A Larkin Double



Episode 1 (of 2): Jill

Dramatised for the first time on BBC Radio 4 by Robin Brooks (Ulysses, I Claudius, The Chandler Season). Starring Samuel Barnett as John Kemp. With Jessica Raine , Richard Goulding and Frank Dillane, and introducing Grace Englert as Jill.

Jill was Philip Larkin's first novel, written when he was 21 and just out of Oxford. John Kemp, a Northern Grammar boy arrives at Oxford for his first term. Socially awkward and inexperienced, he finds he is sharing rooms with the upper class Christopher Warner, whose brash loutish behaviour both intimidates and attracts him.

Jill is a subtle and moving account of a young man facing the big issues of life - sex and class - and retreating into the world of the imagination. In effect, Jill is about Larkin finding himself as a writer - a book about the craft of writing and a young man's journey from boyhood to maturity.

Dramatised by Robin Brooks

Producer/Director: Fiona McAlpine

Sound: Alisdair McGregor

An Allegra production for BBC Radio 4.

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One wintery Saturday in wartime Britain, an exiled girl remembers a holiday romance.

Episode 2 (of 2): A Girl in Winter

Philip Larkin's second and final novel which he wrote in 1946, aged 24, and dramatised for the first time on BBC Radio 4 by Richard Stevens.

In wintery wartime Britain, Katherine Lind, exiled and alone, endures her job as an assistant in an obscure provincial library with an unpleasant boss and unfriendly colleagues. Frozen in time and tragedy, her past is gone - and with it her family, her friends, her old life. She is living moment by moment. But on this cold, bleak Saturday, news from an English family she once knew forces her to relive the idyllic summer she spent with them six years before. Will Katherine's icy heart finally start to melt?

A Girl in Winter is a beautiful evocation of the icy claustrophobia that Philip Larkin himself endured, working in a provincial library in his early twenties, when his career as a poet was only just beginning.

This new radio adaptation stars Carolyn Genzkow, a young German film and television star, based in Berlin. Meeting British radio actors for the first time and performing in English, Carolyn brings wonderful authenticity to the role of the isolated émigré Katherine Lind.

Dramatised by Richard Stevens

Sound by Alisdair McGregor

Producer/Director: Fiona McAlpine

An Allegra production for BBC Radio 4.