Rhapsody In Bohemia

Thirty years after it dominated the charts, a look at Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody.

Cult hit, classic rock, pop's masterpiece? Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen has sparked endless debate over its merits and legacy.

Here, another group of musicians and critics air their views.

They include Times music critic Hilary Finch; classical singer Jane Manning; tribute band 'Freddie Mercury' Rob Comber; film buff Tommy Pearson; singer-songwriter (and unrepentant Queen fan) Andy Watts; broadcaster Andrew Mcgregor and former pop band member Joby Talbot.

So one more time, 'Is this the real life...'.

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20110729 (R4)

Thirty years after it dominated the charts, a look at Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody.

Cult hit, classic rock, pop's masterpiece? Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen has sparked endless debate over its merits and legacy.

Here, another group of musicians and critics air their views.

They include Times music critic Hilary Finch; classical singer Jane Manning; tribute band 'Freddie Mercury' Rob Comber; film buff Tommy Pearson; singer-songwriter (and unrepentant Queen fan) Andy Watts; broadcaster Andrew Mcgregor and former pop band member Joby Talbot.

So one more time, 'Is this the real life...'.In the three decades since the group Queen's extravagant existentialist six minute pop production about 'a poor boy' who'd 'just killed a man' first topped the British charts, Bohemian Rhapsody has become woven into the musical, visual and literary fabric of all our lives - with the exception of Times music critic Hilary Finch who offers here an 'innocent ear' review, having somehow never heard it!

Other musicians and writers - including the classical singer Jane Manning, tribute band 'Freddie Mercury' Rob Comber, singer-songwriter (and unrepentant Queen fan) Andy Watts, film buff Tommy Pearson, broadcaster Andrew McGregor and the composer and former pop band member Joby Talbot - evaluate the song's cultural legacy in this award-winning feature that includes glimpses of Queen themselves and reference to Camus, the Qur'an, commedia dell'arte and, of course, the film comedy Wayne's World.

Producer: Alan Hall

A Falling Tree Production for BBC Radio 4.