How To Survive The Roman Empire, By Pliny And Me [15 Minute Drama]

Episodes

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012017102320190128 (R4)Edinburgh Comedy Award nominee Kieran Hodgson returns as Pliny the Younger, with Nigel Barrett as his trusty slave, Venta, who was captured during the Roman conquest of Britain. Based on real events in first century Rome.

The Emperor Domitian rules Rome with a rod of iron, and is dangerously unstable and paranoid. There are spies everywhere. Venta, Pliny, his mother Marcella, and Doris the Greek cook will have to have all their wits about them if they are to prevail.

As a teenager Pliny witnessed the eruption of Vesuvius from his home across the bay. Many years later, following a request from his uncle Tacitus who is an historian, he takes time off from being a lawyer to travel to Pompeii and Herculaneum where he hopes to find out what happened to his uncle, Pliny the Elder, who died in the eruption. But upon returning to his villa outside Rome, he finds a letter from the Emperor which throws the whole household into a panic.
By Hattie Naylor.

A BBC/Cymru Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

Pliny and his eccentric household are subject to the whims of an unstable emperor.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

012017102320190128 (R4)Edinburgh Comedy Award nominee Kieran Hodgson returns as Pliny the Younger, with Nigel Barrett as his trusty slave, Venta, who was captured during the Roman conquest of Britain. Based on real events in first century Rome.

The Emperor Domitian rules Rome with a rod of iron, and is dangerously unstable and paranoid. There are spies everywhere. Venta, Pliny, his mother Marcella, and Doris the Greek cook will have to have all their wits about them if they are to prevail.

As a teenager Pliny witnessed the eruption of Vesuvius from his home across the bay. Many years later, following a request from his uncle Tacitus who is an historian, he takes time off from being a lawyer to travel to Pompeii and Herculaneum where he hopes to find out what happened to his uncle, Pliny the Elder, who died in the eruption. But upon returning to his villa outside Rome, he finds a letter from the Emperor which throws the whole household into a panic.
By Hattie Naylor.

A BBC/Cymru Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

Pliny and his eccentric household are subject to the whims of an unstable emperor.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

0120171023Pliny and his eccentric household are subject to the whims of an unstable emperor.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

0120180115Captured in Wales during the Roman conquest of Britain, Venta is now a slave in the household of Pliny the Younger, a wealthy lawyer who lives in a magnificent villa just outside Rome. As servitude goes, things could be worse. Pliny is a kind, if tetchy, master and uses Venta mainly as a scribe. His mistress, Pliny's mother, thinks of him as her 'bedroom attendant'. Recently Venta had a lucky escape when he was forced to fight in the Colosseum and survived to tell the tale. Unfortunately, he was given no choice but to kill Calvin, lover of Doris the cook, who now won't speak to him.

Depressed by the decline in the standard of Doris's cooking following Calvin's death, the family spend the day in Rome, shopping for bargains in the market, followed by sheer indulgence at the Baths. But the outing ends with a surprising turn of events for Pliny. By Hattie Naylor, based on real events in first century Rome.

Pliny the Younger... Kieran Hodgson
Venta... Nigel Barrett
Marcella... Joanna Scanlan
Doris... Mia Soteriou
Hawker... Matthew Gravelle

Music composed and performed by Pete Flood (percussion) with Laura Cannell (recorder, crumhorn), Rhodri Davies (Harp) and Paul Sartin (Oboe, Cor Anglais)

A BBC/Cymru Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

A day at the baths in Rome has a surprising ending for Pliny.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

022017102420190129 (R4)Pliny has been commanded by Emperor Domitian to hold a banquet for General Agricola who has recently returned from a successful conquest of Britain. The feast will take place at Pliny's villa outside Rome. But all is not what it seems. The Emperor is a jealous man and Pliny becomes suspicious when he sends one of his personal slaves to oversee the menu. By Hattie Naylor

A BBC/Cymru Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

Pliny is commanded by the Emperor to hold a banquet for returning hero General Agricola.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

022017102420190129 (R4)Pliny has been commanded by Emperor Domitian to hold a banquet for General Agricola who has recently returned from a successful conquest of Britain. The feast will take place at Pliny's villa outside Rome. But all is not what it seems. The Emperor is a jealous man and Pliny becomes suspicious when he sends one of his personal slaves to oversee the menu. By Hattie Naylor

A BBC/Cymru Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

Pliny is commanded by the Emperor to hold a banquet for returning hero General Agricola.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

0220171024Pliny is commanded by the Emperor to hold a banquet for returning hero General Agricola.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

0220180116Pliny, despite vehemently not believing in such things, appears to have fallen in love at first sight. In a quest to find the girl of his dreams, he commands Venta to go under cover in the Ladies side of the Roman Baths. Meanwhile, Doris the psychic cook makes a surprising confession, which no one saw coming. By Hattie Naylor, based on real events in first century Rome.

Pliny the Younger... Kieran Hodgson
Venta... Nigel Barrett
Marcella... Joanna Scanlan
Doris/Oppia... Mia Soteriou
Maximus... Ewan Bailey

Music composed and performed by Pete Flood (percussion) with Laura Cannell (recorder, crumhorn), Rhodri Davies (Harp) and Paul Sartin (Oboe, Cor Anglais)

A BBC/Cymru Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

Pliny has fallen in love at first sight. Now all he needs to do is find the girl.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

032017102520190130 (R4)General Agricola has just returned from the successful conquest of Britain and Pliny has been commanded by the Emperor Domitian to throw the welcome party. But the Emperor is a jealous man and has sent his personal slave to oversee the preparation of dishes for the feast. When the conquering hero mysteriously falls ill and dies, someone has to pay a heavy price. By Hattie Naylor

A BBC /Cymru Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

The welcome party for General Agricola ends in disaster - and an arrest.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

032017102520190130 (R4)General Agricola has just returned from the successful conquest of Britain and Pliny has been commanded by the Emperor Domitian to throw the welcome party. But the Emperor is a jealous man and has sent his personal slave to oversee the preparation of dishes for the feast. When the conquering hero mysteriously falls ill and dies, someone has to pay a heavy price. By Hattie Naylor

A BBC /Cymru Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

The welcome party for General Agricola ends in disaster - and an arrest.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

0320171025The welcome party for General Agricola ends in disaster - and an arrest.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

0320180117Pliny has a new job as Chief Overseer of the sewage works of Rome - but it's Venta, his slave, who has to go under ground and check for blockages. There he finds that Rome's prisoners are doing the real dirty work, including a Stoic philosopher, the victim of a recent purge by the Emperor Domitian. By Hattie Naylor, based on real events in first century Rome.

Pliny the Younger... Kieran Hodgson
Venta... Nigel Barrett
Marcella/Hispulla... Joanna Scanlan
Calpurnia... Kimberley Nixon
Prisoner... Matthew Gravelle
Stoic... Ewan Bailey

Music composed and performed by Pete Flood (percussion) with Laura Cannell (recorder, crumhorn), Rhodri Davies (Harp) and Paul Sartin (Oboe, Cor Anglais)

A BBC /Cymru Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

Venta explores the sewers of Rome where philosophers toil in the darkness.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

042017102620190131 (R4)Venta has been arrested, accused of murdering a famous war hero, and flung into prison. There he meets Calvin, fellow convict and dwarf, who reveals the terrible fate that awaits them both when Emperor Domitian reopens the Colosseum with a spectacular Games. By Hattie Naylor.

A BBC/Cymru Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

Venta meets a fellow prisoner, a dwarf who reveals the terrible fate that awaits them.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

0420180118Pliny feels under threat from the Emperor Domitian more than ever when he is invited to the Palatine, and the room where the Emperor tortures flies. Meanwhile, Marcella has a new slave, Sextus, who has supplanted Venta in Marcella's affections. By Hattie Naylor, based on real events in first century Rome.

Pliny the Younger... Kieran Hodgson
Venta... Nigel Barrett
Marcella... Joanna Scanlan
Emperor Domitian/Sextus... Ewan Bailey
Tacitus/Regulus... Matthew Gravelle

Music composed and performed by Pete Flood (percussion) with Laura Cannell (recorder, crumhorn), Rhodri Davies (Harp) and Paul Sartin (Oboe, Cor Anglais)

A BBC/Cymru Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

Marcella's new slave, Sextus, isn't all that he seems.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

052017102620190131 (R4)Venta has been arrested, accused of murdering a famous war hero, and flung into prison. There he meets Calvin, fellow convict and dwarf, who reveals the terrible fate that awaits them both when Emperor Domitian reopens the Colosseum with a spectacular Games. By Hattie Naylor.

A BBC/Cymru Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

Venta meets a fellow prisoner, a dwarf who reveals the terrible fate that awaits them.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

0520171026Venta meets a fellow prisoner, a dwarf who reveals the terrible fate that awaits them.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

052017102720190201 (R4)Venta the slave has been moved to the cells under the Colosseum, along with his new friend Calvin, a dwarf convicted of stealing a chicken. Doris the Greek cook comes to visit. She has gazed into the entrails of a small rodent and seen death - but whose death she can't be sure. Then, from the Imperial Box Emperor Domitian gives the signal for the Games to begin. Tigers enter the arena, pitted against Gladiators. Soon Venta and Calvin will have to meet their fate.
By Hattie Naylor

A BBC Cymru/Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

Venta the slave is forced to fight in the Colosseum.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

052017102720190201 (R4)Venta the slave has been moved to the cells under the Colosseum, along with his new friend Calvin, a dwarf convicted of stealing a chicken. Doris the Greek cook comes to visit. She has gazed into the entrails of a small rodent and seen death - but whose death she can't be sure. Then, from the Imperial Box Emperor Domitian gives the signal for the Games to begin. Tigers enter the arena, pitted against Gladiators. Soon Venta and Calvin will have to meet their fate.
By Hattie Naylor

A BBC Cymru/Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

Venta the slave is forced to fight in the Colosseum.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

0520171027Venta the slave is forced to fight in the Colosseum.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations

0520180119Fearing for her safety, Pliny calls off his marriage to Calpurnia and retires to his room, brokenhearted. Meanwhile, the Emperor Domitian is increasingly paranoid that there is a plot against him. This time he's right. By Hattie Naylor, based on real events in first century Rome.

Pliny the Younger... Kieran Hodgson
Venta... Nigel Barrett
Marcella... Joanna Scanlan
Emperor Domitian/Maximus... Ewan Bailey
Calpurnia... Kimberley Nixon
Regulus... Matthew Gravelle

Music composed and performed by Pete Flood (percussion) with Laura Cannell (recorder, crumhorn), Rhodri Davies (Harp) and Paul Sartin (Oboe, Cor Anglais)

A BBC Cymru/Wales production, directed by Kate McAll.

The Emperor is increasingly paranoid that there is a plot against him.

Classic and contemporary original drama and book dramatisations