Curated By Mark Ravenhill

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01Light Shining in Buckinghamshire20130428

01Light Shining In Buckinghamshire2013042820151101 (R3)

by Caryl Churchill.

First performed in 1976, Light Shining in Buckinghamshire focuses on the millennial movements that erupted during the English civil war in the 1640s. At the heart of the play is an edited dramatisation of The Putney Debates of 1647. The radical Levellers argue for liberty and universal suffrage while the military establishment stands for security and property as the basis for electoral eligibility.

This production of Light Shining in Buckinghamshire was directed by Mark Ravenhill, and was originally part of a season of dramas curated by Mark for Drama on 3.

Historical adviser to the production: Jacob Field.

Members of the cast each play several roles in the production.

01Light Shining In Buckinghamshire20130428

by Caryl Churchill.

The first in a new season of three classic plays curated for Radio 3 by the playwright Mark Ravenhill.

First performed in 1976, Light Shining in Buckinghamshire focuses on the millennial movements that erupted during the English civil war in the 1640s. At the heart of the play is an edited dramatisation of The Putney Debates of 1647. The radical Levellers argue for liberty and universal suffrage while the military establishment stands for security and property as the basis for electoral eligibility.

This new production of Light Shining in Buckinghamshire was directed by Mark Ravenhill himself.

With Amanda Drew, Monica Dolan, Joseph Mydell, Justin Salinger, Paul Rhys and Andrew Woodall.

Music by Colin Sell. Historical adviser to the production: Jacob Field.

In the following weeks in the season chosen by Mark Ravenhill are new productions of the 1850s play about slavery, the Octoroon and Bertolt Brecht's Jungle of Cities.

Director: Mark Ravenhill

Producer: Jeremy Mortimer

The cast each play several roles in the production.

Man One....Justin Salinger

Man Two....Andrew Woodall

Man Three....Paul Rhys

Man Four....Joseph Mydell

Woman One....Monica Dolan

Woman Two....Amanda Drew.

02The Octoroon2013050520140525

By Dion Boucicault

Adapted by Mark Ravenhill

As part of a season of plays curated by playwright Mark Ravenhill, BBC Radio 3 presents new production of Dion Boucicault's 1859 melodrama The Octoroon - a play that sparked debates about the abolition of slavery and the role of theatre in politics. The drama was recorded in front of an audience at Theatre Royal Stratford East, the venue that saw an earlier production of the same play in 1885.

The story centres around the inhabitants of the Louisiana plantation of Terrebonne. Zoe, the "octoroon" of the title, is the daughter of its owner Judge Peyton by one of his slaves, but she has been raised as part of the family. When the Judge dies, the plantation falls into financial ruin and the Judge's handsome nephew George arrives as heir apparent. George and Zoe soon find themselves in love, but their future happiness is thrown into jeopardy by the plantation's evil overseer Jacob McLosky who has dastardly designs on both the property and Zoe. McLosky will stop at nothing - not even murder.

Dion Boucicault's play contains all the elements of great melodrama - doomed love, murder, corruption, and live musical accompaniment throughout. When it first opened, two years before the start of the American Civil War, The Octoroon sparked debates about the abolition of slavery and the role of theatre in politics.

Cast (in alphabetical order):

Mrs Peyton.... Barbara Barnes

Sunnyside.... Geoffrey Burton

Jacob M'Closky.... Steven Hartley

Salem Scudder.... Toby Jones

Wahnotee.... Earl Kim

Dora Sunnyside.... Claire Lams

Paul.... John MacMillan

Zoe.... Amaka Okafor

Ratts.... Paul Stonehouse

Pete.... David Webber

George Peyton.... Trevor White

Music composed and performed by Colin Sell

Director: Sasha Yevtushenko

Production Co-ordinator: Lesley Allan

Studio Managers: Colin Guthrie, Alison Craig, Steve Oak

Executive Producer: Jeremy Mortimer.

The Octoroon, Dion Boucicault's 1859 melodrama, sparked debates about the abolition of slavery and the role of theatre in politics. This production was recorded in front of an audience at Theatre Royal Stratford East, the venue that saw an earlier production of the same play in 1885.

Dion Boucicault's play contains all the elements of great melodrama - doomed love, murder, corruption, and live musical accompaniment throughout.

First broadcast in May 2013.

03Jungle Of Cities20130512

By Bertolt Brecht, in a translation by Anselm Hollo.

Adapted for radio by Mark Ravenhill.

First performed in 1923 (then revised in 1927), 'Im Dickicht der Städte' is one of Brecht's earliest plays, in which he began to move away from the influence of Expressionism towards a new style. His sources ranged from the bizarre facts of a real-life Chicago murder in 1912, to 'Une Saison en Enfer' and the relationship between Rimbaud and Verlaine, to J V Jensen's 'The Wheel' and Upton Sinclair's 'The Jungle'.

He fused them all into this darkly compelling vision of the impossibility of real human contact in 'the crushing impact of cities' - Brecht's vision of the mechanistic inhumanity and poverty of the early twentieth-century city.

Brecht wrote in a programme for the play: 'An idealised fight such as can be seen in the play... is at present only to be found in the theatre.... (Its) simple basic conception is that pure sport might involve two men in a fight which transforms them and their economic circumstances to the point of unrecognisability. The passion for sport is here being classed with all the other passions already at the theatre's disposal.... The territory used for fighting in this play is probably unfamiliar. For the territory so used consists in certain complexes of ideas which a young man like George Garga holds about the family, about marriage, or about his own honour. His opponent uses these complexes of ideas in order to damage him. Moreover, each combatant stimulates such thoughts in the other as must destroy him; he shoots burning arrows into his head.' (translation: Gerhard Nellhaus)

George Garga - Paul Ritter

Shlink - Nicholas Woodeson

The Worm - Kerry Shale

The Baboon - Richard Ridings

Maynes/Pat Manky - Stephen Hogan

Jane Larry - Tracy Wiles

Marie Garga - Melody Grove

John Garga - Nathan Osgood

Mae Garga - Buffy Davis

Man - David Seddon

Producer/Director, Jonquil Panting