THE PROGRESS OF THE SOUL OF LIZZIE CALVIN
In poet John Donne's great unfinished work of the same name , he plays with the ancient idea of the transmigration of souls, that a spirit might be reincarnated in many different lives. For contemporary poet Michael Symmons Roberts, the idea of making a new 'Progress of the Soul' has long been an ambition. Both poets have serious fun with this idea, imagining a soul passing, dissatisfied with each successive form of life, through a fantastical range of insects, plants, fish, animals and on, trying to reach its ultimate fulfilment as a human being.
The soul , played by Glenda Jackson is the driving voice of the drama - key narrator and storyteller. Beginning in the body of Lizzie Calvin, a minister in waiting , the soul journeys through different forms of life, from a flea on a dogs back to a mandrake. This is a new radio poem that is irreverent and serious, lyrical and disturbing, witty and heart breaking. It ultimately questions the idea of the soul, what its relevance is in contemporary society.
Written by Michael Symmons Roberts
Sound producer Steve Brooke
Directed in Salford by Susan Roberts.