The People's Passion, Thursday

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AD04The People's Passion, Thursday: Trial20120405

BBC Radio 4's major series for Holy Week looks at life in our cathedrals now.

Cathedrals still dominate our city centres: once symbols of temporal power, of technological wonder, a vital part of our musical health, and more recently the focus of protest and appeals to a new morality - what do they mean to us now?

A week of original dramas set in a fictional cathedral, and daily features from real ones, explore how our great cathedrals offer an image of the contradictions of faith in twenty-first century Britain.

The People's Passion Mass and Easter Anthem, composed specially for the series by Sasha Johnson Manning, with lyrics written by the poet Michael Symmons Roberts, not only features in the programmes, but has been made freely available by the BBC, and will be sung by over a hundred and forty choirs around Britain and across the world, as we move towards Easter Day.

The People's Passion Mass and Anthem will be broadcast in full on Easter Sunday, as part of Sunday Worship for Easter Day, from Manchester Cathedral.

4/5: Thursday: Trial

by Nick Warburton

Who are all the statues in the Cathedral? Who remembers all the people named on the monuments? And why are there empty spaces? When Samir comes to the Cathedral, with a half-formed plan in his head and the means to carry it out in his bag, he finds out why.

The Old Man....David Bradley

Robert....James Fleet

James Greenstock....Gerard McDermott

Samir....Shane Zaza

Hannah....Emerald O'Hanrahan

Produced and Directed by Jonquil Panting

Original music by Sasha Johnson Manning, with lyrics by Michael Symmons Roberts.

Performed by:

Manchester Chamber Choir, directed by Christopher Stokes, with Jeffrey Makinson (organ), Rob Shorter (tenor), Rebecca Whettam (cello), Jahan Hunter (trumpet) and Holly Marland (recorder).

BBC Singers with Eleanor Gregory (soprano), Margaret Cameron (alto), Chris Bowen (tenor), Stephen Charlesworth (bass) and Andrew Earis (piano).

Andrew Kirk (organ), and the choir of Saint Mary Redcliffe, Bristol.

More People's Passion:

Thursday 5th April at 1345: Loyd Grossman and Baroness Sherlock investigate HEROES AND HERITAGE at Durham Cathedral.

Friday 6th April at 1345: BELIEF AND BELONGING: the philosopher John Gray visits Canterbury to discuss the cathedral and its meaning with the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams.

Friday 6th April at 1415: AFTERNOON DRAMA: FRIDAY: THE ROAD TO EMMAUS.

Samir comes to the cathedral intending to find out about the empty spaces.