David Edgar: A BBC Radio Drama Collection: 17 Full-Cast Productions including The Shape of the Table, Pentecost & Maydays


Unabridged Audiobook

Ratings
Book
Narrator
Release Date
December 2023
Duration
25 hours 45 minutes
Summary
David Edgar – one of Britain’s greatest living playwrights – introduces a collection of his outstanding works

David Edgar is among the UK’s leading contemporary dramatists, well known for his powerful plays chronicling Britain's changing political landscape over the past 50 years.

This radio anthology begins with the award-winning Destiny, adapted for radio by Edgar himself, in which he analyses the rise of the right-wing National Front movement. In Saigon Rose, the sexual revolution is under the spotlight, as a couple and their cohorts are forced to face the darker side of the Swinging Sixties. This is followed by a play adapted from the journals of a South African lawyer – The Jail Diary of Albie Sachs is a dramatic account of his arrest and solitary confinement.

Mary Barnes recounts the struggles of the titular heroine with her own madness, and Ecclesiastes deals with a fundamentalist preacher. A Movie Starring Me centres around a TV soap star and her obsessive fan, while Entertaining Strangers is about the struggle between a fundamentalist parson and a town’s first woman brewer. The 1984 miners’ strike forms the backdrop to That Summer.

Two plays from Edgar’s ‘Iron Curtain Trilogy’ are next: The Shape of the Table and Pentecost, examining themes of negotiation in the aftermath of the fall of the Berlin Wall. Talking to Mars looks at the collapse of the Cold War through the eyes of an international radio station.

The Secret Parts is a gripping murder mystery, adapted for radio by David Edgar from the novel written by his late wife Eve Brook. Playing with Fire is a powerful exploration of racial tensions in multicultural Britain, and Something Wrong about the Mouth is about a man who wants to commission a portrait of a woman he can't produce, dressed for an event that didn't occur. If Only finds a Labour spin doctor, a Tory MP and a Lib Dem party worker stranded by the Icelandic ash cloud.

David Edgar’s 2019 solo show, Trying It On, sees him delving into the background of his landmark play, Maydays. This collection concludes with Maydays, refashioned by Edgar into a sweeping three-part audio epic charting the journey of idealistic young activists from the far-left to the die-hard right.

Track List:
01: Introduction by David Edgar
02-05: Destiny
06-08: Saigon Rose
09-11: The Jail Diary of Albie Sachs
12-13: Mary Barnes
14-15: Ecclesiastes
16-17: A Movie Starring Me
18-19: Entertaining Strangers
20-21: That Summer
22-23: The Shape of the Table
24-28: Pentecost
29-30: Talking to Mars
31-32: The Secret Parts
33-34: Playing with Fire
35: Something Wrong About the Mouth
36-37: If Only
38: Trying It On
39-41: Maydays

Written by David Edgar
The Secret Parts written by Eve Brook

Text copyright © David Edgar 1976 (Saigon Rose, Destiny), 1977 (Ecclesiastes), 1978 (The Jail Diary of Albie Sachs), 1979 (Mary Barnes), 1983 (Maydays), 1987 (That Summer), 1990 (The Shape of the Table), 1991 (A Movie Starring Me), 1994 (Pentecost), 1996 (Talking to Mars), 2005 (Playing with Fire), 2007 (Something Wrong About the Mouth), 2013 (If Only), 2018 (Trying It On)
The Secret Parts text copyright © Eve Brook 2000
All rights reserved

© 2023 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd (p) 2023 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd
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