Episodes

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Anita Sullivan - The Bee Maker20170812 (BBC7)

In the year 2020 the bees are nearly all gone. And human beings might be next.

By Anita Sullivan

It's 2020 and the bees are nearly all gone. Human beings might be next.

Robotics expert, Deborah, builds artificial bees in order to help pollinate fruit trees across the world - real bees having been driven to the brink of extinction. But then a strange phenomenon strikes mankind - people start getting lost. It happens slowly, people lose their way, forget where they are. But before long society starts to crumble.

Deborah must fight her way across an apocalyptic Britain and find her way back home. But first she must remember where that is.

A dark and cautionary tale about our busy technology-filled lives.

Directed by James Robinson
A BBC Cymru Wales Production.

Billions2013061720140211
20140614 (BBC7)
20140615 (BBC7)

by Ed Harris

One of three plays nominated as Best Single Drama at the BBC Audio Drama Awards 2014.

Mark's wife Donna has an accident and ends up in a life-threatening coma. But when he comes home from hospital, Donna is in the kitchen. Not Donna, in fact, but a near-perfect replica provided by her insurance company.

Award-winning writer Ed Harris tells a wickedly twisted tale of love - and adjustments.

Producer/Director... Jonquil Panting.

One of a season of dramas exploring contemporary takes on future dystopias.

Mark discovers his wife has been replaced by a replica, in Ed Harris's twisted love story.

Body Tourists20190604

It's 2045 and scientists have found a way to store memory and personality digitally after death - inserting a chip into other living bodies. The procedure is still at the trial stage.

The drama follows consultant Luke Butler and the experiences of the first volunteer bodies - the Hosts - intercut with the experiences of their new inhabitants, the Body Tourists who have been cryogenically frozen in anticipation of being brought back to life.

Hosts are drawn from among the unemployed poor in fenced estates in the north of England, who are paid handsomely for their bodies. After 14 days, each body is returned to its owner.

But Luke has inserted the brain of a dead woman scientist he venerates, Octavia, into the body of a young man he admires, Ryan.

This play has been rewritten and expanded by Jane Rogers into a full-length novel called Body Tourists, which will be published later in 2019.

Cast:
Octavia ..... Susan Brown
Luke ..... Joseph Kloska
Paula ..... Lotte Rice
Ryan ..... Will Taylor
Gemma/Bot ..... Alana Ramsey

Music by 0171

Produced and Directed by Clive Brill
A Brill production for BBC Radio 4

In the year 2045 scientists have found a way to store memory and personality after death.

Dramas that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias.

Body Tourists20190604

It's 2045 and scientists have found a way to store memory and personality digitally after death - inserting a chip into other living bodies. The procedure is still at the trial stage.

The drama follows consultant Luke Butler and the experiences of the first volunteer bodies - the Hosts - intercut with the experiences of their new inhabitants, the Body Tourists who have been cryogenically frozen in anticipation of being brought back to life.

Hosts are drawn from among the unemployed poor in fenced estates in the north of England, who are paid handsomely for their bodies. After 14 days, each body is returned to its owner.

But Luke has inserted the brain of a dead woman scientist he venerates, Octavia, into the body of a young man he admires, Ryan.

This play has been rewritten and expanded by Jane Rogers into a full-length novel called Body Tourists, which will be published later in 2019.

Cast:
Octavia....Susan Brown
Luke....Joseph Kloska
Paula....Lotte Rice
Ryan....Will Taylor
Gemma/Bot....Alana Ramsey

Music by 0171

Produced and Directed by Clive Brill
A Brill production for BBC Radio 4

In the year 2045 scientists have found a way to store memory and personality after death.

Dramas that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias.

Concrete Island2013062320130629
20140622 (BBC7)
20140623 (BBC7)

By JG Ballard. A cocky young architect is stranded when he crashes off the motorway.

By J.G. Ballard

Adapted by Graham White

Driving home one Friday rush hour, a cocky young architect crashes down a motorway embankment. At first he seems bound to be rescued, but as he fails to make the passing commuters notice him, he finds himself trapped on a strange, neglected island between the highways. Can this modern day Crusoe survive in a strange new world?

Directed by Mary Peate

Radio 4's Dangerous Visions Season:

The adjective Ballardian refers to the writer 'JG Ballard's fearful imaginings of what the near future might be like. Even though the master creator of dystopian futures died four years ago, his vision of what our future might become feels as relevant, satirical and as scary as ever. Radio 4's Dangerous Visions is a season of dramas that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias. Dramatisations of Ballard's seminal works, Drowned World and Concrete Island, straddle the season, and we have asked five leading radio writers - Nick Perry, Ed Harris, Michael Symmonds Roberts, Michael Butt and Philip Palmer - to imagine what life might be like in the near future if everything goes wrong - and their Dangerous Visions form the bedrock of the series: clever, imaginative and disturbing takes on just what might happen. What happens if sleep is outlawed? If cloning becomes a matter of course, and your loved ones are capable of being cloned? If North London declares UDI on South London, which has become a wasteland? If human sacrifice becomes a part of society? We are also running a 5 part dramatisation of Jane Roger's award winning terrifying novel The Testament of Jessie Lamb, dramatised by the author

Dangerous Visions - you will be disturbed as you see the present reflected in the glass

of an uneasy future.

Culture2017062620180126

Al Smith's dystopian vision of a world where antibiotics have ceased to work.

by Al Smith

Scientific Advisor....Dr Claas Kirchhelle
Director....Sally Avens

With increasing numbers of infections becoming drug resistant Al Smith's dystopian play takes a step into the near future.
Anna is a Doctor working in infectious diseases and is forced everyday to help choose whether to treat a patient or not. But what does it do to both you and your patient when your judgement is wrong?
Culture was developed through the Wellcome Trust Experimental Stories scheme.

Dark Minds20140627

By Philip Palmer

A dangerous obsession with immersive virtual reality games has deadly consequences.

In the near future Harry is obsessed with totally immersive virtual reality gaming. Then one day he wakes up with a dead body lying next to him in bed. All evidence points to the fact that Harry is the killer. Harry even remembers doing it. But why? Did the violence of the games give him his gruesome blood lust? Or is something far more sinister going on?

Slowly Harry uncovers a conspiracy that has its roots in the illicit underbelly of the Internet.

Sex, violence and virtual reality combine in this futuristic thriller.

Directed by James Robinson

A BBC Cymru Wales Production.

Darkness At Noon2017070120190202 (R4)

Adaptation of Arthur Koestler's nightmarish portrait of a totalitarian state.

By Arthur Koestler
Adapted by Simon Scardifield

At the height of the media attention during the Monica Lewinsky scandal, US President Bill Clinton reportedly referred to Arthur Koestler's novel, telling an aide, "I feel like the character in the novel Darkness at Noon....I am surrounded by an oppressive force that is creating a lie about me and I can't get the truth out."

Clinton was referring to Nicholas Rubashov, the protagonist of Koestler's novel inspired by the Moscow Trials of Stalin's Russia. Rubashov, once a powerful player in the regime, finds the tables turned on him when he is imprisoned and psychologically tortured. His reflections on his previous life and experiences in prison are at the heart of this thought-provoking masterpiece.

Written after Koestler became disillusioned with Communism, Darkness at Noon is a moving and thought-provoking indictment of totalitarianism. Simon Scardifield's new adaptation draws on Koestler's original manuscript - which had been thought lost for 75 years, after Koestler hurriedly fled Paris before the German occupation in 1940, only to be recently discovered in a Zurich library.

Directed by Sasha Yevtushenko.

By Arthur Koestler
Adapted by Simon Scardifield

At the height of the media attention during the Monica Lewinsky scandal, US President Bill Clinton reportedly referred to Arthur Koestler's novel, telling an aide, "I feel like the character in the novel Darkness at Noon....I am surrounded by an oppressive force that is creating a lie about me and I can't get the truth out."

Clinton was referring to Nicholas Rubashov, the protagonist of Koestler's novel inspired by the Moscow Trials of Stalin's Russia. Rubashov, once a powerful player in the regime, finds the tables turned on him when he is imprisoned and psychologically tortured. His reflections on his previous life and experiences in prison are at the heart of this thought-provoking masterpiece.

Written after Koestler became disillusioned with Communism, Darkness at Noon is a moving and thought-provoking indictment of totalitarianism. Simon Scardifield's new adaptation draws on Koestler's original manuscript - which had been thought lost for 75 years, after Koestler hurriedly fled Paris before the German occupation in 1940, only to be recently discovered in a Zurich library.

Directed by Sasha Yevtushenko.

Dramas that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias.

By Arthur Koestler
Adapted by Simon Scardifield

At the height of the media attention during the Monica Lewinsky scandal, US President Bill Clinton reportedly referred to Arthur Koestler's novel, telling an aide, "I feel like the character in the novel Darkness at Noon....I am surrounded by an oppressive force that is creating a lie about me and I can't get the truth out."

Clinton was referring to Nicholas Rubashov, the protagonist of Koestler's novel inspired by the Moscow Trials of Stalin's Russia. Rubashov, once a powerful player in the regime, finds the tables turned on him when he is imprisoned and psychologically tortured. His reflections on his previous life and experiences in prison are at the heart of this thought-provoking masterpiece.

Written after Koestler became disillusioned with Communism, Darkness at Noon is a moving and thought-provoking indictment of totalitarianism. Simon Scardifield's adaptation draws on Koestler's original manuscript - which had been thought lost for 75 years, after Koestler hurriedly fled Paris before the German occupation in 1940, only to be recently discovered in a Zurich library.

Directed by Sasha Yevtushenko.

Death Duty2013062020161112 (BBC7)
20161113 (BBC7)

By Michael Butt

In a desperate bid for water, a city-state plagued by drought has instituted a system of so-called Gifts, a weekly lottery that leads to the sacrifice of its young men. But the Gifts aren't working, and when the man in charge of the system sees his son's number called up, his faith is sorely tested.

Producer, Sasha Yevtushenko.

A city-state plagued by drought has instituted a system of sacrifice in a bid for rain.

Ed Harris - Billions20130617 (BBC7)
20161105 (BBC7)
20161106 (BBC7)

Mark discovers his wife has been replaced by a replica, in Ed Harris's twisted love story.

by Ed Harris

One of three plays nominated as Best Single Drama at the BBC Audio Drama Awards 2014.

Mark's wife Donna has an accident and ends up in a life-threatening coma. But when he comes home from hospital, Donna is in the kitchen. Not Donna, in fact, but a near-perfect replica provided by her insurance company.

Award-winning writer Ed Harris tells a wickedly twisted tale of love - and adjustments.

Producer/Director... Jonquil Panting.

Face To Face With Jg Ballard20130616 (BBC7)
20130617 (BBC7)

The late author of Empire of the Sun and many works of speculative fiction reveals his perspective on the world and the media.

The late author of speculative fiction reveals his perspective on the world and the media.

4 Extra Debut. The late author of Empire of the Sun and many works of speculative fiction reveals his perspective on the world and the media.

Freedom20180620

By Gary Owen. A dystopian story questioning what freedom of speech means.

Dramas that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias

Dangerous Visions: Freedom
by Gary Owen

Starring Suzanne Packer as Marian and Connor Allen as Jamie

Marian has always told her son, Jamie, that it is fine to be gay, fine to be who you really are and that, in years to come, of course it will be possible for him to marry another man or adopt children.
All this changes when a newly elected coalition government decides political correctness has got out of hand and passes a Freedom Law that licenses both the freedom to say whatever you like, however hateful, and the right not to be offended. Now Jamie has to decide how to be true to himself in a society where intolerance has become acceptable, and Marian confronts what she might need to do to keep him safe.
An absorbing play about the political becoming personal and how an apparently liberal society can threaten those who don't conform.

Directed by Gilly Adams
A BBC Cymru Wales Production

Gary Owen is a Welsh playwright whose recent plays include the award-winning Killology which premiered at the Sherman Theatre, Cardiff and then played at the Royal Court; Violence and Son for the Royal Court, and Iphigenia in Splott for which he won the James Tait Black Prize for Drama and which was performed at the National Theatre.

Invasion20130618

30 years from now, Astronaut Kadian Giametti becomes the first human to walk on Mars. But on his return to Earth he wakes up in a quarantine cell from which he's not allowed to leave. Slowly Kadian learns the truth about what's happened on Earth while he's been away, and what he's brought back with him.

A claustrophobic two-hander from science fiction writer Philip Palmer. Part of the Dangerous Visions season.

Directed by James Robinson

A BBC Cymru Wales Production

Dangerous Visions: The adjective Ballardian refers to the writer 'JG Ballard's fearful imaginings of what the near future might be like. Even though the master creator of dystopian futures died four years ago, his vision of what our future might become feels as relevant, satirical and as scary as ever. Radio 4's Dangerous Visions is a season of dramas that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias. Dramatisations of Ballard's seminal works, Drowned World and Concrete Island, straddle the season, and we have asked five leading radio writers - Nick Perry, Ed Harris, Michael Symmonds Roberts, Michael Butt and Philip Palmer - to imagine what life might be like in the near future if everything goes wrong - and their Dangerous Visions form the bedrock of the series: clever, imaginative and disturbing takes on just what might happen. What happens if sleep is outlawed? If cloning becomes a matter of course, and your loved ones are capable of being cloned? If North London declares UDI on South London, which has become a wasteland? If human sacrifice becomes a part of society? We are also running a 5 part dramatisation of Jane Roger's award winning terrifying novel The Testament of Jessie Lamb, dramatised by the author. Dangerous Visions - you will be disturbed as you see the present reflected in the glass of an uneasy future.

Iz20140617

One man risks everything in order to find the woman he loves - a woman he has only met in a virtual world.

Sacha Dhawan, Sian Phillips and Jaimi Barbakoff star in Miranda Emmerson's disquieting new thriller.

In 2091, British citizens are living in 24-hour curfew, confined to solitary housing units and communicating entirely through virtual worlds. Students Lee and Iz have been dating each other virtually for three years, but when Lee fails an important exam, he is suddenly cut off from Iz and everything he knows. He sets out on a journey across a deserted England, determined to find the real Iz.

Part of Radio 4's Dangerous Visions series.

Directed by Emma Harding.

Jane Rogers - The Testament Of Jessie Lamb Omnibus20130622 (BBC7)
20130623 (BBC7)

Made for 4 Extra. Jane Rogers dramatises her award-winning dystopian novel about a teenage girl who decides to save humanity.

Jane Rogers' dystopian story about a teenage girl who decides to save humanity.

Jg Ballard - Concrete Island20130623 (BBC7)
20161023 (BBC7)
20161024 (BBC7)

A cocky young architect is stranded when he crashes off the motorway.

By J.G. Ballard

Adapted by Graham White

Driving home one Friday rush hour, a cocky young architect crashes down a motorway embankment. At first he seems bound to be rescued, but as he fails to make the passing commuters notice him, he finds himself trapped on a strange, neglected island between the highways. Can this modern day Crusoe survive in a strange new world?

Directed by Mary Peate

Radio 4's Dangerous Visions Season:

The adjective Ballardian refers to the writer 'JG Ballard's fearful imaginings of what the near future might be like. Even though the master creator of dystopian futures died four years ago, his vision of what our future might become feels as relevant, satirical and as scary as ever. Radio 4's Dangerous Visions is a season of dramas that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias. Dramatisations of Ballard's seminal works, Drowned World and Concrete Island, straddle the season, and we have asked five leading radio writers - Nick Perry, Ed Harris, Michael Symmonds Roberts, Michael Butt and Philip Palmer - to imagine what life might be like in the near future if everything goes wrong - and their Dangerous Visions form the bedrock of the series: clever, imaginative and disturbing takes on just what might happen. What happens if sleep is outlawed? If cloning becomes a matter of course, and your loved ones are capable of being cloned? If North London declares UDI on South London, which has become a wasteland? If human sacrifice becomes a part of society? We are also running a 5 part dramatisation of Jane Roger's award winning terrifying novel The Testament of Jessie Lamb, dramatised by the author

Dangerous Visions - you will be disturbed as you see the present reflected in the glass

of an uneasy future.

Kafka's Metamorphosis20170624

By Franz Kafka. A darkly comic updating of the classic tale. Adapted by Alan Harris.

By Franz Kafka
Adapted by Alan Harris.

A darkly comic updating of the classic tale.

Gregor Samsa's life is dominated by routine - the monotony of his busy commute, mindless call centre job and crowded tower block home is steadily taking its toll. Then one morning Gregor awakes to find himself transformed into a giant insect. As he attempts to master life with six legs, his family must also learn to live with his new look.

Writer Alan Harris gives Kafka's classic a modern twist with a darkly comic edge. Starring Tom Basden (W1A), Kenneth Collard (Cuckoo), Felicity Montagu (Alpha Papa), Emma Sidi (W1A) and Tim Key (Alpha Papa).

Directed by James Robinson
A BBC Cymru Wales Production.

London Bridge20130619

By Nick Perry

In the future, London is divided in two. North of the river is a virtual police state and the South is a lawless no-go area ruled by criminal gangs. When the body of young boy washes up on the banks of the Thames, a police detective crosses the dangerous divide in the search for his killers.

Director: Sasha Yevtushenko

Production Co-ordinators: Jessica Brown, Selina Ream

Editor: Colin Guthrie

Studio Managers: Cal Knightley, Keith Graham

The adjective Ballardian refers to the writer JG Ballard's fearful imaginings of what the near future might be like. Even though the master creator of dystopian futures died four years ago, his vision of what our future might become feels as relevant, satirical and as scary as ever. Radio 4's Dangerous Visions is a season of dramas that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias. Dramatisations of Ballard's seminal works, Drowned World and Concrete Island, straddle the season, and we have asked five leading radio writers - Nick Perry, Ed Harris, Michael Symmonds Roberts, Michael Butt and Philip Palmer - to imagine what life might be like in the near future if everything goes wrong - and their Dangerous Visions form the bedrock of the series: clever, imaginative and disturbing takes on just what might happen. What happens if sleep is outlawed? If cloning becomes a matter of course, and your loved ones are capable of being cloned? If North London declares UDI on South London, which has become a wasteland? If human sacrifice becomes a part of society? We are also running a 5-part dramatisation of Jane Roger's award winning terrifying novel The Testament of Jessie Lamb, dramatised by the author. Dangerous Visions - you will be disturbed as you see the present reflected in the glass of an uneasy future.

Michael Symmons Roberts - The Sleeper20130615 (BBC7)
20170422 (BBC7)
20170423 (BBC7)

In a future Britain, people have gradually lost the gift of sleep - or have they?

A fable for our times. In The Sleeper by Michael Symmons Roberts we see our own society as it is today but with one familiar element removed. This is a Britain in which, decades ago, human beings gradually lost the gift of sleep.

The Sleeper is a new verse drama by Michael Symmons Roberts with music by the WNO and youth chorus from Irish composer Stephen Deazley, adapted to create a soundtrack mixing speech, poetry and chorus.

Society is strained to breaking point by 24-hour wakefulness. The government has cracked down on subversive images of sleep. People work around the clock. Hotels are for private meetings and illicit sex. Shops never close.

Into this paranoid world, a teenage girl emerges, a girl who can sleep. Protected by her friends, she goes on the run from the authorities who are keen to control and study her gift. The group ends up living in a city centre squat, surviving as a group by shoplifting and begging.

The group grows increasingly anxious and fractious, with Ellah (the sleeper)'s boyfriend Jamie lapsing into cultish beliefs in the 'old gods', in which lullabies are chanted as prayers, worshipping sleep. Some of the other group members join in these rituals. Keller, the level-headed natural leader of the group, is struggling to keep the peace.

Hungry, scared and sick of being pursued, the group receives an offer of help from a wealthy man - known by the nickname Hypnos - who says he will protect them. But what does he want in return? Desperate, and running out of options, they go to him.

When they reach the man's hideout they find a spectacular, illegal private 'archive of sleep' - films, paintings, music, books - and an eerie film-set centred on a four poster bed. The price for his protection is a movie. He wants to film the 'sleeper' sleeping.

Why? Well, it transpires that he is the son of the last ever sleeper. In fact, as a young child he woke his mother up from that last sleep. He plays the group a film of that fateful event, a home movie taken by his father of his mother's rare and last sleep, ending with Hypnos - as a boy - waking her. After that, no-one slept again. The guilt of waking his mother has never left him, and the only cure is to film this newly discovered sleeper peacefully asleep.

With music created from the original WNO Youth commission by the composer Stephen Deazley, and performed by members of the Welsh National Opera Orchestra and Youth Opera

Directed in Salford by Susan Roberts

Michael Symmons Roberts is an award winning poet and experienced radio writer. His latest projects for Radio 4 include Crimes of Mancunia, A Man in Pieces and the award winning Soldiers in the Sun.

Perimeter2017063020190718 (R4)

By Josie Long and Liam Williams

In the not-so-distant future, siblings Josie and Liam live in a city divided by a giant, electrified fence. The haves live on one side, the have-nots on the other.

Josie and Liam live on the non-affluent side of the city and share a room - as in Josie lives in it for twelve hours a day and Liam for the other twelve; it is too small for two people to be in at one time. Then one day they're offered the opportunity to cross the fence and see how the other half lives.

A dystopian comedy about an increasingly divided society written by and starring comedians Josie Long and Liam Williams.

Josie Long
"There's a lovable romantic sensibility here... heartfelt and eccentric." (The Guardian)
Josie is often described as a unique voice in comedy. She started stand-up at 14, winning the BBC New Comedy Award. She has appeared on: The News Quiz, Just A Minute, Never Mind the Buzzcocks, The Alternative Comedy Experience, Have I Got News For You and 8 out of 10 Cats, and is the voice of the Radio 4 show Short Cuts.

Liam Williams
"The Philip Larkin of British Comedy." (The Huffington Post)
Liam is a stand-up comedian, host of Invisible Dot's Stories night, and one-third of comedy sketch troupe Sheeps. He was shortlisted in 2013 for Best Newcomer at Edinburgh Festival, and his show 'Capitalism' was nominated for Foster's Best Comedy Show at Edinburgh last year. He's written and starred in his own series for Radio 4 (Liam Williams: Ladhood) and BBC 3 (Pls Like).

Directed by James Robinson
A BBC Cymru Wales Production.

By Josie Long and Liam Williams. Dystopian comedy about a city divided by a giant fence.

Dramas that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias.

Perimeter20170630

By Josie Long and Liam Williams. Dystopian comedy about a city divided by a giant fence.

By Josie Long and Liam Williams

In the not-so-distant future, siblings Josie and Liam live in a city divided by a giant, electrified fence. The haves live on one side, the have-nots on the other.

Josie and Liam live on the non-affluent side of the city and share a room - as in Josie lives in it for twelve hours a day and Liam for the other twelve; it is too small for two people to be in at one time. Then one day they're offered the opportunity to cross the fence and see how the other half lives.

A dystopian comedy about an increasingly divided society written by and starring comedians Josie Long and Liam Williams.

Josie Long
"There's a lovable romantic sensibility here... heartfelt and eccentric." (The Guardian)
Josie is often described as a unique voice in comedy. She started stand-up at 14, winning the BBC New Comedy Award. She has appeared on: The News Quiz, Just A Minute, Never Mind the Buzzcocks, The Alternative Comedy Experience, Have I Got News For You and 8 out of 10 Cats, and is the voice of the Radio 4 show Short Cuts.

Liam Williams
"The Philip Larkin of British Comedy." (The Huffington Post)
Liam is a stand-up comedian, host of Invisible Dot's Stories night, and one-third of comedy sketch troupe Sheeps. He was shortlisted in 2013 for Best Newcomer at Edinburgh Festival, and his show 'Capitalism' was nominated for Foster's Best Comedy Show at Edinburgh last year. He's written and starred in his own series for Radio 4 (Liam Williams: Ladhood) and BBC 3 (Pls Like).

Directed by James Robinson
A BBC Cymru Wales Production.

Shadowbahn20180609

The Twin Towers reappear in Dakota in 2021. Teenagers cross border guards to investigate.

Dramas that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias

The Twin Towers reappear in Dakota in 2021. Nothing is predictable in this new America and reality and history are turned upside down. What exists and what is a shadow?

Steve Erickson's 2017 novel was hailed by critics as the first novel of the Trump era. It imagines checkpoints and borders and rupture zones in a country that's torn apart.

Parker, aged 23, and his 15 year-old sister Zema are driving from the West coast to see their mother in Michigan. On a news feed they hear that the Twin Towers have reappeared in South Dakota. Overnight. Out of nowhere. Strange sounds seem to be coming from them. Is there anyone inside? The buildings look pristine.

Dubbed by reporters on the scene as an "American Stonehenge", they immediately become a pilgrimage site.

Headstrong Zema insists that they change course and join the throng heading to the site. She has brought along mix tapes made by their dad who was a music DJ. The songs somehow reflect where they are and what they are thinking about. Astonished, they learn over social media that their car has become a magnet. Hashtag Supersonic. What is the strange cargo they carry?

Meanwhile, around the Twin Towers, every sightseer hears different music. And on a top floor in the otherwise empty South Tower, Jesse Presley the twin brother of Elvis wakes up. He has his own demons and music raging in his head.

Jesse's journey has parallels with Parker and Zema's. It's a supernaturally charged trip across an America which is familiar and yet eerily angry and dangerous, and back in altered time.

Steve Erickson, often described as a writer's writer, has had ten novels published in as many languages. He's known for Zeroville (soon to be seen as a movie), Our Ecstatic Days, and These Dreams of You which contains some of Shadowbahn's characters.

Recorded on location in Arizona and New York.

Other parts played by
Pete McElligott
Chris Dwane
Sara Berg
Reynaldo Piniella
Raphael Martin

Written by Steve Erickson
Adapted for radio by Anita Sullivan

Produced and Directed by Judith Kampfner and Steve Bond

A Corporation For Independent Media production for BBC Radio 4.

Speak20180618

By Philip Palmer. A dystopian love story about the power of language.

Dramas that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias

By Philip Palmer

Starring Pippa Haywood and Andrew Gower

Lucian has a vocabulary that is limited to a core 1500 words, but Clara wants to teach him those that are forbidden. A dystopian love story about the power of words, set in a near future where the language spoken is Globish - a reduced version of English.

The OED lists 171,476 English words in current use. The average adult native English speaker has an active vocabulary of about 35,000 - 50,000 words. But studies suggest our vocabularies are shrinking.

Globish is a real international business language, developed in 2004, made up of the most common 1500 English words. It is designed to promote international communication in the global economy. 'Speak' imagines a future in which Globish has become the official language.

A gripping two-hander about the power of words; how words - and even more, the absence of words - can control, confine, leach emotion and trap minds.

Directed by James Robinson
A BBC Cymru Wales Production.

The Bee Maker2014061620160714 (R4)

By Anita Sullivan

It's 2020 and the bees are nearly all gone. Human beings might be next.

Robotics expert, Deborah, builds artificial bees in order to help pollinate fruit trees across the world - real bees having been driven to the brink of extinction. But then a strange phenomenon strikes mankind - people start getting lost. It happens slowly, people lose their way, forget where they are. But before long society starts to crumble.

Deborah must fight her way across an apocalyptic Britain and find her way back home. But first she must remember where that is.

A dark and cautionary tale about our busy technology-filled lives.

Directed by James Robinson

A BBC Cymru Wales Production.

The Double2018061020190119 (R4)

Jonathan Holloway's reimagining of Dostoyevsky's nightmare vision of a lonely civil servant driven to madness when his life is stolen by a doppelganger.

Produced and directed by Gemma Jenkins

Jonathan Holloway has taken Dostoyevksy's tale of the lonely civil servant on the verge of a nervous breakdown and relocated it to a steampunk version of 19th Century St Petersburg, substituting the labyrinthine Tsarist bureaucracy of the original with the advanced computer systems office of the Russian Federation's Intelligence Services.

To win his superiors' admiration the story's hero, Golyadkin, starts working on perfecting a new cyber-weapon only to find that a new arrival in the office who looks remarkably like him is taking all the credit for his work.

In this new adaptation the 21st century begins to intrude - samovars bubble, dances mix trance with live string quartets, electric taxis whine on the highways while horses clatter by and computers are gas-fuelled.

In Golyadkin's fractured mind he's lost all sense of where he exists in time and what we're experiencing is his dream of the future.

Dostoyevsky's themes of grinding bureaucracy, societal pressures inducing feelings of inadequacy and hopelessness are given a bleakly modern twist.

Dostoyevsky's nightmare vision of a man whose life is usurped by his double.

Dramas that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias.

Jonathan Holloway's reimagining of Dostoyevsky's nightmare vision of a lonely civil servant driven to madness when his life is stolen by a doppelganger.

Golyadkin/The Double....Joseph Millson
Andrei Filippovich Olsufy....Sean Murray
Dr Rutenspitz....Elizabeth Counsell
Klara Olsufyevna/Needles....Kerry Gooderson
Marmeladov....Lauren Cornelius
Raskolnikov....Joseph Ayre
Fatboy....Ryan Whittle
Maitre D'....Ryan Early

Produced and directed by Gemma Jenkins

Jonathan Holloway has taken Dostoyevksy's tale of the lonely civil servant on the verge of a nervous breakdown and relocated it to a steampunk version of 19th Century St Petersburg, substituting the labyrinthine Tsarist bureaucracy of the original with the advanced computer systems office of the Russian Federation's Intelligence Services.

To win his superiors' admiration the story's hero, Golyadkin, starts working on perfecting a new cyber-weapon only to find that a new arrival in the office who looks remarkably like him is taking all the credit for his work.

In this new adaptation the 21st century begins to intrude - samovars bubble, dances mix trance with live string quartets, electric taxis whine on the highways while horses clatter by and computers are gas-fuelled.

In Golyadkin's fractured mind he's lost all sense of where he exists in time and what we're experiencing is his dream of the future.

Dostoyevsky's themes of grinding bureaucracy, societal pressures inducing feelings of inadequacy and hopelessness are given a bleakly modern twist.

The Drowned World2013061620130622
20140621 (BBC7)
20140622 (BBC7)

As part of Radio 4's Dangerous Visions season, Graham White's adaptation shows a future in which the earth's atmosphere is destroyed. As a scientific mission surveys England's drowned capitals before their final abandonment, two lovers find themselves reverting to a primitive state of consciousness.

In a future in which solar flares have wreaked havoc with the earth's atmosphere, Dr Robert Kerans is part of a scientific mission to survey the drowned cities of what was once the temperate zone before they are abandoned for good.

The de-evolution that the ecological crisis has provoked seems to have affected the expedition's crew. Kerans, alongside his enigmatic lover Beatrice, whom he is trying to persuade to leave, attempts to make sense of the disappearance of a crew member who has succumbed to the lure of the emerging new water world.

Kerans and Beatrice also start to embrace the breakdown they see around them, until an encounter with the maverick scavenger Strangman and his piratical crew forces them to face what de-evolution may really mean, as he drains the drowned city in search of the powers of civilization it may once have held. Ballard's vivid futurescape imagines the surreal results of Darwin's theories going into reverse.

Dangerous Visions - you will be disturbed as you see the present reflected in the glass

of an uneasy future.

A future where the Earth's atmosphere, and human consciousness, has eroded.

The Illustrated Man2014061420150905 (R4)

Iain Glen is the Illustrated Man in a dramatisation by Brian Sibley of Ray Bradbury's iconic short story collection.

A young traveller encounters a vagrant on the road who claims his tattoos come to life after dark and have the powers of prophecy.

The vagrant offers his young travelling companion tantalising glimpses into the future with tales of restless androids, children caught up in a sinister game and astronauts stranded in outer space which all hint at dark and troubling times ahead.

The Illustrated Man....Iain Glen

The Youth....Jamie Parker

The Tattoo Witch....Elaine Claxton

The Driver....Wilf Scolding

Brayling/Brayling 2....Patrick Kennedy

Smith....Stephen Hogan

Mink....Nell Herrin

Mother....Heather Craney

Father....Clive Hayward

Anna....Lucy Hutchinson

Hollis....Alec Newman

Applegate....John P. Arnold

Stone....Jaimi Barbakoff

Stimson....Craige Els

Directed by Gemma Jenkins

Production Co-ordinator: Philippa Tilbury

Studio Managers: Anne Bunting, Peter Ringrose, Alison Craig.

First published in the UK in 1952, it's the startling framing device of a man whose tattoos predict the future of humankind which signals Bradbury's collection out as one of the defining works of 20th century Science Fiction.

The award-winning radio dramatist, Brian Sibley's other credits include dramatisations of TH White's The Once and Future King, Mervyn Peake's Gormenghast novels and The Lord of The Rings trilogy.

First in the return of Radio 4's Dangerous Visions - dramas that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias.

This iconic collection of visionary short stories is brought to the airwaves for the first time in an adaptation by the award-winning radio dramatist, Brian Sibley, whose credits include dramatisations of The Lord of The Rings trilogy and Mervyn Peake's Gormenghast novels.

The Keepers2014062920161112 (BBC7)
20161113 (BBC7)
20160807 (R4)

Radio 4's Dangerous Visions: The last of three specially commissioned stories that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias.

Matt Haig's vision in which a man wonders from his cage in a zoo what it means to be human. In a letter to his daughter he describes the events leading up to the moment humankind's supremacy came to an end.

Read by Barnaby Kay

Produced by Gemma Jenkins

Bestselling author, Matt Haig's latest novel, The Humans, was one of the twenty books chosen for this year's World Book Night.

Bestselling author of The Humans, A Boy Called Christmas and How To Stay Alive.

In Matt Haig's vision, a man wonders, from his cage in a zoo, what it means to be human.

A man wonders from his zoo cage what it means to be human.

The Martian Chronicles2014062120150912 (R4)

Derek Jacobi and Hayley Atwell lead an all-star cast in a thrilling new dramatisation, re-imagining Ray Bradbury's timeless fable of doomed Martian colonisation.

When the first expedition to Mars mysteriously disappears, Earth sends a second to find out what happened. But the real mission is classified. And only Captain Wilder knows the truth.

Dramatised for radio by Richard Kurti and Bev Doyle.

Original Music: Imran Ahmad

Sound Design: Alistair Lock

Executive Producer: Dirk Maggs

Producer/Director: Andrew Mark Sewell

A B7 Production for BBC Radio 4.

Mayflower Rocket Kids....Polehampton Junior School

The Problem With Talitha2014061520160724 (R4)

Sex as an opiate for the masses is taken to a whole new level in Lauren Beukes' celebrity-obsessed dystopia where every second of a star's life is filmed and recorded for consumers to plug into and experience at first-hand. Talitha Calix, a South African reality TV star, has become a worldwide phenomenon, people are riveted by the soap opera that is her love life. When a hacker group of obsessive fans decide to bring the network down and give Talitha an hour of privacy a whole new world of possibilities opens up to her but will she be allowed to walk away from the limelight?

Read by Chipo Chung

Produced by Gemma Jenkins

Lauren Beukes is the author of bestselling thrillers, The Shining Girls and Broken Monsters.

Radio 4's Dangerous Visions: the first of three specially commissioned stories that explore contemporary takes on future dystopias.

Lauren Beukes is the author of the international bestselling thriller, The Shining Girls.

Lauren Beukes's celebrity-obsessed dystopia where fans can channel a star's every desire.

The Sleeper2013061520140208

A fable for our times. In The Sleeper by Michael Symmons Roberts we see our own society as it is today but with one familiar element removed. This is a Britain in which, decades ago, human beings gradually lost the gift of sleep.

The Sleeper is a new verse drama by Michael Symmons Roberts with music by the WNO and youth chorus from Irish composer Stephen Deazley, adapted to create a soundtrack mixing speech, poetry and chorus.

Society is strained to breaking point by 24-hour wakefulness. The government has cracked down on subversive images of sleep. People work around the clock. Hotels are for private meetings and illicit sex. Shops never close.

Into this paranoid world, a teenage girl emerges, a girl who can sleep. Protected by her friends, she goes on the run from the authorities who are keen to control and study her gift. The group ends up living in a city centre squat, surviving as a group by shoplifting and begging.

The group grows increasingly anxious and fractious, with Ellah (the sleeper)'s boyfriend Jamie lapsing into cultish beliefs in the 'old gods', in which lullabies are chanted as prayers, worshipping sleep. Some of the other group members join in these rituals. Keller, the level-headed natural leader of the group, is struggling to keep the peace.

Hungry, scared and sick of being pursued, the group receives an offer of help from a wealthy man - known by the nickname Hypnos - who says he will protect them. But what does he want in return? Desperate, and running out of options, they go to him.

When they reach the man's hideout they find a spectacular, illegal private 'archive of sleep' - films, paintings, music, books - and an eerie film-set centred on a four poster bed. The price for his protection is a movie. He wants to film the 'sleeper' sleeping.

Why? Well, it transpires that he is the son of the last ever sleeper. In fact, as a young child he woke his mother up from that last sleep. He plays the group a film of that fateful event, a home movie taken by his father of his mother's rare and last sleep, ending with Hypnos - as a boy - waking her. After that, no-one slept again. The guilt of waking his mother has never left him, and the only cure is to film this newly discovered sleeper peacefully asleep.

With music created from the original WNO Youth commission by the composer Stephen Deazley, and performed by members of the Welsh National Opera Orchestra and Youth Opera

Directed in Salford by Susan Roberts

Michael Symmons Roberts is an award winning poet and experienced radio writer. His latest projects for Radio 4 include Crimes of Mancunia, A Man in Pieces and the award winning Soldiers in the Sun.

By Michael Symmons Roberts. In a future Britain, people have lost the gift of sleep.

The Two Georges20140620

By Stephen Keyworth

In 1955, the fledgling science fiction writer Philip K. Dick and his wife Kleo received a visit at their California home from two FBI agents, which they believed to be a result of Kleo's left-wing activities. The consequences of the visit are largely unclear, with conflicting accounts suggesting that the couple were asked to spy on college radicals, travel to Mexico, and even that one of the FBI agents taught Dick how to drive.

Using this biographic encounter as its starting point, The Two Georges is a playful and fantastical story, Dick-esque in its absurdity, that sees the sci-fi writer partner up with an FBI Agent to uncover a devilish conspiracy that strikes at the heart of Cold War McCarthyite America.

Directed by Sasha Yevtushenko.