David Zane Mairowitz Radio Dramas


Original Plays

04.01.81 Landscape of Exile
06.11.83 Azari's Aerial Theatre
17.06.84 Silent Wing
08.12.86 Mock Manoeuvres
24.05.88 Chopin's Piano
18.04.89 Maker of Angels
01.08.89 The Stalin Sonata
26.03.92 Fragments in a Vulgar Tongue, rpt. 5 Sep 94
23.06.92 Dictator Gal, R3
22.01.94 Laura Singer, WS
25.02.95 Dark Orphan*
18.11.96 The Voluptuous Tango*
02.10.98 Case Study - Joan of Arc 2
10.04.98 I Bought Juan & Evita Peron's Custom Ferrari*, r. 6 Aug 99
21.07.00 The 78s*
16.02.01 Sherlock Holmes meets Karl Marx*
02.05.03 Williwaw*
28.10.18 James's Story (for RTE, Ireland)
15.12.18 Mono (for Westdeutscher Rundfunk, Cologne; in German and English)
??.??.20 TKO (In German)
date nk.........Maker of Angels

17.07.95 Planet of Ashes
02.06.96 Roberto Zucco
02.07.00 Moby Dick (in 3 episodes)

The asterisked plays are known to exist in collections within VRPCC (Now known as The Radio Circle).


Based on the life of Friedrich Engels With John Phillips, Julie Covington, John Rowe and Hilda Kriseman. Produced by Liane Aukin

With Alfred Molina and Tom Wilkinson. Produced by Jane Morgan.

By David Zane Mairowitz.. Mon play 11 Jun 84; aft theatre 17 Jun 84. Gisela, a German immigrant, teaches carpentry at a youth center. She keeps her distance from people and has a thin skin that covers a painful past. Cast: Gisela/Monika ....................Diana Quick, Kevin ...................Nick Conway, Rod ......................Philip Fox, Pam .........................Carrie Lee-Baker, Catherine ....................Elizabeth Rider, Ulli ....................Wolf Kahler, Police Officer ................Michael Goldie, 1st Interrogator ..............Paul Humpoletz, Fairground Barker/English Interrogator ....Brett Usher, Prison Guard/Boy ..................Peter Acre, Boy/2nd Interrogator ..........Michael Jenner, Bartender .....................Ellen McIntosh, Robyn/Masseuse ................Cleo Sylvestre, Jane/Officer Guthrie ..............Helen Atkinson Wood, Dohert/Police Officer ..........Bernard Brown, Doctor ........................Jon Strickland, Waitress .........................Jill Brooke, Unnamed extra lady ...........Maggie McCarthy. Produced by Jane Morgan (........GL)

Soldiers on manoeuvres in a sleepy French village. With Judy Loe, Clive Merrison and Geoffrey Matthews. Produced by Richard Wortley.

CHOPIN'S PIANO 24-May-1988 (R3)
A professor Newman is discovered, comatose, on a donkey track in Majorca. With Bernard Hepton, Shelley Thompson and John Rowe. Produced by Richard Wortley.

    I 'broke' a studio piano, my colleague simulating the keys being played by a goat. (Chopin's Piano, by D.Z.Mairowitz) with pitch perfect narrative by Bernard Hepton. And Barbara Jefford had her fingers broken (only pretend) in "The Stalin Sonata" by the same author......(Richard Wortley, Some Reflections on a Lifetime in Radio, Diversity Website, 2005)

- with Paola Dunizotti(sp?), Nigel Anthony, Alice Arnold, Christopher Scott, Geoffrey Whitehead and Michael Graham Cox directed by Richard Wortley, 95 mins Drama based on a true story in WW II-era France. (located by Greg Linden)

A cheery little number about a pianist rendered a non-person by Stalin, all her records smashed...she is dragged into a studio to record a disc of a piece he has a whim to hear again. And in the course of the story, her fingers are broken, stopping her playing even in the cafe where she used to play popular tunes after her concert career was destroyed. See Barry Pike's article ... (radio page) "The Decline of Radio Drama".

The story of an obsessive man. 60m play about a scholar studying Petrarch in Avignon, obsessed by a girl called Laura.

DICTATOR GAL 23-Jun-1992
(rpt 31-Jul-1994) (R3)
A musical satire with Josette Simon and Joe Melia.

LAURA SINGER 22-Jan-1994
(World Service)

DARK ORPHAN 25-Feb-1995
With Keith Allen and Anna Livia Ryan. True crime drama set in France. Produced by Peter Kavanagh. R4. This is a remarkably nasty play about a violent, bigoted, Jew-hating fascist. He has all the worst beliefs of a World War 2 Nazi. He also abuses his wife and two daughters. Eventually there is a murder, but not the person you'd expect, either as perpetrator or victim. I was astonished to find at the end of the play that this grim story is essentially true. TXN/TDT:R4

18-Nov-1996 (rpt 30-Aug-1998) (R3) With Maria Friedman and Alan Belk. An operatic drama which throws together dancer Isadora Duncan and founder of Italian futurism F T Marinetti. (Greg Linden)
This play won a prize for its "innovation in the art of radio fiction" with an approach described on the Prix Italia website as "choreophony". Music was by Dominic Muldowney, and sound by Ian Dearden. It was produced by Ned Chaillet for the BBC. The website continues "The jury notes with regret that changes in the structure of production and broadcast at the BBC may now decrease the chance of similar plays being made in the future". Whether this is a loss I don't know, but I would like to hear it. No casting details available at time of writing.

With Hugh Ross, Julia Vaidis-Bogard and Sylvain Corthay. Director David Zane Mairowitz. Bradley is certain that the voices heard by Joan of Arc's were epileptic fits brought on by the ringing of church bells.

With James Fleet and Edna Dore. Director Peter Kavanagh. When a clerk buys a historic Ferrari, he does not expect to hear Latin American news on the radio or a strangely familiar voice whispering from the back set.

THE 78s .... 2000
An old man, apparently beyond communication, has a priceless collection of old gramophone records. Can his son find it? He tries to jog his dad's memory. Excellent Friday play, 60min. With Warren Mitchell, Henry Goodman and Margot Leicester. Director: Jeremy Mortimer.

Entertaining comic play where Sherlock Holmes meets Marx ...who's lost his manuscript of "Das Kapital". Friday play, 60min.

The story of naturalist Georg Steller, who was on Bering's disastrous expedition in 1741 from Siberia to Alaska. Bering and many of his men died of scurvy after their ship was marooned for nine months. Steller discovered some new species of animals but was unable to take any specimens back to Russia. With Adam Godley as Steller, Ewan Hooper as Vitus Bering; also starring Bruce Purchase, Gerard McDermott and Laura Martin-Simpson; dir. Jeremy Mortimer.


Based on "Shivitti: A Vision" by Ka-Tzetnik 135633 With Warren Mitchell and Frances Tomelty. Produced by Peter Kavanagh. An Auschwitz survivor haunted by terrible dreams is not helped by conventional treatment.

ROBERTO ZUCCO 2-Jun-1996 (rpt 13-Jul-1997) (R3)
By Bernard-Marie Koltes, adapted and translated by David Zane Mairowitz. with Alistair McGowan and Judy Parfitt Director Peter Kavanagh A young thug, imprisoned for murdering his father, escapes to embark on a trail of killings.

MOBY DICK 2nd, 9th and 16th July 2000
By Herman Melville, adapted in 3 parts by David Zane Mairowitz With Fritz Weaver and Oliva Leavanae. Director: Bill Raymond. The struggle between man and beast becomes a compelling tale of camaraderie, fate and megalomania.

By David Zane Mairowitz. The radio drama kicks off from a rather simple, but startling anecdote. Two young English art students, vacationing in a remote area of Kerry in the late 1960s, pass an old Irish farmer in a country lane. Hearing them speaking English, he calls to them and asks where they’re from. When they reply they are from London, he declares ‘I killed an Englishman once". The man explains that the event occurred at the time of the Troubles, when Sinn Fein exhorted the villagers to kill an Englishman. The men and boys over 14 draw straws and the task falls to the person who is now, years later, the old man telling the story. The narrator, listens, but starts to put his own interpretation on what he hears...Production details: Language - English. First broadcast on RTE Radio 1, 28 Oct 2018. Also on the RTE download site. Producer: David Zane Mairowitz. Story Poacher: Stephen Rea, James was played by James Rook (himself), Tom McQueen played James as a young man, and P. McGarratt played the old farmer. Richard Smallwood was the lighthouse keeper and Roisin Derby (sp?) his daughter. (.....this play was aired at the 2019 UK International Audio Drama Festival. - Ed)

Or - How My Brother Lost His Hearing in One Ear During a Concert of "The WHO". A radio fable by David Zane Mairowitz. It’s true. It happened during the song"Baba O’Reilly". My brother still goes to rock concerts, although he’s over 75, a septuagenarian teenager. During the day, he sells spare parts for lifts. He’s been doing the same work for fifty years, without more than a few weeks holiday, and without the merest promotion. Everyone wonders why he doesn’t retire. But he’s still strong, still mobile, why should he stop? ANd he's got a special place in his heart for 60s legends. This fateful night he buys himself an orchestra seat for another of those famous "farewell" concerts. He sits near the front, right under the powerful amps... Technical Realisation: Benno Müller vom Hofe, Christian Baader, Günther Kaspar and Steffen Jahn. Assistant Director: Jasmin Schäffler. The characters: Mono (75), the Fabulist, his brother (72), the boss-lady (35-40), a mediator, and the speaker. Roger Daltry also appears, in person. First broadcast: 15 Dec 2018, Westdeutscher Rundfunk, Cologne. Language: German & some English. 53m. (.....this play was aired at the 2019 UK International Audio Drama Festival. - Ed)

By David Zane Mairowitz. In German. Made in Switzerland; 53min. The real story: Victor Young Perez was a Tunisian Jewish boxer who won the world flyweight championship in 1932. He more or less left his poverty-stricken past behind him when he became famous, moved to Paris and had a notorious love affair with the French film star, Mireille Balin. As for the play: The fighter Emmanuel Zerbib, a Jewish “pied - noir”, originally from Tunisia, known as "Kid Paradise", disappears without trace in Paris in 1944. Nothing more is known about this. He had already broken with his family, and was generally considered a has-been in the war years. Some eighty years later, Zerbib's great-niece, Edith, becomes involved in his fate, against her will. She tries to discover what happened to him, and is more and more convinced that he was the victim of mob violence. She is told Zerbib was meant to throw a fight which he in fact won, and was subsequently eradicated by the boxing underworld. At the same time, the play proceeds in flashback, where we learn of Zerbib's affair with a French film star, Armele Dulin. This leads to conflict when he reveals his Jewish identity, she coming from an anti-Semitic background. They manage nonetheless to stay together until World War 2 begins. (.....this play was aired at the 2021 UK International Audio Drama Festival. - Ed)

Most of the above was compiled from information supplied by Greg Linden, and supplemented by information from Roger Bickerton and own collection.

Nigel Deacon, Diversity website

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