|A Beat In Time||20071021||20100725|
Actors Greta Scacchi and Greg Wise delve into poems on the subject of time: lives ticking away as the poets contemplate ageing and change, the rhythm of life and clocks themselves - objects that rule our lives.
With poems and prose by Virginia Woolf, Ts Eliot, Wendy Cope, Sylvia Plath and Shakespeare and music by Haydn, Ravel, John Cage, Bach and Philip Glass
With poems and prose by Virginia Woolf, Ts Eliot, Sylvia Plath and Shakespeare and music by Haydn, Ravel, John Cage, Bach and Philip Glass.
A selection of music and poetry on a theme of Time.
|A Book Of Hours||20080106||20100731|
Amanda Root and Rory Kinnear take an imaginative journey around the clock over the course of 24 hours with poems and prose by Fleur Adcock, John Clare, Shakespeare, Byron, Walt Whitman and Carol Ann Duffy, and music by Sibelius, Debussy, Elvis Costello, Copland and Falla.
Amanda Root and Rory Kinnear take an imaginative journey around the clock over the course of twenty four hours with poems by John Clare, Byron, Louis MacNeice and Carol Ann Duffy and music by Samuel Barber, Schoenberg, Debussy, Ravel and Elvis Costello.
A sequence of words and music which journey around the clock over the course of 24 hours.
|A Change In The Weather *||20080330|
To mark 85 years since the first forecast was broadcast on the BBC, Mark Strong and Niamh Cusack read poetry on the theme of the weather.
Featuring writings by John Donne, AA Milne, W H Auden, Laurence Binyon and Shakespeare interspersed with music from Gene Kelly, Ravel, Gershwin, Flanders and Swann, Mahler, Chopin and Terje Isungset.
|A Chinese Anthology *||20080615|
Wendy Kweh and David Yip read from two millennia of Chinese poetry covering topics such as love, longing, loss, revolution and protest - with an early poem about a hangover.
Plus music from Debussy, Mahler and Puccini as well as Chinese classical music and folk songs.
Part of Radio 3's Focus on China season.
|A Dante Sequence||20070506|
Dante's journey from the infernal underworld to Paradise in The Divine Comedy has inspired writers and composers through the ages.
In this sequence, poems by W H Auden, Samuel Beckett, Ts Eliot and Stevie Smith are interwoven with translations of the original by Benedict Flynn and Elizabeth Barrett Browning and music by Liszt, Messiaen and Salvatore Sciarrino.
|A Greek Odyssey||20121202|
Words and Music on the theme of Greece, from classical antiquity to modern day Greece, gripped by austerity.
Sian Phillips and Timothy West read the classical poetry of Euripedes and Homer, defiant verses against the 1960s Junta by Nobel prize winner George Seferis, and contemporary poetry about Greece and the financial crisis.
There is poetry by Lord Byron, regarded as a national hero in Greece for joining their fight for independence, and readings from Gerald Durrell's My Family and Other Animals, about his childhood in Corfu, and Louis de Berniere's novel Captain Corelli's Mandolin, set on the island of Kefalonia during the occupation of World War II.
The selection of music includes Greek composers such as Mikis Theodorakis (born 1925), best known for his film-scores Zorba the Greek and Z, plus opera settings of great Greek mythology, including Richard Strauss's Ariadne auf Naxos and Monteverdi's Orfeo.
Producer: Timothy Prosser.
|A Song Of The Seasons||20070429||20070805|
Anthony Calf and Rebecca Saire read poems in an uninterrupted sequence of music, poetry and prose on the theme of the seasons.
Including Thomas Hardy's During Wind and Rain, Philip Larkin's And now the leaves suddenly lose strength, and AE Housman's Loveliest of Trees.
With music by Vivaldi, Piazzolla, Debussy and Britten.
Anthony Calf and Keeley Hawes read poems in an uninterrupted sequence of music, poetry and prose on the theme of the seasons.
Including A Song of the Seasons by Alfred Perceval Graves, Thomas Hardy's During Wind and Rain, Philip Larkin's And now the leaves suddenly lose strength, and AE Housman's Loveliest of Trees.
With music by Vivaldi, Astor Piazzolla, Tchaikovsky, Debussy and Britten.
|A Traveller's Path||20070826|
As many will be experiencing the inevitable travel chaos of the late summer bank holiday weekend, this sequence of poetry and music explores the idea of the journey.
Melanie Kilburn and Joe Dunlop read a selection from Tennyson, Plath, Baudelaire and Wordsworth, with archive readings from John Betjeman and Philip Larkin.
Music includes Nielsen's Helios Overture, Vaughan Williams's Songs of Travel and Ligeti's Lux Aeterna.
"Abundance: plenty, excess and enough."
Hayley Carmichael and Nicholas Farrell read poems by Ted Hughes, Louis MacNeice and Thomas Campion with music from Prokofiev, Dutilleux and Thomas Tallis.
Producer NATALIE STEED.
Music and poetry on the theme of abundance read by Nicholas Farrell and Hayley Carmichael.
Robinson Crusoe is stranded without one, Yann Martel's Pi Patel is stranded with a tiger on one, and Jerome K. Jerome's Three Men are causing chaos mucking about on one. Boats feature frequently in literature and poetry as a means of exploring, escaping or just enjoying the water. Today's Words and Music features famous fictional boats along with important real life vessels such as Captain Cook's explorers, the Titanic, and those used during the Dunkirk landings. Extracts are read by Anne-Marie Duff and Jonathan Keeble and accompanied by nautical music from Wagner, Vaughan Williams, Debussy and Nick Drake.
Producer - Ellie Mant.
|All India Radio *||20090816|
A sequence of poetry, prose and music celebrating literature and song from the Asian subcontinent.
With readings from Meera Syal and Art Malik, and featuring ragas to rap, from Kerala to Calcutta.
A celebration of literature and music from the Asian subcontinent.
|All The World's A Stage||20110508||20111226|
The lights, the greasepaint, the roar of applause: there's no business like show business and this week's Words and Music turns the spotlight on the theatre and showbiz. Actors have fascinated audiences from ancient Greece through to the groundlings of Shakespeare's Globe, on into modern movie houses; and the theatre has been both celebrated as a grand metaphor for life and denigrated as the the site of moral decay. Henry Goodman and Samantha Bond read from work by Shakespeare, Thomas Hardy, John Dryden, T.S Eliot and Dorothy Parker, accompanied by the music of Puccini, Irving Berlin, Purcell, Sondheim and Thomas Ades.
Producer: Georgia Mann.
Texts and music related to theatre and showbusiness. With Henry Goodman and Samantha Bond.
The lights, the greasepaint, the roar of applause: there's no business like show business and this week's Words and Music turns the spotlight on the theatre and showbiz.
Actors have fascinated audiences from ancient Greece through to the groundlings of Shakespeare's Globe, on into modern movie houses; and the theatre has been both celebrated as a grand metaphor for life and denigrated as the the site of moral decay.
Henry Goodman and Samantha Bond read from work by Shakespeare, Thomas Hardy, John Dryden, T.S Eliot and Dorothy Parker, accompanied by the music of Puccini, Irving Berlin, Purcell, Sondheim and Thomas Ades.
Texts and music related to theatre and showbusiness.
With Henry Goodman and Samantha Bond
A sequence of poetry and music inspired by the world seen from a great height, the flight of birds and the romance of mountain tops.
Musical evocations of mountains by Sibelius, Strauss and Liszt sit with poems by Shelley and Petrarch.
Anton Lesser and Lesley Sharp read works by Ted Hughes, Pablo Neruda and EE Cummings which describe the world of birds in flight, and music by composers including Haydn, Honegger and George Benjamin evokes the same subject.
Musical evocations of mountains by Sibelius, Strauss and Liszt sit with work by Shelley and John Evelyn.
Anton Lesser and Lesley Sharp read works by Ted Hughes, Pablo Neruda and J.A.
Baker which describe the world of birds in flight, and music by composers including Haydn, J.S.
Bach and Richard Strauss evokes the same subject.
Texts and music inspired by the world seen from above, birds in flight, and mountain tops.
|An American Landscape||20090301||20090927|
On a cold, gusting morning of January 1961 the poet Robert Frost set out to read a specially composed poem at the inauguration of John F Kennedy, the man on whom all America's hopes were pinned.
But the sun's glare and the newness of the poem robbed Frost of his ability, his confidence, to read.
He fell back on a poem he'd written in 1942.
The Gift Outright explores in its few lines one of the deepest and darkest matters facing Americans: the nature of their brief relationship with the land, a land once occupied by others.
The poem, read by Jeff Perry is followed by Virgil Thomson's film score The Plow That Broke the Plains, which was sponsored by the United States Resettlement Administration.
As the orchestrator of Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue, Ferde Grofé couldn't have been closer to the heart of American music.
In 1916, Grofé drove across the Arizona desert with a group of friends to watch the sun rise over the Grand Canyon.
He was later inspired by the experience to compose his famous Grand Canyon Suite.
Some years before, in the late 1860's John Wesley Powell, a soldier turned naturalist embarked on the first geological survey of the Grand Canyon.
His journal, which starts as a dry analysis of rock samples and description of geological formations finally becomes a painting and a hymn of praise to this unique American landscape.
I found writer and composer speaking in one language in their breathless excitement in the presence of the Grand Canyon.
I think you'll agree that Grofé's music and Powell's journal exactly describe each other.
Etta Baker's Appalachian guitar music is followed by Copland's take on the same region: part of his ballet score Appalachian Spring.
The White Mountains, part of the Appalachian mountains, the most rugged in New England, were visited in the 1830s by the novelist Nathaniel Hawthorne who wrote an awe-inspiring account of his trip.
His connection with the area was forever sealed by his death there on a subsequent visit many years later.
Copland's classic orchestration of the Shaker hymn Simple Gifts ends this section and is itself topped off by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir's own version of the original hymn.
The composer Philip Glass has composed America with a photographer's eye, his unique, self-styled voice, mapping America and American life and shipping it across the world as the soundtrack of numerous films.
His early score to The Photographer, unswerving in its forward drive is the adjunct to Robert Lowell's haunting poem, The Mouth of the Hudson, a description of a man standing on an outcrop above a railroad siding and watching the trains switching beneath him.
It's a neutral description until the word ‘unforgivable' at the end.
The 20th century American composer Roy Harris was born in 1898 to poor parents, in a log cabin in Oklahoma, on Abraham Lincoln's birthday.
He had the perfect opportunity to survey the American landscape as he worked for many years as a trucker, criss-crossing the continent.
You can hear the lie of the land in his masterpiece Symphony No.3.
I mixed the symphony with John Ashbery's poem Pyrography, an elliptical commentary of America, written to accompany a travelling exhibition of American landscape paintings.
We end with Charles Ives, possibly the composer who captured the spirit of America better than any other.
Whilst Harris was a trucker, Ives's main job was in insurance.
That was no bar to him writing his totally original and uncompromising musical reflection of the America he saw and heard.
His Three Places in New England here prepares the way for Henry James's reflection on the New England landscape, which I have mixed with Ives's contemplative masterpiece The Unanswered Question.
Appropriately, that piece ends the programme.
actors ian barford and jeff perry read works on the theme of the american landscape
Words and Music/Ancient Greece
Actors Tim McMullan and Clare Higgins read poems and prose extracts by Shakespeare, Keats, Auden and Homer etc on the subject of Ancient Greece.
With music by Schubert, Tippett, Bernstein, Stravinsky and Ravel
The culture and mythology of Ancient Greece have inspired a wide range of writers and composers: the plays of the Elizabethan dramatists William Shakespeare and Christopher Marlowe; the dramas of Racine during the 17th Century; Goethe; the Romantics Keats, Tennyson and Matthew Arnold; and in the 20th Century Yeats, Auden and Greece’s own Cavafy.
Cavafy’s Ithaka and Tennyson’s Ulysses both, in different ways, explore the notion of The Journey.
And their reference point is one of the central myths of ancient Greek culture, the journey of Ulysses/Odysseus back to his homeland of Ithaka after the end of the Trojan War as recounted in Homer’s great epic the Odyssey.
And so we start this sequence with the famous opening to Homer’s Odyssey where the poet invokes the muse for inspiration and describes Ulysses/Odysseus (“the man of many devices”) as he sets out on his return journey.
And before that, Keats, whose reading of Homer in the translations of George Chapman was a life-changing experience (“Much have I travelled in the realms of Gold”).
It was the Greek king Menelaus’s wife, Helen who indirectly caused the Trojan War by running off with the Trojan Prince, Paris.
Offenbach takes a sardonic view of the whole affair as the Greek kings and heroes march on in La Belle Hélène.
But Christopher Marlowe and Richard Strauss allow themselves to be swept up in her overwhelming beauty.
The introductions to Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida and Tippett’s King Priam both catapult us into the broil of the Trojan War itself.
In The Shield of Achilles Auden reflects bitterly on the differences between the Greek world as described by Homer—a world where, even amid warfare, imagination naturally ran to scenes of peace—and the world of totalitarian horror Auden himself imagines.
At the same time, Auden criticizes Homer for attributing glory to warriors.
Auden's moral opprobrium is directed, not at Thetis or Hephaestus, but at "the strong iron-hearted man-slaying Achilles."
But, away from the battle we see a softer side of Achilles in his tent, as he fantasizes with his friend Patroclus about their life after the war has finished.
The love of Achilles for Patroclus became one of the icons of male romantic love for the Greeks.
Cavafy muses on The Horses of Achilles who are upset by the death of Patroclus and mourn the “eternal disaster of death”.
The Agathon movement from Bernstein’s Serenade (after Plato’s Symposium) leads from the Cavafy to Agathon’s speech in praise of love from Plato’s Symposium.
Ancient Greece seems to have been a very male-dominated society, with women definitely occupying a lower rung of importance.
However Greek tragedy has given us some of the strongest female characters in world literature: Medea, Clytemnestra, Elektra and Phaedra whose obsessive sexual passion for the virginal Hippolytus ends in disaster (Racine, Britten)
The Greek male by contrast could either have been all-male, all-conquering heroes such as Odysseus and Achilles; or at the other extreme they were chaste epicene youths such as Hippolytus or Ganymede (Goethe, Schubert)
We come full circle with Yeats’s poem Leda and the Swan in which Zeus disguises himself as a swan in order to rape Leda who eventually gives birth to Helen whose elopement with Paris triggers the Trojan War.
The journey to Ancient Greece ends on the slopes of Mount Parnassus with Apollo, the Greek god of poetry inspiring the 9 muses (Stravinsky, Matthew Arnold).
And the sequence fades away as Words and Music become one in the wordless conclusion to Strauss’s An dem Baum
Daphne: Daphne transformed into a laurel tree by Apollo.
Clive Portbury (producer)
Poetry and music on the theme of Ancient Greece.
Readings by Tim McMullan, Clare Higgins.
Actors Tim McMullan and Clare Higgins read poems and prose by Shakespeare, Keats, Byron, Auden, Homer and Euripides on the subject of Ancient Greece.
With music by Schubert, Tippett, Bernstein, Stravinsky, Vaughan-Williams and Ravel.
Actress Fiona Shaw introduces a selection of poetry and prose on the theme of animals, wild and domestic, including works by Ted Hughes, Elizabeth Bishop, William Golding, Lewis Carroll and Paul Durcan, with music by Sibelius, Schumann, Schubert, John Tavener and Poulenc.
Olivia Williams and Oliver Ford Davies read poems and prose inspired by apples with work by Keats, Kafka and Christina Rossetti and music by Schumann, Purcell and Janacek.
Apples are such a common place food and yet have been deployed in literature and myth to mean much more than the crisp bite and juicy, healthy froth on the tongue. They are a symbol of temptation, seduction and the fall of man as well as, in the savouring of the old names of disregarded varieties, a sort of nostalgic longing for an England of abundant orchards.
Texts and music inspired by apples, with readings by Olivia Williams and Oliver Ford.
Apples are such a common place food and yet have been deployed in literature and myth to mean much more than the crisp bite and juicy, healthy froth on the tongue.
They are a symbol of temptation, seduction and the fall of man as well as, in the savouring of the old names of disregarded varieties, a sort of nostalgic longing for an England of abundant orchards.
Texts and music on the theme of architecture. Readings: Indira Varma and Robert Glenister.
Indira Varma and Robert Glenister read poetry and prose on the subject of architecture and the built environment, from the earliest known treatise by Vitruvius to J.G. Ballard's dystopian vision of the modern high-rise. Other texts include poems by Thomas Hardy, Philip Larkin and Stephen Spender, critical writing by John Ruskin and Robert Venturi, and a passage from Milton's Paradise Lost. With music from Dufay, Stravinsky, Gabrieli, Varese, Debussy, Widor and Mussorgsky.
|At The Movies||20091227||20101227|
An edition of BBC Radio 3's weekly mixture of poetry, prose and music inspired by the movies.
Poets and composers have been associated with the cinema since it began well over a hundred years ago.
In the early years, artists such the Russian poet Mayakovsky, Jean Cocteau, W H Auden and Bertolt Brecht were all involved as were composers William Walton, Erich Korngold, Max Steiner and Elmer Bernstein.
Poems include Tony Harrison's Continuous, George Szirtes's In Memoriam Busby Berkeley, Carol Ann Duffy's Big Sue and Now Voyager, ee cummings's your slightest look (heard in Woody Allen's film Hannah and Her Sisters) and Roger McGough's If Life's a Lousy Picture, Why Not Leave before the End?
Plus music by Michael Nyman, Mozart, Schumann, Bernard Hermann, Aubert, Miles Davis, Nino Rota, Jerry Goldsmith and Ennio Morricone.
A mixture of poetry, prose and music inspired by film.
A selection of poetry, prose and music inspired by the movies.
In the early years Russian poet Mayakovsky, Jean Cocteau, W.H.
Auden and Bertolt Brecht were all involved as were the composers William Walton, Erich Korngold, Max Steiner and Elmer Bernstein.
In Words and Music at the Movies poems include Tony Harrison's 'Continuous', Carol Ann Duffy's 'Big Sue and Now Voyager', ee cummings' 'your slightest look' (heard in Woody Allen's 'Hannah and her Sisters') and Roger McGough's 'If life's a lousy picture, why not leave before the end?' with music from Michael Nyman, Mozart, Schumann, Bernard Hermann, Aubert, Miles Davis, Nino Rota, Jerry Goldsmith and Ennio Morricone.
The readers are Barbara Flynn and William Hope.
A sequence of poetry, prose and music on the theme of atonement, with readings by Simon Russell Beale and Adjoa Andoh.
Featuring works by John Milton, Emily Dickinson, Anton Chekhov, CS Lewis, Antjie Krog and Kit Wright, accompanied by the music of Samuel Barber, Max Bruch, Benjamin Wallfisch, Dario Marianelli and Barry Adamson.
Poetry and music on the theme of atonement.
Readings by Simon Russell Beale, Adjoa Andoh.
Writer and broadcaster Armando Iannucci selects poetry, prose and music around the theme of authority, spanning gods, kings, the state and parents, and encompassing anarchy, rebellion and disobedience.
Including Pope's Essay on Man and excerpts from Milton's Paradise Lost, Primo Levi's If This Is A Man and Orwell's Shooting an Elephant, with music by Britten, Respighi, Joni Mitchell and Copland's Lincoln Portrait narrated by Margaret Thatcher
A sequence of music, poetry and prose united by the theme of awakenings.
Including readings by Peter Marinker and Hattie Morahan from the work of Mary Shelley, A E Housman, Edward Thomas, Anne Bronte and Percy Bysshe Shelley.
With music by Handel, Bach, Stravinsky and Britten.
A sequence of poetry, prose and music on the theme of awakenings.
Every Sunday evening Radio 3 brings you a sequence of music, poetry and prose united by a theme: this week work about awakenings.
|Ballad Of The Northern Lights||20080803||20090912|
Douglas Hodge and Stella Gonet read poetry and prose on the theme of the North - from Ted Hughes, Katrina Porteous, Philip Larkin and Kathleen Jamie.
Music includes Sibelius' Symphony No 4, Delius' North Country Sketches, Holst's A Moorside Suite and Ewan MacColl's The Shoals of Herring.
Poems and music on the theme of the North.
Readings are by Stella Gonet and Douglas Hodge
A thing of beauty is a joy forever.' John Keats' paean is celebration of that which has inspired love, reverence and harmony. Beauty is an elevation of the senses or a perfect balance of nature. In this edition of Words and Music, Eve Best and Don Warrington put down their vanity mirrors and take the words of Baudelaire, Sara Teasdale and Oscar Wilde to explore what became, for Narcissus, a watery obsession. With music from Mendelssohn, Delius and Wagner.
Texts and music on the theme of beauty, with readings by Eve Best and Don Warrington.
1989: Twentieth Anniversary
Berlin may not be as beautiful as Paris; it may not have the brash allure of Rome or even London's muscularity; but no one can think of the twentieth century without thinking of Germany's capital.
It was on the front line between two of the most powerful ideologies of modern times - communism and capitalism.
It was Hitler's stage when he seized power in 1933, and now it stands poised between a resurgent Russia in the East and a Europe forging a new identity in the West.
Actors Henry Goodman and Liz Sutherland read poems and prose to evoke the city's history, alongside a rich array of music.
Including Strauss, Mendelssohn and Eisler, as well as Weill and U2.
With readings by Alfred Doblin, Joseph Roth, Bertolt Brecht, Gunter Grass, Peter Schneider and Nazim Hikmet.
Words and music on the theme of Berlin, with readings by Henry Goodman and Liz Sutherland.
Tonight's actors are Henry Goodman and Liz Sutherland and you should probably listen out too for the supporting cast which includes Hitler and John F Kennedy!
Quintet No 1
Extract from Flight Without End
Reader: Henry Goodman
From Achtung Baby
Extract from Emil and the Detectives
Ute Lemper, John Mauceri
Moritat von Mackie Messer
Composer: Kurt Weill
From Ute Lemper sings Kurt Weill
The Demons of the Cities
The Faber Book of 20th Century German Poems
Composer: Hanns Eisler
Der politische Tucholsky
Deutsche Grammophon LPMS 44025
Of poor B.B
Composer: Alban Berg
Deutsche Grammophon 423 587 -2
Extract from eighth book of Berlin Alexanderplatz
Reader: Liz Sutherland
Deutsche Grammophon 439 039 -2
Ouverture zum “Fliegende Hollander” wie sie eine schlechte Kurkapelle morgens um 7 am Brunnen vom Blat spielt, fur Streichquartett
Composer: Paul Hindemith
Paul Hindemith: Kammermusik
WER 6197-2 286 197-2
Extract from - Berlin – The Downfall
Dennis Russell Davies and Brooklyn Philharmonic Orchestra
Phillips 475 075-2
Extract from The Wall Jumper
The Symphony Orchestra of the Southwest German Radio
Vergangenes – number 2 of the Funf Orchesterstucke op.
Arnold Schoenberg – Funf Orchesterstucke op.16
A German Requiem
Reader: James Fenton
Steh auf Berlin
ZICKZACK ZZ 65
Extract from Stasiland
Ensemble Modern – Josef Bierbichler
Anmut sparet nicht noch Muhe
Heiner Goebbels/Hanns Eisler
CD Code: ECM 4616482
In the Egg
Going to a Town
From Release the Stars
Emine Sevgi Ozdamar
Extract from The Bridge of the Golden Horn
Der Klang der Familie
Sven Rohrig and Matthias Roeingh
Best of Reactive Volume 2
REACT MUSIC REACTCD197
Ashes for Breakfast
To those born later
Philharmonia Choir and Orchestra
EMI 7243 5 675388 2 2
CD 2 track 16
|Beyond Good And Evil||20120819|
Words and Music on the theme of Evil. Readings by Ann Mitchell and Andrew Wincott. With texts from the Bible, Beowulf and Blake. With Music by Berg, Britten and Black Sabbath.
A whirlwind tour through the dark alleys of Evil: from the Garden of Eden in Genesis and Milton's Paradise Lost, to the vampires and dominatrices of Baudelaire and Swinburne, via the black magic of Aleister Crowley and Marlowe, to the apocalyptic visions of Blake and Dante, taking in the Evil lurking in the German forest to the cloven hoof on the carpet where Evil is located by Auden in the everyday world, "unspectacular and always human".
Producer Clive Portbury.
Poetry, prose and music on the theme of evil. Readings by Ann Mitchell and Andrew Wincott.
Claire Skinner and Hugh Bonneville are the readers in a celebration of nature's musicians.
The poems include Milton's Nightingale, Hardy's Darkling Thrush and Tennyson's Blackbird, and the music includes Saint-Saens's Cuckoo, Rameau's Hen and Sibelius's Swan of Tuonela.
Birdsong has fascinated poets and musicians for centuries.
This poetry selection spans 700 years, from Dafydd ap Gwilym's 14th-century hymn to the thrush to RS Thomas's more recent celebration of the blackbird, while the music ranges almost as far, from the Renaissance lute-song The dark is my delight to a section from Einojuhani Rautavaara's atmospheric Cantus arcticus, memorably enriched by the recorded sound of migrating swans.
With a pair of 'catalogues' (opening with Izaak Walton's inventory of the 'nimble musicians of the air'), but for the greater part have chosen to concentrate on those songsters who have inspired the most frequent creative effort.
Most popular among them by far is the nightingale, the thrilling musician of the woods who reduces the other birds to silence with her brilliance in Blake's Milton, sings her traditional song of lost love in Richard Barnfield's As it fell upon a day, and offers encouragement to human lovers in a ravishing air from Rameau's opera Hippolyte et Aricie.
For Leslie Norris the voice of 'the poet's bird' is both pleasure and torment, a spur to the creative act and a reproach to human inadequacy.
Not far behind is the skylark, whose ebullient airborne music - for many people the sound of the British summer - is here celebrated in an anonymous 17th-century poem and in music connecting its song to the cares of lovers from the English folk tradition and by Hoagy Carmichael.
Less virtuosic but no less irresistible to artists have been the cuckoo - the two-note herald of spring humorously imitated by Saint-Saens and argued over in words by Wordsworth and Bunyan - and the owl, whose comforting and disturbing contributions to the soundscape of the winter night are evoked by Edward Thomas and in Dominick Argento's setting of lines from Love's Labour's Lost.
Other composers and poets have essayed more demanding birdsong imitations: Olivier Messiaen's intricately notated representations became a vital part of his own creative personality; Gerard Manley Hopkins ambitiously attempts a verbal characterisation of a woodlark.
Few of these skilful impressions would count for much without some wider resonance.
We have seen that birdsong both marks out the seasons and reminds us of our humble place in the natural world.
But above all, and as all the poets and composers represented in this programme have recognised, birdsong also touches something deep in our hearts, unstopping the streams of love, longing, memory, joy, laughter and melancholy that lie within us all.
Readers:Claire Skinner (cs)Gerard Manley Hopkins: the woodlark (cs)
33.25Hugh Bonneville (hb)
00.00John Milton: sonnet i (hb)
39.39William Blake: milton (excerpt) (cs)
37.26William Wordsworth: to the cuckoo (hb)
08.56alfred, lord tennyson: the blackbird (cs)
17.39alfred, lord tennyson: the dying swan (cs)
01:04.12alison hagley, catherine robbin, john mark ainsleyanonymous: the dark is my delightanonymous: the lark (cs)
00:23.11argento: winter (six elizabethan songs)as above
01:10.27britten: the merry cuckoo; spring, the sweet spring (spring symphony)dafydd ap gwilym: the thrush (hb)
13.49dg 453 433 2
01:02.06edo de waart (conductor)edward thomas: the owl (hb)
01:00.04edward thomas: the unknown bird (hb)
35.24erato 0630 155172
45.20evelyn tubb and michael fieldshoagy carmichael (voice) and bandhoagy carmichael: skylarkhoward haskin and david triestramizaak walton: the compleat angler (excerpt) (hb)
02.05john bunyan: of the cuckoo (cs)
10.16john eliot gardiner (conductor)john lyly: song (cs)
03.59lahti symphony orchestraleman classics lc42801
36.10les arts florissantsleslie norris: nightingales (hb)
54.42marek janowski (conductor)matt molloy (flute) and bandmessiaen: le merle noir (petites esquisses d'oiseaux)musica oscura 070980
38.48nicholas daniel (oboe)ondine ode 1095-2
51.42orchestre philharmonique de radio franceosmo vanska (conductor)pacific jazz cdp746862 2
31.01patricia petibonpaul reade: birdsong (aspects of a landscape)peter hill (piano)philharmonia orchestraphilips 411 419 2
59.07rameau: rossignols amoureux (hippolyte et aricie)rautavaara: swans migrating (cantus arcticus)ravel: oiseaux tristes (miroirs)respighi: l'usignuolo (gli'uccelli)richard barnfield: as it fell upon a day (cs)
46.39rs thomas: a blackbird singing (hb)
18.25saint-saens: le coucou au fond des bois (le carnaval des animaux)saint-saens: voliere (le carnaval des animaux)san francisco symphony orchestrateldec 4509 974452
03.20thomas hardy: the darkling thrush (hb)trad.
english: the lark in the morning: alva (vivien ellis and giles lewin)trad.
irish: the morning thrushtzimon barto (piano)unicorn dkpcd9144
16.26william christie (conductor)
|Birth And Rebirth * *||20080323||20080629|
Josette Simon and Julian Rhind-tutt are the readers in this Easter Day edition, focusing on the theme of babies, flowers and birds, Creation and the Resurrection, and all thing new and reborn.
With poems and texts by Sylvia Plath, Wordsworth, Browning, Christina Rossetti, Dorothy Parker, Walter De La Mare and Margaret Drabble as well as music from Delius, Warlock, Bach and Cleo Laine
Composer Simon Holt, a lifelong admirer of the Spanish poet Federico Garcia Lorca, selects music, poetry and prose reflecting the mages of blood, marriage and the moon which suffuse his best-known play, Blood Wedding, performed on Radio 3 earlier this evening.
Including music by Bach, Berg, Bowie, Marilyn Mozart, Manson, Shostakovich, Schoenberg, Scarlatti and Lorca and Holt themselves, plus actors Ian McDiarmid and Nuria Benet reading extracts from Ts Eliot's Four Quartets, poems by William Empson and Don Paterson, Roberto Calasso's The Marriage of Cadmus and Harmony and Fernando Pessoa's The Book of Disquiet.
A sequence of poetry, prose and music examining the idea of borders - those that are voluntary, those we use to define ourselves, those that baffle us and those we simply have to cross.
With works ranging from Kafka's parable about the construction of the Great Wall of China to Marilynne Robinson's watery meditations on memory and loss; and from Chopin's dramatic exploration of the frontiers between major and minor keys to Ligeti's experiment to create the musical equivalent of a decomposing body.
With readings by Sam West and Penelope Wilton.
Poetry, prose and music on the theme of borders.
Readings by Sam West and Penelope Wilton.
|Brave New Worlds||20110515|
Ideas of the future have provided artists with the freedom of imagination to envisage new worlds, drive through change and reinvent traditional art forms.
These imagined worlds might be oddly familiar, but ones where robots shoulder the burden of manual labour or fear stalks the streets of a rain washed, sky-scraper city.
In religious texts, the philosophical musings of the Metaphysical poets or in sci-fi and other genre fiction this imagination has given rise to both utopian and dystopian visions.
Obsession with the future has also inspired composers to drive through change and reinvent their own art form, pushing the boundaries of composition.
With words from Margaret Atwood, Tennyson and Shelley and music from Tallis, Berlioz and Stockhausen.
Poetry, prose and musicon the theme of the future.
|Bridge Passage *||20081116|
A selection of poetry, prose and music inspired by bridges, with readings by Lindsay Duncan and Adam Godley.
Featuring poetry and prose from Friedrich Holderlin, Edmund Blunden, Longfellow, Dickens, Kafka, Nabokov and Nobel Prize-winning Bosnian writer Ivo Andric.
The music includes works by Stravinsky, Leo Ferre, Handel, Kodaly, Finzi and Gubaidulina.
|By The Sea *||20070318||20071118|
Fiona Shaw and Alex Jennings read a selection of poetry and prose on a sea theme from Elizabeth Bishop, Michael Longley, Charles Dickens, John Masefield and Hugo Williams, with music inspired by the sea by Charles Trenet, Benjamin Britten, Mozart and Mendelssohn.
A sequence of poetry, prose and music evoking the spirit of carnival, with readings by actors Saskia Reeves and Tom Hiddleston.
Including music by Saint-Saens, Constant Lambert, Verdi and Stravinvsky, as well as writings by Poe, Byron, Elizabeth Bishop, EE Cummings and Malcolm Lowry.
Poetry, prose and music evoking the spirit of carnival.
With Saint-Saens, Verdi and Poe.
Turn the world upside down, break all the rules and let the dead talk to the living and what have you got? Nothing less than the spirit of Carnival.
This week Words and Music takes its cue from Rome's Saturnalia and the gris gris of New Orleans.
Carnival may be about laughter and licence but it also acknowledges darkness and unease.
It's a kind of whistling in the dark and a kind of exorcism.
It gives physical form to our fears and with its clowns, zombies and ritual helps us to reconcile ourselves to the obscene, the terrible and the outrageously wonderful in our lives.
Most, if not all of us watch and all of us sometimes wear the mask and join the dance.
Musical intoxication is supplied by the likes of Saint Saens, Constant Lambert, Verdi and Berlioz and the verbal fireworks come courtesy of Edgar Allan Poe, Byron, Elizabeth Bishop, ee cummings, Malcolm Lowry and Goethe with the actors Saskia Reeves and Tom Hiddleston as the Lords of Misrule.
! Kathryn Tickell heads a distinguished musical line-up in this special edition recorded at The Sage Gateshead, as part of Radio 3's Free Thinking Festival.
All kinds of celebratory poetry and prose are read by Donald Mcbride and Zita Frith, including a strong North East flavour evoking the area's landscapes, heroes and heroines.
A special programme of poetry, prose and music, recorded at The Sage Gateshead.
Part of the Free Thinking 2010,
|Chains Of Desire *||20080525|
A sequence of poems, prose and letters read by actors Neil Pearson and Clare Higgins interspersed with music, all connected by the theme of erotic love.
With words by Catullus, Andrew Marvell, Shakespeare, Keats as well as Baudelaire, Flaubert, and Proust (in translation).
The music includes works by Beethoven, Rimsky-Korsakov, Wagner, Dvorak and Orff.
Alison Steadman and Andrew Sachs read poetry and prose exploring clowns as mysterious constructs that evoke an array of emotions: from laughter to tears, happiness to fear, and wonder to pity.
Clowns are seen as solitary, innocent, terrifying, malevolent and sometimes even evil.
The programme captures the many guises of clowns and begins with a homage to Joseph Grimaldi, considered to be the most famous English Clown.
On the first Sunday of every February, clowns gather in the National Clowns' Church (Holy Trinity Church, Dalston, East London) to celebrate the life of Grimaldi, so the beginning of the programme recreates the Grimaldi Service with stanzas from an ode by Thomas Hood read over Stravinsky's Circus Polka arranged for organ.
Then enter the clowns: Verlaine's Parisian circus clown, the foolish country clowns of John Clare and Henry Parrot, Simon Armitage's Clown Punk, Shel Silverstein's tearful, unfunny 'Cloony the Clown' and Heinrich Boll's naive clown in the confusion of post-war Germany.
The familiar figures of the Commedia dell'Arte - Pierrot, Harlequin, Columbine and Pantalon - also begin to emerge from the beginning of the programme and are characterized in Schumann's Carnaval, Op 9, the Pierrot of Bantock and Reger, plus Telemann's Columbine from Ouverture Burlesque.
In the middle of the programme, the 'Clowns' Prayer' recreates the central part of the Grimaldi Service accompanied by Britten's Village Organist's Piece.
The darker side of clowns is revealed through Stephen King's 'It' with Respighi's horrifying depiction of death in the Roman circus (Feste romane), Shakespeare's clown gravediggers from Hamlet over Charlie Chaplin's 'Clown's Last Crazy Act', and Betsy Sholl's ghostly 'saddest man in the world'.
Texts and music focusing on clowns, with readings from Alison Steadman and Andrew Sachs
A sequence of music.
poems and prose on the theme of constraint.
Artists have struggled against restriction, yearning for freedom and yet edges and boundaries can also be tremendous stimuli.
Siobhan Redmond and John Rowe read poems and prose by Rosa Luxemburg, Andrew Marvell, Billy Collins and Emily Dickinson with music by Ethel Smyth, John Cage, Benjamin Britten and Francis Poulenc.
Music and poems on the theme of constraint with Siobhan Redmond and John Rowe.
A selection of poetry, prose and music centring on correspondence - between poets, musicians, lovers and friends.
With writings by Kafka, Ovid and Mary Wollstonecraft interspersed with music from Arthur Honegger, Steve Reich, Charles Mingus and Duke Ellington.
Poetry, prose and music centring on correspondence.
With works Kafka, Ovid and Mingus.
Readers Rafe Spall and Abigail Davies.
'In the end it took me a dictionary to find out the meaning of unrequited'.
So sings the Saturday Boy in Billy Bragg's evocation of the pain of unrequited love.
The dictionary would only have told him that unrequited means unreturned.
Looking into the world of music and poetry he would have found that unrequited love is much more complex and nuanced.
Schooldays are often the start, also for Gwyneth Lewis in her poem 'To the boys I loved who never loved me' which brings back memories of adolescence and makes an important statement in this territory: I was never made less by loving you more.
Unrequited Love can leave someone a sad, winsome and even quite pathetic figure.
However, in reading poetry and listening to music that dealt with this idea it soon becomes clear that once the hope is gone, how the person deals with the love and longing that remains is fertile ground.
The physical decline of Miss Haversham's dress and rooms might be shocking, and the still upper lip fortitude found in the Houseman poetry quite painful, but the determination and self–knowledge demonstrated by both are things I found to be noble and empowering.
The idea of a carrying something inside that isn't just going to go away is also explored in Simon Rae's poem 'Believed'.
This isn't about unrequited love, but is nonetheless a longing for something that's never going to happen.
There is perhaps in all of us a longing for the things we didn't do, the words unspoken, people unkissed, journeys not taken.
This is also touched on in Sophie Hannah's poem To the Memory of Love where Love was Not.
Unrequited Love can be painful, and the love that remains after hope has gone can be the most painful of all.
Sophie Hannah reminds us that however painful the feelings, at least those feelings are there, true and present, and in some way make us real.
There's a great deal of music that can be related to unrequited love.
Brahms and Berlioz come to mind for their devotions to Clara Schumann and Harriet Smithson respectively.
Billie Holiday had to be there not just for the song – she sings 'Love me or Leave me' here – but for her own life and that voice that carries so much loss and pain so beautifully.
The plangent dissonances of early string music are so reminiscent of the pains and stabs of love, and I've included music by Gibbons and Biber.
To finish, I have included the quintet from Wagner's Die Meistersinger where Hans Sachs, one of the most humane and complex of all operatic characters sings of how 'the heart's sweet burden had to be subdued' and renounces his love for Eva.
Consorts For Viols
Laurence Dreyfus/ Phantasm
CAROL ANN DUFFY
Warming her Pearls
Read by Abigail Davies
Film Music 1980–2001
Michael Nyman Band
Read by Rafe Spall
Intermezzo in C Sharp Minor
XXXI (Because I liked you)
Mad About the Boy
All Woman 3
Quality TV ALLWOCD03
Variations On Bei Männern Welche Liebe Fühlen
Variations for Piano and Cello in E Flat Major
Jacqueline du Pré/ Daniel Barenboim
EMI CMS 7630152
Song to Celia
From Great Expectations
Pezzo in forma di Sonatina
Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
Virgin VC 7907982
JOBIM/ DE MORAES/GIMBEL
The Girl From Ipanema
Nigel Kennedy Plays Jazz
Nigel Kennedy / Peter Pettinger
Chandos CHAN 6513
Why is the Rose so Pale
Adagio Piano Concerto No.
23 in A Major K488
Daniel Barenboim/ English Chamber Orchestra
The Heart asks Pleasure First
String Quartet No.2,"Intimate Letters"
Vanbrugh String Quartet
Harper Collins 13812
F Scott Fitzgerald
Excerpt from the Great Gatsby
DONALDSON / KAHN
Love me or leave me
The Very Best of Billie Holiday
The Memory of Love where Love was Not
Rosary Sonata No.1 "The Annunciation"
Pavlo Beznosiuk/ David Roblou
Avie AV 0038
To the Boys I Loved Who Never Loved Me
The Saturday Boy
Brewing Up With Billy Bragg
Cooking Vinyl COOKCD 107
Elizabeth Barrett Browning
Sonnets from the Portuguese, XIII
Ombra Mai Fù
In the run up to the 2009 National Eisteddfod of Wales, the annual festival of Welsh culture and language, Words and Music celebrates the land famous for its poetry and song - from the (Anglo-Welsh) lyrical verse of Dylan Thomas to the Welsh poetry of Gwyneth Lewis.
With the haunting sound of the male voice choir, Wales's leading classical musicians Bryn Terfel and Robert Te,r and some of Wales' most successful pop artists.
Poems are read by Ruth Madoc and Owen Teale.
Ruth Madoc and Owen Teale with poetry and music inspired by Wales.
|Dancing In The Wind||20070722||20080727|
Sara Kestelman and Rory Kinnear read poetry and prose on the theme of childhood.
Including Prayer before Birth by Louis Macneice; Morning Song by Sylvia Plath; Mid-Term Break by Seamus Heaney; and Lord of the Flies by William Golding.
Music includes Mahler's Kindertotenlieder, Rufus Wainwright's The Art Teacher, John Tavener's To a child dancing in the wind, Schumann's Kinderszenen and Hans Kraas' Brundibar.
In 1830, the first railway passenger service in the world was established between Manchester and Liverpool; ever since railways have exerted their special fascination, not least with writers and musicians. They suggest adventure and romance, excitement... and fear. Dickens had a strong dislike of trains, but couldn't ignore them in his fiction.
The path of a train can mirror a journey through life. The 19th century Parisian railway provided a powerful backdrop to Emile Zola's exploration of the darker side of human nature in La Bête Humaine; while for the American novelist Nathaniel Hawthorne, the train was the means for a soul's symbolic journey towards spiritual fulfilment. Trains mean rendezvous, departure, loss and transportation. For some, the incessant drive of a great steam engine is the epitome of the industrial world. For one poet, the clickety-clack of metal wheels on metal rails chimes into something primeval..
Jonathan Pryce and Eleanor Bron read poems and texts celebrating our relationship with railways by Zola, Hawthorne, Dickens, Wilfred Owen, Hardy, Larkin, Tolstoy and Primo Levi, with "train" music from Bruckner, Rossini, Offenbach, Villa-Lobos, Ives, Britten, Langgaard, Bainbridge, Reich, Meade "Lux" Lewis and Elvis Presley.
Texts and music celebrating railways, with readings by Jonathan Pryce and Eleanor Bron.
|Do Not Go Gentle *||20090524||20091230|
Barbara Jefford and Neville Jason explore the adventure of entering our 'third age', and the challenges and consolations of old age.
With readings from Shakespeare, Yeats, Browning, Dylan Thomas, Roger McGough and Dannie Abse, and music including Mozart, Schubert, Chopin, Scarlatti, Villa-Lobos, John Taverner, Leiber & Stoller, Jerome Kern, and The Beatles.
Barbara Jefford and Neville Jason explore the adventure of entering old age.
With readings from Shakespeare, Yeats, Browning, Dylan Thomas, Roger Mcgough and Dannie Abse, and music including Verdi, Mahler, Strauss, Beethoven, Ravel and Jerome Kern.
|Ecstasy * *||20071104||20080720|
A sequence of music and poetry evoking states of rapture.
Religious ecstasy is explored through poems by John Donne and George Herbert, and music by Messiaen and Robert Carver.
The Romantic obsession with the mind-altering power of the outdoor world is reflected in works by Wordsworth and Schubert.
Musical evocations of ecstatic feelings include pieces by Scriabin and Thomas Ades, while Shakespeare and Emily Dickinson provide a poetic depiction of the elation felt by lovers.
Read by Michael Elwyn and Eleanor Bron
A sequence of music and poetry evoking states of rapture, with readings by actors Michael Elwyn and Eleanor Bron.
With works exploring religious ecstasy from John Donne and George Herbert as well as by Olivier Messiaen and Robert Carver.
There are also musical evocations of ecstatic feelings in pieces by Scriabin and Thomas Ades, and poetic depictions of the elation felt by lovers in writings by Shakespeare and Emily Dickinson
This week's Words and Music explores the theme of education. Richard Wilson and Celia Imrie read poetry and prose exploring educational experience, from primary school nature tables and terrifying school mistresses, to the 'cloistral hush' of Oxford University and the darker resonances of learning in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. Musical accompaniment includes work by Barber, Schumann and Britten as well as Bartok, Leopold Mozart, Rufus Wainwright and Brahms.
Texts and music on the theme of education. Readings by Richard Wilson and Celia Imrie
The quest to Empire-build - from the sixteenth century Spanish conquistadors to the nineteenth century British Raj - has inspired some powerful and enduring words and music.
Readers Sian Thomas and Timothy West read poetry and prose which conjures both the era of empire, Rudyard Kiplings' 'The White Man's Burden' and Forster's 'A Passage to India', and the discomfort and melancholy of the post Imperial world, with Derek Walcott's 'Poems on the Passing of an Empire' and Langston Hughes' 'Roar China'.
War poetry offers a disturbing glimpse into the darkest impulses of Empire-building with Hardy's plaintive Drummer Hodge and Siegfried Sassoon's coruscating 'Dulce et Decorum Est' before the heart-rending opening notes of the 'Sanctus' from Benjamin Britten's 'War Requiem'.
Empire-building and enslavement are tragically bound together; in the negro spiritual 'Nobody Knows de Trouble I've Seen' - sung by Barbara Hendricks - and James Weldon Johnson's poem 'Lift Every Voice And Sing' we hear both the sorrowful reality - and joyful rejection - of slavery.
Texts and music on theme of Empire, with readings by Sian Thomas and Timothy West.
One enemy can do more hurt than ten friends can do good.
So said Jonathan Swift, and this week's Words and Music takes a closer look at what we have to fear from those who wish us harm.
Struan Rodger and Siobhan Redmond read work by William Blake, Dorothy Parker, Charles Baudelaire, Elizabeth Barlett and Naomi Shihab Nye, with music from Bach, William Walton, Nick Cave and Shirley Bassey.
Texts and music on the theme of enemies.
Readings by Struan Rodger and Siobhan Redmond
In 1904 Britain and France signed the Entente Cordiale - the formal agreement establishing a special relationship between the two countries. The agreement put in writing something that had existed informally for centuries: a deep cultural understanding, witnessed in the exchange of ideas, music and literature. And despite periods of great turbulence, such as the Napoleonic Wars, Britain and France remained close.
As part of Radio 3's Napoleon Season, this week's edition of Words and Music sails the English Channel to give expression to this special relationship with words by Rimbaud, Wordsworth and Henry James and music from Debussy, George Benjamin and Poulenc.
Texts and music on the theme of epiphany, with readings by Joanna David and Bertie Carvel.
In the Christian tradition, The Epiphany marked one of the first manifestations of God to mankind - to the gentiles - when the Magi or Wise Men were presented to the new-born Christ. It was a moment of revelation, of insight and understanding, as Christ's divinity was revealed.
Richard Strauss's Die heiligen drei KÃ¶nige opens this edition of Words and Music with its mournful and subdued strings. Introducing the religious theme, the piece describes the epic and starlit voyage of the three Magi as they sought the Christ child.
George Mackay Brown's Epiphany Poem, read by Joanna David, describes the horror of this journey: the Magi 'Suffered salt, snow, skulls'. But at the end, the revelation of God to man brings hope and salvation; the first word is made flesh. Strauss expresses the movement from suffering to salvation through the modulation from minor to major key.
The Epiphany has been interpreted by many composers including Jonathan Dove, Judith Bingham and Richard Trunk whose work we hear in this programme.
In contrast, TS Eliot's The Journey of the Magi, read by Bertie Carvel, is a dramatic monologue from the point of view of one wise man. The anguished narrator, rather than expounding the joy of the birth or the beauty of the Eastern star, explains that the coming of Christ brought about the end of his world, 'the old dispensation'. The birth was 'bitter agony for us, like Death, our death.'
In Queen Herod, Carol Ann Duffy subverts the Epiphany story. The poem tells the tale of three queens whose visitation brings a warning: the eastern star heralds the birth of 'a swaggering lad' who will break her daughter's heart. Stansilaw Baranczak's The Three Magi introduces a secular aspect to the theme of epiphany, transposing the story to Communist Poland and the arrest of a dissident: the gold of a watch and the frankincense of cigarette smoke serve as substitutions for the Magi's gifts: 'what is this myrrh, anyway / you'd have to finally look it up / someday.'
Beethoven's Symphony No.3 expresses a secular epiphany in the finale, as its headlong rush is interrupted with a slow section, building to an overwhelming climax; Janacek's Taras Bulba describes a similar epiphanic movement.
Frances Barber and Greg Hicks read poetry and prose exploring the theme of exile.
The texts look at differing reactions to being away from home and its effects, or thinking that home should be somewhere other than it is.
Shakespeare, Du Maurier, Italo Calvino, WB Yeats, AE Housman, Browning, Shelley, John Clare, Edward Lear, and Emily Dickinson provide the words; music from Chabrier, Byrd, Bach and Bob Marley, among others.
Produced by David Papp.
Texts and music on the theme of exile, with readings by Frances Barber and Greg Hicks.
Texts and music exploring the theme of exile.
Readings by Frances Barber and Greg Hicks.
Another chance to hear a revised repeat of Words and Music on the theme of the face.
The face of our mother is the first thing on which we focus when we are born.
From then on, faces take on a huge significance throughout our lives.
We communicate all our emotions through our faces, through our eyes and with words through our lips.
Through our noses we can detect not just when it's time for dinner, but whether somebody is frightened, depressed or attracted to us.
This programme explores this uniquely human phenomenon, surveying all aspects of the face - beauty, youth, ugliness, love, fear.
Then there are the barriers put up when the face is not as it should be, when one cannot see, or one encounters a disfigured face, or eyes that tell a terrible story.
Highly acclaimed actors Michael Maloney and Lesley Sharp read poems and texts by Christina Rossetti, Christopher Marlowe, Ovid, George Barlow and, of course, extracts from Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray".
And there is music by Gershwin, Hildegard of Bingen, Tavener, Purcell, Ivor Gurney, Dowland and George Michael.
Michael Maloney and Lesley Sharp read poems and texts exploring the face.
Michael Maloney and Lesley Sharp are the readers in a programme that explores aspects of the face such as beauty, youth, ugliness, love, fear, blindness, disfigurement and unhappy stories behind a face.
With poems and texts by Walt Whitman, Edward Lear, Marlowe, Ovid and excerpts from Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray interspersed with music by Gershwin, Purcell, John Harle, Ivor Gurney and George Michael"
Poetry and music on the theme of fame and celebrity, read by Imogen Stubbs and Michael Maloney.
This week's programme looks at the value - or cost - of fame.
Can recognition itself bring happiness? What happens when the soft caress of the camera is replaced by the harsh gaze of the paparazzi? Why do so many yearn for their 'fifteen minutes of fame'? And how differently do we view those who have earned their celebrity status through great achievements in life rather than in the film studio?
Writing by Rita Dove, Boris Pasternak, John Clare, Geoffrey Hill, Charles Simic and Emily Dickinson is accompanied by the music of Handel, John Tavener, Stephen Sondheim and Marianne Faithfull.
Texts and music about fame and celebrity.
Readings by Imogen Stubbs and Michael Maloney
Free Thinking 2009
Ian McMillan introduces a special edition, as part of Radio 3's Free Thinking festival.
In an atmospheric evening of poetry and music inspired by family life, County Durham-born actress Gina McKee and Live Theatre's Donald McBride read poems by Philip Larkin, John Clare, Sylvia Plath and Newcastle's own Thomas Whittle.
Plus a newly-commissioned dramatic dialogue for both actors by Karen Laws, Free Thinking Writer-in-Residence.
They are joined by members of the Northern Sinfonia playing works for string quartet by Purcell, Haydn and Dvorak, as well as music from Newcastle-based folk singer Emily Portman and concertina and Northumbrian pipes player Alistair Anderson.
Ian McMillan introduces a special edition recorded from the 2009 Free Thinking festival.
|Fathers And Sons||20121028|
Fathers and their sons -- or should that be sons and their fathers? Whichever way you look at it, it has to be one of the most powerful of human bonds....sometimes nurturing, sometimes destructive but always unavoidable. This evening's Words and Music features two of Britain's best known actors - Sir Freddie Jones and as you might expect under the circumstances, his son Toby. Freddie has starred in everything from The Elephant Man to Emmerdale Farm and Toby is just as ubiquitous - think of Berberian Sound studio, Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy or Dr Who. They stay pretty much in character for the programme - with the odd surprise - to explore this turbulent domestic terrain drawing on Shakespeare, Turgenev, Coleridge and Les Murray as they go. Further illumination, wit and vitality is provided by JS Bach and his son CPE, the Strauss family, Leopold and Wolfgang Mozart and by Bob Dylan and Horace Silver - so something for everyone, as they say.
Producer: Zahid Warley.
A sequence of music and poetry reflecting the age-old obsession with the German legend of Faust.
With readings by Neil Dudgeon and Carolyn Pickles
|Feasting With Panthers||20091004||20100919|
A selection of words and music on the theme of gay love.
Douglas Hodge and Helen McCrory read poems and texts by W.
Auden, Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, A.
Housman and Sappho etc.
Includes music by Szymanowski, Britten and Tchaikovsky.
Texts and music on the theme of gay love.
Readings by Douglas Hodge and Helen McCrory.
A sequence of poetry, prose and music on the theme of gay love, with readings by Douglas Hodge and Helen Mccrory.
Including poems and texts by W H Auden, Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, Shakespeare, AE Housman and Sappho, plus music by Szymanowski, Britten and Tchaikovsky.
Words and music on the theme of gay love, with readings by Douglas Hodge and Helen Mccrory
|Femme Fatales * *||20090118||20091229|
A programme of poetry and music on the theme of the femme fatale, an idea exemplified in some of the most passionate artistic creations, including Medusa, Delilah, Carmen and Lady Macbeth.
Jeremy Northam and Harriet Walter read works by Keats, Spenser, Shakespeare, Wilde, Carol Anne Duffy and Angela Carter, alongside music by Handel, Massenet, Saint-Saens, Richard Strauss, Bizet and Gershwin.
Poetry and music on the theme of the femme fatale.
Jeremy Northam and Harriet Walter read.
With just two months to go before the start of the 2012 Olympics, and inspired by the idea of what motivates athletes to compete, an exploration of the theme of fighting spirit in its many guises.
From Aesop's famous morality tale of the hare and tortoise, through Lewis Carroll's selfish Queen domineering in a game of croquet, to Henry V's call to arms on St Crispin's Day - a range of driven characters reveal what it is that makes them tick.
Actors Alison Steadman and Peter Egan read poetry and prose alongside music including Raymond Scott, Schubert, Wagner, Irving Berlin and Queen.
|Finishing The Hat||20100418||20101228|
Alex Jennings and Carolyn Pickles read poetry and prose from William Carlos Williams, Christina Rossetti, Robert Browning, E.M.
Forster, Fleur Adcock and Thom Gunn.
With music by Ned Rorem, Debussy, Morton Feldman, Mussorgsky, George Gershwin, Respighi and Stephen Sondheim.
Words and music inspired by painting, with readings by Alex Jennings and Carolyn Pickles.
Readers are Alex Jennings and Carolyn Pickles.
Every Sunday evening Radio 3 brings you a sequence of music, poetry and prose united by a theme: this week work inspired by painting and artists.
Forster, Carol Ann Duffy and Thom Gunn.
With music by Ned Rorem, Debussy, Morton Feldman, Mussorgsky, Respighi and Stephen Sondheim.
|Fire And Ice - Fire||20110306|
In the first of two programmes inspired by Robert Frost's poem, 'Fire and Ice', Alex Jennings read poetry and prose inspired by fire with work by Robert Frost, Emily Dickinson, D.H.
Lawrence, William Golding and Carol Ann Duffy with music by Tartini, Peggy Lee, Debussy, Lauridsen, Stravinsky and Falla.
|Fire And Ice - Fire||20120101||20111227|
In the first of two programmes inspired by Robert Frost's poem, 'Fire and Ice', Alex Jennings read poetry and prose inspired by fire with work by Robert Frost, Emily Dickinson, D.H. Lawrence, William Golding and Carol Ann Duffy with music by Tartini, Peggy Lee, Debussy, Lauridsen, Stravinsky and Falla.
Producer Fiona McLean.
Texts and music inspired by fire, with readings by Alex Jennings and Carolyn Pickles
|Fire And Ice - Ice||20110313|
Carolyn Pickles and Alex Jennings read poetry and prose inspired by ice including work by Wordsworth, Byron, Jenni Diski, Helen Dunmore and T.S.
Eliot with music from Tchaikovsky, Wolf, Vaughan Williams and Liszt.
Texts and music inspired by ice, with readings by Carolyn Pickles and Alex Jennings.
|Fire And Ice - Ice||20120108||20111228|
In the second episode of programmes inspired by Robert Frost's poem Fire and Ice Carolyn Pickles and Alex Jennings read poetry and prose on the theme of ice. Fly with the Snow Queen, past the vivid blue icebergs of Antarctica and on to Byron's cold, dark vision of the end of the world.
You'll hear music by Purcell, Vaughan-Wiliams, Rachmaninov and Eliza Carthy as well as poems and prose from Charles Dickens, William Wordsworth, Edmund Spenser, Simon Armitage and Jenny Diski.
Producer Fiona McLean.
Texts and music inspired by ice, with readings by Carolyn Pickles and Alex Jennings
|Flowers Of Evil *||20080518|
The programme explores Baudelaire's Fleurs du mal, an expression of personal torment and the conflict between Catholic morals and debauchery in 19th-Century Paris.
Antony Sher reads from the texts, with Imogen Stubbs reading complementary works by Shakespeare, Thomas Hardy, Walt Whitman, Ezra Pound and Ts Eliot.
With the voice of Jean-Louis Barrault and music influenced by Baudelaire from Debussy, Duparc, Serge Gainsbourg and Diamanda Galas, as well as Takemitsu and Messiaen.
|Food And Drink||20080504||20081123|
With Alison Steadman and Timothy West reading a selection of verse on the theme of food and drink, including Moules a la Mariniere by Elizabeth Garrett, Since by W H Auden and Chocs by Carol Ann Duffy as well as Tony Harrison's A Kumquat for John Keats, Hillaire Belloc's On Food and Elizabeth Bishop's The Fish.
Interwoven with the poetry is Schubert's Trout Quintet, Feast of the Pheasant by Binchois and Fats Waller performing Hold Tight Want Some Seafood Mama.
|Food For Thought *||20090426||20091225|
A selection of poetry, prose and music on the subject of food, with readings by Samantha Bond and Robert Powell.
Including stories from the Bible, poetry by Robert Frost and Carol Anne Duffy as well as writings by Jane Grigson, Marcel Proust, Samuel Pepys and Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa.
Music includes Chabrier, Cage, Schubert, Stravinsky and Bach.
A selection of poetry, prose and music on the subject of food.
|Forty Years Of Poetry On Radio 3 *||20071028|
It's 40 years since Radio 3 made its entrance on the world's stage.
Poetry has been the station's lifeblood from its earliest days, so there's no better way to toast the past and welcome the future than a deep draught of the 'blushful Hippocrene'.
Featuring some of the most arresting performances poets have given on Radio 3 in the past 40 years, from John Ashbery to Derek Walcott, with music to match.
|From London To Paris||20070225||20071202|
With the opening of London's new international terminal to Paris, Sophie Okonedo and Kenneth Cranham read a selection of poetry and prose around the theme of these two great cities.
Readings include words by Samuel Johnson, Wordsworth, Verlaine, George Orwell and Fleur Adcock, and a range of music from Gibbons, Noel Coward, Elgar, Boulez and Yves Montand.
Sophie Okonedo and Kenneth Cranham read a selection of poetry and prose around the theme of two great cities, from Samuel Johnson, Wordsworth and Verlaine to George Orwell and Fleur Adcock.
The programme includes music by Gibbons, Noel Coward, Elgar, Pierre Boulez and Yves Montand.
|Full Of Noises||20090823||20101223|
A sequence of poetry, prose and music exploring the distinction between listening and hearing, with readings by John Paul Connolly and Rebecca Hall.
Including writings by EM Forster, PG Wodehouse, Ian Mcewan, Frances Hodgson Burnett, Jane Austen, Thomas Hardy and Walt Whitman, as well as music from Shostakovich, Tallis, Ravel, Sciarrino, Bach and Part.
A sequence of poetry, prose and music on the theme of hearing and listening.
|Get Thee To A Nunnery||20121007|
Music, poetry and prose on the theme of Nuns. Read by Sheila Hancock and Ellie Kendrick.
From the ghostly nun in Villette by Charlotte Bronte, via the social climbing prioress of Chaucer's Canterbury's Tales, to Shakespeare's virtuous Isabella in Measure for Measure, and the foreboding convent of Rumer Godden's Black Narcissus.
Music includes the penitential nuns of Puccini's Suor Angelica, the tragic nuns of Poulenc's Les Dialogues des Carmelites, and men dressed as nuns in Rossini's Count Ory. There is music composed by nuns, including the soaring 12th-century chants of Hildegard von Bingen, and instrumental music by Vivaldi, who wrote most of his compositions at the hospital and convent school in Venice, the Ospedale della PietÃ .
Sheila Hancock and Scott Handy read poems and prose on the festive theme of giving and receiving gifts.
Through the words of writers from Robert Herrick to O.
Henry, and from Edward Lear to Walt Whitman, Sheila Hancock and Scott Handy unwrap simple gifts of friendship and lavish gifts of love.
They explore the desire of gifts and the rejection of friendships.
Music includes Siegfried Idyll by Wagner, which was composed as a birthday present for his wife Cosima, and Colleen's musical boxes.
Sheila Hancock and Scott Handy read poems and prose about giving and receiving gifts.
Texts and music exploring the colour green. Readings by Niamh McGrady and Sean Barrett.
Has any colour attracted a wider range of associations than green? This Words and Music programme explores its resonance - from emeralds to vegetables and frogs to leprechauns, the greenhorn and the green-ey'd monster, Irish republicanism and international environmentalism - in poetry and prose from Chaucer and Shakespeare to Wilfred Owen, Dylan Thomas and P. G. Wodehouse; and music from Schubert to Maxwell Davies.
Readings: Niamh McGrady and Sean Barrett.
|Gsoh: Good Sense Of Humour||20110123|
This edition of Word & Music draws together a universal theme - what makes you laugh? Or as the personal ads put it: "GSOH", a Good Sense of Humour.
Over the ages, poets and writers have drawn inspiration from the things that make us laugh and musicians have tickled our funny bones with their musical notes.
Sophie Thompson and Sanjeev Bhaskar read a selection works from Ogden Nash, Hilaire Belloc, Shakespeare and Wendy Cope and music to accompany these include the laughing aria from Die Fledermaus, some Erik Satie and a smidgen of Sondheim.
Producer: Belinda Naylor.
Texts and music on the theme of humour.
Readings by Sophie Thompson and Sanjeev Bhaskar.
Jane Horrocks and Rory Kinnear are the readers in this sequence of music, poetry and prose celebrating the many facets of joy; with words from Thomas Hardy, Rabindranath Tagore, Friedrich Schiller among others, and music ranging from Handel to Leonard Cohen, and from Mozart to Randall Thompson to Judy Garland.
Celebrating the many facets of joy, with readings by Jane Horrocks and Rory Kinnear.
Jane Horrocks and Rory Kinnear are the readers in the regular sequence of music, poetry and prose, this week celebrating the many facets of joy, with words from Thomas Hardy, Rabindranath Tagore, Friedrich Schiller among others, and music ranging from Handel to Leonard Cohen, and from Mozart to Randall Thompson to Judy Garland
|Handel Week - Handel's Divas||20090412||20091221|
Geraldine James and Michael Maloney read extracts from journals, newspapers, letters and poetry of Handel's time about the highs and lows of opera and oratorio performances in London.
These are interspersed with music by the composer himself.
In his London operas, Handel provided vehicles for the most famous singers, mostly brought over from Italy.
The infamous rivalries between singers such as Senesino, Cuzzoni and Faustina were played out in public.
Music and poems with extracts from journals and newspapers about Handel's opera singers.
Actor Simon Russell Beale curates a sequence of words and music on the theme of happiness.
Emma Fielding and John Rogan read poems and texts by Wordsworth, Adcock, Shakespeare, AA Milne and Sassoon.
Music eovking the happiness of the texts includes Byrd's Haec dies, Blossom Dearie singing I'm in Love, Prokofiev's Classical Symphony, Adams's China Gates and Wagner's Siegfried Idyll.
A programme devoted to the playwright and actor who died in December 2008, featuring archive recordings of Pinter himself reading poems by Thomas Hardy, Nazim Hikmet and his own work.
Plus new readings by Michael Gambon, including the passage from No Man's Land which the actor read at Pinter's request at the playwright's funeral.
He also reads a passage from Proust's Time Regained, a poem by WS Graham and an unpublished poem heard for the first time, To My Wife, dedicated to Antonia Fraser.
Penelope Wilton's readings include a passage from Old Times and, with Michael Gambon, she reads the passage from Ts Eliot's Little Gidding chosen by Pinter for her to read at his funeral.
Some of the late playwright's favourite music is also featured, including Miles Davis, Bach, Thelonius Monk, Schubert (played by his friend Mitsuko Uchida) and Beethoven, alongside music from one of the films Pinter worked on - The French Lieutenant's Woman.
A programme devoted to Harold Pinter, with recordings of the playwright himself.
Two of Britain's most well loved actors - Celia Imrie and Bill Paterson - read poems and texts on the subject of Healing.
Ranging from Jesus' healing miracles in the Gospels of the New Testatment to Florence Nightingale's advice on nursing, the texts and poems cover all aspects of healing.
Doctors and nurses feature in works by HG Wells, Louisa M Alcott and Richard Gordon.
Then there are spiritual, emotional and political healing as described by authors as diverse as Dorothy Parker, Robert Burns, Carol Ann Duffy and Nelson Mandela, interwoven with music by Wagner, John Adams, Durufle and Sting.
Texts and music on the subject of healing, with readings by Celia Imrie and Bill Paterson.
A sequence of poetry and music on a heroic theme.
Heroes of legend and history, from Beowulf to John F Kennedy, are celebrated in works by Beethoven, Stravinsky and Birtwistle, while poets including Shelley, Robert Graves and W H Auden meditate on the double-edged nature of heroism.
Read by Jamie Glover and Charlie Norfolk.
|Hope And Despair||20091213|
Romola Garai and Tim McMullan read poetry and prose on the theme of hope and despair.
With poetry from Ts Eliot, Tennessee Williams and Emily Dickinson.
Including readings from the works of George Orwell and Roald Dahl, as well as music by Shostakovich, Biber and George Crumb.
A sequence of poetry and music inspired by the sights and sounds of the Iberian Peninsula.
Music by Granados, Falla and Miles Davis is combined with examples of the flamenco and fado traditions, while Andrew Wincott and Yolanda Vazquez read work by Portuguese and Spanish writers such as Lorca and Fernando Pessoa.
This is complemented by atmospheric writing by outsiders such as Byron, Washington Irving and Ted Hughes.
Poetry and music inspired by the peninsula, with flamenco, fado and atmospheric readings.
Music by Granados, de Falla and Miles Davis is combined with examples of the Flamenco and Fado traditions, while Andrew Wincott and Yolanda Vazquez read work by Portuguese and Spanish writers including Lorca and Fernando Pessoa.
|Ideas Of Wilderness||20090621||20101221|
Jenny Agutter and Anton Lesser explore ideas of wilderness from all corners of the globe, reading works by W H Auden, eco-writer Jeffers Robinson, the Australian Elizabeth Brown, Shackleton and the Taoist wilderness literature of Ancient China.
Music includes excerpts from Messiaen's Des Canyons aux Etoiles, Redolfi's Mare Teno, Purcell's Solitude and Shostakovich's 8th String Quartet.
Jenny Agutter and Anton Lesser read works about wilderness from all corners of the globe.
Poetry, prose and music on the theme of illumination, with readings by Sian Thomas and Jamie Glover.
Including works by Rimbaud, Jo Shapcott and Margaret Atwood with accompanying music by Thomas Ades, Arvo Part and Schubert.
Words and music on the theme of illumination.
Readings are by Sian Thomas and Jamie Glover
|Illusions Of Power||20091011||20111221|
A sequence of poetry, prose and music on the theme of power, with readings by Sheila Hancock and Tom Hollander.
With poems from Percy Shelley, Ted Hughes, Rudyard Kipling and Margaret Atwood, as well as music by Prokofiev, Ligeti and Handel.
Please note this programme contains strong language.
Words and music on the theme of power, with readings by Sheila Hancock and Tom Hollander.
|In Search Of England||20070603||20071223|
Harriet Walter and Robert Glenister read a selection of poetry and prose on the theme of England.
Including works by John Agard, Maura Dooley, Robert Browning, Fleur Adcock and George Orwell, with music by Delius, Vaughan Williams, Billy Bragg and Purcell.
|In Search Of The Sublime||20100926||20101229|
The inexorable yearning for transcendence: Stephen Mangan and Adjoa Andoh read prose and poems by Keats, Mary Wollstonecraft and Robert Scott with music by Janacek and Prokofiev.
The human soul's desire for transcendence.
Readings by Stephen Mangan and Adjoa Andoh.
Stephen Mangan and Adjoa Andoh read prose and poetry about mankind's yearning for transcendence.
Writers, artists and composers have delighted in recreating the effects of overwhelming sensation and emotion induced by tempests, terror, jealousy and the serene soar of the soul.
Texts by Keats, Mary Wollstoncraft, Sappho and Frank O'Hara.
With music by Haydn, Thomas Ades, Janacek, Richard Hawley and Lili Boulanger.
|In The House Of God||20090125|
Hugo Thurston and Pookie Quesnel read poetry and prose on the theme of places of worship including work by Philip Larkin, Emily Dickinson and Thomas Hardy, with music by Bach, Britten and Monteverdi.
Hugo Thurston and Pookie Quesnel with readings and music about places of worship.
|In The Microscope *||20090705|
Cheryl Campbell and Douglas Hodge explore the world of science in poetry and prose with work by Miroslav Holub, Mary Shelley, Thomas Hardy, Fleur Adcock and Emily Dickinson and music by Philip Glass, Dvorak, Takemitsu and Bach.
Cheryl Campbell and Douglas Hodge explore the world of science in poetry, prose and music.
|In The Park *||20090913||20091220|
A sequence of poetry, prose and music on the theme of public parks, with readings from Greta Scacchi and Henry Goodman.
Including writing by Ted Hughes, DH Lawrence, Elizabeth Bowen, Graham Greene, Gwen Harwood and Sara Teasdale, as well as music from Handel, Saint-Saens, Debussy, Phyllis Tate and Nina Simone.
Poetry, prose and music on the theme of parks.
Readings by Greta Scacchi and Henry Goodman
A sequence of poetry, prose and music on the theme of parks, with readings from Greta Scacchi and Henry Goodman.
Including writing by Thackeray, DH Lawrence, Elizabeth Bowen, Graham Greene, Gwen Harwood and Sara Teasdale, as well as music from Handel, Debussy, Phyllis Tate, Stephen Sondheim and Charles Ives.
|Innocence And Experience *||20070304|
Imogen Stubbs and Bill Paterson read a selection of poetry and prose around the theme of Blake's Songs of Innocence and Experience.
Featured writers include Emily Dickinson, John Clare, Robert Herrick, Thomas Mann and George Herbert.
Sylvia Plath reads her poem Ariel and Brian Patten's A Blade of Grass, a poem about the loss of innocence.
The programme includes Blake settings by Vaughan Williams, Bernstein's The Age of Anxiety and Tallis's Spem in Alium.
They creep upon the earth, and buzz and flit above us in the air, but we rarely think of them.
This week's Words and Music is devoted to the tiny invertebrate world of insects, and the beauty and variation to be found within.
The grasshopper singing on a summer is celebrated by Josquin's frotolla El Grillo, and the slow patient progress of a snail reflected by Thom Gunn's poem Considering The Snail.
We certainly notice insects that bother us, provoking ire in D H Lawrence's The Mosquito, and Robert Burns's To A Louse, but the invertebrate kingdom brings us great joy as well, through the beauty of butterflies and the industry of bees.
Ewan Bailey and Rachel Atkins read poetry to lead us through this minute, mysterious world.
A selection of poetry and music on the theme of insects.
With poems by Ted Hughes.
Poetry, prose and music devoted to the world of insects, and the beauty and variation to be found within, with readings by Ewan Bailey and Rachel Atkings.
Including Thom Gunn's poem Considering the Snail, DH Lawrence's The Mosquito and Robert Burns' To A Louse, as well as music by Josquin, Roussel, Bartok and Martin Carthy
Actors Christopher Eccleston and Olivia Hallinan read from a selection of love letters - both real and fictional - by Shakespeare, Edith Wharton, Emily Dickinson, Ted Hughes, Keats and Oscar Wilde; including music by Couperin, Wagner, Kurt Weill and Mozart.
Christopher Eccleston and Olivia Hallinan read from love letters - real and fictional.
|Italian Fantasy * *||20080706||20090801|
A sequence of poetry, prose and music inspired by travellers to Italy.
Actors Emily Bruni and Benedict Cumberbatch read poetry, including works by Byron, arch-Italophile Robert Browning and EE Cummings, who depicts numberless hordes of tourists to Italy clutching cameras.
With prose from Henry James, explaining Wordsworth's enthusiasm for a particular Italian pine tree, cookery writer Elizabeth David on white truffles and American writer Eleanor Clark, who found the fountains of Rome surprisingly shocking.
The music includes Berlioz's Harold in Italy inspired by Byron, Bob Dylan's When I paint my masterpiece, Respighi's depictions of the pines and fountains of Rome and the vocal sound of the Italian trallalero team Vagabondo.
Poetry, prose and music inspired by travellers to Italy.
With poetry by Byron and Browning
|John Milton *||20081207|
Poetry and music inspired by Milton's description of 'darkness visible' in Paradise Lost.
For Radio 3's celebration of the 400th anniversary of John Milton's birth, a programme of poetry and music exploring the theme from Paradise Lost of 'darkness visible'.
|Kiss Kiss Bang Bang!||20121223|
Murder, mayhem and lust. The actors Tracy-Ann Oberman and Henry Goodman blunder through the mean streets of the soul - stalked by glamour and dogged by obsession.
What lies at the heart of the labyrinth? Minotaur or man? Fear or delight? We're all fascinated by labyrinths - whether they're an impenetrable jumble of box hedges in the garden of a stately home or the multiplying reflections in a hall of mirrors.
We move through them at the speed of dreams - sometimes as quick as a flicker of lightning sometimes as slow as the drift of sand in an hour glass.
From inside they can appear both menacing and beguiling.
From outside they can be treated as an engaging puzzle but one where the solution is never in doubt.
This evening - should you accept their invitation - you can join Rory Kinnear and Anna Maxwell Martin in a maze of words and music.
Along the way you are likely to bump into George Herbert, Thelonious Monk, Arvo Part, Erik Satie, Jorge Luis Borges, Edwin Muir, Bach and Francis Seyrig - some of them more than once....even if you don't lose your way or your nerve.
Texts and music focusing on labyrinths.
Readings by Anna Maxwell Martin and Rory Kinnear.
An edition of Words and Music about endings with readers Tim Pigott-Smith and Katherine Parkinson.
The subjects include last love and its consolations; death and what may follow; sound fading into silence and Heaven and Hell.
These pieces are often the last words of a writer or a composer's last works and can act as a wry counterpoint, or even a kind of swansong.
So Schubert's 'String Quintet' sits next to John Updike's birthday meditations shortly before his death in 2009; Mozart's 'Requiem' jostles up against the beautiful but bleached words of the narrator in Paul Auster's apocalyptic novel 'In the Country of Last Things'; and The Doors' psychedelic anthem, 'The End', underpins Michael Herr's memories of Vietnam and his eerie vision of a soul slowly unravelling like a parachute.
Producer: Zahid Warley.
Texts and music about endings, with readings by Tim Pigott-Smith and Katherine Parkinson.
|Law And Order||20110424||20111220|
Andrew Buchan (Garrow's Law) and Josette Simon OBE (Casualty, Silent Witness) read poetry and prose about Law and Order.
Following the model used by a popular American TV series of the same name, they begin by focusing on crime itself with T.S.Eliot's mischievous cat Macavity and extracts from "Crime and Punishment" and PD James, followed by the appearance of the police - both the uniformed variety and the private detective.
Then they are in court with Atticus Finch in "To Kill a Mocking Bird" (Harper Lee) and Shakespeare's Portia from "The Merchant of Venice".
Finally sentence is carried out and the notorious highwayman Dick Turpin is hanged and Oscar Wilde is in Reading Gaol writing his famous ballad.
Other writers featured include Seamus Heaney, Arthur Conan Doyle, Roger McGough, Carol Ann Duffy and Alfred Noyes.The texts are interwoven with music by Janacek, Britten, Gilbert and Sullivan, Prokofiev and Henry Mancini.
Andrew Buchan and Josette Simon read poetry and prose about crime, police and the courts.
|Legend Of Orpheus||20121111|
Orpheus, 'the Thracian Bard' and son of Apollo, was the great natural musician of Greek mythology. Readers Mariah Gale and Kobna Holdbrook-Smith celebrate the artistry which had the power to charm even rocks and stones, and the love which took him to the dark Underworld to regain his Eurydice, in words by Rilke, Virgil, Goethe and Carol Ann Duffy, and music by Monteverdi, Handel, Beethoven, Gluck and Birtwistle.
|Let Us Now Praise Famous Men||20120923|
: Tom Goodman-Hill and Emma Fielding are the readers of poems and prose about the celebration of men, the great and the not so noble.
From the Greek and Trojan kings, to the tyrants of the twentieth century via Einstein and the paeans sung by artists to their mentors and heroes. Seamus Heaney mourns Robert Lowell whilst Philip Larkin utters an unalloyed yes to Sidney Bechet.
There's music from Britten, written especially for the cellist Mstislav Rostropovich and an elegy for Philip Sidney by WIlliam Byrd as well as music by John Adams, Mozart and Berlioz.
Producer: Natalie Steed.
|Let's Face The Music And Dance||20110529||20111230|
Words and music on the theme of dance including poetry and prose by Shelley Patrick Kavanagh, William Carlos Williams, T.S. Eliot and Jane Austen with music by Schubert, John Tavener, Poulenc, Fred Astaire and Shostakovich.
Producer: Fiona McLean.
Words and music on the theme of dance read by Imogen Stubbs and Joseph Kloska.
Words and music on the theme of dance including poetry and prose by Shelley Patrick Kavanagh, William Carlos Williams, T.S.
Eliot and Jane Austen with music by Schubert, John Tavener, Poulenc, Fred Astaire and Shostakovich.
|Light Fantastic: The 1950s||20110626|
As part of the Light Fantastic Festival, this week's Words and Music is on the theme of the 1950s with music, poetry and prose from the decade.
A sequence of poetry, prose and music from the 1950s.
An edition of Words and Music dedicated to Locomotion.
A selection of music and poetry provides the short dash through the A-Z of getting from A-B - and steams its way through the implacable human passion for all forms of locomotion.
Readers Claire Rushbrook and Andrew Wincott guide us through a scenic route -- so music from Wagner, Ellington, Mayfield, Eno and Schubert are among the stops on one branch of the journey while words from Marvell, Lear, Patrick Leigh Fermor and E Nesbit are scheduled destinations on the other.
Producer: Zahid Warley.
Texts and music about getting from A to B.
Readers: Claire Rushbrook and Andrew Wincott.
|Lost In The City Of Waters *||20070610||20080127|
Jeremy Irons and Anna Massey explore the splendour and decadence of Venice through the poetry and prose of Longfellow, Browning, Thomas Mann and Marcel Proust.
With music by Luigi Nono, Gounod, Vivaldi, Hahn, Liszt and Gabrieli.
Linked to the Shakespeare theme of this year's Proms, Nicholas Farrell and Miriam Margolyes conjure up words on magic by Shakespeare, Pushkin, Martin Feinstein, Chaucer, Derek Walcott and Keats.
These are accompanied by the music of Wagner, Mendelssohn and Tippett, among others.
|Make The Mark||20110807|
Peter Capaldi and Emily Bruni read poetry and prose on the theme of music, from the metaphysical to the everyday.
The programme explores the wide-ranging facets and inescapable power of music: the mystical concept of the music of the spheres, the power of music in childhood and everyday life, music as a psychological tormentor and the beauty of music in performance.
With poems by Siegfried Sassoon, Walt Whitman, Thomas Hardy and Pablo Neruda, and prose by Nick Hornby and Louis de Bernieres.
Music to compliment the readings includes works by Messiaen, Purcell, Pergolesi, Charles Mingus, Neil Young and Philip Glass.
Peter Capaldi and Emily Bruni read poetry and prose on the theme of music.
The great American essayist, Susan Sontag, once said that we all carry two passports - one that allows us into the kingdom of the well and another, less seldom used, which ushers us into the realm of the sick.
This week's edition of Words and Music is all about that kingdom of malady - from the famous musical sneeze in Kodaly's Hary Janos suite to the balm of Bach's cantata - Ich habe genug.; from Pinter's description of electroconvulsive therapy to John Evelyn's eye- witness account of the removal of a bladder stone.
The readers for this journey into the night-side of life are Rory Kinnear and Anna Maxwell Martin.
A sequence of poetry, prose and music focusing on sickness.
Including Kodaly and Bach.
|Man And Beast||20081026||20090607|
Hermione Norris and Jim Norton are the readers in a sequenece of poetry, prose and music on the theme of the relationship between animals and humans.
Including works by John Donne, Ted Hughes, Seamus Heaney, WH Hudson and Samuel Taylor Coleridge interspersed with music including Barber, Vivaldi, Haydn, Britten, Noel Coward, Tom Waits and Johnny Cash
Radio 3's sequence of music and readings examines the relationship between humans and animals, with readings by Hermione Norris and Jim Norton.
Including poetry and prose by John Donne, Ted Hughes, Seamus Heaney, WH Hudson and Samuel Taylor Coleridge among others, interspersed with music from Barber, Vivaldi, Haydn, Britten, Noel Coward, Tom Waits and Johnny Cash among others.
Poetry, prose and music exploring the relationship between humans and animals.
Sequence of poetry, prose and music on the relationship between man, nature and machines.
Caroline Catz and Anthony Flanagan read a selection of poetry and prose, serious and light-hearted, celebrating the relationship between humankind, nature and machines.
The programme begins with a look at man's use of machinery through history, including words from Karl Marx and Charles Dickens, and music from Bach and the Beach Boys.
Meanwhile, poets Rudyard Kipling and Carl Sandburg look into the minds of machines and imagine how they must feel as they carry out their work. This leads down the shady avenue of artificial intelligence: the endeavour to create the perfect machine in man's image, an idea investigated by Science Fiction writer Philip K Dick. Interspersed are Olympia the doll's aria from Offenbach's Tales of Hoffmann, and music featuring telephones, typewriters and helicopters.
Philip Larkin's poem The Mower hints at the destructive power of machines, as he finds a mauled hedgehog in the blades of his lawnmower, while Kenneth Grahame's animal characters from The Wind in the Willows have a close encounter with an automobile. D.H. Lawrence ponders where it will all lead, and nature and the man-made dance together in the music of Messiaen.
|Mark The Music * *||20091206|
Peter Capaldi and Emily Bruni read poetry and prose on the theme of music, from the metaphysical to the everyday.
The programme explores the wide-ranging facets and inescapable power of music - the mystical concept of the music of the spheres, the power of music in childhood and everyday life, music as a psychological tormentor and the beauty of music in performance.
With poems by Siegfried Sassoon, Walt Whitman, Thomas Hardy, Ian Crichton Smith and Pablo Neruda, and prose by Nick Hornby and Louis De Bernieres.
Music to compliment the readings includes works by Bach, Brahms, Philip Glass and Sigur Ros.
Peter Capaldi and Emily Bruni read poetry and prose on the theme of music.
is often associated with English pastoral images: Maypoles, morris dancing and the gathering of greenery. But there's a darker side too, as May Day has throughout history had an undercurrent of misrule, evil practices and sexual liberty. Sarah Alexander and Julian Rhind-tutt perform poems and prose on the theme by Milton, Chaucer, Herrick and Richmal Crompton, with music including Britten, Debussy, Michael Berkeley, and The Rolling Stones.
Producer - Ellie Mant.
is often associated with English pastoral images: Maypoles, morris dancing and the gathering of greenery.
But there's a darker side too, as May Day has throughout history had an undercurrent of misrule, evil practices and sexual liberty.
Sarah Alexander and Julian Rhind-tutt perform poems and prose on the theme by Milton, Chaucer, Herrick and Richmal Crompton, with music including Britten, Debussy, Michael Berkeley, and The Rolling Stones.
Words and music on the theme of May Day.
Readers: Sarah Alexander and Julian Rhind-tutt
Saskia Reeves and Alex Jennings read poetry and prose by Philip Larkin, Carol Ann Duffy, Lewis Carroll, Billy Collins and Patrick Kavanagh, interspersed with music from Mahler, Joan Baez, the Beatles, Schumann, George Butterworth, Tchaikovsky and Liszt.
|Mendelssohn Weekend - The Great Trip||20090509|
Edward Bennett reads extracts from letters Mendelssohn wrote during the 'Great Trip'.
In 1829, aged 20, the young and impressionable composer embarked on a tour that lasted until 1832.
It was the longest trip undertaken by any musician in modern times and spanned England, Scotland, the Swiss Alps and European cities such as Vienna, Rome and Paris.
The journey concluded in London, a city where Mendelssohn felt particularly at home.
Throughout the trip, Mendelssohn wrote letters to his family about his impressions of the landscape, culture and customs of the different countries he encountered.
It was also a process of self-discovery where he thought about his future plans and his identity as a German.
In London he sees streets shrouded in fog; in Edinburgh he scrambles up Arthur's Seat for a view of the city.
He notes in Vienna that people do nothing at all.
Travelling down the Danube by boat is a highlight and in Pressburg he joins in the celebrations for the crowning of the King of Hungary.
His final destination is London, where he is overwhelmed by the enthusiastic reception by audiences.
The programme includes music written by Mendelssohn alongside music the composer would have heard during his years of travelling.
Edward Bennett reads from Mendelssohn's letters about the composer's travels in Europe.
: neither the fresh hope of beginning nor the reflection of the end but complexity and endurance. Poems by W.H. Auden, Robert Frost and Thomas Hardy are read by Juliet Stevenson and Peter Marinker with music by Shostakovitch, Bach and Ned Rorem.
Texts and music on the theme of middles. Readings by Juliet Stevenson and Peter Marinker.
Words and Music celebrates the miniature this week with music from Webern, Billy Mayerl and Delius and a few well chosen words from Herbert, e e cummings and Gertrude Stein amongst others.
The giants in this magical Lilliput are John Rowe and Lia Williams.
Texts and music focusing on miniatures, with readings by John Rowe and Lia Williams
Kings and Queens have long possessed the imaginations and financed the careers of poets, playwrights and composers. Readers Samantha Bond and Simon Chandler play a host of historical kings and queens, from Shakespeare's Henry V and IV to Schiller's Queen Elizabeth I and Lewis Carroll's Queen of Hearts.
Royal coronations with their pomp and visual grandeur have inspired some of the greatest music ever written. Handel's Zadok the Priest and Walton's Crown Imperial provided the soundtracks to the coronations of George II and VI respectively; and we hear Samuel Pepys relate the incredible sight of '24 violins' at the coronation of Charles II in 1661.
The predicament of kingship was one of Shakespeare's most enduring fascinations, his Henry IV and V soliloquize in some of his greatest verse on the isolation of the ruler's plight, an isolation that may have been understood only too well by Shakespeare's great patron: Elizabeth I. Music by Donizetti and Schumann, and drama by Schiller capture the tragedy of Elizabeth's relationship with her passionate cousin Mary, Queen of Scots; whose last letter we hear, written on the eve of her execution.
This edition of Words and Music explores the theme of monarchs.
Kings and Queens have long possessed the imaginations and financed the careers of poets, playwrights and composers.
Readers Samantha Bond and Simon Chandler play a host of historical kings and queens, from Shakespeare's Henry V and IV to Schiller's Queen Elizabeth I and Lewis Carroll's Queen of Hearts.
Royal coronations with their pomp and visual grandeur have inspired some of the greatest music ever written.
Handel's Zadok the Priest and Walton's Crown Imperial provided the soundtracks to the coronations of George II and VI respectively; and we hear Samuel Pepys relate the incredible sight of '24 violins' at the coronation of Charles II in 1661.
The predicament of kingship was one of Shakespeare's most enduring fascinations, his Henry IV and V soliloquize in some of his greatest verse on the isolation of the ruler's plight, an isolation that may have been understood only too well by Shakespeare's great patron: Elizabeth I.
Music by Donizetti and Schumann, and drama by Schiller capture the tragedy of Elizabeth's relationship with her passionate cousin Mary, Queen of Scots; whose last letter we hear, written on the eve of her execution.
Texts and music on the theme of monarchs.
Readings by Samantha Bond and Simon Chandler.
A selection of poetry and music on the theme of monsters, with readings by Don Warrington and Carolyn Pickles.
Including works by Jack Mapanje, Christina Rossetti, Seamus Heaney, Yeats, Hans Christian Andersen, Robert Browning, Sylvia Plath, Brian Patten, Carol Ann Duffy, Tennyson and Ted Hughes, and music including Grieg, Knussen and Schubert.
NB: This broadcast starts at approximately 22.50
Art Malik and Alexandra Gilbreath read poetry and prose that explores our ancient and continuing fascination with the moon, in various guises: as a symbol of purity, as a capricious, changeable being, as an object to reach in the imagination and through scientific exploration.
With texts by Ben Jonson, William Shakespeare, Charles Baudelaire, Virginia Woolf and Sylvia Plath, and music from Mendelssohn, Debussy, Schumann, Judy Garland, and Radiohead.
Poetry, prose and music about the moon.
Readers: Art Malik and Alexandra Gilbreath.
|Mozart: An Inspiration||20110102|
Mozart's genius has inspired many artists to comment on his musical creativity.
This edition of Words & Music focuses on the writers inspired by Mozart to a new creativity of their own.
Michael Pennington and Olivia Williams read from authors including Eduard Morike, Sara Teasdale, Hardy, Goethe, and Wallace Stevens, accompanied by some of Mozart's finest music.
Texts and music focusing on writers inspired by Mozart to a new creativity of their own.
From the mew of the pussycat to the roar of the lion, Nine Lives pays homage to the musicality and poetry of the feline form.
Juliet Stevenson and Kenneth Cranham read poetry and prose from Rudyard Kipling, T.S.
Eliot, Lewis Carroll, Ruth Padel and Grace Nichols accompanied by music from Saint-Saens, Rossini, Telemann, John Tavener, Ravel and Tchaikovsky.
Producer: Baya Cat
Texts and music on the theme of cats.
Readings by Juliet Stevenson and Kenneth Cranham.
Sian Thomas and William Hope read poetry and prose inspired by the night including work by Neruda, Jackie Kay, Emily Dickinson, John Burnside, A.E.
Housman and Rachel Carson with music by Mozart, Borodin, Takemitsu, Aaron Copland, Steve Reich and Faure.
Producer: Fiona McLean.
Texts and music inspired by the night, with readings by Sian Thomas and William Hope.
"Obsession requires a commendable mental agility", according to Nick Hornby and this edition of Words and Music wrestles with ideas that inexorably take hold of the brain.
Readers are Olivia Colman and Toby Stephens.
There is nothing more absorbing than being in the throes of love, and the more unrequited it is, the more obsessive the lover becomes - from the idée fixe of Berlioz, in his almost gothic passion for Harriet Smithson, to the hormone-fuelled obsession with the teen idol, as suffered by the young Allison Pearson.
But this passion can disintegrate into something more sinister, and so enter the stalker, courtesy of Ian Mcewan and The Police, and the narcissist, taken to fantastical extreme in The Portrait of Dorian Gray.
And there are those whose minds work in a way they struggle to control - Dr Johnson may have had a form of obsessive compulsive disorder, there is the hoarder, the hypochondriac, and the keeper and interpreter of minutiae, like Nick Hornby's football obsessive.
And finally the all-absorbing, all-encompassing epic grand passion, the inability to concentrate on anything else - Ahab's quest for the white whale, and the Arthurian knight's mission to find the Holy Grail.
Music from jazz, pop, rock and classical, including Cole Porter's rather unsettling (in this context) "Night and Day", the romanticism of Schubert, Berlioz and Wagner, and the joyous piling up of insistent ostinati by Herbie Hancock.
Texts and music on the theme of obsession.
Readings by Olivia Colman and Toby Stephens.
|Ode To Autumn *||20080921|
A sequence of music interspersed with readings of poetry and prose on the theme of autumn.
Nicholas Farrell and Rachel Atkins read works by Robert Frost, Yeats, Shakespeare, Emily Dickinson, Yeats and Ted Hughes.
With music by Vaughan Williams, Vivaldi, Mahler, Charlie Parker, Piazzolla and Haydn.
|Ode To Gaia||20070401||20080113|
Sian Thomas and Jamie Glover read poetry and prose on a theme of the state of the planet, including work by Ted Hughes, W H Auden, John Clare, Alice Oswald, Rachel Carson and Philip Larkin.
With music inspired by our landscape by Peter Maxwell Davies, John Cage and Mahler.
|Perchance To Dream||20121230|
Freud argued that dreams could be interpreted, and for many literary characters, such as Winston in 1984 and Tolstoy's Anna Karenina the dream is used as a device to reveal the character's true or subconscious feelings. Nightmares are also well represented, with chilling passages from Moby Dick and Wuthering Heights. There are also aspirational dreams from real people such as Churchill and George Mallory, and literary figures; Jude the Obscure is desperate to escape his miserable life through learning, while Rebecca Sharp sees a rich husband as her salvation. Prophetic and opium-induced dreams also feature, alongside music by Mendelssohn, Berlioz, Stravinsky and Handel. Extracts are read by Sophie Thompson and Chiwetel Ejiofor.
Producer - Ellie Mant.
Physical beauty is the ultimate expression of human perfection. In geometry, the circle is, according to Aristotle, 'the perfect, first, most beautiful form'. This week's Words and Music goes in pursuit of perfection - an often elusive intangible concept for many writers and musicians. It can be an unattainable state, ending only in disappointment and failure. But there is still hope, for comfort can be found in the simplicity and stability of its sibling, imperfection.
A sequence of poetry, prose and music on the theme of perfection.
Physical beauty is the ultimate expression of human perfection. In geometry, the circle is, according to Aristotle, 'the perfect, first, most beautiful form'. This week's Words and Music goes in pursuit of perfection - an often elusive intangible concept for many writers and musicians. It can be an unattainable state, ending only in disappointment and failure. But there is still hope, for comfort can be found in the simplicity and stability of its sibling, imperfection. With readings by Helen Baxendale and David Schofield.
Producer: Gavin Heard
First broadcast in April 2012.
Texts and music on the theme of perfection. Readers: Helen Baxendale and David Schofield.
Season on the BBC.
Louise Jameson and Joshua Richards with poetry, prose and music celebrating the piano.
The piano inspires a kaleidoscope of musical styles, but packs an emotional punch as well. Join actors Louise Jameson and Joshua Richards for poetry and prose that celebrates love, loss, nostalgia, grim determination and joy, all inspired by the piano. With music to match, of course.
|Purcell Weekend - Years Of Wonders *||20090322|
Juliet Stevenson and Kenneth Cranham read prose and poetry describing the momentous times that the composer Henry Purcell would have witnessed.
He was a baby at the Restoration of Charles II to the throne, but would have known the Great Plague and Great Fire of London.
In adulthood, he would have seen both the accession and the forced abdication of James II in the Glorious Revolution of 1688 as well as the coronation of James's daughter Mary and her husband William of Orange.
Readings include excerpts from Pepys, Evelyn, Dryden, Aphra Behn and Defoe, while the music includes Purcell and his contemporaries alongside works from the 20th century.
A programme of words and music spanning the turbulent period of Purcell's lifetime.
|Radio 3 Presenters||20090719|
As part of the BBC Poetry Season, a selection of poems recommended by BBC Radio 3 presenters.
Including work by Gerard Manley Hopkins, Keats, W H Auden, Emily Dickinson, Edna St Vincent Millay and Maya Angelou, and music by Bach, Shostakovich, Nina Simone, Schubert, Martinu and Yasmin Levy.
The choices include Jez Nelson on Langston Hughes's The Negro Speaks of Rivers, Rob Cowan on I Could Not Stop by Emily Dickinson, Fiona Talkington on Sonnet XLVII by Edna St Vincent Millay and Stephen Johnson on September 1, 1939 by W H Auden.
The readers are Tamsin Greig and Alex Jennings.
As part of the BBC Poetry Season, poems and music chosen by BBC Radio 3 presenters.
In our personal lives or on the world stage, reconciliation is an essential part of humankind's co-existence and civility.
It can sometimes be a painful process, admitting our mistakes or failings, but it can also be a moment of celebration where we achieve redemption and forgiveness; where we can put the past behind us and move forward with great hope and optimism.
Actors Harriet Walter and Oliver Dimsdale read poetry by John Donne, Peter Porter and Elizabeth Jennings, with music by Tchaikovsky, John Adams and Nick Cave.
Texts and music related to reconciliation.
Readings by Harriet Walter and Oliver Dimsdale.
Poetry and prose exploring all aspects of shopping and trade, read by Phil Davis (Whitechapel/Silk) and Raquel Cassidy (Lead Balloon/Teachers). From Madame Bovary's compulsive spending and The Mayor of Casterbridge selling his wife to the betrayal of Christ for thirty pieces of silver and Charlie Bucket's life changing purchase of that golden ticket lined Whipple-Scrumptious Fudge-Mallow Delight.
This week's edition of Words and Music satiates itself on the cold dish of revenge. It's an act of passion meted out on our foes, ourselves, love, old age, the sun....So many subjects have been the focus of humankind's ire. Shakespeare's Titus Andronicus opens the programme with a threat to the foul offender who shall quake at the feet of revenge. And we hear music composed for some of literature's most famous revenge scenes: Romeo's revenge on Tybalt for murdering Mercutio; Diana's revenge upon Actaeon for espying her naked; or the chilling revenge of the Pied Piper upon the citizens of Hamelin. With music by Prokofiev, Mendelssohn and Janacek; and words by Carol Ann Duffy, Ted Hughes and Charles Dickens. The readers and Samantha Bond and Kenneth Cranham.
Producer: Gavin Heard.
A journey around provincial France, as Jonathan Firth and Haydn Gwynne read poetry and prose by Paul Verlaine, Gillaume Apollinaire, Elizabeth David and Peter Mayle, with accompanying music by Debussy, Berlioz, Chausson, Josephine Baker and Charles Trenet.
Producer: Lisa Davis.
Music and poetry set in provincial France.
Readings by Jonathan Firth and Haydn Gwynne
A journey to Russia, as imagined by poets and musicians: natives, exiles and foreigners.
Music by French composer Tournemire conjures up the bells of Moscow, while verses by Marina Tsvetaeva give a Russian literary slant on the same subject.
Stravinsky depicts his homeland from the perspective of both resident and emigre, one in an unabashedly Russian vein, the other unmistakably coloured by his exposure to American jazz.
Including poems by Anna Akhmatova, Mikhail Lermontov and Osip Mandelstam, and music by Borodin, John Field and Schnittke.
Readings by Andrew Sachs and Siobhan Redmond.
Including poems by Anna Akhmatova, Mikhail Lermontov and Osip Mandelstam, and music by Borodin, John Field and Benny Goodman
|Say, What Shall We Dance? *||20070415||20080316|
To tie in with the Sunday Feature on Akram Khan, Words and Music is an uninterrupted sequence of music, poetry and prose on the theme of dance.
Including works by Thomas Moore, Laurence Binyon, Rainer Maria Rilke, Philip Larkin, Roger Mcgough and Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe and music by Johann Strauss, Claude Debussy, Louis Andriessen and Benjamin Britten
This week's Words and Music explores Scottish landscape and history.
Jimmy Yuill and Stella Gonet read poems and prose by Lewis Grassic Gibbon, Sorley MacLean, Edwin Muir, Muriel Spark, John Burnside, Jackie Kay and Robert Crawford.
The music reflects Scotland's rich heritage with work from Scottish composers and musicians including James MacMillan, Judith Weir, Tommy Smith, Thea Musgrave, Aly Bain and Jean Redpath as well as from the many composers like Peter Maxwell Davies and Max Bruch who have been inspired by Scotland.
Poetry, prose and music on a Scottish theme.
The readers are Jimmy Yuill and Stella Gonet.
Anna Maxwell Martin and Matthew Macfadyen explore through poetry and prose a subject that has exercised some of the greatest minds of all time: self-improvement.
What is the value of seeking out knowledge, physical improvement and enlightenment through self-teaching and motivation? With words of wisdom from a variety of sources across the ages including Confucius, Kant, Tennyson, Charlotte Bronte and Alan Bennett, together with music by Elgar, Clementi, Rimsky-Korsakov, and Bob Dylan.
Anna Maxwell Martin and Matthew Macfadyen in readings on the subject of self-improvement.
The number seven is considered sacred and symbolic in many cultures around the world and it provides the theme for this programme featuring poetry, prose and verse by Shakespeare, Donne and Ginsberg as well as music from Dave Brubeck, Stockhausen, Glenn Gould and Angela Hewitt.
|Slavery And Freedom||20070325|
The poet and novelist Jackie Kay introduces a selection of poetry and prose on the theme of slavery and freedom including work by Langston Hughes, Fred D'Aguiar, Emily Dickinson, Robert Burns and Paul Laurence Dunbar.
Including music inspired by slavery and freedom by Bessie Smith, Paul Robeson, Beethoven and The Blind Boys of Alabama.
A sequence of poems and music on the theme of sleep, with readings by Lisa Dillon and Adrian Rawlins.
The music is by Peter Warlock, Ivor Gurney, Richard Strauss and The Beatles, and the poetry is by John Keats, Margaret Atwood and Shakespeare.
A sequence of poetry, prose and music exploring the theme of solitude, with readings by Paul Mcgann and Kirsty Besterman.
With works from Alexandre Dumas, William Wordsworth, Philip Larkin, Emily Dickinson and Maya Angelou as well as music from Bach, Delius, Strauss, Scriabin and Thelonius Monk.
Poetry, prose and music exploring the emotion and experience of being alone.
We shut out the hustle and bustle of the outside world and explore the emotion and experience of solitude through a sequence of poetry, prose and music.
Readings by Paul Mcgann and Kirsty Besterman.
With words from Alexandre Dumas, William Wordsworth, Philip Larkin, Emily Dickinson and Maya Angelou and music from Bach, Delius, Strauss, Scriabin and Thelonious Monk.
|Song For Ireland||20090628||20100207|
A sequence of poetry, prose and music exploring the identity of the Irish through the landscape, with readings from Irish actors Lorcan Cranitch and Orla Charlton.
Literature featured spans the 9th century to the present day and includes some of the best-loved Irish poets - WB Yeats, Seamus Heaney, PJ Kavanagh, Derek Mahon and Paul Durcan.
Music ranges from the pastoral idyll of Bax's Moy Mell and the chaotic Irish circus of John Cage's Roaratorio to the sound of Liam O' Flynn on Uillean pipes and young flute player Michael McGoldrick.
Lorcan Cranitch and Orla Charlton with readings evoking the Irish landscape.
Miranda Richarson and Tim Mcmullan read works by Walt Whitman, Arthur C Clarke, Wordsworth and Craig Raine, as well as from Douglas Adams's Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
With music evoking the sound of space, including Brian Eno's Apollo, Holst's The Planets and Frank Sinatra's Fly me to the Moon.
A hymn to speed: agitation and restlessness; frenzied, dynamic performances; and the feverish adrenaline of high-speed travel.
'We declare,' wrote Marinetti in his Manifesto of Futurism, 'that the splendour of the world has been enriched by a new beauty: the beauty of speed.'
With music by John Adams, Charles-Valentin Alkan and Bach; and words by Pablo Neruda, Wordsworth and Emily Dickinson, read by Maxine Peake and Andrew Scott.
Texts and music on the theme of speed with readings by Maxine Peake and Andrew Scott.
A programme exploring the fascination for writers and composers of the world of sport, with readings by Ioan Meredith and Angela Wynter.
Including writing on subjects from cricket and rugby to the more esoteric, such as hang-gliding and rock climbing.
Featuring works from Ian Mcmillan to Jean Binta Breeze, interspersed with music from Henry VIII, Britten and Holst.
Music and poems on the theme of sport read by Angela Wynter and Ioan Meredith
Elgar loved football, Debussy composed a tennis match, and Honegger wrote a musical game of rugby.
Poet Laureates from William Wordsworth to Wole Soyinka and Gwyneth Lewis have all turned their pen to sporting passions.
Sports crowds in return use music and song to raise their hopes and cheer on their flagging sporting heroes, from Sunderland FC, who come out to Prokofiev's Romeo and Juliet, to Liverpool FC's footballing anthem, 'You'll Never Walk Alone'.
Words and Music this week explores the world of sport.
The original Greek Games had their origins in a poetic and musical tradition, and sport - the human endeavour, the triumphs and failures - continues to hold a fascination for writers and composers.
From the obvious sporting worlds of cricket and rugby to the more esoteric, like hang gliding and rock climbing, Ioan Meredith and Angela Wynter read poetry from Ian Mcmillan to Jean Binta Breeze, with music from Ives, Ravel and Holst, the New Zealand All Blacks and Liverpool FC's triumphant Kop.
|Symphony Of A City||20100912|
Emilia Fox and Richard Armitage read poetry and prose on the theme of a 'Symphony of a City', recording and evoking the movement of a city day.
This Words and Music takes as its departure point the silent 'city symphony' documentaries of the 1920s, from Walter Ruttmann's 'Berlin: Symphony of a Great City' to Dziga Vertov's 'The Man with a Movie Camera'.
These were among the first documentaries to take the city as both character and subject, highlighting the inherent musicality of the heterogeneous mass of the modernist city.
The rhythms of daily city life are evoked not just in the subject matter of this poetry and prose but in the very rhythms of their performance.
And yet, we also see that the study of these daily movements of city life does not just belong to the modernists.
The beauty, the energy, and the strange terror of city life, are evoked here by poets and authors across time, from Swift, Dickens and Wordsworth to T.
Eliot, Virginia Woolf and William Carlos Williams.
Music from Gershwin, Varese, Byrd, Steve Reich and Charles Ives.
Emilia Fox & Richard Armitage read poetry & prose on the theme of a 'Symphony of a City'.
What do our clothes say about us and what do we say about them? Are they, as Coco Chanel once said, a reflection of the heart or something merely contingent on the weather? This week's Words and Music, with poems and prose read by Maxine Peake and Ralf Little, is a mischievous examination of our attitudes to what we wear.
Its an adventure in the bespoke - from Achilles' armour to Colline's overcoat with, as you might expect, the odd plunge into the mysteries of underwear and the seductions of the veil.
There'll be compositioins by John Tavener as well as Puccini, Miles Davis and The Coasters, and the lyric poet Robert Herrick will find himself hanging snugly next to the Beat generation's Lawrence Ferlinghetti.
Texts and music about clothing and what it means.
Readings by Maxine Peake, Ralf Little.
A selection of poetry, prose and music examining our attitudes to what we wear.
Including compositions by John Tavener as well as Puccini, Miles Davis and The Coasters, as well as works from lyric poet Robert Herrick and Beat writer Lawrence Ferlinghetti.
Poetry, prose and music examining our attitudes to what we wear.
|Take Me To The River||20100509||20101205|
Every Sunday evening Radio 3 brings you a sequence of music, poetry and prose on a theme, this week inspired by rivers.
Tonight, Juliet Stevenson and Jamie Glover read poetry and prose by Wordsworth, U.A.
Fanthorpe, Ezra Pound, John Clare and Elizabeth Jennings with music by Tippett, Delius, Duke Ellington, Gorecki and Talking Heads.
Texts and music inspired by rivers, with readings by Juliet Stevenson and Jamie Glover
David Haig and Deborah Findlay read poetry and prose inspired by the 1940s, including work by C Day Lewis, John Betjeman, W H Auden, Dannie Abse, Simone de Beauvoir, Louis Aragon and Freya Stark, with music by Prokofiev, Vaughan Williams, Britten, Django Reinhardt and Peggy Lee.
Producer: Lisa Davis.
Texts and music inspired by the 1940s, with readings by David Haig and Deborah Findlay.
Sophie Okonedo and Paul Copley read poetry and prose on the theme of the Afterlife, from heaven and hell to paradise and purgatory.
Ultimately the question of what lies beyond the grave impacts us all.shall we be reunited with lost loved ones or be able to return to those we've left behind in some ghostly form? Shall we find peace at last, eternal damnation, or worse, oblivion?
Hamlet faces his father's ghost, Wilfred Owen's Strange Meeting tells of an encounter between two dead soldiers, and in Paradise Lost Satan considers the advantages of ruling in Hell.
Whilst contemporary novelists Julian Barnes and Alice Seebold place their protagonists in very different versions of Heaven.
With a mixture of accompanying music by John Mccabe, Charles Ives, Britten, Liszt, Schumann, Terry Riley, Steve Reich, Gluck, Keith Jarrett and Johnny Cash.
Texts and music on the theme of the afterlife.
Readings by Sophie Okonedo and Paul Copley
|The Anatomy Of Melancholy||20070930|
Janet Suzman and Heathcote Williams read poems and prose by Robert Burton, Keats, Gray, Tennyson, Owen, Plath, Dickinson and Auden on various aspects of melancholy.
With music by Dowland, Purcell, Schubert, Schumann, Prokofiev and Britten.
|The Ark *||20090920|
What does the story of The Ark mean to us today? Is it a Darwinian fable about survival? Is it a prophecy of impending ecological disaster? Or is it a blunt cautionary tale for an ungodly age?However you choose to read it, the tale of Noah and his Ark has proved perennially fascinating.
Blake and Milton jostle for space in the hold of our virtual ark with comic turns from Chaucer, Julian Barnes and Stanley Holloway amongst others, while actors Claire Skinner and Andrew Scott keep things shipshape.
The musical animals are of the highest pedigree too - so count on hearing from Britten, Saint Saens, Bruch and Rossini.
As a concession to modernity, you can listen to the programme on your own if you insist but if you're really going to enter into the spirit of the enterprise, you should pair off with someone else - 'two by two' was, after all, the traditional arrangement.
A sequence of poetry, prose and music focusing on the story of Noah and the Ark.
|The Art Of Friendship||20100516||20110320|
Readers Robert Lindsay and Diana Quick.
An exploration of the art of friendship as celebrated through the ages in poetry, prose and music.
For all the thousands of poems on love, there are distinctly fewer on what could be seen as love's neglected cousin, friendship.
And yet friendship is as common to the human experience as love, and probably just as necessary.
How should we make friends, keep friends, lose them...? What happens to friendships as we get older? Do men and women see friendship in the same way? What is the true nature of friendship - and is it all it's sometimes cracked up to be?
Words from Plutarch, Sir Francis Bacon, Ogden Nash, Auden, T.S.Eliot, Dorothy L.
Sayers, Edward Thomas and others, with music to complement the readings.
Texts and music about the art of friendship.
Readers are Robert Lindsay and Diana Quick.
For all the thousands of poems on love, there are distincly fewer on what could be seen as love's neglected cousin, friendship.
|The Ascent Of Man||20090215||20101220|
The idea of the ‘Ascent of Man’, triggered by the commemoration of the 200th anniversary of Charles Darwin’s birth, became for me a thrilling passageway to a vast and multi-layered territory.
After reading excerpts from his Journals and Autobiography, in particular those relating to his trip to South America –where my own roots are- a clear idea came to mind: to portray in ‘Words and Music’ the many different types of journeys he made throughout his life.
I mean not only the voyage on board the Beagle, of course, but his other two parallel journeys: the intellectual and spiritual transformations Darwin so bravely went through as he travelled, in body, mind and spirit, in search of the origins of nature.
The texts I’ve selected here to illustrate this three-fold journey, read by actors Henry Goodman and Jemima Rooper, include excerpts from Darwin himself, but also from some Victorian poets, contemporary of the scientist, eager to reflect the influence his innovative vision brought to their craft.
A crucial and modern contribution to the mix though, comes in the shape of readings by Ruth Padel, a prize-winning poet and herself direct descendant of Darwin, who’s written about nature and who contributes here –the way I see it- by putting some of his famous ancestor’s concerns into today’s context.
Her readings include excerpts from her latest book, ‘Darwin: A Life in Poems’, just published to coincide with the famous scientist’s anniversary.
Now, music becomes another voice in this journey: the taped songs of the biggest sea mammals in Hovahaness ‘And God Created Great Whales’, or the ritual dance for the killing of a snake in Revueltas’ ‘Sensemayá’, or the subliminal message of ‘Koyaanisqatsi’ -‘world out of balance’-, Philip Glass’ soundtrack inspired in the language of a native American tribe.
They all represent nature and the world that so much excited Darwin.
Juan Carlos Jaramillo (producer)
Ruth Padel and Henry Goodman read prose and verse exploring the idea of the Ascent of Man.
To mark the 200th anniversary of Darwin's birth, Ruth Padel, a poet as well as his descendant, and Henry Goodman read prose and verse exploring the idea of the Ascent of Man, based on the naturalist's work and travels around the globe.
Padel reads her own verses recreating her ancestor's life and works, while Goodman portrays Darwin, reading texts from the scientist's journals.
This is complemented by other poetry read by Jemima Rooper, inspired by the power of nature, including works by Victorian writers and thinkers influenced by the great naturalist.
|The Beast Within *||20070729|
Actress Fiona Shaw introduces a selection of poetry and prose on the theme of animals, including work by Ted Hughes, Elizabeth Bishop, William Golding, Les Murray, Lewis Carroll and Paul Durcan.
With music by Sibelius, Schumann, Schubert, John Tavener and Poulenc.
|The Doors Of Perception||20100404||20101222|
The unifying idea behind this edition of Words and Music is that reality is variable and personal.
The texts, read by Jim Broadbent and Miranda Richardson, cover the best part of 2000 years from the Bible's Book of Revelation, to last year's "Late" by Christopher Reid.
It's striking that, despite the various ways of coming to that reality (religion, a refined sensibility, illness, mind-altering drugs), these visions share many similarities.
The weird animal hell-on-earth of Revelation is echoed in Thomas De Quincey's opium nightmares; Baudelaire's bedroom (while he's on a high, at least) is as perfect and intoxicating as the heavenly paradise described by the fourth-Century St Ephrem.
Coleridge's trippy "Kubla Khan" features another Oriental paradise with hints of something disturbing but distant; Alice's mushroom has very peculiar effects.
The experience of Julian of Norwich, alternating between ecstasy and pain, and the fevered ravings of Sylvia Plath are strangely similar; Blake sees the infinite in the small and apparently insignificant, and after a long marriage Christopher Reid still feels the presence of his dead wife.
Funnily enough, it's Aldous Huxley with his rather too well organised mescalin experiment who stays earthbound.
The music ranges from Bach to Zappa, by way of (among others) Mahler, Ravel, Debussy, Messiaen, Crumb and Cage.
Producer: David Papp.
A sequence of poetry, prose and music centring on altered states and visions.
Words and Music: The Doors of Perception.
The texts, read by Jim Broadbent and Miranda Richardson, cover the best part of 2000 years from the Bible's Book of Revelation, to last year's Late" by Christopher Reid.
Coleridge's trippy "Kubla Khan" features another Oriental paradise with hints of something disturbing but distant; Alice's mushroom has very peculiar effects.
|The Double *||20090503||20090802|
A sequence of poetry, prose and music exploring the disturbing world of shadows and ghostly doubles, with readings by Janie Dee and Nicholas Farrell.
With works by Edgar Allan Poe, Robert Louis Stevenson, Dostoevsky, Heine, Wilde, Robert Lowell and Khalil Ghibran, interspersed with music by Bach, Boulez, Schubert and Steve Reich
A sequence of poetry, prose and music exploring the world of ghostly doubles.
Words and Music on the theme of The Exotic.
Readings by Greta Scacchi and Simon Woods.
Distant lands full of heat, opulence and mysterious inhabitants; lost civilisations full of entrancing women and god-like warriors have provided vivid inspiration to authors and composers across the centuries.
The Exotic has meant different things to different generations: from Shakespeare's visions of a savage island full of unnerving sights and sounds, informed by the era of exploration and brutal empire building in which he lived; to the rich visions of the romantics: Coleridge's Xanadu and Byron's Childe Harolde who wonders in landscapes described with the linguistic lushness of love poetry.
Musical and literary experiences of exoticism are often about western artists seduced by a vision of otherness which is little more than a mirage: from Mozart's typically eighteenth century take on a Turkish harem to Kipling's colonial representations of India.
Yet from the excitement of imagined faraway lands and people comes the lush beauty of Rimsky-Korsakov's Scheherazade and the delicate orientalism of Debussy's Pagodes.
Gustave Flaubert's entrancing Salammbô and Shakespeare's glittering Cleopatra offer visions of exotic womanhood; the goddess who commands adulation and fear in equal measure - like the distant corners of the earth from which she comes.
Producer: Georgia Mann.
Texts and music on the theme of the exotic.
Words and Music on the theme of The Exotic. Readings by Greta Scacchi and Simon Woods.
Distant lands full of heat, opulence and mysterious inhabitants; lost civilisations full of entrancing women and god-like warriors have provided vivid inspiration to authors and composers across the centuries. The Exotic has meant different things to different generations: from Shakespeare's visions of a savage island full of unnerving sights and sounds, informed by the era of exploration and brutal empire building in which he lived; to the rich visions of the romantics: Coleridge's Xanadu and Byron's Childe Harolde who wonders in landscapes described with the linguistic lushness of love poetry. Musical and literary experiences of exoticism are often about western artists seduced by a vision of otherness which is little more than a mirage: from Mozart's typically eighteenth century take on a Turkish harem to Kipling's colonial representations of India. Yet from the excitement of imagined faraway lands and people comes the lush beauty of Rimsky-Korsakov's Scheherazade and the delicate orientalism of Debussy's Pagodes. Gustave Flaubert's entrancing SalammbÃ´ and Shakespeare's glittering Cleopatra offer visions of exotic womanhood; the goddess who commands adulation and fear in equal measure - like the distant corners of the earth from which she comes.
Producer: Georgia Mann.
|The Faerie World||20090510||20091224|
A selection of poetry, prose and music on the theme of the fairy tradition, with readings by Stella Gonet and Robert Glenister.
With works by Keats, Shelley, Charlotte Bronte, Christina Rossetti and Yeats interspersed with music by Stravinsky, Judith Weir, Schubert, Purcell and Kathryn Tickell.
Poetry and music in the fairy tradition.
Readings are by Stella Gonet and Robert Glenister
Including works by Keats, Shelley, Charlotte Bronte, Christina Rossetti and Yeats interspersed with music by Stravinsky, Judith Weir, Schubert, Purcell and Kathryn Tickell.
Readings from Stella Gonet and Robert Glenister
|The Geography Of A Home||20080406||20090815|
Belinda Lang and David Bamber read poems on the theme of houses and homes.
Celebrating the idea of the physical building of a home, and the lives that change within it, poetry comes from W H Auden, Philip Larkin, Robert Service and Ivor Gurney.
Music by Sibelius, Chopin, Holst, Copland, Chris Rea and The Beatles.
With poetry by W H Auden, Philip Larkin and Ivor Gurney interspersed with music by Sibelius, Chopin and The Beatles.
|The Glory Of The Garden||20080831|
Anton Lesser and Frances Barber read a selection of prose and poetry, including Milton, W H Auden, excerpts from Frances Hodgson Burnett's The Secret Garden and Tennyson's Maud.
The music includes Delius's In a Summer Garden, Debussy's Jardins sous la pluie and Messiaen's Jardin du sommeil d'amour from the Turangalila symphony.
This week Words and Music takes you into the darkened, turreted recesses of The Gothic. From the surreal, macabre beginnings of the genre in Horace Walpole's The Castle of Otranto to the tortured wanderings of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein; the gothic literary world is one of dark passions and ominous thrills. Work by Coleridge and Keats shows the romantic impulse which was extended and darkened by later gothic writing, arriving in the late nineteenth century at Oscar Wilde's haunting Picture of Dorian Gray. Musically, we venture back to the 12th century with the work of Pérotin who composed amidst the gothic splendour of Notre Dame cathedral, as well as pieces by Bach, Berlioz, Paganini and Rachmaninov.
A sequence of poetry, prose and music on the theme of the gothic.
This week Words and Music takes you into the darkened, turreted recesses of The Gothic.
From the surreal, macabre beginnings of the genre in Horace Walpole's The Castle of Otranto to the tortured wanderings of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein; the gothic literary world is one of dark passions and ominous thrills.
Work by Coleridge and Keats shows the romantic impulse which was extended and darkened by later gothic writing, arriving in the late nineteenth century at Oscar Wilde's haunting Picture of Dorian Gray.
Musically, we venture back to the 12th century with the work of Pérotin who composed amidst the gothic splendour of Notre Dame cathedral, as well as pieces by Bach, Berlioz, Paganini and Rachmaninov.
Texts and music on the theme of haunting, with readings by Emilia Fox and Jamie Glover.
Emilia Fox and Jamie Glover read a selection of poetry and prose exploring some of literature's most chilling supernatural hauntings - but also the idea of being haunted by a lover, the past or a place. Berlioz's 'Dies irae' from his 'Symphonie Fantastique' opens the programme - a piece haunted by the composer's vision of female perfection - followed by arguably the most famous haunted character in literary history, Shakespeare's Hamlet, reflecting on the appearance of his father's spirit. Thomas Hardy's 'The Haunter' and D.H Lawrence's 'Silence' capture the melancholy of being haunted by the memory of a loved one, while Shirley Jackson's 'The Haunting of Hill House' and Edgar Allan's Poe's 'The Haunted Palace' provide unsettling examples of haunted house literature. In Thomas Mann's 'Death in Venice', his anti-hero Aschenbach wanders the labyrinthine Venetian streets, haunted by an obsessive sexual impulse; we hear Benjamin Britten's otherworldly musical imagining of the tale. And in Tennyson's poem 'A Spirit Haunts the Year's Last Hours' and Sir Arnold Bax's 'Into the Twilight', we glimpse nature in its haunted state: with the fading autumnal moments of the year, the spectral approach of winter and the growing shadows of the evening.
First broadcast in March 2012.
|The Idea Of West||20120212|
Olivia Williams and Sean Arnold with poetry, prose and music on the idea of west, and the West - powerful concepts in many cultures.
In English and Irish thought the west is associated with happiness, the 'land of lost content', the Celtic land of eternal youth. The sun sets in the west, and our western edge is a seemingly endless ocean.
But what if we follow the sun? In America the west was certainly still the promised land for several centuries, though today the mythology is (to say the least) questioned.
From Russia and the Middle East, the West - and Western attitudes - look rather different.
And there's another recurring association of the west in Western thought... death. But a fascinatingly positive view of death.
Texts, music on the idea of west and the West. Readers: Olivia Williams and Sean Arnold.
|The Metaphysical Soul||20091129||20100717|
Anna Massey and Derek Jacobi read selections of poems by Metaphysical Poets, John Donne, George Herbert, Henry Vaughan, Thomas Carew and Andrew Marvell interspersed with the five sections of Burnt Norton, the first of the Four Quartets by Ts Eliot.
Including music by Mahler, Takemitsu, Britten, Byrd and Beethoven.
A selection of poems by metaphysical poets including Donne, George Herbert and Marvell.
Anna Massey and Derek Jacobi read a selection of poems by metaphysical poets John Donne, George Herbert, Henry Vaughan, Thomas Carew and Andrew Marvell.
These are interspersed with the five sections of Burnt Norton, the first of the four Quartets by Ts Eliot
|The Old Refrain||20100808|
This edition of Words and Music is all about refrain.
Whether it appears in a poem such as Easter, 1916 by Yeats or in the idée fixe of Berlioz' Symphonie Fantastique; whether its anguished as in Villanelle by William Empson or wonderfully ingenious as in Dana Gioia's double triolet - The Country Wife.
Why are we fascinated by the idea of repetition? Rhythm is meaningless without it.
It gives shape and subtlety to music and poetry and by its modulated insistence often unlocks the door to our most complex feelings and thoughts.
We use past experience as a tool to understand what's happening to us in the present and what might happen to us in the future.
The actors Samuel West and Nancy Carroll read the poems and count on a supporting musical cast that includes Brahms, Tavener and Ravel.
Poems and music about refrain and repetition.
Rreadings by Samuel West and Nancy Carroll.
Lesley Manville and Tom Goodman-Hill read poetry and prose on the theme of outsiders, from those who seek to escape society's constraints, to those who long to conform. With words by Jean-Jacques Rousseau, John Clare, Mary Shelley, Albert Camus, George Orwell, Maya Angelou and Jeanette Winterson, and music by Gesualdo, Strauss, Ligeti and Berg.
Texts and music about oustsiders, with readings by Lesley Manville and Tom Goodman-Hill.
|The Parish Priest||20111016||20120728|
Music, poetry and prose about the day to day life of the parish priest, with actors Celia Imrie and Michael Kitchen. Priests appear in major and minor roles in literature from Biblical times to the present day and frequently play a pivotal or catalyst part in the dramatic plot twists. Think of Mr Collins in Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, or Obadiah Slope in Trollope's Barchester novels. Many priests have themselves been poets, such as R.S. Thomas and John Donne, whose work is featured along with the view points of long suffering vicars' wives, often the power behind the parish throne. Priests are often portrayed in novels and poetry as distinctive characters who are either malevolent, self absorbed, objects of desire or saintly. Rarely are they ordinary, frequently they are comical. Music surrounds the life of the church and the programme features works by Handel, J.S. Bach, William Harris, James MacMillan and Saint-Saens , and includes poetry and prose by, Charlotte Bronte, Charles Dickens, John Pritchard (Bishop of Oxford) and Thomas Hardy.
Producer Helen Garrison.
Music and readings on the life of the parish priest, with Celia Imrie and Michael Kitchen.
A selection of poems and music by prodigies, read by actors Jack Laskey and Ellie Kendrick, including the early, sometimes very early work of great artists.
All the music is composed by or performed by teenagers, from Purcell and Mozart to Benjamin Britten and Thomas Ades.There are early recordings of pianists Daniel Barenboim and Evgeny Kissin made when they were twelve, and ten year old violin prodigy Sarah Chang dazzles with a Paganini Caprice.
Rimbaud, Byron, Robert Graves and Paul Muldoon all published poetry in their teens.
Daisy Ashford was barely nine when she wrote her satirical novella The Young Visiters.
Anne Frank wrote the final entry to her remarkable diary on this day, 1 August, in 1944, age fifteen.
Poetry also comes from a young Keats, who dedicated Endymion to another teenage poet Thomas Chatterton, whose early death was immortalised in pre-Raphaelite art.
Plus contemporary poets Sarah Howe, Liz Berry, and Matthew Gregory, and Adam O'Riordan.
The relevant ages of the composers, performers and poets are given on the running order below.
Producer: Tim Prosser.
Poems and music by prodigies and the early work of great artists.
David Bamber and Gillian Bevan (readers)
Every Sunday evening Radio 3 brings you a sequence of music, poetry and prose: this week's theme is the Rebel.
From the Paris Commune to the American Deep South, from home life to public life, David Bamber and Gillian Bevan explore the defiance of rebellion in a series of readings, including work by William Blake, WB Yeats, Maya Angelou and Albert Camus; and music by Mahler, Chopin, Arnold Bax, Leonard Cohen and Anna Marly.
Words and music about rebels, featuring readings by David Bamber and Gillian Bevan.
|The Ring Cycle *||20080824|
A selection of poetry, prose and music on the theme of marriage, with readings by actors Jane Lapotaire and Ralf Little
|The Ringing Grooves Of Change * *||20071230||20081012|
A selection of poetry and prose on the theme of revolution and change with poetry by Blake, Shelley, Clough and Yeats, and music by Shostakovich, Paul Robeson, Mosolov and Berlioz.
Penny Downie and Adrian Lukis read a selection of poetry and prose on the theme of revolution and change, with poetry by William Blake and Yeats and music by Shostakovich and Paul Robeson.
Poems, prose and music on the theme of the Rose. Ruby petals, emerald stems: the rose speaks love. Its language is beauty, tenderness and eternity; its colour is passion. But the rose also speaks a less familiar language, that of peace, nationalism and revolution, the strangeness of mysticism and the finality of death. This hymn plucks rare and wild roses for its verses with music by Britten, Delius and Wagner and words by Charles Tomlinson, Dorothy Parker and HD, read by Lindsay Duncan and Iwan Rheon.
Texts and music on the theme of roses with readings by Lindsay Duncan and Iwan Rheon.
Poems, prose and music on the theme of the Rose. Ruby petals, emerald stems: the rose speaks love. Its language is beauty, tenderness and eternity; its colour is passion. But the rose also speaks a less familiar language, that of peace, nationalism and revolution, the strangeness of mysticism and the finality of death. This hymn plucks rare and wild roses for its verses with music by Britten, Delius and Bridge and words by Charles Tomlinson, Dorothy Parker and WB Yeates, read by Lindsay Duncan and Iwan Rheon.
|The Sky Smiles Down||20080608||20100911|
A sequence of poems, prose and music on the theme of summer, with readings by Fiona Shaw and Robert Glenister.
The programme includes poems by John Clare, Seamus Heaney, Emily Dickinson, Carol Ann Duffy interspersed with music by Gershwin, Delius, Sondheim, Jean Redpath, Suk and Messiaen.
Fiona Shaw and Robert Glenister read poetry and prose on the theme of summer - from John Clare's 'Shepherd's Calendar', the misery of having to go to school on a Scottish summer morning, Walt Whitman's 'mad, naked summer night' and Jay Gatsby's party with music from George Gershwin, Dvorak, Joan Baez, Mendelssohn and Toru Takemitsu.
Poems and music with a summer theme, with readings by Fiona Shaw and Robert Glenister.
|The Soft Machine *||20080601||20090712|
A sequence of poems read by Anna Maxwell Martin and John Rowe interspersed with music, all on the theme of the body.
The programme features writings by Whitman, Homer and Auden along with music from Tchaikovsky, Monteverdi and Charles Mingus.
Poems read by Anna Maxwell Martin and John Rowe plus music, all on the theme of the body.
|The South Country||20100328||20110703|
Inspired by the recent republication of Edward Thomas's essay collection The South Country, the weekly sequence of music, poetry and prose celebrates the landscape of southern England, in particular three counties in which the poet loved to walk: Sussex, Hampshire and Wiltshire.
Tamsin Greig and Neil Pearson read prose by fellow observer-wanderers Gilbert White, William Cobbett and Richard Jefferies, and poetry by such lovers of the south as Flora Thompson, Andrew Young, Hilaire Belloc, Molly Holden and, of course, Edward Thomas himself.
The music includes orchestral music and songs by John Ireland, Michael Tippett, The Copper Family and the English Acoustic Collective among others.
A sequence of music, poetry and prose celebrating the landscape of southern England.
|The Spirit Of Schubert, Schubert And Friends||20120325|
Schubert - In Words and Music
Continuing BBC Radio 3's celebration of The Spirit of Schubert, the words in this special edition of Words and Music come from letters by Schubert himself, read by Russell Tovey, and from letters, diaries and remininscences from his wide circle of friends, read by Anthony Calf. There are also extracts from fascinating contemporary documents including the composer's school reports, the dismissive official view of his suitability for conscription, and the poignant inventory of his paltry possessions, listed after his death.
The music is, of course, all by Schubert, a soundtrack to the life and death of this short-lived genius.
Russell Tovey and Anthony Calf read letters and reminiscences by Schubert and his friends.
|The Spirit World||20080427|
Dominic West and Samantha Morton read poetry on the theme of the spirit world, with verse by Shakespeare, Thomas Hardy, John Keats, Robert Graves and Emily Dickinson alongside a selection of music inspired by ghostly apparitions.
|The Thrill Of The Chase||20100307|
From the dawn of mankind, humans have been bound up in the pursuit of prey, while at the same time avoiding being hunted themselves.
We are now usually the hunters, rather than the hunted, but from the exhilaration of hunting for sport, to the disgust at hunting for pleasure, emotions evoked by the chase are never mild.
This week's Words and Music explores this music and poetry inspired by hunting.
Deborah Findlay and Nicholas Farrell read Adrienne Rich's 'Abnegation', and extracts from Moby Dick and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight; the full spectrum of opinion is here, with music by Harrison Birtwistle, Clement Janequin and Franz Schubert.
But although hunting brings to mind the thunder of horses' hooves, it also describes a very human ritual - the lover's chase.
With readings from A Midsummer Night's Dream, and poetry by Sir Thomas Wyatt, this programme will touch on a very different sort of chase, and the desire for love, not death.
Words and music about hunting and chasing.
Readings by Nicholas Farrell, Deborah Finlay.
Deborah Findlay and Nicholas Farrell read Adrienne Rich's 'Abnegation', and extracts from Moby Dick and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight; the full spectrum of opinion is here, with music by Harrison Birtwistle and Benjamin Britten
|The Truth About Love||20070218||20071007|
Sundays, around 10.15pm.
Every Sunday evening Radio 3 brings you a sequence of classical music, interspersed with well-loved and less familiar poems and prose read by leading actors.
Each week the selection of readings and music is chosen broadly to illustrate or complement a theme.
Full details of all the pieces in the programme are published on the website ahead of broadcast.
Also on the website, alongside each programme, will be a note from the sequence's producer giving an insight into their choice of words and music.Derek Jacobi and Juliet Stevenson read poetry and prose around the theme of love, including Marvell's To His Coy Mistress, Philip Larkin's Arundel Tomb and Auden's poems Lullaby and Oh Tell me the truth about love.
Music includes Britten's Auden settings, Elgar's Salut d'amour, madrigals by De Rore and Dufay, and Wagner's Prelude to Tristan und Isolde.
With Derek Jacobi and Juliet Stevenson.
Readings include some of the great love poetry - Marvell's To His Coy Mistress, Philip Larkin's Arundel Tomb and Auden's Lullaby and Oh Tell Me the Truth about Love.
Music related to the theme includes Britten's Auden settings, Elgar's Salut d'amour, madrigals by De Rore and Dufay and Wagner's Prelude to Tristan and Isolde.
Rufus Sewell and Indira Varma read a selection of texts by authors including Thomas Hardy, John Masefield, Bruce Chatwin - as well as the Old English poem The Wanderer and the Indian epic The Mahabarata.
With music including Schubert's Der Wanderer, Gawain's journey by Harrison Birtwistle, as well as the gypsy sounds of Django Reinhardt and Maurice Ravel.
This week's Words and Music leads you up the aisle with a series of poetry, prose and music around the theme of the wedding.
From the bridal marches of Wagner and Mendelssohn - the soundtracks to countless walks up the aisle - to Saint-Saëns' confection of piano and strings in the Wedding Cake Valse-Caprice, the joyful ritual of the wedding ceremony has inspired some timeless music.
Anna Maxwell Martin and Jamie Glover read work which explores the enduring romance of wedded bliss and the darker moments of married life.
Poetry by Shakespeare and Keats meditates on the nature of love and takes us to a sumptuous Grecian wedding feast; while Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice returns us to a time of marriage as an aid to social mobility and Dickens' Great Expectations introduces us to one of literature's most haunting brides: the jilted Miss Haversham, who resides in her faded wedding dress alongside the clock which stopped at twenty to nine on her wedding day, the moment she discovered her heart had been broken.
Texts and music related to weddings.
Readings by Anna Maxwell Martin and Jamie Glover.
|The Worst Form Of Government||20120930|
This week's Words and Music explores the theme of democracy. Democracy is the worst form of government, except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time. Winston Churchill's now famous quote underpins today's edition. Democracy is hailed as a force for good - promoting freedom, equality and self-governance - but has been used and misused for personal gain and political oppression.
In his 2006 speech, Barack Obama declared that far from being an unshakable ideology to be exported from the West, democracy must be re-examined and 'we must be more modest in our belief' that it can be imposed by military force.
Nelson Mandela describes his astonishment in his memoir Long Walk to Freedom, on meeting Inuits from Northern Europe, that people from 'the top of the world' should have any knowledge of his political struggle at the southern tip of Africa. Television, he writes, had become a force for promoting democracy.
Throughout the programme, we hear the voices of colonised and marginalised peoples as they struggle for their right to be heard, their right to vote, and their right to live a free life.
With music from Copland, Shostakovich, Somalian poet and rapper K'naan, and Benjamin Britten; and words by Walt Whitman, Pablo Neruda and Emma Lazarus. With Lisa Dillon and Ray Fearon.
|The Year *||20090104|
Andrew Lincoln and Emma Fielding with a selection of poetry on the changing seasons.
This edition of Words and Music explores the changing seasons for the first programme of the New year.
Andrew Lincoln and Emma Fielding read a selection of poetry interspersed with seasonal music.
I chose Ted Hughes' Seasons Songs as a thread for the programme.
These fine poems are full of sharp observation and the feeling of natural forces of destruction and renewal.
Alongside Ted Hughes, I chose a range of poetry which picked up on these themes from Thomas Hardy, Robert Frost and William Blake among others.
I selected some music directly linked to seasons - from Piazzolla's atmospheric tangos from Kremerata Baltica, to Cage's studies in sound for his Seasons and the legendary recording of Gershwin's Summertime from Sarah Vaughan.
At other times, there's abstract music which seemed to match the mood of the readings.
Fretwork's recording of Byrd leads to Robert Grave's A Prayer for Spring; Steve Reich's Music for mallet instruments, voices and organ matches picks up on the famous express" of Hughes' Deceptions leading to Gerald Manley Hopkins's poem about the cuckoo where "the whole landscape flushes on a sudden at a sound".
A centre point for the programme is Samuel Barber's Summer Music in a vibrant recording by the Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet which leads to the playful poem "Hay" by Ted Hughes.
The programme draws to a close with DH Lawrence's elegy for winter, and Ligeti's sparse Atmospheres.
I end with Tennyson's poem, Death of the Old Year which beautifully depicts the feeling of loss at the end of the year, and tentative hope as a new year begins.
Jessica Isaacs (producer)
Readers: Emma Fielding (EF) and Andrew Lincoln (AL)
00:00:00Gidon Kremer and kremer balticaGidon Kremer/kremerata balticaThomas Hardy at the entering of the new year (al and ef)
00:05:45William Blake: the schoolboy (al)
00:44:40american composers orchestraamiata arnr0393 tk 1
00:21:20andreas schmidt (baritone)barber: summer musicberlin philharmonic wind quintetbis cd952bis tk 1
00:36:30bournemouth symphony orchestra conducted bycage: seasonscapitol cdp7466352 tk 6
00:21:00chandos chan 9299 tk 5
00:00:05chandos chan 9396 tk 20
00:42:00chaucer: general prologue from canterbury talesclaramae turner, barbara ruick and mixed chorusconducted by c.
garbenconducted by d.
Russell Daviesdeller consort/alfred dellerecm 4651402 tk 4
00:46:00fretworkgerald manley hopkins: repeat that, repeat (al)
00:25:20hyperion cda66924 tk 2
00:04:15in the merry month of maylet an anthem praisemahler arr berio: fruhlingsmorgenmargaret leng tan: prepared piano, toy pianononesuch 7559795682 tk 16
00:13:20nonesuch 7559795682 tk 4
00:43:40parley of instruments and peter holmanpearl gem0160
00:14:20piazzolla: primavera portenapiazzolla: verano portenor.
hickoxradio-sinfonie-orchester berlinrca 09026611842 tk 12
00:10:00read in middle english by trevor eatonreich: music for mallet instruments, voices and organrichard rodgers june is burstin out all over (from carousel)robert graves: a prayer for spring (ef)
00:08:30sarah vaughansir michael tippett: new year space ship landingsumer is a-comin insummertimeted hughes: deceptions (al and ef)
00:22:20ted hughes: hay (ef)
00:37:30ted hughes: march morning unlike others (al)
00:11:30ted hughes: new year song (ef)
00:01:40the dufay collectivevanguard 08503971 tk 23
00:16:00virgin classics vc5450312 tk 21
00:07:00wordsworth: lines written in early spring (al)
00:17:00by....rd: te lucis a 4 no 2, verse 2"
|Them And Us||20121104|
In this special edition of Words and Music recorded at The Free Thinking Festival in St Mary's Heritage Centre, opposite The Sage, Gateshead, Sian Thomas and Ron Cook read poetry and prose on the theme of this year's festival: Them and Us. Music is provided by The Aronowitz Ensemble, soprano Sarah-Jane Lewis and The NASUWT Riverside Band, with conductor Ray Farr.
The programme opens with an extract from Arthur C. Clarke's' sci-fi classic Childhood's End. We hear poetry by Fleur Adcock, Hilaire Belloc and Wilfred Owen and prose from Jane Austen and George Orwell. Our musical accompaniment includes Mars from Holst's The Planets, Thomas Ades' Darknesse Visible and Poulenc's Voyage a Paris.
Producer: Georgia Mann-Smith.
|This Is New York||20080217||20100807|
William Hope and Laurel Lefkow read poetry and prose by Langston Hughes, E B White, Walt Whitman and Audre Lorde, accompanied by the music of Dvorak, Leonard Bernstein, Stephen Sondheim, John Adams, Philip Glass, Rodgers and Hart and Ned Rorem.
William Hope and Laurel Lefkow read poems and prose on the theme of New York with work by Walt Whitman, Langston Hughes, Federico Garcia Lorca, Emma Lazarus (the author of the poem inscribed on the Statue of Liberty), Allen Ginsberg and E.B.
White with music by John Adams, Charles Ives, Steve Reich, Tom Waits, Dvorak, Rodgers and Hart and Bernstein.
A reading of poetry accompanied by the music of Dvorak, Adams, Bernstein and others.
|Through The Looking Glass||20090111||20100711|
This edition takes the theme of mirrors and reflections with readings by Sir Derek Jacobi and Lesley Manville.
The poetry and prose I have chosen show the mirror as a symbol of vanity, self-examination and the limits of human understanding.
I started with the object of the mirror with Amy Lowell's poem and Arvo Part's haunting Spiegel im Spiegel.
There are severAl Readings from Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking Glass and what Alice found there.
Lesley Manville, played Alice at the Lyric Theatre in Hammersmith during the 80s.
Derek Jacobi brings Alice's topsy-turvy world to life in his reading of the poem Jabberwocky.
A darker vein runs through Ted Hughes' re-telling of Ovid's myth of Narcissus where his fate is sealed when he becomes entranced by his own reflection in a pool, leading to Szymanowski's seductive myths and Brain Eno's plateaux of mirror.
Ann Sexton's poem about Snow White gives a modern twist to the "Mirror, mirror on the wall" and leads to the modern jazz improvisation of Dave Douglas.
Darker still with Walt Whitman's A Handmirror with the radiophonic piece Veils and Mirrors, Sylvia Plath's bleak poem Mirror and Jorge Luis Borges's fear of mirrors.
I end with a mirror fugue from Bach's Art of Fugue and the passage from 1 Corinthians about self-knowledge "For now we see through a glass, darkly, but then face to face:"
Producer: Jessica Isaacs.
Derek Jacobi and Lesley Manville with readings about mirrors and reflections.
This edition explores the theme of mirrors and reflections, with readings by Derek Jacobi and Lesley Manville.
Lesley Manville played Alice at the Lyric Theatre in Hammersmith during the 1980s.
A darker vein runs through Ted Hughes's re-telling of Ovid's myth of Narcissus, where his fate is sealed when he becomes entranced by his own reflection in a pool, leading to Szymanowski's seductive myths and Brain Eno's plateaux of mirror.
Ann Sexton's poem about Snow White gives a modern twist to the 'mirror, mirror on the wall', and leads to the modern jazz improvisation of Dave Douglas.
A darker vein runs through Walt Whitman's A Handmirror with the radiophonic piece Veils and Mirrors, Sylvia Plath's bleak poem Mirror and Jorge Luis Borges's fear of mirrors.
I end with a mirror fugue from Bach's Art of Fugue and the passage from 1 Corinthians about self-knowledge: 'For now we see through a glass, darkly, but then face to face'.
Readers: Derek Jacobi (DJ) and Lesley Manville (LM)
bach: art of fugue(lm)
1 corinthians 13(lm)
jorge louis borges: mirrorsBrian Eno: the plateaux of mirrorHilaire Belloc: the mirrorLewis Carroll: through the looking glassLewis Carroll: through the looking glass and what alice found thereThomas Hardy: at the dinner-tableWalt Whitman: a hand-mirroramy lowell: mirrorann sexton: snow white and the seven dwarfsanon: salve cleri speculumanonymous 4arthur bliss: the lady of shalottbach: art of fuguebach: contrapunctus 13 alio modo from art of fuguebbc radio classics 1565691842 tr 16 and 17
42'15bbc rec196cd tr 11
Sylvia Plath: mirrorbbc symphony orchestra conducted by arthur blissbis cd829bis tr 3
60'00britten: metamorphoses after ovid op 49britten: reflectionchan 8647 tr 9
35'30chandos chan 8747 tr 7
20'30clara schumann: ihr bildniscollins classics 70432 cd 2 tr 2
71'20collins classics 70432 cd2 tr 1collins classics 70432 cd2 tr 7
9'00daniel hope (violin)dave douglas: mirrorseg eegcd47 tr 2
24'00eugene asti, pianoglynis jones: veils and mirrorsguillaume dufay: o gemma lux et speculumharmonia mundi hmc 901700 tr 3
51'00harmonia mundi hmu907232 tr 15
69'00heinz holliger (oboe)huelgas ensemblehyperion cda 67249 tr 21
45'00i'll be your mirrorjoanna macgregor (piano)kotaro fukuma (piano)louis lortie (piano)lydia mordkovitch (violin)marina gusak-grin (piano)naxos 8570261 tr 5
54'00nimbus ni5631 tr 5
2'00noboku imai (viola)part: spiegel im spiegelphilips 4340762 tr 1
13'30radiophonic workshopravel: miroirs: noctuellesrilke: lady at a mirrorroland pontinen (piano)shakespeare: sonnet 3simon mulligan (piano)soul note 1212762 tr 2
29'40stephan loges, baritoneszymanowski: narcissus, op 30takemitsu: pause ininterrompueted hughes: narcissustennyson: lady of shalottthe velvet undergroundtranslated by stephen cohnverve 823 290-2 tr 9
A sequence of poetry, prose and music on the theme of immortality, using WB Yeats's poem Sailing to Byzantium as a starting point, and with readings by Andrew Lincoln and Deborah Findlay.
Including poetry by Charles Causley, Anthony Thwaite, Adrian Mitchell, Wislawa Szymborska, Emily Dickinson and Rilke, as well as music by John Tavener, Pierre Boulez, Britten and Steve Reich.
Yeats' poem Sailing to Byzantium is the starting point for a theme about the journey of man and the vision of eternal life.
Andrew Lincoln and Deborah Findlay read a selection of poetry and prose including Keats, Longfellow, John Masefield and Adrian Mitchell.
With related music by John Tavener, Messiaen and Gesualdo.
Diana Rigg and Samuel West read a selection of poetry on the theme of music.
Including Elizabeth Jennings's First Music, Andrew Marvell's The Empire of Music, DH Lawrence's Piano and Ts Eliot's Four Quartets, and WB Yeats reading his poem The Fiddler of Donney.
Music includes Webern's arrangement of Bach's A Musical Offering, songs by Dowland and Schubert and Seamus Heaney's reading of The Given Note accompanied by piper Liam O'Flynn.
|To Strive, To Seek, To Find And Not To Yield||20090809||20091223|
In a programme celebrating the work of Tennyson, Beth Goddard and Michael Pennington read poetry from Tennyson himself and others on the theme of destiny, alongside with music inspired by, and reflecting the texts.
The poet is represented by excerpts from favourites such as The Lady of Shalott and Ulysses.
With works by Thomas Hardy, Robert Frost, Andrew Marvell, Dylan Thomas and Ts Eliot, as well as music from Vaughan Williams, Britten, Hubert Parry, Richard Strauss and Arthus Bliss among others.
In a celebration of the work of Tennyson, readings and music on the theme of destiny.
|Town And Country||20070617|
A stroll among differing reactions to the metropolitan and rural landscapes.
Tim Mcinnerny reads descriptions of the city's charms by Wordsworth, Eliot and WS Graham, hymns to the natural life by Shakespeare, Clare and WH Hudson, and musings on where the two worlds meet from the likes of Cowper, Edward Thomas and William Carlos Williams.
Music includes works by Ives, Reich, Vaughan Williams and Handel.
A sequence of poetry and music taking Richard Dehmel's poem Transfigured Night as a starting point for a theme around night and dreams.
Simon Russell Beale and Emma Fielding read a selection from Longfellow, Poe, Milton, Gerald Manley Hopkins with archive readings from Dylan Thomas and Michael Longley.
Music includes Schoenberg's Verklaerte Nacht, Ravel's Gaspard de la nuit and Takemitsu's Dreamtime.
An unpresented sequence of poetry and music that takes Richard Dehmel's poem Transfigured Night as a starting point for a theme around night and dreams.
In this edition of Words and Music, the readers Stella Gonet and Nicholas Farrell set sail on a sea of tall tales told by travellers.
Since the ancient Greek poet Homer hailed the exploits of Odysseus there has been an appetite for the true, almost true and downright fabricated stories of travellers: their adventures, the strange sights they saw and the creatures they sometimes loved and left behind.
These tales are reflected in from Debussy, Telemann, Rimsky-Korsakov and the Tiger Lillies with words by Sir John Mandeville, Alfred Lord Tennyson and Margaret Attwood.
Producer: Natalie Steed.
Texts and music about travellers, with readings by Stella Gonet and Nicholas Farrell.
These tales are reflected in from Debussy, Telemann, Rimsky-Korsakov and the Tiger Lillies with words by Sir John Mandeville, Alfred Lord Tennyson and Margaret Atwood.
|Tricksters And Hoaxers||20120408||20150208 (R3)|
Katherine Parkinson and Jim Norton side-step the banana skins and refuse the exploding cigars in a celebration of the devilish works of pathological pranksters and perennial manipulators including Robin Goodfellow, Brer Rabbit, Till Eulenspiegel, Renard the Fox and Scapino. Words come from Skakespeare, WS Gilbert, Ogden Nash and Chaucer, and music from Mozart, Mendelssohn, Kreisler and Strauss among others.
Texts, music about pranksters and maniupulators. Readers: Katherine Parkinson, Jim Norton.
Tricksters and Hoaxers. Katherine Parkinson and Jim Norton side-step the banana skins and refuse the exploding cigars in a celebration of the devilish works of pathological pranksters and perennial manipulators including Robin Goodfellow, Brer Rabbit, Till Eulenspiegel, Renard the Fox and Scapino. Words come from Skakespeare, WS Gilbert, Ogden Nash and Chaucer, and music from Mozart, Mendelssohn, Kreisler and Strauss among others.
Producer: Lindsay Kemp.
Occidental as well as oriental - Turkey has often been disputed territory.
It's the site of Homer's Troy; much of Xenophon's famous expedition takes place on its soil; and the country and its people have attracted admirers like the poets Yeats and John Ash as well as detractors like T.E.Lawrence.
Byron as well as Lady Wortley Montagu have fallen under the spell of its customs and more recent visitors such as Rose Macaulay and Neal Ascherson have been both beguiled and bemused by their experience of the country.There's music to match from Mozart, Dave Brubeck, Arvo Part and Cantemir and the actors Ruth Wilson and Toby Jones are ready to set sail for Byzantium and beyond.
A portrait in music, poetry and prose of Turkey, seen through the eyes of the outsider.
In this edition of Words and Music Helena Bonham Carter and Hugh Bonneville explore Turning Points, from life-changing and epoch-making, to funny and insignificant.
Love is the pivot for many of the programme's turning points.
Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra, artist Marc Chagall, and Coleridge fall in it; Dorothea (in George Eliot's 'Middlemarch') and Carol Ann Duffy's Eurydice fall out of it; Alan Bennett movingly describes his mother's final days.
Revolutions provide other turning points: the Industrial one provokes opposing reactions from Erasmus Darwin and William Blake; Igor Stravinsky self-consciously remembers his musical one, and Estelle Sylvia Pankhurst recalls her part in an episode in the fight for Women's Suffrage.
The lives of Hilaire Belloc's Matilda and the Bible's Saul are changed forever by versions of the truth, and there's a culinary miracle when eggs and oil emulsify into a mayonnaise, according to Julia Child's instructions.
Music is by Bach, Beethoven, Janacek, Rachmaninov, Vaughan Williams and Erma Franklin, among others.
Sequence of poetry, prose and music exploring some of life's turning points.
Producer David Papp.
William Hope and Yolanda Vasquez read poetry and prose on a theme of Two Americas, North and South including work by Walt Whitman, Ts Eliot, Robert Frost, Gabriela Mistral and Pablo Neruda.
With music inspired by the Americas from Villa-Lobos, Aaron Copland, Astor Piazzolla and Charles Ives.
A sequence of music and poetry reflecting on villainy, from the Emperor Nero to Billy the Kid.
With music by Mozart, Bartok and Stephen Sondheim, and poems by writers including Oscar Wilde, Shelley and Sylvia Plath, read by Patience Tomlinson and Jonathan Keeble
|Walkers, Wanderers And Wayfarers||20091018||20100718|
Walking is the subject of this week's edition of the award-winning programme mixing music, poetry and prose.
Clare Higgins and Ian McDiarmid read poems and prose extracts by Henry David Thoreau, Edward Thomas, WH Davies, William Wordsworth and Alfred Wainwright among others, while the music includes contributions from Mussorgsky, Elgar, Richard Strauss, Vaughan Williams and Lou Reed.
From the age-old beneficial effects of sauntering to the exhilaration of climbing a mountain, and from a lover's evening stroll to the inconvenience of Manchester street-puddles, this seemingly everyday subject gradually takes us further and further from home...
A sequence of poetry, prose and music on the theme of walking.
A sequence of poetry, prose and music on the theme of walking, featuring readings by Clare Higgins and Ian McDiarmid.
With excerpts of writing by Thoreau, Edward Thomas, WH Davies, William Wordsworth and Alfred Wainwright, as well as music by Mussorgsky, Elgar, Richard Strauss, Vaughan Williams and Lou Reed
|War And Peace *||20070701||20081109|
On a theme of the eternal struggle between conflict and concord, Joanna David and Paul Mcgann read poems by Emily Dickinson, George Herbert, John Milton, Wilfred Owen, Edith Sitwell and Walt Whitman.
Including music by Bartok, Dowland, William Lawes, Monteverdi and Purcell.
An exploration of the warrior in poetry and music, from classical heroes to more contemporary soldiers.
These are fighting men and women, in their own words to their troops, in their quiet moments alone, and in the eyes of those who love them and sometimes lose them.
There is loss as well as triumph, but the only political protest is Bob Dylan's Masters of War.
Queen Elizabeth I makes an appearance rousing her troops to repel the Spanish Armada.
Hector of Troy leads his men into battle against the Greeks and is mourned later by his father.
George Orwell shares his experiences of the Spanish Civil War, and Ivor Gurney's In Flanders aches for the hills of home.
Tennyson's King Arthur is the elderly king at the end of his life.
Works also include Shakespeare, Christopher Logue, Michael Longley and UA Fanthorpe, with music from Beethoven, Purcell, June Tabor, Bob Dylan, Tchaikovsky and Berlioz.
Readings are by Deborah Findlay and Don Warrington.
Don Warrington and Deborah Findlay read poetry and prose on the theme of the warrior.
|We Must Love One Another Or Die * *||20080413||20090201|
Sian Thomas and Nicholas Farrell read poetry and prose from the 1930s by Louis Macneice, Sylvia Townsend Warner, John Steinbeck, George Orwell, Dylan Thomas and W H Auden, with music by Britten, Barber, Robeson, Bartok and Noel Coward.
With readings from MacNeice, Steinbeck and Orwell, and music by Britten, Barber and Bartok
With Sian Thomas and Nicholas Farrell reading poetry and prose from the 1930s by Louis Macneice, Sylvia Townsend Warner, John Steinbeck, George Orwell, Dylan Thomas and W H Auden, interspersed with music by Britten, Barber, Robeson, Bartok and Noel Coward
|Weary With Toil *||20070527||20081005|
Harriet Walter and Robert Glenister read poetry and prose on a theme of work and toil by Shakespeare, Kathleen Jamie, Simon Armitage, John Clare and Carol Rumens.
With music by Beethoven, Handel, Elvis Costello and Shostakovich.
The Wild Wood is where to find Dante and Winnie the Pooh.
It's where to shelter from the storm and where one is stalked by nameless terror.
It's a place for monkish retreat and contemplation, and a place where, according to Vaughan Williams, an amorous Sir John Falstaff can be found prancing around with antlers on his head.
Readers Emma Fielding and John Rowe visit this beguiling and bewildering space, with the musical help of Wagner, Schubert, John Coltrane and Radiohead.
The Wild Wood is where you find Dante and Winnie the Pooh.
It's where you shelter from the storm and where you're stalked by nameless terror.
Readers Emma Fielding and John Rowe take you into this beguiling and bewildering space, with the musical help of Wagner, Schubert, John Coltrane and Radiohead.
This week's Words and Music is devoted to the season Emily Dickinson described as the time when the sky is low and the clouds are mean: winter.
Winter in the countryside is celebrated in Wordsworth's ‘The Prelude' when, as a child, he and his friends skated along the ice, flying through the cold in the darkness.
With this you'll hear Peter Maxwell Davies' ‘At the lochan' from his ‘Seven Songs Home', the series of songs which tell the story of children in the Orkneys making their way home from school on a winter's afternoon.
Mark Doty's walk with his dogs as the sun sets is heard alongside the Finnish composer Rautavaara's concerto for birds and orchestra, ‘Cantus Arcticus'.
The memory of winter past is heard in David Hartnett's ‘Two winters' in which a man, now a parent himself, remembers his father shovelling snow outside his childhood home, a time in which he dreamed that the snow fell for years ‘and the ray of stars like birds' feet flecked the white'.
Winters in California and Tangiers are evoked by the poets Karl Shapiro and Sarah Maguire – in one the pink camellias line the paths, in the other ‘hibiscus blooms burn, scarlet, cerise, tangerine'.
The programme ends with Robert Frost's ‘Stopping by woods on a snowy evening' and Wayne Barlow's rhapsody for oboe and strings inspired by Appalachian folk songs, ‘Winter's Passed'.
Fiona McLean - Producer.
The Seasons – Winter
Yevgeny Svetlanov – conductor
The Sky is Low
Cheryl Campbell (reader)
The Reindeer Race
Kuopio Symphony Orchestra
Shuntaro Sato – conductor
from The Prelude
Struan Rodger (reader)
Children's Corner - The Snow is Dancing
Pascal Roge – piano
PETER MAXWELL DAVIES
Seven Songs Home – At the Lochan
The Choir of St Mary's Music School
Sir Peter Maxwell Davies – conductor
In the Same Space
Richard Stoltzman – clarinet
Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra
Leif Segerstam – conductor
Symphony no 1 - Winter Dreams
Herbert von Karajan – conductor
DEUTSCHE GRAMMOPHON 4191762
WILLIAM CARLOS WILLIAMS
Winter Words – At Close of Day in November
Robert Tear – tenor
Sir Philip Ledger – piano
Winter in California
MAMAS AND THE PAPAS
MCA 982 168 0
Wintering in Tangier
Catalogue d'oiseaux - Robin
Hakan Austbo – piano
Now winter nights enlarge
The Seasons – Winter in F Minor
Nigel Kennedy – violin
PERCY BYSSHE SHELLEY
The Cold Earth Slept Below
Chery Campbell (reader)
Soile Isokoski – soprano
Leaving the Land
North Country Sketches – Winter Landscape
Works for Piano Four Hands
Noriko Ogawa and Kathryn Stott – piano
BIS BISCD 1347
Winter is Good
Christmas Dance ‘Sir Roger de Coverley'
Academy of St Martin in the Fields
Sir Neville Marriner – conductor
The Snow Man
Un soir de neige
Figure Humaine and other Secular Choral Music
New London Chamber Choir
James Wood – conductor
The night is darker
Stopping by woods
The Winter's Past
Music for Quiet Listening
Howard Hanson – conductor
Music and poems on the theme of winter read by Struan Rodger and Cheryl Campbell.
A sequence of music and poetry on the theme of winter, with readings by Struan Rodger and Cheryl Campbell.
Including works by John Clare, Thomas Campion, Sarah Maguire, Emily Dickinson, Mark Doty and Wallace Stevens, and music by Tchaikovsky, James MacMillan, Jean Redpath, Debussy, Schubert and John Cage.
|Witches And Sorcerers||20101031|
On Halloween Words and Music takes a suitably dark turn, with a programme built around the theme of witches and sorcerers; those sinister beings who have captured the imagination and chilled the blood of poets, dramatists and composers for centuries.
This edition also brings together a critically-acclaimed theatrical duo: Juliet Stevenson and Henry Goodman are the readers, their performance together last year in Matthew Lloyd's production of Duet For One won them each best actor nominations at The Evening Standard Theatre Awards.
From Shakespeare's cauldron-stirring hags to Christopher Marlow's tortured Dr Faustus, this is an exploration of some of literature's most iconic witches and wizards.
Music ranges from Mussorgsky's Night on Bald Mountain to Nina Simone's classic Put a Spell on You; from Dukas' much loved The Sorcerer's Apprentice to Thomas Ades' The Tempest.
On the night associated with creatures of darkness, Words and Music takes you to the land of Oz, home of the Wicked Witch of the West; sweeps you into Goethe's account of the sorcerer's misguided apprentice; and transports you to Prospero's isle, as the wizard-ruler struggles to abandon his magical powers.
Texts and music about witches and sorcerers.
Readings by Juliet Stevenson, Henry Goodman.
|Years Of Wonders||20091222|
|Young And Easy * *||20090329||20091228|
Readings of poetry and prose, interspersed with music, exploring the intensity of youth and its transience.
Hattie Morahan and Samuel West read poetry and prose by Wordsworth, Rimbaud, Dylan Thomas, Thom Gunn, AE Houseman, Evelyn Waugh, Sylvia Plath, Jane Austen and Caroline Bird.
Music includes Debussy, Schumann, Butterworth, Prokofiev, Thomas Morley, Britten and Bernstein.
Poems and music on the theme of youth, with readings by Hattie Morahan and Samuel West.
Readings of poetry and prose, interspersed with music.
A programme of words and music exploring the intensity of youth and its transience.
Hattie Morahan and Sam West read poetry and prose by Wordsworth, Rimbaud, Dylan Thomas, Thom Gunn, AE Houseman, Evelyn Waugh, Sylvia Plath, Jane Austen and Caroline Bird.
The music includes Debussy, Schumann, Butterworth, Prokofiev, Thomas Morley, Britten and Bernstein.
Poems and music on the theme of youth with readings by Hattie Morahan and Sam West.