Is it another case of a deluded cult or has Damanhur achieved something remarkable in the cynical 21st century?
Sony Award winning presenter and musician David Bramwell (Between the Ears: "The Haunted Moustache") takes a sound journey through the community, deep into the bowels of its temple, where the Time Machine has been created, listens to a jazz singer improvise with a musical plant, and has a lesson in esoteric physics.
He also attempts to unravel Damanhur's history and purpose, challenging some of its unfeasible claims through conversations with its residents, and attempts to become a Time Traveller himself.
Producer: Sara Jane Hall
Presenter: David Bramwell
First broadcast in June 2013.
A time machine in the world's biggest underground temples?The secrets of Damanhur revealed
In 1979, in the Italian Alps, a fledgling community of twenty-eight people (calling themselves Damanhur) began secretly digging into a mountain at night. Their purpose: to build the world's largest underground temple, the equivalent in size to St Paul's Cathedral. Thirty years on, the 'Temples of Humankind' continue to grow. Despite being described as the 8th Wonder of the World, this is not the most interesting thing about Damanhur.
|A Song Of Bricks And Mortar||20130706||20150214 (R3)||Nina Perry's composed feature A Song of Bricks and Mortar explores composition, the creative process and the art of making. It takes its inspiration from this quote by Benjamin Britten:|
"Composing is like driving down a foggy road toward a house. Slowly you see more details of the house - the colour of the slates and bricks, the shape of the windows. The notes are the bricks and the mortar of the house."
Via a compositional road trip, artists in the process of creating and making give insight into their own personal creative process, and what drives them to create. Like a play within a play or a documentary that documents itself - this feature dips its toe into the infinite and timeless nature of artistic creativity as an integral part of being human.
The fear of new beginnings, the pleasure of being in flow, moments of illumination, and of being lost; the artists' relationship with the environment and their own interior landscapes are revealed by Sculptor Helaine Blumenfeld, Art Student Imran Perretta, Composer Cheryl Frances-Hoad, Choreographer and Artistic Director of Rambert Dance Company, Mark Baldwin; and a group of people with Dementia and memory problems at a Creative Arts Session run by the Arts development company Verd de gris.
Their insights are woven together with a metaphorical motorbike journey performed by violinist Oli Langford and a soundscape of specially composed music.
First broadcast 06/07/2013.
feature in which artists give insight into their own personal creative process.
|Sound Of Cinema: Return Of The Monster From The Id||20130921||In 1956 Louis and Bebe Barron birthed the world's first electronic film score with their unearthly soundtrack to M.G.M.'s Forbidden Planet. Ken Hollings considers their act of creation and wonders if the Monster from the Id can ever be re-awakened?|
Forbidden Planet was M.G.M.'s lavish leap into science fiction. Fusing Shakespeare's Tempest, pop Freud and pulp SF. Fleetingly Hollywood and the electronic avant-garde embraced to make unworldly music inspired by the new science of cybernetics. The Barrons were close associates of John Cage and at the cutting edge of new technology and music. Their "electronic tonalities", as credited on screen in deference to an anxious musicians union, were groundbreaking for both experimental music film scoring.
In the cramped space of their Greenwich village apartment the Barron's poured current through home made circuits made up of valves, oscillators and wires. Music, sound effects and character were all arrived at by wiring, art and sweat. The roaring Monster from the Id, the bubbling sounds of Planet Altair IV and the vast caverns of glowing, ancient Krell technology. Even the Krell music, anthem to a long dead race of technologically advanced beings.
Audiences and filmmakers were startled by this great musical experiment. It remains one of the most perfect fusions of film and music, defining the way we thought the future would sound. In rare recordings Bebe and Louis Barron relate their adventures in sound. Meanwhile, somewhere near Stoke, Ken Hollings challenges music boffin Phil Taylor to a hardwired search for the secrets of Krell music and the electronic heartbeat of the Monster from the Id.
Producer: Mark Burman.
|Re:union||20140111||The idea of a nation coming into being: in the track and weave of an oval ball. Owen Sheers' new sound poem explores the complex, often difficult relationship between rugby and modern Welsh identity.|
"Re: Union" fuses the violent, lyrical soundscape of Welsh rugby and its culture with a meditation on the social, historical and cultural signifiers of the national sport.
As a young player makes the physical and psychological journey from the training pitch to the stadium on matchday, he experiences his country 'coming into being' - and the deep-rooted, deeply knotted threads that have taken him to the brink of his first Welsh cap.
Voiced by Scott Arthur, and featuring contributions from Peter Stead, Ceri Wyn Jones and Martin Johnes.
|Play And Record||20140118||Poet Paul Farley imagines himself a sound-recordist taping the Garden of Eden and recalls the impoverished soundscape of his childhood. Growing on the edge of Liverpool in the 1960s and given a simple cassette recorder for a birthday present he went in search of the sounds of the superbs inspired by the bird song records he borrowed from his local library. He pressed play and record on his Panasonic and eavesdropped on... What? Not a lot, as it turned out. Instead his imagination went to work: the sound recordist's field notes from the Trojan War, during the Irish Potato Famine, lodged in the trenches of the First World War.... A radio poem with found, remembered and dreamt sounds.|
Producer: Tim Dee
|Chinoiserie||20140125||A radiophonic drama by Peter Blegvad and Iain Chambers.|
"A character can be true without being real, don't you think?"
John, an exiled Chinese novelist, meets an American author struggling with a commission about a shape-shifting princess. Their ideas fuse, and as Princess Xu-Feng takes form, mind-altering events occur. We travel inside the minds of the characters, hearing their thoughts and their words, revealing the gap between fantasy and reality.
Chinoiserie explores the true price we pay for speaking the truth. We rule our lives by what we think is real, by what we decide is true. This drama asks whether we're deceiving ourselves.
Chinoiserie follows Peter Blegvad and Iain Chambers' previous drama for Between The Ears, Use It Or Lose It, which won a Sony Radio Award and Prix Europa special commendation in 2012.
An Open Audio production for BBC Radio 3.
|How Was Your Day Joe?||20140607||Joe is home from school.|
"How was your day Joe?" asks his mum Emma (the producer of the programme).
But Joe, and many like him on the autistic spectrum, can't always find the words to summarise their day, or even make sense of the question. Yet later on, they may come round to offering an answer. So what is happening as they struggle to process what is being asked of them?
Through sound and interview, Joe and Emma explore where he and others on the autistic spectrum go to in their minds between the question and a possible answer.
Emma finds out that part of Joe's resistance to giving an answer may come from the fact that he's exhausted just from the effort of processing the transition between school and home. Whereas so-called "neurotypical" people find it easy to make sense of the different settings and can see them in a wider context, people with autism often focus on every tiny detail and find it difficult to filter information. So a short walk up the path to the house may be crammed with observations of every blade of grass, or a struggle to understand why some things have changed since they left- the window being open for instance when it wasn't before.
And the question itself - "How was your day?" Which part of the day? Does Mummy mean "today" or yesterday? Is it the right question to be asking at all?
Emma and Joe hear testimony from others on the autistic spectrum, including the writers Wendy Lawson, Michael Barton and the poet Nicole Nicholson. There are also contributions from Professor Simon Baron-Cohen (Director of the Autism Research Centre at Cambridge University), clinical psychologist Andrew McDonnell, speech therapist Robert Bell and Delia Barton, Michael's mother.
Producer: Emma Kingsley.
|Dear Mr Eliot: When Groucho Met Tom||20140614||20150523 (R3)||Lenny Henry stars in a musical fantasy written by Jakko M Jakszyk and Lenny Henry, woven round the real-life 1964 dinner encounter between the greatest poet in the English language of the twentieth century, TS Eliot and the legendary star of A Night at the Opera, Duck Soup and Horse Feathers, Groucho Marx.|
Almost exactly fifty years after the meeting in early June 1964, Radio 3's adventurous feature series Between the Ears brings the moment to life with the aid of Groucho Marx and TS Eliot's exchange of letters. They'd been pen-pals since 1961, had swapped signed photographs - Eliot particular that Groucho send him a cigar-toting portrait - and compared lifestories. Eliot hung his Groucho picture between his portraits of WB Yeats and French poet Paul Valery - a place of great honour, according to Craig Raine, celebrated poet himself and biographer of Eliot, who also appears in the programme.
With Lenny Henry taking the role of Groucho, Jakko Jakszyk has woven a delicate vocal and instrumental score around the letters, while he and Lenny together speculate about the nature of the men's seemlingly unlikely passion for each other's work.
After a number of failed arrangements, in June 1964, a car arrives at the Savoy to collect Groucho and his wife to take them the short distance to Eliot's home for the much-awaited dinner. Yet such is the nature of celebrity that when Groucho quoted lines from Eliot's The Wasteland back to him, he was uninterested, and Groucho, in turn, was unable to recall the scene from Duck Soup that Eliot particularly loved. They parted, disappointed and a little dejected. Yet, nine months later, on learning of the poet's death, Marx wrote: "he was a nice man, the best epitaph any man can have...".
Lenny Henry stars in a musical fantasy by Jakko M Jakszyk, woven round the real-life 1964 dinner encounter between the greatest poet in the English language of the twentieth century, TS Eliot and the legendary star of A Night at the Opera, Duck Soup and Horse Feathers, Groucho Marx.
|Sky Boy||20140621||This Between the Ears is a flight simulation in sound that takes off with trapeze artist, Matt Costain. A portrait of life divided between reality and wild fantasy, which soars through the subconscious; to dreamlike spaces where anything is possible.|
Dreams may represent that which is beyond our physical limitations. In our subconscious mind, we can be anybody and do anything. We feel undefeatable and nobody can tell us what we cannot do and accomplish.
In reality, we do not have the ability to fly. Or do we?
"I suppose it's the flip side of being real, it's about flying in the face of reality and saying ha! See? See what I can do? See what we can do? See what can be done? Not just physically here, but as metaphor, as life statement as joie de vivre, as life."
With contributions from Adi Andrei, Hitomi Sakamoto, Evelyn Quek and Matt Costain.
Produced by Hana Walker-Brown
A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 3.
|Music In The Great War: Wilfred Owen - The Soldiers' Poet||20140628||Wilfred Owen wrote that he was a 'poets' poet'. He also wrote, in the preface to 'War Poems', 'Above all I am not concerned with Poetry. My subject is War, and the pity of War'. Owen is, then, a soldiers' poet, and the people who figure in his poems are all soldiers. In this Between the Ears, soldiers, all serving when they were recorded, choose a Wilfred Owen poem, explain why, read it and speak about the impact it has on them.|
They range from Barbara Ennis, a corporal, who chooses 'Dulce Et Decorum Est' because Owen's description of a gas attack matched her own experience, to General Sir Richard Dannatt, who was the Chief of the General Staff. He considers the worst fate that can befall a soldier - going mad. David Hamilton joined up as a boy, Justin Featherstone fought as a second lieutenant, Owen's rank, and one was awarded, like the poet, the Military Cross.
They reflect on killing, on boredom, the covenant between soldiers and the society they serve - and the civilian population's lack of understanding. 'The Soldiers' Poet', first broadcast in 2006, was an early catalyst to the debate about this that continues to this day. These are what Wilfred Owen's poems, written a lifetime ago, address. They speak to today's soldiers, whose readings of the poems have arresting immediacy.
Soldiers get to the point, make it quickly and move on. This, their poetry programme, cracks along, reflecting their brisk clarity. There is no presentation, just essential information - who the soldiers are and where they have served - the equivalent of giving name, rank and number.
Producer: Julian May
|Skylarking||20140705||Cathy FitzGerald meets a prisoner and a paraglider in this airy daydream about the delights of looking up at a big blue sky. Includes cameos from levitating yogis, labradors with wings and freewheeling angels, plus a specially composed score by Joe Acheson and the Hidden Orchestra.|
Please note Skylarking is a lawn-based, horizontal radio feature best experienced from the comfort of a picnic blanket with a long drink, a soft pillow and a view of the sky.
This episode of Between the Ears was produced by Cathy FitzGerald and Matt Thompson. Original music and sound design by Joe Acheson (Hidden Orchestra), featuring clarinettist Tomas Dvorak and cellist Su-a Lee.
Skylarking is a Rockethouse Production for BBC Radio 3.
|Eschatology||20140920||A live radiophonic drama about the end of the world, witnessed from a liner adrift on a deserted ocean. Written and narrated by Peter Blegvad, Eschatology is a poetic exploration of the end of everything: of land where we take to ships, of radio contact when white noise fills the receiver; of individual sounds as they echo into space. Presented live from Broadcasting House, music and sound effects are composed and performed by Langham Research Centre, using vintage electronic instruments and tape machines. The last survivors are played by Harriet Walters and Guy Paul. Susan Rae delivers updates on the apocalypse as it spreads around the planet. Eschatology is a contemplative piece that encourages us to calmly consider how it would feel to witness the end of the world.|
An Open Audio production for BBC Radio 3.
|More Than A Desert||20141004||Twenty years after the death of the iconic filmmaker Derek Jarman, the poet Kate Tempest - only a child when Jarman died - creates a new radio poem on the Kent beach where he lived. Tempest has been shortlisted for this year's Mercury-prize and was named in September as one of the Next Generation poets.|
Crunching across the shingle of Britain's only desert, poet and playwright Kate Tempest's words are buffeted by relentless wind of Dungeness. Home to two lighthouses, two nuclear power stations, abundant wildlife, and to Prospect Cottage.
Here iconic British filmmaker Derek Jarman spent the last years of his life building his garden, writing diaries, inscribing the words of John Donne on the wall of his cottage. Here the wind whips across the flat, barren shingle, around the fisherman's cottages, out to the open sea where rolling waves meet a vast sky.
Recorded entirely on location in Dungeness, at Jarman's desk and out in the elements, Kate Tempest weaves the words and thoughts of local families and fishermen with rich soundscapes, both natural and man made. Amidst the quietest sounds of the sanctuary of Prospect Cottage, to the roaring innards of the power station, Tempest crafts vivid new verse, at once intimate and elemental, mapping Dungeness anew.
Features music recorded on the beach by musician Alexander Tucker, and Keith Collins reading from Derek Jarman's "Modern Nature". Includes field recordings from the RSPB nature reserve and inside Dungeness B Nuclear Power Station.
Producer, Peter Meanwell
An Open Audio production for BBC Radio 3.
|Coma Songs||20141011||A meditation on the cultural representation of comas through music, poetry and interviews with the families of people who have a suffered brain injury.|
There are several thousand people in vegetative or minimally conscious states in the UK and, as medical interventions to save the body improve, numbers are growing. 'What is it like being in such as state?', 'Is she in there?', 'Does he recognize me?' 'What should I do for the best?' 'Is this a meaningful existence, or a state worse than death?' These are the questions that haunt families. Using new research from the York-Cardiff Chronic Disorders of Consciousness Research Centre, this programme asks the inevitable question of whether one would choose to die rather than live in such a state, trapped in a 'fate worse than death'. Not dead, but perhaps not fully alive either.
Family members talk with stark honesty about what it is like to have a relative in a coma-like state, unable to speak or do anything for themselves, year after year; their feelings at the bedside and their thoughts about the heart-breaking dilemmas they face. Using words, sounds, music and poetry, the programme explores the surreal and extraordinary situation created by modern medicine's ability to save the body, but not to restore the brain.
Produced by Llinos Jones and Professor Jenny Kitzinger. This is a Terrier Productions Ltd programme for BBC Radio 3.
Illustration: "Wordless" (detail) by Tim Sanders.
|The 21-gun Salute Suit||20150207||A funny and moving autobiographical documentary about one of Britain's most brilliant performance poets, John Cooper Clarke; a revealing look at John's relationship with clothes, monkeys and fatherhood. John takes us to a gig, a Savile Row tailors and a journey into his mind exploring his relationship with clothes from childhood to present day, and culminating in his feelings of paternal love.|
Produced by Pauline Harris
John has a massive cult following, he performs now to packed audiences. Tall and thin with a mess of black hair, black sunglasses, drainpipe trousers and cuban-heeled boots: John has made a multitude of recent UK and Irish festival appearances. He also tours throughout Europe and Australasia. Some of his poems are now in the GCSE syllabus. He is studied by many A level students and his poetry is prolific within UK and Irish University courses, all ensuring that he will be forever ingrained in the psyche of Britain's new youth.
|The Simpson Ferrograph||20150221||Early in 2013 record producer Dan Carey bought a vintage tape machine at a charity shop in Streatham, South London. The Ferrograph recorder came with a box of 7-inch tapes containing an audio documentation of the previous owner's social life as a young man in the 1950s at a time when reel to reel tape recorders were state of the art audio technology. Among the recordings was a poetry reading event featuring an unusual selection of texts, from obscure comic verse to sections from the King James Bible and a Ministry of Transport pedestrian advice leaflet. Alan Dein goes in search of the recordist Barrie Simpson and surviving members of his circle, in this evocative and poignant story of suburban life and the Baptist church in South London over half a century ago.|
|Deliverance||20150228||Poet Lemn Sissay collaborates with sound artists Francesca Panetta and Lucy Greenwell to create a new radio poem around the audio diaries of five women in their final days of pregnancy.|
Armed with audio recorders Diptee, Olya, Lynda, Sally and Nikki tape their journey: from shopping trips for disposable knickers and maternity towels, to the moment they wonder whether it's started, whether this is it... to the peak of their labours. Deliverance bravely bares all from pregnancy to birth, and Lemn's dialogue with the women reveals how, through the process, not only is a new child born but a new woman.
Lemn was without his birth family until he was 21. Since then he can count on two hands the number of times he's met his mother. He realizes that the nine months he spent in her womb are the only time they were truly connected. Yet only his mother has the memory of it.
Pregnancy's ordinary, yet mysterious. The inner workings of a pregnant woman's mind and body are veiled, private. Yet five women nearing childbirth from as far afield as Russia, Bangladesh and Manchester reveal what many are too fearful to admit to.
We hear Nikki, a surrogate mother determined not to bond with her baby. Sally weeps quietly in fear at 4am; Olya, just 25, considers which country to bring her child up in. And Lynda worries about losing the bond with her toddler Joe, as she reads to him in bed for the last time before the new baby arrives.
|School For Harmonicas||20150307||Imagine a town of harmonica players; sounds a bit surreal?|
Now 'Between the Ears' gives listeners a chance to hear the harmonica as a truly virtuoso instrument, always an instrument of the people - portable, affordable and playable. Acclaimed poet Kim Addonizio turns harmonica student, heading to blues school with pen, mouth, and a stack of harps at the ready, in search of the sweetest sounds.
Trossingen in Germany may be the world capital of harmonicas. Every street echoes to the sound of the harp, and even the downtown hotel is part of the old Hohner Factory. This is where you will find the true aficionados, the hard-core addicts, who come to have lessons with the top players.
Kim learns riffs from the world's top 'harp' teachers, Dave Barrett, Steve Baker and Joe Filisko - who customizes harps for such as Neil Young, blues great Kim Wilson, and jazz phenomenon Howard Levy, and who she wants to persuade to accompany her on his magical harp.
She also dreams of being the first woman to jam on stage at the Blues conference... so will her dreams become reality?
Producer: Sara Jane Hall.
|Into The Valley||20150321||Monument Valley, which straddles the state lines of Arizona & Utah, is a place most of us have seen & never visited or listened to. The 'true West' of John Ford movies and endless car adverts. Mark Burman takes his microphone through the red dust of history with Navajo guide Larry Y. Holiday. Chased by the storm clouds and lightning, theirs is a trip through nature's own movie set.|
At the turn of the 20th Century very few outsiders had penetrated its mysterious spaces. Spanish priests, American soldiers and silver hungry prospectors had vied with warring Ute and Navajo Indians amidst the red rock. Then came isolated trading posts and the first flourishings of tourism in the 1920's. American's eager to 'discover' what was still a largely blank space on the map but was firmly part of the Navajo Nation, who had returned to their land of rock and sand after defeat and exile.
Exactly 60 years ago a teenage Pippa Scott made what was then an arduous journey to act in John Ford's The Searchers. In 1955 it was a remote and inaccessible place. No running water, power or telephones but it offered a towering landscape of eroded rock like no other. An ancient place , still home to a small community of Navajo's who eke out a living in a place of deep spiritual significance to them and exercising a powerful pull on all our imaginations via the words of writers like Zane Grey & Willa Cather & the films of John Ford. Lose yourself in the swirling dust.
|Mr Rainbow||20150516||Gregory has a decent job and a sort-of girlfriend, but he lives at home with his Dad. When an alarming physical condition leaves him incapacitated he takes advice from a series of self-help experts: a life coach, a GP, a healer and a dating expert.|
Mr Rainbow fuses elements of drama with real voices and is inspired by The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka. Part of Radio 3's series "In the Shadow of Kafka" exploring the enduring power of the writer's work.
Written by Sebastian Baczkiewicz
Gregory - Tom Bennett
Producer/director, Joby Waldman
Executive producer, Polly Thomas
A Somethin Else production for BBC Radio 3
The season includes:
Sunday Feature, The Prophet of Prague, Sun 10th May 1845
Drama on 3, The Process, Mark Ravenhill's adaptation of The Trial, Sun 10th May 2200
The Essay, Encounters with Kafka by five contemporary writers, Mon-Fri 2245
Jazz on 3: A session from British quartet Blue Eyed Hawk inspired by Kafka's short stories. Mon 11th May 2300
Between The Ears, Mr Rainbow, a drama documentary inspired by Kafka's The Metamorphosis, Sat 16th May 2130.
|The Scrapbook: Memoirs Of A Forensic Investigator||20150530||Jack Sturiano is no stranger to death.|
Originally from the USA, Jack served in the Vietnam War as a medic, treating soldiers and Vietnamese villagers alike, sometimes under enemy fire. After the war he became a Forensic Investigator. The FI is called out to fatal accidents, suicides and any unexplained death to pronounce the victim dead and to check there is nothing suspicious. Jack calls himself a modern day Charon and has witnessed thousands of scenes of tragedy, or stupidity, or plain bad luck.
Many times when driving to an accident late at night Jack would play a CD of his favourite movie, Taxi Driver, which starred Robert De Niro as a Vietnam Veteran who didn't adjust particularly well to life after the war.
Jack got fed up living in the USA and now lives in Ypres, Belgium. Producer Matt Thompson travelled to Ypres to record Jack and a selection of his self-published stories for 'The Empath'.
What is a life like spent in the company of the dead?
|Wake Up Baby||20150606||A baby sleeps.|
A man in another room watches her on a screen.
Her loving father?
This man does not know this baby. He's in another country, thousands of miles away. And, each night, he watches a different baby.
Wake Up, Baby! is an atmospheric journey into the sometimes unsettling world of "reassuring" technology.
The media storm that surrounded the 1932 'baby Lindbergh kidnap', and the subsequent trial, planted the fear of child abduction into the public imagination. In 1937, Zenith produced the Radio Nurse, the world's first baby monitor, designed to fit well into an elegant sitting room, with a transmitting unit in baby's nursery.
The Radio Nurse was a tiny private radio station, casting baby's cries onto the electromagnetic seas. To feel the presence of baby in whichever room you occupied while she stayed safe in the nursery was a kind of magic - wonderfully reassuring to a couple in their big house. But it was prone to interference. You might hear things other than baby: a police radio, a pilot preparing to land, or even someone else's baby, picked up from a similar device nearby.
The problem of stray interference went away in the digital age. The baby monitor, now with pictures as well as sound, became wi-fi-enabled. In recent years, there have been several well-reported cases of devices being hacked. A couple in Ohio heard "Wake up, baby. Wake Up, baby! screaming from their baby's monitor. Someone had taken control of the wi-fi device across the internet.
With contributions from:
Dakin Hart, senior curator, Noguchi Museum, New York
Ashley Stanley, victim of widely-reported webcam hack in Texas
Renate Samson, Chief Executive, Big Brother Watch
Produced by Peregrine Andrews.
A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 3.
|Bee Journal||20150613||Sean Borodale's intimate poem sequence was written as a series of field notes over two years in Somerset. His reflective, passionate chronicle of beekeeping, of the changing seasons and the alchemy of the hive is also an account of the creative act of writing and the alchemy of composition.|
The poems are set to the soundscape of the human hive: the mechanised city, with its pulses of human construction and communication, its humming motifs of social movement and the isolated sounds of the single cells within it.
At the heart of the sequence, in the heart of the hive, is the queen bee - voiced by champion beatboxer Bellatrix.
The soundtrack is compiled from wildtrack and recordings from cities around the world, and includes music by Elizabeth Purnell and Neil Sorrell.
Sean Borodale is one of 2014's Next Generation Poets. He is currently Creative Fellow at Trinity College, Cambridge. His second collection, Human Work: A Poet's Cookbook, is newly published.
He was selected as a Granta New Poet in 2012, and Bee Journal was shortlisted for the TS Eliot Prize and the Costa Book Award in 2013. Mighty Beast, his documentary poem for Radio 3 (also produced by Sara Davies), won the Radio Academy Gold Award in 2014 for Best Feature or Documentary.
A Cast Iron Radio Production for BBC Radio 3.