1981 Radio Plays

The Sword In The Stone....1981
By T.H. White,R4,26.12.1981/2000, Michael Hordern / Toby Robertson. Dram. by Neville Teller. Classic adaptation of T.H.White's story - will never be repeated; the Disney Corporation have the rights. SNT. (Saturday Night Theatre). See Neville's page - and more details are shown on Graham Gauld's pages....click on: Radio Plays-Producers-Graham Gauld-Single Plays.

R3 20 Dec 81. Set in 16th century Scotland; by Robert Forrest. Alison is a tinker who enjoys telling stories and making love; but when she practises both arts on the king she is accused of witchcraft. Cast: Alison Aird ... Maureen Carr, Tam Fisher ... Ron Bain, James Stewart, King of Scots ... Benny Young, Sir James Hamilton of Kincavel ... Alec Heggie, Brother Matthew ... Michael Elder, Rab Cowan ... Jimmy Yuill, Davy Nicol ... Charles Kearney, Ellie Duncan ... Monica Brady, Alec Sutton ... Gerard Slevin. Directed by Tom Kinninmont. BBC Scotland.

Sherlock Holmes vs. Dracula....1981
R4, 19.12.1981/2030, John Moffatt/Timothy West/David March. Dram. by Glyn Dearman (I think) of someone's novel (L. Estelman?), mixing two very different gentres. It works. 90m. SNT.

Atmospheric play by Charlotte Hastings. 18 Dec 81. A young woman finds the house of her dreams - a Tudor cottage. It is idyllic, but she is haunted by visions and a voice from the past. No details of cast or producer on my recording, which ends as the play finishes, but I guess it's Graham Gauld.

Cardboard Christmas Cutouts....1981
10 Dec 81, by Brian Thompson. Humorous play set in a alrge store in the Christmas season. Enter the working-class boy. Will he make good? And if he does, what will it cost him? Excellent play produced by Alfred Bradley.

The Autonomous Murder Complex....1981
By Frederick Bradnum,R4,5.12.1981/2030,Robin Ellis/Frances Jeater. Is the murderer real, or part of someone's subconscious? SNT. Imaginative thriller.

To Kill A Town....1981
By Derek Raby. 4.12.1981 With James Villiers/Neville Jason/Stephen Garlick. Afternoon play produced by Margaret Etall. A message is received by the police that a town is going to be killed unless a large ransom is paid.

Monday Play, three episodes, 23 Nov - 7 Dec 81. Olivia Manning dramatized for radio by Eric Ewens. Producer: John Tydeman. More information and cast...

A Voice In My Hand....1981
Charlotte Hastings,R4,14.11.1981/2030,Flora Robson/Marius Goring. Peculiar tale involving a walking stick which exerts influence over its owner. See Graham Gauld pages - Flora Robson Festival.SNT.

Operation Lightning Pegasus....1981
Alick Rowe,R4,7.11.1981/2030,Timothy West/Joy Harrison/Neil Stacy. from Alick Rowe's excellent comedy set in classical times. See his page.SNT.

The Hessian....1981
Howard Fast,R4,31.10.1981/2030,Derek Jacobi/Patricia Gallimore/Ian Hogg. A Hessian is a person from the Hesse region of Germany. (Rheinhessen....familiar to wine lovers)..SNT.

Leave It To Psmith....1981
P.G. Wodehouse,R4,3.10.1981/2030,John Gielgud/Michael Hordern/Joan Greenwood/Simon Ward. Humorous romp with a good cast. SNT.

The Best Of Friends....1981
J.C.W. Brook,R4,19.9.1981/2030,Michael Cochrane/Christopher Scoular/Angela Down. See JCW's page. SNT.

A STUDY IN SIN....1981
By Michael Robson. 18 Sep 81. A woman receives a threatening 'phone call, which alters the course of her life. She has no choice but to do as she's told. There's a terrific twist at the end. 45m.

Frame Of Deference....1981
Rod Beacham,R4,12.9.1981/2030,Stuart Milligan/Stephen Garlick/Patience Tomlinson.

The Technicolour Time Machine....1981
Harry Harrison/Chris Boucher,R4,5.9.1981/2030,Lee Montague/Richard Pearson/John Bay/David March/Michael Kilgarriff. Very unusual in that this is a comic science-fiction tale. SNT.

The Englishman Abroad....1981
Christopher Douglas,R4,29.8.1981/2030,Michael Cochrane/Robert Lang/Michael Kitchen/David Threlfall. See cricket plays page. "Douglas Jardine set out in the winter of 1932 with the avowed intent of destroying "those ruddy convicts" - the Australian cricket team. The tour became known as the Bodyline Tour ".....SNT.

12.8.1981. By Victor Canning. Rather unattractive tale about a young ornithologist who, one day, photographs something he shouldn't. With Rosalind Shanks, Sean Barrett. Producer Graham Gauld.

A Case To Be Answered....1981
Jill Hyem,R4,1.8.1981/2030. Very effective play about an awkward subject - violence to women by their partners. SNT.

A Full Account....1981
John Kirkmorris,R4,25.7.1981/2030,Jeffry Wickham/Sheila Grant/John Hollis. See John Kirkmorris page. SNT.

A Fall Of Moondust....1981
Arthur C. Clarke/Andrew Lynch,R4,30.5.1981/2030,David Buck/Barry Foster/Roland Curram/Bill Simpson. A people transporter gets stuck in the middle of nowhere on the moon. Superb science fiction. SNT.

Bequest To The Nation....1981
Terence Rattigan,R4,23.5.1981/2030,Sian Phillips/Michael Bryant/Anna Massey/Alan Lake. This is a play about Horatio Nelson, his death, and his "bequest" ... the woman he loved.

Three-part series.
20 May 81 The occupant of the room
21 May 81 Accessory before the fact
22 May 81 Violence

The Treadgold Conspiracy....1981
Malcolm Stewart,R4,9.5.1981/2030,Nicholas Courtney/Margaretta Scott. Thriller; up to MS's usual high standard. SNT.

7 Ma9 81. 55m A woman's husband goes missing, and the police cannot find him. They reluctantly allow a local medium to assist ... Det-Insp Ford: Michael Burlington, Marlowe: Lee Harrington, Skinner: John Forbes-Robertson, with Malcolm Hayes, Sam Dastor, Nicholas Courtney, Jenny Lee, Sean Probert. Producer Gerry Jones.

The Chrysalids....1981
John Wyndham,R4,25.4.1981/2030,Stephen Garlick/Amanda Murray/Judy Bennett. The well-known sci-fi tale about those who have just a little more ability than their peers....directed by Michael Bartlett. SNT.

The Rundle Gibbet....1981
Peter Terson,R4,4.4.1981/2030,Haydn Jones/June Barrie. A middle aged busybody starts a scandal-sheet where he slags off all and sundry. Some of them do not like it, and decide to teach him a lesson he will not forget. SNT.

By John Osborne. R3, 15 Mar 81.

Franz II, grandfather of Franz Joseph, believed that national patriotism was dangerous: it gave the people ideas above their station and, if encouraged, would lead to their demands for a share in government. It was he who asked the famous question which summed up the general Hapsburg attitude; a distinguished servant of the Empire being recommended to him as a sterling patriot, the dry old stick asked: 'But is he a patriot for me?'

"A Patriot For Me" is a provocative and controversial play that tells the fact-based story of an ambitious young soldier, Alfred Redl, in the Austro Hungarian army at the turn of the 20th century. Redl's career is on the rise, but his personal relationships always seem to end in heartbreak and frustration. That is, until he discovers his passion is really for men. Redl defies convention and flaunts his new-found sexuality in the upper echelon of society by attending a notorious drag ball. His bold and reckless behavior is noted by the Russian secret service, and Redl is blackmailed for his homosexuality to serve as a spy for Russia. Redl is forced to compromise his friendships and fellow soldiers to save his lovers from being persecuted. In the end, Redl must choose between his life and patriotism for his country.

The play's major theme is that the marginalisation of homosexuality, and the conspiratorial silence that this forced on practising homosexual men, created a real danger to the state. The action takes place in Lemburg, Warsaw, Vienna, Dresden, and Prague between 1890 and 1913.

Adapted for radio by Anton Gill from John Osborne's 1965 play, "A Patriot for Me", winner of "The Evening Standard" Best Play of the Year award.

Cast: Gary Bond [Alfred Redl], Norman Rodway [Lt.-Col. Ludwig Von Mohl], Robert Lang [Colonel Mischa Oblensky], Jill Bennett [Countess Sophia Delyanoff], John Moffatt [Baron von Epp], Haydn Wood [August Siczynski / Stanitsin / 'Lady Godiva'], Sean Arnold [Steinbauer / Maximillian von Taussig], John Church [Judge Advocate Jaroslav Kunz], Patrick Barr [General Conrad von Hotzendorf], Kathryn Hurlbutt [Hilde], Anthony Hyde [Ludwig Max Von Kupfer], Martyn Read [Albrecht / Paul], John McAndrew [Adjutant / Young Man in Cafe / 'Marie Antoinette'], Philip Fox [Ferdy / Orderly / Flunky], Richard Gibson ['Tsarina' / Mischa Lipschutz / Lt. Viktor Jerzabek], Gordon Reid [Lt. Stefan Kovacs / Dr. Schoepfer], and Alexander John [The Narrator]. Directed by John Tydeman and Anton Gill. (.......thanks to s-j of 'radiofans'.....ND)

15 Mar 81. By Jorge Icaza, adapted by Elizabeth Gowans from the translation by Mervyn Savill.

Ecuador in the early 1930s. A landowner, whose last chance of averting total ruin is to build a road and open up the interior for American speculators He has to buy more land and the Indians who go with it to provide his labour force. There is nothing else in his way except the Indians' huts and hereditary plots of land - their 'huasipungos'...

Nigel Davenport, Judi Franklin, Cyril Shaps, John Rye, Martin Read, Christopher Scott, Jane Knowles, Sean Arnold, Kathryn Hurlbutt, Edward Kelsey, Michael Spice, Ann Rosenfield, Douglas Lambert, John Webb, David McAlister, Olwen Griffiths, Stephen Garlick and John McAndrew.

Music by Malcom Clarke, BBC Radiophonic Workshop. Directed by Margaret Etall.

Stranger In The Dark....1981
Robert Garrett,R4,14.3.1981/2030,Tony Osoba/Cyril Shaps. Thriller. SNT.

The Return From Mars....1981
Charles Chilton,R4,7.3.1981/2030,John Pullen/Anthony Hall/Ed Bishop/Nigel Graham. 25 years after the last "Journey Into Space", Charles Chilton wrote a sequel. This is it. It doesn't disappoint. SNT.

By John Wainwright. 15 Feb 81. An excellent 90m police drama where a man has been in the vicinity of three child murders. He has the wife from hell, and this was the beginning of his problems. Produced by Alfred Bradley.

There'll Almost Be An England....1981
Bruce Stewart,R4,7.2.1981/2030,Elizabeth Bell/Robert Morris. Comic play by BS. SNT.

Comedy by Peter Gibbs. R4, 5 Feb 81. With Richard Briers.A main tries in vain to use a new glitzy computerized hyper-store. 45m.

Stoker Leishman's Diaries....1981
Peter Tinniswood,R4,24.1.1981/2030,Robin Bailey. Very funny play about the "Stoker"; a guy who has explored the Antarctic. Now he's old, and there's a fight to decide who will have (and publish) his journals. But what exactly is in them? SNT.

The First Men In The Moon....1981
H.G. Wells,R4,17.1.1981/2030,Hywel Bennett/William Rushton. Classic tale of lunar exploration written over a hundred years ago. Rushton is well-cast as Cavor.Dramatised by Terry Jones. Directed by Glyn Dearman.

Captain Of Heretics....1981
Anthony Read,R4,10.1.1981/2030,Charles Kay/Clifford Rose/Hugh Dickson/Sheila Grant. The William Tindale story. SNT.

Max Williams,R4,3.1.1981/2030,Charles Foster/Paul Copley. A murder story - but where is the weapon? See the page "Ice" (Radio plays by topic). SNT.

By T.S.Eliot; adapted for radio by David Self.

From Wikipedia:
....A verse drama that portrays the assassination of Archbishop Thomas Becket in Canterbury Cathedral in 1170, first performed in 1935. Eliot drew heavily on the writing of Edward Grim, a clerk who was an eyewitness to the event.

The play, dealing with an individual's opposition to authority, was written at the time of rising Fascism in Central Europe, and can be taken as a protest to individuals in affected countries to oppose the Nazi regime's subversion of the ideals of the Christian Church.

Thomas Becket ... Michael Williams
The Chorus ... Margaret Robinson, Jenny Lee, Catherine Parr and Gladys Spencer
The Priests Edward Seckerson, Michael N. Harbour and Dennis Graham
1st Tempter / 1st Knight ... David Horovitch
2nd Tempter / 2nd Knight ... John Forbes-Robertson
3rd Tempter / 3rd Knight ... Christopher Benjamin
4th Tempter ... Michael Williams
4th Knight ... Neville Jason
The Messenger ... David Bradshaw

Recorded on location in St Giles Church, Cripplegate. Organ music composed and played by Mike Steer. Directed by Dickon Reed. A BBC World Service Drama production, 1981.

Compiled by Nigel Deacon / Diversity website

Above plays known to exist in VRPCC collections

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