Radio 3 Drama, 1984

Compiled by Ian Johns

Main source of information is the BBC Genome scanned pages of Radio Times with entries edited, added to and amended for clarity and context. Also listed separately are drama-related documentaries and selected readings and short stories.


1 January 1984:
The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui
By Bertolt Brecht, adapted for radio by Brian Miller. Brecht’s 1938 tragi-comic polemic about Hitler’s criminality portrays him as, literally, a cheap hoodlum. Arturo is a crook from Brooklyn, who exploits the cauliflower trade’s depression by setting up protection rackets that ultimately gain him total power in Chicago and Cicero. Arturo Ui: Bill Wallis, Newsboy: Sonia Ritter, O’Casey/Pastor: Tom Watson, Flake/Bowl/Inna: Mark Buffery, Woman/Betty Dullfeet: Miranda Forbes, Counsel: Leslie Heritage, Roma: Malcolm Gerard, Clerk/Judge: Ian Price, Butcher/Prosecutor: Brian Haines, Sheet/Gaffees: Alan Dudley, Dogsborough: John Gabriel, Young Dogsborough/Crocket: Peter Whitman, Giri: Peter Woodthorpe, Givola: Barry Dennen, Dockdaisy: Heather Baskerville. Director: Brian Miller (BBC Bristol). (Repeat from 10 March 1983)

5 January 1984:
The Duchess’s Diary
By Robin Chapman. Based on an incident and a character in Don Quixote, this monologue reconstructs the tragic career of the young Spanish noblewoman who falls in love with de Cervantes when he visits her husband's castle. But when his great work of fiction appears, she believes she has been cruelly misrepresented in its pages, and so begins a dark and steep descent into obsession. Maria Isabel: Maureen O'Brien. Director: Maurice Leitch. (Repeat from 17 April 1983)

12 January 1984:
By Don Haworth. Two Second World War servicemen travel back by train to their RAF base. During the journey, one of them unburdens himself of a terrible secret. Winner of a 1984 Giles Cooper Award. Harold: David Threlfall, Fred: Christian Rodska. Director: Kay Patrick. (Repeated on Radio 4 on 8 September 1984 and 8 June 1986).

19 January 1984:
The Old Markers Don’t Work Anymore
By James Douglas. Bush was a writer until The State decided to withdraw his work. Now, a prisoner in his own home, he waits for the weekly visit from Lomb, a bureaucrat whose investigation into Bush’s work takes the form of a deadly psychological game. Bush: Tony McEwan, Lomb: Alan Dudley. Producer: Robert Cooper. (Repeated on 12 August 1984)

24 January 1984:
A Small Speck of Evil
By Frederick Bradnum, adapted from Francois Tassart’s Recollections of Guy de Maupassant. In 1891, aged 41, the womanising Maupassant was rich and world-famous for his short stories and his novels, yet increasingly prone to mental disorders caused by syphilis that hastened his death two years later. His decline was witnessed by his valet. Maupassant: Michael Elphick, Francois: Sean Barrett, Doctor: William Eedle, Father: Peter Tuddenham, Mother: Jane Wenham, Gisele: Carole Boyd. Special sound: Jonathan Gibbs. Director: John Theocharis. (Repeated on 24 July 1984)

26 January 1984:
Romeo and Juliet
By William Shakespeare. A production partly recorded on location. Romeo: Ian Saynor, Juliet: Harriet Walter, The Nurse: Elizabeth Spriggs, Friar Laurence: Stephen Thorne, Mercutio: William Nighy, Benvolio: Alex Jennings, Chorus/Prince of Verona: Hugh Dickson, Tybalt: Stuart Organ, Paris: David Gooderson, Capulet: Timothy Bateson, Lady Capulet: Frances Jeater, Montague: Ronald Baddiley, Lady Montague: Hilda Schroder, Peter: David Peart, Balthazar: Steve Hodson, Apothecary: James Bryce, Friar John: Danny Schiller, Page: Jeremy Booker. Other parts played by James Bryce, Steve Hodson, David Peart and Danny Schiller. Technical presentation by Tim Sturgeon, Richard Beadsmore, Sarah Rosewarne, Cedric Johnson and Andy Leslie. Music: Ilona Sekacz. Director: Richard Wortley. (Repeat from 16 June 1983)

2 February 1984:
The Death of Humpty Dumpty
By Graham Reid. In this first play by the Northern Irish playwright, first produced at Dublin’s Abbey Theatre in 1979, an innocent teacher is left paralysed after accidentally falling foul of a paramilitary assassination squad. Gerard Doyle: John Keegan, Mary Sampson: Caroline Reid, David Sampson: Trevor Moore, Heather Sampson: Valerie Lilley, George Sampson: Donal McCann, Judith Sampson: Fay Howard, Caroline Wilson: Eileen Pollock, Martin Ferguson: Allan McClelland, Sister Thompson: Maggie Shevlin, Willy John: Adrian Dunbar, Radio Announcer: Linda Wray. Director: Robert Cooper (BBC Northern Ireland). (Repeated on 20 February 1985)

Barnes’ People II
A series of duologues by Peter Barnes. Director: Ian Cotterell

8 February 1984:
1: Worms
What is the nature of religious faith and is the world really made of mouldy cheese? Such questions are raised when a mother tells a priest of her son’s blasphemy. With Joan Plowright and Paul Scofield. (Repeated on 12 August 1984)

15 February 1984:
2: It’s Cold, Wanderer, it’s Cold
A God-fearing terrorist defends his revolutionary beliefs on his last day on earth. With Mary Ellis and Ian McKellen. (Repeated on 14 August 1984)

22 February 1984:
3: The Right Time and Place
Suicide is not only dangerous but also difficult and, to do it with style, almost impossible. With Claire Bloom and Irene Worth. (Repeated on 13 August 1984)

29 February 1984:
4: Silver Bridges Red in tooth and claw, two monsters of American capitalism, Commodore  Cornelius Vanderbilt and Jay Gould, fight to the death. With Alec McCowen and Peter Ustinov. (Repeated on 15 August 1984)

7 March 1984:
5: Acting Exercise
Would you believe an actor if he were telling the truth? With Alan Bates and Donald Sinden. (Repeated on 11 August 1984)

14 March 1984:
6: Lament for Armenians and Grey Viruses
Two men talk about Armenians, grey viruses, the 36 Just Men, and ask, is there life before death? With Harry Andrews and Trevor Howard. (Repeated on 17 August 1984)

21 March 1984:
7: Moondog Rogan and the Mighty Hamster 
An insight into the wilder shores of showbusiness. With Eileen Atkins and Barbara Leigh-Hunt. (Repeated on 16 August 1984)

9 February 1984:
True West
By Sam Shepard. In Shepard’s celebrated 1980 play, cerebral screenwriter Austin has come to his mother’s Texas home to work on a screenplay, but he’s interrupted by the arrival of his dissolute, desert-living brother, Lee. Both are pursuing the American Dream from contrasting perspectives, but are they so different? (Also herd on Radio 3 on 19 November 2006 in a version with David Soul and Richard Laing). Lee: Lee Montague, Austin: Jonathan Pryce, Saul Kimmer: Alan Tilvern, Mom: Mildred Shay. Director: Peter King. (Repeat from 23 June 1983).

16 February 1984:
By Seneca, trans. Jane Elder. Atreus and Thyestes have fought a long and bitter civil war. Exiled, Thyestes is persuaded to return home to share the throne, but Atreus is really plotting a horrifying act of revenge. Thyestes: Denis Quilley, Atreus, his brother: Richard Pasco, The Messenger: Anton Lesser, A Fury: Hugh Dickson, Ghost of Tantalus: David March, Courtier: Anthony Newlands, Tantalus, Thyestes’ son: Crawford Logan, His brothers: Stuart Organ, Simon Hewitt, Chorus: Hugh Dickson, David Gooderson, Simon Hewitt, Anton Lesser, Crawford Logan, Stuart Organ, Richard Pasco, Peter Tuddenham. Singer: Martyn Hill. Music: Christos Pittas. Director: Martin Jenkins. (Repeat from 5 June 1983) 

23 February 1984:
By Seneca in a version by Ted Hughes. Having solved the riddle of the Sphinx. Oedipus Is proclaimed King of Thebes and marries the Queen, Jocasta, but he is faced with a new riddle when the city is struck by a deadly plague. Who is responsible? Oedipus: Martin Jarvis, Jocasta: Slim Phillips, Creon: John Rowe, Tiresias: Hugh Dickson, Manto, his daughter: Frances Jeater, Corinthian Messenger: Nigel Graham, Phorbas: Timothy Bateson, Theban Slave: David Gooderson, Chorus Leader: Stephen Thorne, Chorus: James Bryce, Jill Lidstone, David Peart, Jean Trend. Music: Ilona Sekacz. Director: Martin Jenkins. (Repeat from 2 June 1983)

1 March 1984:
The Smell of the Seaweed, The Roar of the Fish
By Robert Ferguson. Sarah is very self-possessed for a 10-year-old, perhaps because her father is dead and her friends are of her mother's generation rather than her own. Among them, John commands her particular affection and respect. Sarah: Annabelle Lanyon, John: Geoffrey Collins. Director: Richard Imison. (Repeated on Radio 4 on 12 September 1984)

1 March 1984:
The King Emperor
By E.R. Pugh. A young man makes a journey to a strange and mystical land. There he falls under the spell of the beautiful Queen and eventually that of the King Emperor himself. Storyteller: William Squire, Queen: Sian Phillips, Young Man: Robin Sachs. Producer: Enyd Williams (BBC Wales). (Repeated on 28 August 1984)

8 March 1984:
Boris Godunov
By Alexander Pushkin, translated and adapted by D. M. Thomas. The first production in the UK of Pushkin’s drama. Written in 1824-25, it mixes the political, historical and psychological as it explores the guilt and fate of the Russian tsar, who reigned from 1598 to 1605, and his tragic conflict with the pretender to his throne, Dimitri. Boris Godunov: Alan Howard, Grigory/Dmitry: William Nighy, Marina Mniszek: Jane Lapotaire, Pimen: Robert Harris, Prince Shuisky: John Rowe, Varlaam: William Squire, Vorotynsky: Brett Usher, Pushkin: Kerry Francis, Basmanov: James Kerry, Kurbsky: Richard Huw, Semyon: Nigel Graham, Informer: Geoffrey Collins, Patriarch: Michael Bilton, Abbott: Peter Tuddenham, Misayil: James Bryce, Proprietress: Pat Keen, Fyodor: Clive Panto, Kseniya: Alison Truefitt, Nurse: Hilda Schroder, Mniszek: Timothy Bateson, Holy Man: Alex Jennings. All other parts are shared by Carole Boyd, Madi Hedd, Stuart Organ, Pauline Siddell, John Webb and other members of the cast. Music (originally for a stage production in Moscow): Prokofiev, performed by the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra and the Halle Choir (men’s voices) conducted by Edward Downes. Solo singing coach: Simon Joly. Russian adviser: Rita Weissman. Music producer: Clive Bennett. Director: John Theocharis. (Repeated on 21 October 1984)

15 March 1984:
By Ian Weir. As King Arthur is dying, his life and achievements are reviewed in a series of flashbacks that contrast his public glory and private flaws. King Arthur: Paul Daneman, Young Arthur: Mick Ford, Sir Bedwere, the bold: Trevor Martin, Alan, the boy: Jill Lidstone, Merlin: Douglas Storm, The Older Minstrel: David March, The Younger Minstrel: John McAndrew, Sir Mordred: Richard Huw, Sir Lancelot: Geoffrey Colons, Queen Guinevere: Carole Boyd, Morgause: Tammy Ustinov, Crone: Madi Hedd, Man in Tavern: Clive Panto, Sir Gaherys: Scott Cherry, Lady: Jane Wenham, Common Man: Peter Tuddenham, Common Woman: Hilda Schroder Music composed and conducted by Philip Pickett, played by the New London Consort. Singers: Tessa Bonner, Caroline Trevor, Peter Hall. Director: Glyn Dearman. (Repeated on 8 August 1986)

20 March 1984:
Yes and No
By Graham Greene. A short play or “theatrical fragment” by the celebrated novelist in which a director tries to seduce an actor while discussing a play, during which the actor’s replies are simply “Yes” or “No”. First performed at the Haymarket Studio Theatre, Leicester, on 20 March 1980, with Derek Smith as The Director and William Hope as The Actor. The Director: Clive Francis, The Actor: Alex Jennings. Producer: John Tydeman. (Repeat from 29 April 1983)

22 March 1984:
All for Love (or The World Well Lost)
By John Dryden. First performed at the Theatre Royal, London, in December 1677, Dryden reconceives and rewrites Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra. Confining the action to Alexandria on the final day of the lovers’ lives, its focus is on the conflict between love and honour. Antony: John Turner, Cleopatra: Barbara Jefford, Ventidius: Nigel Stock, Octavia: Maureen O’Brien, Alexas: David March, Dollabella: John Rowe, Serapion, a Priest: Hugh Dickson, Myris: Stephen Thorne, Iras: Jill Lidstone, Charmion: Frances Jeater. Director: Martin Jenkins. (Repeat from 7 July 1983)

29 March 1984:
What Else (Et puis?)
By Antoine de la Morinerie, translated by Peter Meyer. A 12-year-old girl, paying her weekly visit to a blind old man, is persistently pressed by him to describe what else there is in the world that surrounds him. The Man: Michael Gough, The Girl: Phoebe Nicholls. Director: Glyn Dearman

1 April 1984:
By Christopher Russell. Neil Crosby, a taunted disabled boy, learns to swim brilliantly. But when he falls in love with a girl at the pool, his obsessional belief in water as his true element turns to something more sinister. (Joint winner of the 1983 Radio Times play competition and a 1984 Giles Cooper Award). Neil: Julian Firth, Michelle: Tilly Vosburgh, Ken, the swimming instructor: John Rowe, Neil’s Mother: Jane Wenham, Neil’s Father: James Bryce, Jacko: Alex Jennings, First Boy: Michael Jenner, Second Boy: Ian Hoare, Official: John Rowe. Location recording at the Porchester Baths, London, by Cedric Johnson, Julian Walther and Brian Prior. Technical presentation: David Greenwood, Paul Pearson and Vanessa Ellner. Director: Richard Wortley. (Repeated on Radio 4 on 12 November 1984 and 6 July 1985)

2 April 1984:
Barnes People: Confessions of a Primary Terrestrial Mental Receiver and Communicator: Num III Mark I
By Peter Barnes. A seemingly dull suburban man finds meaning in his belief that he is part of a greater plan conceived by aliens with whom he is in covert correspondence. Edward Charles Lilly: Alec Guinness. Director: Ian Cotterell. (Repeat from 19 September 1981 and 24 May 1982).

5 April 1984:
By Gabriel Josipovici. A man, sitting alone in the middle of an empty room, is visited by another man. They engage in an intensely personal dialogue, part interrogation, part confession. Are the two men friends? Brothers? Is one, or indeed either of them, in that empty room at all? (Also adapted by the author as the short story Brothers). With Kenneth Haigh and Bernard Gallagher. Director: John Theocharis. (Repeat from 20 July 1983)

8 April 1984:
The Primrose Path
By Georges Feydeau, adapted by Peter Barnes from the 1906 comedy Le Bourgeon, translated Kate Horn. The pious son of an aristocratic family is heading for the priesthood ,but then falls in love with an actress. Comtesse de Plounidec: Gwen Watford, Eugenie Heurteloup: Dilys Laye, Catherine, a maid: Moir Leslie, Marquis de Laroche-Tourmel: Aubrey Woods, Luc a valet: Michael Bilton, Maurice de Plounidec: Simon Hewitt, Huguette: Wendy Murray, Hector Heurteloup: Richard Pasco, L’Abbe Bourset: Timothy Bateson, Dr Vetille: Mlchael Spice, Monsieur Guerassin: Christopher Ettridge, Etiennette Marigny: Penelope Wilton, Lt Musignol: Wllliam Eedle, Cleo de Montespan: Pauline Siddle, Paulette de Vernandois: Maggie McCarthy, Roger, a valet: Alex Jennings, Simone Clovis: Jane Wenham, Jaques, the Abbe’s gardener: Michael Bilton. Music: Jonathan Gibbs (BBC Radiophonic Workshop). Director: Ian Cotterell. (Repeated on 30 December 1984)

14 April 1984:
Barnes People: Glory
By Peter Barnes. Peregrinus Proteus, an Ancient Greek philosopher famous for parricide, delivers his final oration before stepping on to his own funeral pyre. Peregrinus Proteus: John Gielgud. Director: Ian Cotterell. (Repeat from 29 September 1981 and 22 May 1982)

15 April 1984:
Boney Jan and the Flying Man
By Nigel Baldwin. A British military aircraft apparently ditches in the North Sea. A field officer working for a charity in Africa, who was acquainted with the pilot, is interrogated by the authorities. Jan: Charlotte Cornwell, Kelly: Tom Wilkinson, Kate: Susan Wooldridge, Tyler: Crawford Logan, Charles: Richard Hurndall, Rousseau: Brett Usher, Wagner: Ed Bishop, Amanda: Pauline Siddle, Roberts: Kerry Francis, Colin: Clive Panto, CO: James Kerry, Army Captain: David Peart. Organ played by Alec Leader. Director: Richard Wortley. (Repeated on 20 March 1985)

22 April 1984:
No One is Evil and No One is Good
By Rainer Werner Fassbinder, trans. Anthony Vivis. “An experiment in science fiction” by the German director. Set in In a time when sight, smell and love are only dimly remembered, Petrov and Elvira await the end of the world as the play wonders if the moment before a nuclear holocaust can be a time for hope. Elvira: Fiona Walker, Petrov: Nigel Anthony, Narrator: Alan Dudley, Jeanne: Annabel Lanyon, Christoph: Damian Frankun, Grandfather/First Man: Michael Bilton, Second Man: Mark Jones, Operator: Eileen Tully. Greek: Steve Plytas, Arab: Ali Refaie. Director: Jeremy Mortimer. (Repeated on 16 January 1985)

28 April 1984:
Who is Sylvia?
By Stephen Dunstone. Two scientists work in a laboratory, studying cockroaches. Worry, death and ignorance are apparent in both their worlds as we shift perspective between the humans and insects. (Joint winner of the 1983 Radio Times playwriting competition and a 1984 Giles Cooper Award). Sir Archibald Sopwith-Plackett: Michael Aldridge, Henry: Nigel Hawthorne, Michael: Martin Jarvis, Angela: Anna Massey, Sylvia: Frances Jeater. Director: John Tydeman. (Repeated on 17 October 1984)

4 May 1984:
A Self-Made Man
By Angela Carter. An exploration for radio of the life and character of the Edwardian novelist Ronald Firbank (1886-1926), whose work was championed by E.M. Forster and Evelyn Waugh. Firbank: Lewis Fiander, The Female Narrator: Frances Jeater, The Male Narrator: John Westbrook, Lord Bemers: Timothy Bateson, Nancy Cunard: Liza Goddard, Sir Osbert Sitwell: John Webb, Sewell Stokes: Geoffrey Collins, Baba: Kate Binchy, Joseph Firbank: James Garbutt, Sir Thomas Firbank: Peter Tuddenham, Augustus John: James Bryce, Evan Morgan: Clive Panto, Grant Richards: Eric Allan, Wyndham Lewis: Kerry Francis, Harold Nicholson: Brett Usher, Oscar Wilde: James Kerry, Forrest Reid: Tom Hunsinger, Duncan Grant: Michael Spice. Director: Glyn Dearman. (Repeated on 29 March 1985)

6 May 1984:
A 1958 musical by Sandy Wilson based on the book by Ronald Firbank. This adaptation of Firbank’s 1919 novel (by the composer and lyricist of The Boy Friend) is set in a fictional Edwardian spa resort, where its aphrodisiac air and a Caribbean masseuse seem to ensure longevity for everyone. (First heard as a Radio 4 Monday Play on 28 April 1975). At Harehatch House: Mrs Hurstpierpoint: Maxine Audley, Mrs Thoroughfare: Betty Hardy, Fr Colley-Mahoney: Gordon Whiting, Capt Dick Thoroughfare: John Rye, Lt Jack Whorwood: Michael Deacon, Ffines, the butler: Michael Darbyshire, Nit, the footman: Ian Charleson, Fowler, the parlour maid: Celia Helda, Sister Ecclesia: Marcia Ashton. At Tooke's Farm: Grannie Tooke: Doris Hare, Thetis Tooke: Patsy Rowlands, David Tooke: Steven Pacey. At the Nook: Mrs Yajnavalkya: Elisabeth Welch, Niri-Esther, her niece: Elaine Delmar, Carry, her maid: Hilary Paterson. At the Strangers’ Hotel: Lady Parvula de Panzoust: Fenella Fielding, Sir Victor Vatt: Donald Scott, Lady Saunter: Celia Helda, Cardinal Pirelli: Aubrey Woods, Madame Mimosa: Marcia Owen. Book, music and lyrics: Sandy Wilson, arranged and conducted by Richard Holmes. Director: Glyn Dearman. (Also repeated on Radio 3 on 25 December 1990)

27 May 1984:
Pure Science
By Nick Dear. “An allegory for radio” in which 50 years of pottering about in his secret laboratory has led Harold Lamb to a great discovery involving elemental forces. Harold Lamb: Patrick Troughton, Mary Lamb: Elizabeth Spriggs, Perkins: Derek Fowlds, Harold’s Belly and Ancient Chinese: Stephen Thorne. Director: Richard Wortley. (Repeat from 1 September 1983)

28 May 1984:
The Stone Guest
By Alexander Pushkin, translated by Antony Wood. Inspired by the legend of Don Juan, this is one of four “little tragedies” completed by Pushkin in 1830. An unrepentant serial seducer and fighter of duels, Don Juan is finally defeated when the statue of a knight commander comes to life after Juan seduces his widow. Don Juan: Gawn Grainger, Leporello: Peter Baldwin, Donna Anna: Frances Jeater, Laura: Janet Maw, Priest: Nigel Graham, Don Carlos: Crawford Logan, Guests: James Kerry, Simon Hewitt, Commendador: Peter Tuddenham, Singer: Glenda Simpson, Guitarist: Barry Mason. Producer: Piers Plowright. (Repeat from 3 December 1982)

3 June 1984:
In the Ruins
By Nick Dear. Alone in his empty rooms at Windsor Castle in 1817, the year before his death, a now old, mad, deaf and blind George III reviews his past life through a series of audiences held with his imaginary court. Subsequently staged at the Bristol Old Vic in 1989 with Patrick Malahide as the king. George III: Nigel Stock. Harpsichord played by Ilona Sekacz. Director: Richard Wortley. (Repeated on 24 March 1985)

5 June 1984:
The Family Lives Here
By Priscilla Allen. A portrait of the novelist’s life in a large, chaotic household, which inspired her fiction about life among the late Victorian and Edwardian upper middle class. Ivy Compton-Burnett: Hilda Schroder. The Family: Peter Acre, Rosalind Adler, Helen Atkinson Wood, Timothy Bateson, Arnold Diamond, William Eedle, Narissa Knights, Moir Leslie, Ellen Pollock, David Sinclair, Mark Straker and Margaret Wolfit. The Observers: Helen McNeill, Peter Mellor and Alison Waley. Director: Piers Plowright. (Repeated on 3 May 1985)

10 June 1984:
Caught on the Crossing
By Manny Draycott. Eleanor enjoyed a European-style childhood in Corsica and has never really settled since returning to England. Her impending marriage into the upper middle-classes prompts a crisis of identity as she observes their very different attitudes towards elitism and violence in society. Michael: Tim Pigott-Smith, Eleanor: Susan Wooldridge, Anthony: Alan Rickman, Michael’s Mother: Maxine Audley. Bernard's voice: Michael Jenner Director: Cherry Cookson. (Repeat from 13 October 1983)

15 June 1984:
The Snake Eater
By Vazha Pshavela, trans. Donald Rayfield. The Georgian poet Pshavela (1861-1915), who lived the tough life of a Georgian peasant, based this dramatic poem on the legend of the warrior Mindia who, while in captivity, ate snake flesh and acquired superhuman powers. The Poet: Fraser Kerr, Mindia: Jack McKenzie, Mzia: Sandra Clark, Chalkia: James Kerry, Beraia: Brett Usher. Other parts played by Scott Cherry, Moir Leslie and Clive Panto. Director: John Theocharis. (Repeated on 12 February 1985)

16 June 1984:
By Eric Ewens. “A Duet for Bloomsday” by the prolific radio dramatist (1917-1998). James Joyce: Sean Barrett, Nora Barnacle: Maggie Shevlin. Director: Piers Plowright. (Repeated on 29 July 1986)

17 June 1984:
The Return of General Forefinger
By Giles Cooper. Augusta Forefinger, the eccentric daughter of a distinguished general, has dedicated her life and fortune to collecting statues of her illustrious father, wherever they may be. Her quest has been going well, until one surviving male relative turns up from Australia. This is a second production of Cooper’s play. The first was heard on the Third Programme on 25 July 1961 with Mary O’Farrell and Nigel Stock (and repeated on 18 August 1961, 18 August 1962 and 18 May 1970). George Brady: James Aubrey, Augusta Forefinger: Mary Wimbush, Binnie: Patricia Quinn, Quentin Ashmold: Michael Cochrane, Macnab: Sam Dastor, Spine Pad: John Bott, Linda: Helena Breck, Sean: Sean Barrett, Tim/Taxi Driver: Mark Rolston, Clancy: Anthony Hall, Moti: Kumal Grewal, Chandra: Rashid Karapiet. Director: David Spenser

24 June 1984:
The Scientists of the Strange
By Peter Redgrove. A power emanating from a haunted house in Cornwall attracts a group of self-appointed “ghosthunters”, together with their millionaire patron, who is determined to record the unrecordable on videotape. Highsticker, the millionaire: Conrad Phillips, Diana: Sarah-Jane Bickerton, Bernard: Nat Brenner, Esther: Susan Engel, Adrian: Alan Moore, Sally: Amanda Murray, Dentist: Matthew Adams. Music: Sidney Sager. Director: Brian Miller (BBC Bristol). (Repeated on 6 March 1985)

1 July 1984:
A Captive Lion 
By Elaine Feinstein. A biography of Russian and Soviet poet Marina Tsvetayeva, who lived through the Russian Revolution, the First World War and years in exile. Marina: Paola Dionisotti, Narrator: Mary Wimbush, Aly/Anastasia: Prim Cotton, Mandelstam/Slonim: Anthony Newlands, Pasternak: Henry Stamper, Rodzevich: James Kerry, Seryozha: Greg Hicks, Maria Mein: Anna Fox. Director: Margaret Wyndham. (Repeated on 26 April 1986)

1 July 1984:
The Object
By Giles Cooper. A fallen space capsule offers options for a desperately poor couple and their neighbour, but will they make the right choices? Cooper’s play was originally produced on the Third Programme on 17 April 1964 with Michael Hordern, Bernard Bresslaw and Sheila Grant (and repeated on 17 April 1964, 7 May 1964 and 9 March 1965). Mill: Miriam Margolyes, Gary: Christopher Ettridge, Mr Thurle: Freddie Jones, Operator: Ellen McIntosh, Voice: William Hope. Director: Michael Heffernan

8 July 1984:
Rotunda Blue
By Neil Donnelly. Two couples meet in a Dublin flat for a swinging party, but by the end of the evening perhaps no one’s hopes will be realised. Siobhan: Deidre Donnelly, Ollie: Michael Lally, Doreen: Marcella O’Riordan, Fergus: Maoliosa Stafford. Director: Marilyn Ireland (BBC Northern Ireland). (Repeat from 15 September 1983)

15 July 1984:
By Max Frisch, translated and adapted by Geoffrey Skelton from a dramatisation by Mario Hindermann. Acquitted of the charge of strangling one of his six wives, Zurich physician Dr Schaad can’t help but reflect on his 10 months on remand, the trial and his complicated life and character. Dr Schaad: Norman Rodway, Prosecuting Counsel: Neil Stacy, Judge/Father: Michael Bilton, Pfeiffer/Knuttel/Caretaker: Timothy Bateson, Defending Counsel: Rex Holdsworth, Frl Schlegel/Andrea: Maev Alexander, Waitress/Corinne: Ann Morrish, Son/Felix: Richard Curnow, Lilian/Fr Hofer: Ellen McIntosh, Gisel: Jane Wenham, Stocker/Garage Owner: Victor Winding, Schwander/Bickel/Psychiatrist: John Linstrum, Helene/Mother: Hilda Schroder. Director: Brian Miller (BBC Bristol). (Repeated on 26 June 1985)

17 July 1984:
This Grand Conversation was Under the Rose
By Mary Munro. An evocation of Irish painter Jack Butler Yeats, brother of the poet. Best known for his paintings of jockeys and horses, the boxing ring and the circus, he believed “all fine pictures... to be fine, must have some of the living ginger of life in them”. Woman: Kate Binchy, Young Man: Tony Doyle, Elderly Man/Sligo Voice/Second Horseman: Michael Duffy, Baron/Dublin Voice/Man: Sean McCarthy, Ballad Singer/Kerry Voice: Barry McGovern, First Horseman: Desmond Perry, Critic: John Shedden. Flute music played by Alison McDonald. Director: Marilyn Ireland

22 July 1984:
By Lanford Wilson. A 1977 one-act play by the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright (1937-2011) in which a sophisticated New York antiques dealer’s wisecracking cynicism is challenged by her nephew, studying for the ministry, who insists he has had a mystical experience. Antiques Dealer: Margaret Robertson, Her Assistant: Denyse Alexander, Her Nephew: Rolf Saxon. Director: Ian Cotterell. (Repeat from 25 September 1983)

29 July 1984:
Dynamite Hill
By Kenneth Robbins. Summer 1963. Roosevelt Statum, an African-American garbage collector, has to tread a careful path amidst the turmoil of the streets around Dynamite Hill in Birmingham, Alabama, even if he has a white policeman pal in Chunky Hornsby. Narrator: Blain Fairman, Roosevelt Statum: Major Wiley, Chunky Hornsby: Francis Drake. Director: Richard Wortley. (Repeated on 20 November 1985)

31 July 1984:
Rameau’s Nephew
By Denis Diderot, translated and adapted by John Hope Mason. The 18th-century philosopher’s celebrated dialogue, between a philosopher and his lazy, conniving, and morally and ethically questionable nephew, questions whether the morally undesirable can be creatively fruitful and truth can cause more trouble than benefit. The Nephew: Peter Woodthorpe, Diderot: Patrick Allen. Director: John Theocharis. (Repeated on 6 February 1985)

2 August 1984:
Reading Faulkner
By Igor Pomerantsev, trans. Frank Williams. A monologue in which a Russian student, writing a thesis on the novels of William Faulkner, becomes steeped in the character and atmosphere of these stories to the point where they intensify his whole vision of life. Performed by Ronald Pickup. Producer: Cherry Cookson. (Repeated on 28 February 1985)

5 August 1984:
Jacques the Fatalist 
By Denis Diderot, translated and adapted by Michael Henry. The French philosopher’s novel, written between 1765 and 1780, features a valet telling stories of his amorous adventures to his master to ward off boredom on a journey. But his tales are constantly interrupted by other travellers, who in turn tell their stories that are also interrupted while a “reader” interjects to demand more information. Diderot: Norman Rodway, Jacques: Christopher Fairbank, The Master: John Rowe, Hostess: Maggie McCarthy. Other parts played by Timothy Bateson, Helena Breck, Bernard Brown, Geoffrey Collins., Arnold Diamond, William Eedle, Narissa Knights, Moir Leslie, Mark Rolston, Hilda Schroder and Mark Straker. Director: John Theocharis. (Repeated on 25 August 1985)

19 August 1984:
By Terence Hards. A play by author and poet Hards (1929-1991), a friend of Robert Graves. James Grimling has lived his life sticking to the rules and feeling that there was no freedom of choice for him, yet finds you can still make choices right up to the end – if you have the courage. James Grimling: Harry Andrews, Dolly Grimling: Rosalind Ayres, Lorna Wainwright: Janet Dale, Jan Peeble: Pauline Siddle, Mrs Clements: Christine Hargreaves, Mrs Brown: Maggie McCarthy, Capt Tobias: Bruce Purchase, Quack Cargill: Jon Strickland, Patients: Margot Boyd, Mark Jones and Michael Goldie. Director: Jane Morgan. (Repeated on 17 April 1985 & 14 April 1992)

26 August 1984:
Worstward Ho
By Samuel Beckett. A monologue that ponders how we plod on through life because there is no better alternative. Performed by Norman Rodway. Director: Ronald Mason. (Repeat from 4 August 1983)

31 August 1984:
The Hunting of the Snark
By Lewis Carroll. “The impossible voyage of an improbable crew to find an inconceivable creature” is set to music that reflects the playful games within the text. Narrator: Peter Easton. Music: Douglas Young, with Leicestershire Chorale, members of the Leicestershire Schools Symphony Orchestra and Douglas Young (piano), conducted by Peter Fletcher.

2 September 1984:
Ar Lan y Mor
By Nigel Baldwin. English working-class newlyweds Sarn and Phil face an impoverished future, but the sad yet poetic Welsh proprietress of the guest house where they are staying shows there are worse things than not having enough money. (“Ar Lan y Mor” (Beside the Sea) is a traditional Welsh folk song). Einwen: Meg Wynn Owen, Sam: Pauline Siddle, Phil: Russell Dixon, Selwyn: Richard Derringtion, Man: John Webb. Director: Richard Wortley. (Repeat from 3 November 1983)

9 September 1984:
At Home
By Mike Weller. Paul and Carol have been married long enough to discover that their idyllic romance isn't going to last. (This 1978 play has a 1979 companion piece, Abroad, which when performed together on stage is known as Split). Carol: Anna Nygh, Paul: Kevin McNally. Director: Peter King. (Repeat from 28 December 1982)

16 September 1984:
The Lorenzaccio Story
By Paul Thompson after Alfred de Musset. In this adaptation of French dramatist de Musset’s 1833 play, republicans in 16th-century Florence struggle to free themselves from the yoke of Medici oppression while Lorenzo de Medici plots to murder his own cousin, the Duke. (Ranjit Bolt’s adaptation was on Radio 3 on 10 March 2002). Lorenzo: David Warner, The Merchant: Joe Melia. Filippo Strozzi: Nigel Davenport, Piero Strozzi: Alan Rickman, Duke Alessandro: Ian Hogg, Goldsmith: Dudley Sutton, Francesco Alamanni: Mark Straker, Luisa Strozzi: Moir Leslie, Cardinal Cibo: Andrew C. Wadsworth, Captain Viteili: John Woodvine, Laudomia: Shan Stevens, Tebaldeo Freccia: Nigel Williams, Bindo Altoviti: Timothy Bateson, Charles V: Gordon Jones, Francesco Vettori: Barry Stanton, Cosimo de Medici: John Hall, Cardinals: Henry Stamper, Michael Bilton, Brett Usher, Man/Scoronconcolo: John Grillo. With the Ambrosian Singers. Technical presentation by Peter Novis and Tim Robinson. Director: Margaret Windham.

23 September 1984:
Punch Flame and Pigeon Breast
By Eva Figes. An account of Monet’s trip to Italy in 1884, during which “punch flame” and “pigeon breast” were the only words Monet could find to define the striking colours of the northern Italian landscape as he chronicles his loneliness, frustrations and occasional diversions. Monet: Derek Godfrey, American Lady: Pauline Siddle, Painters: David Peart, Clive Panto, Customs Officer/Frenchman: Peter Tuddenham, English Ladies: Jean Trend, Susan Uebel, Moreno: Roshan Seth. Director: Margaret Windham. (Repeat from 25 July 1983)

23 September 1984:
The Ambassador
By Slawomir Mrozek, translated by Slawomir Mrozek and Ralph Manheim. This satire by the Polish dramatist (1930-2013) sees an ambassador’s day spiral out of control after he loses a piece of clothing. His wife then threatens to leave him, he loses contact with Washington and a man breaks in seeking political asylum. The Ambassador: Denis Quilley, The Deputy: David March, The Man: Tim Piggot-Smith, Amelia: Carole Boyd, Othello: Eric Allan, Telephonist: Alan Woodhouse. Director: Martin Jenkins. (Repeat from 15 December 1983)

30 September 2018:
Winter is Coming
By Aidan Higgins. “An elegy for Andalucia” in which, as winter gathers over Southern Spain, four expatriates watch themselves, each other and the world. Dan: Norman Rodway, Olivia: Frances Jeater, The Warholes: James Kerry and Sylvia Coleridge. Location recordings by Antonio Jesus Fernandez. Director: Piers Plowright. (Repeat from 23 September 1983)

30 September 1984:
The Master Builder
By Henrik Ibsen, translated by Michael Meyer. In Ibsen’s 1892 play, Halvard Solness, a rich and successful architect in an unhappy marriage, is haunted by guilt and jealous of the next generation as a young woman forces him to question his life and achievements. Solness: Leo McKern, Hilde Wangel: Madeline Church, Knut Brovik: George Howe, Kaja Fosli: Susan Sheridan, Ragnar Brovik: Mike Gwilym, Mrs Solness: Mary Wimbush, Dr Herdal: Nigel Stock. Other parts played by Michael Bilton, Mark Straker, Carole Boyd and Helen Atkinson Wood. Director: Ronald Mason. (Repeated on 18 September 1985)

3 October 1984:
Cocteau a la Troisieme Puissance
By Jean Cocteau, translated by Peter Meyer. Three monologues – A Practical Joke, At the Window and Read Your Paper – were originally written for the author’s friend, the celebrated actor Jean Marais, to perform on radio. Performed by Alec McCowen. Music from the works of Georges Auric. Director: Glyn Dearman. (Repeat from 12 August 1983)

7 October 1984:
A Mad World, My Masters
By Thomas Middleton, adapted by Peter Barnes. In Middleton’s 1605 comedy, Dick Follywit attempts to get his hands on the fortune of his rich uncle, Sir Bounteous Progress, while the upright Penitent Brothel pursues the wife of the insanely jealous, sexually repressed Harebrain. Follywit: Roy Marsden, Sir Bounteous Progress: James Villiers, Francesca: Theresa Streatfeild, Penitent Brothel: Ian McDiarmid, Hoboy: Steve Hodson, Mawworm: Simon Hewitt, Francesca’s Mother: Brenda Bruce, Harebrain: Stephen Thorne, Mistress Harebrain: Miranda Forbes, Posset: James Kerry, Inesse: Jim Reid, Sir Colewort/Jasper: Hugh Dickson, Gunwater/Rafe: Ronald Baddiley, Constable Watchman: Chas Bryer, Footman: David Gooderson. Director: Penny Gold. (Repeat from 21 July 1983)

10 October 1984:
By Sandra Freeman. Several years before his mental collapse in 1899 aged 44, the German philosopher and writer Nietzsche is in an emotionally charged ménage a trois with a woman student and a close friend. Friedrich Nietzsche: Mike Gwilym, Lou Salome: Maureen O’Brien, Lisbeth Nietzsche: Susan Engel, Paul Ree: Michael Tudor Barnes. Music: Ilona Sekacz with Sekacz (piano) and John Leach (zither). Technical Presentation: Marsail MacCuish. Director: Cherry Cookson. (Repeated on 5 May 1985)

Are You Still Awake?
By Russell Davies. A series of 15-minute dialogues set in bed with real-life couples cast as fictional couples. Producer: Jonathan James-Moore

13 & 14 October 1984:
A bedroom in north Oxford. Godfrey: Michael Denison, Muriel: Dulcie Gray. (Repeated on 26 & 27 December 1985)

20 & 21 October 1984:
A bedroom in Stevenage. Alan: Edward Petherbridge, Clare: Emily Richard. (Repeated on 28 & 29 December 1985)

27 & 28 October 1984:
A bedroom in Frimfield, the best-kept village in Worcestershire.  Roger: Martin Jarvis, Abigail: Rosalind Ayres. (Repeated on 30 & 31 December 1985)

14 October 1984:
Scenes from an Execution
By Howard Barker. The action is set in Venice, where the (fictional) artist Galactia struggles to portray the grim reality of a 16th-century battle against the wishes of her patron, the Doge of Venice. The play was first staged at London’s Almeida Theatre in 1990. Galactia: Glenda Jackson, The Doge of Venice: Freddie Jones, Carpeta: Clive Merrison, The Admiral Suffici: Clifford Rose, The Cardinal Ostensile: Peter Howell, Gina Rivera: Darlene Johnson, The Sketchbook: Brett Usher, Prodo: David Sinclair, Supporta: Elizabeth Rider, Dementia: Helena Breck, Sordo: Anthony Hall, Official: Peter Acre, Lasagna: Mark Straker, Pistaccio: Brett Usher, First Sailor: Anthony Hall, Second Sailor: Mark Straker, Third Sailor: David Sinclair, Man in next cell: Jon Strickland. Director: Richard Wortley. (Repeated on 1 May 1985. Also on 9 October 1985 and on Radio 4 on 17 November 1986)

24 October 1984:
Species Plantarum
By Sheila Bradley. While Edward Vyner, an English botanist, is studying specialised mountain plants at the Austrian home of Dr Strelitz, his son Teddy is increasingly influenced by Nazi thinking in Hitler’s Austria. Gretel: Jill Bennett, Dr Strelitz: Robert Lang, Mr Vyner: Leonard Fenton, Teddy: Philip Childs, Nurse Fassbender: Sally Edwards. Pianist: Mark Vibrans. Director: Pat Trueman (BBC Manchester). (Repeated on 19 May 1985)

26 October 1984:
Stalin v Wells 
By H.G. Wells, edited by Mervyn Jones. Wells interviewed Joseph Stalin in 1934 for The New Statesman. This features a verbatim transcript of their conversation and the resulting correspondence in the magazine. Stalin: Timothy West, HG Wells: Paul Nicholson, George Bernard Shaw: Allan McLelland, J.M. Keynes: Brett Usher, Ernst Toller: Anthony Hall, Dora Russell: Carole Boyd. Director: John Theocharis. (Repeated on 4 September 1986)

28 October 1984:
Transfigured Night
By Robert Ferguson. A man tries to tell the story of a moment in the past when, in the shadow of a mountain, by a quickly flowing river, he saw a girl whose presence moved him. (A 1984 Giles Cooper Award winner). The Man: Clive Francis. Other parts played by Anthony Hall, Moir Leslie and Mark Rolston. Director: John Tydeman. (Repeated on 3 April 1985)

31 October 1984:
False Admissions (Les fausses confiances)
By Marivaux, translated by Timberlake Wertenbaker. In Marivaux’s 1737 comedy, Dorante is madly in love with the rich widow Araminte and insinuates himself into her household as a steward. But well-intentioned friends end up embroiling him in more and more complex deceptions and misunderstandings. Araminte: Frances Jeater, Dorante: Gary Bond, Mademoiselle Marton: Maggie McCarthy, Arlequin: William Hope, Dubois: Clive Panto, Monsieur Remy: Jack May, Madame Argante: Petra Davies, LeComte: Peter Baldwin. Harpsichord played by Gordon Langford. Director: David Johnston. (Repeated on 2 February 1988)

4 November 1984:
Mrs Lynch’s Maggot
By Scoular Anderson (best known as a children’s author and illustrator). A lively fishing party visits the Crown Hotel, owned by the desperately glamorous Mrs Lynch. Mrs Lynch: Eileen McCallum, Uncle William: Finlay Welsh, Rogie: Bill Riddoch, James: Simon Donald, Sandra: Joyce Deans, Mr Lynch: John Buick, Mary: Joyce McBrinn, James’s Mother: Monica Brady, James’s Father: Robert Carr. Director: James Runcie (BBC Scotland). (Repeated on 19 June 1985)

7 November 1984:
Ending Time
By John Clifford. “There cannot be earth without heaven, or heaven without earth. Seen from earth, there’s something ridiculous about heaven; seen from heaven, there’s an awful lot that’s absurd about earth.” John the Evangelist: Bill Paterson, The Angel: Iain Cuthbertson, Bert, a producer: Martin Heller, James, a musician: Crawford Logan, Mary, an idealist: Ann Louise Ross. Director: Stewart Conn (BBC Scotland). (Repeated on 24 November 1985)

11 November 1984:
Opium Eater
By Andrew Dallmeyer. Edinburgh, 1820: as starving writer Thomas de Quincey struggles to finish an essay, his manservant Willy arrives with bread and laudanum. Also produced with Paul Rhys and Peter Mullan on BBC2 (18 July 1993). Thomas De Quincey: Neil Cunningham, Willy: Russell Hunter. Director: Stewart Conn. (Repeated on 24 April 1985)

14 November 1984:
The Gift
By Graham Swannell. A young man, dying of an incurable disease, persuades an old schoolfriend to accompany him on a journey to the sun. Hugh: David Collings, Andrew: Simon Hewitt. Director: John Tydeman. (Repeated on 26 May 1985)

18 November 1984:
The Spectre
By David Cregan. An investigation is launched into the suicide of a middle-ranking Foreign Office diplomat. Were his actions prompted by questions of patriotism or something more personal? Roberts: Edward Hardwicke, Smith: Charles Kay, The Investigator: Clive Swift, Emily: Helen Horton, Spencer: William Roberts, Mario: Steve Hodson. Director: John Tydeman. (Repeat from 17 July 1983)

21 November 1984:
By Trevor Royle. A dramatised impression of the thoughts and writing of the Scottish novelist and screenwriter James Kennaway (1928-1968), best known for his novel Tunes of Glory (1956), drawn from his novels, notebooks and letters. Kennaway: Julian Glover, Mother: Gwyneth Guthrie, Mary: Isobel Gardner, Stephen/Officer: Sandy Neilson, David/Adjutant: David Ashton, Bun: Mary Riggans, Belle: Sheila Donald, Minister/Colonel/Mr Cox: John Shedden, Fiddle: Derek Hoy, Piper: Tom Speirs. Director: Patrick Rayner (BBC Scotland). (Repeated on 21 July 1985)

22 November 1984:
The Nitshill Writing Circle
By John Byrne. A monologue, originally written in the 1970s, celebrating the fictional poet, painter, novelist and sage Francis Seneca McDade, Paisley’s answer to McGonagall. Byrne would develop the character for his 1977 play Writer’s Cramp. Performed by Bill Paterson. Producer James Runcie (BBC Scotland). (Repeated on 13 February 1986)

23, 30 November, 7, 14, 21, 28 December 1984:
Broomhouse Reach
A suite in six movements by Colin McLaren. Martin Mendl: David De Keyser, Timothy Liripet: Timothy Davies, Sir Hubert Fiske: Cyril Luckham, Mrs Wix: Fanny Carby, Nigel Scrote: Mark Jones, Laura: Maggie McCarthy, Leonora: Shope Shodeinde. Music: Paul Patterson. Director: Piers Plowright. (Repeated on 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23 August 1985)

First Movement: New Light on an Old Master
In which a dead composer learns of a plot to revive him. 

Second Movement: Deep Plots in a Depressed Area 
Ron: Clive Panto, Elkins: John Bott, V.S: Madhav Sharma, Mrs Maconchie Brown: Ellen McIntosh, Girl: Helena Breck, Lighterman: Keith Smith 

Third Movement: High Treason at a Low Level 
In which a publicity campaign runs into something nasty in the boathouse. Chairwoman: Monica Grey, Elkins: John Bott, Ernest Cusp: Arnold Diamond, Filbert/Lighterman: Keith Smith, V.S: Madhav Sharma, Wally Pitcher: William Hope, Liz: Helen Atkinson Wood, Bill Chertsey Cribb: Peter Howell, Lady Hester Stanhope Garter: Narissa Knights, Michael Oliver: Himself, Graham Sheffield: Himself 

Fourth Movement: Sudden Opening of a Closed File 
In which sex, spies and a scholarly sergeant throw doubt on certain reputations. Chertsey Cribb: Peter Howell V.S: Madhav Sharma, Liz: Helen Atkinson Wood, Sgt Singer: David Sinclair, Cusp: Arnold Diamond, Waiter: William Hope, BBC Radio Announcer: Peter Barker 

Fifth Movement: Heated Exchanges and Burning Questions 
In which nearly all the rats abandon a sinking museum. Chairwoman: Monica Grey, Liz: Helen Atkinson Wood, V.S: Madhav Sharma, Elkins: John Bott, Cusp: Arnold Diamond, Chertsey Cribb: Peter Howell, Wally, Pitcher: William Hope, Ron: Clive Panto, Sgt Singer: David Sinclair, Marcher: Suhe Cerys 

Final Movement: Stay Loose and Stuff Posterity 
A wounded hero receives his reward. Chairwoman: Monica Grey, Elkins: John Bott, Sgt Singer: David Sinclair, Wally Pitcher: William Hope, V.S: Madhav Sharma, Cusp: Arnold Diamond, Chertsey Cribb: Peter Howell, Announcer: Robert Booth

25 November 1984:
By Robert Forrest. The 45-year-old David Struthers contemplates on his desk four lilac petals of chrysanthemum, left by his wife, and a revolver. David Struthers: Peter Kelly, Kirsty: Phyllis Logan, Martin: Russell Hunter, Bun: Finlay Welsh, Sneck: Tony Roper, Colin: Andy Gray, Alec: Stewart Preston, Bill: John Buick, Agnes: Gwyneth Guthrie. Music: Robert Sandall. Director: Patrick Rayner (BBC Scotland). (Repeated on 2 June 1985)

28 November 1984:
By William Shakespeare. Denis Quilley takes the title role. He also played the Scottish thane for the National Theatre in 1972 with Diana Rigg as Lady Macbeth. First Witch: Carole Boyd, Second Witch: Susan Brown, Third Witch: Pauline Siddle, Duncan, King of Scotland: Clifford Rose, Malcolm, his son: Stuart Organ, Sergeant/Porter: John Hollis, Lennox: Geoffrey Collins, Ross: Sean Barrett, Macbeth: Denis Quilley, Banquo: Nigel Terry, Angus: David Peart, Lady Macbeth: Hannah Gordon, Seyton: John Webb, Fleance, Banquo’s son: Elizabeth Lindsay, Macduff: John Rowe, Donalbain, Duncan's son: Richard Huw, Old Man: Michael Bilton, First murderer: Kerry Francis, Second Murderer/Menteith: James Bryce, Hecate, Queen of the witches/ Gentlewoman: Jane Wenham, Scottish Lord: Manning Wilson, Lady Macduff: Jane Knowles, Her son: Elizabeth Undsay, Doctor: Michael Bilton, Caithness: James Kerry, Old Siward: Manning Wilson, Young Siward: Michael Jenner. Music: Ilona Sekacz. Director: Martin Jenkins. (Repeat from Radio 4’s Monday Play on 23 April 1984)

2 December 1984:
Castle Spellbound
By Robert Farrar. Described as “a comical fantastickal piece penned in the Gothic style with Dr Jesse, Mr Beryl and a footman, Miss Charity Lighthouse and a serving woman”. Narrator & Sir Bleeding Wound: Richard Pasco, Sir Lucas Lighthouse: John Rowe, Lady Luxuria Lighthouse: Barbara Leigh-Hunt. Music: Jonathan Gibbs (BBC Radiophonic Workshop). Director: Ian Cotterell. (Repeated on 7 August 1985)

5 December 1984:
The Other Lake
By Patrice Chaplin. The personal assistant to an internationally famous opera singer becomes obsessed by a Chinese vase sent to her employer by an admirer. It inspires visions of a Chinese empress, not unlike the opera singer, and a dangerous, but ecstatic, love affair. Jane: Janet Maw, Alex: Sian Phillips, Jonny: David Neal, Robert: John Rowe, Frances: Matyelok Gibbs, Adrian: Gregory Phillips, The Maestro: Bernard Brown. Music: Ilona Sekacz. Musicians: Ilona Sekacz, John Leach, Adrian Brett and Nicole Tibbels (singer). Director: Cherry Cookson

9 December 1984:
Josef and Maria
By Peter Turrini, translated and adapted for radio by David Roger.  A 1980 play by the Austrian dramatist, poet and novelist. On Christmas Eve in a department store, it’s the start of an evening of memories, music and romance for a part-time cleaner and the nightwatchman. Josef: Maurice Denham, Maria: Elizabeth Spriggs, Store Announcer: Monica Grey, Personnel Manager: James Bryce, Doorman: Michael Jenner. Director: Jeremy Mortimer. (Repeat from 22 December 1983. Also repeated on Radio 4 on 11 January 1987)

12 December 1984:
Alice’s Tea Party
By Frederick Bradnum. 30 April is the anniversary of something or other that happened in 1945. “But what?” wonders Alice, as she visits her ancient, rather potty Cambridge relatives for tea. Alice: Elizabeth Proud, Aunt Percy: Sylvia Coleridge, Augustus: Maurice Denham, Henry: Timothy Bateson. Director: John Tydeman

16 December 1984:
Folkeraadet (People’s Council)
By Gunnar Heiberg, translated from the Norwegian by Ian Rodger. A political satire by the Norwegian playwright, poet and theatre critic (1857-1929), written in 1897, with music specially written by Frederick Delius. Threatened by invasion from a neighbouring country, an exasperated populace send their vacillating, self-seeking leaders to lead the troops into battle. (The play’s premiere provoked riots at the Christiania Theatre with Delius’s score also booed for parodying the national anthem). Ella: Maureen O'Brien, The Poet: Nigel Anthony, Sparrow: Michael Deeks, Speaker of the Council: Charles Simon, Brash: Ronald Baddiley, Pomp: Hugh Dickson, Gregorius: Nigel Graham, Stoll: John Rye, Vestby: James Kerry, Tailor: David Peart, Shoemaker: Henry Stamper, Farmer/Second Stranger: Timothy Bateson, Constable: Stephen Thorne, Tourist: Alex Jennings, Curator: Michael Bilton, First Woman: Madi Hedd, Second Woman: Jean Trend, Boy: Jill Lidstone, Stranger/Second Boy: Stuart Organ. Music: Delius, played by the BBC Concert Orchestra, conducted by Ashley Lawrence. Director: David Johnston. (Repeat from 20 October 1983)

19 December 1984:
Oedipus Gunslinger
By Ian Weir. Described as “a western in the style of a Greek tragedy”, this reworks the Oedipus story in the Old West. Marshal Prestridge: Bruce Boa, Adam Shand, the outlaw: Bob Sherman, Liberty Shand, his son: Ryan Michael, Justin, the lawyer: Blain Fairman, Deputy Marshal Gimble: Keith Edwards, The Ancient Indian: David March, Squint: Cyril Shaps, Doc Halloran: Alan Tilvern, Old Barlay: Robert Henderson, Silas Weathervane: Ed Bishop, Widow Wentworth: Gladys Spencer, Twitchell: William Hope, Burlap: Mark Rolston. Music: Philip Pickett, played by Imogen Barford, Stephen Henderson, Melinda Maxwell and David Roach, conducted by Pickett. Director: Glyn Dearman

23 December 1984:
Liberty Comes to Krihwinkel (Freiheit in Krahwinkel)
By Johann Nestroy, translated and freely adapted for radio by Sybil and Colin Welch. This satirical comedy, first produced in Vienna in 1848, reflects the excitement of the student revolution of that year and the downfall of Metternich, Chancellor of Austria. Ultra: George Layton, Burgomaster: John Hollis, Klaus: Timothy Bateson, Frau von Frankenfrei: Frances Jeater, Nightwatchman: Eric Allan, Pemperl: Alan Dudley, Schabenfellner: Geoffrey Collins, Cacilie: Jill Lidstone, Wachs: John Webb, Pfilfspitz: Peter Tuddenham, Reaczerl: John Rye, Emerenzia: Hilda Schroder, Actor-manager: Michael Bilton, Sperling: Clive Panto, Rummelpuff: James Bryce, Frau Pemperl: Margot Boyd, Frau Schabenfellner: Jane Wenham, Frau Kloppel: Jill Simcox, Frau von Schnabelbeiss: Kadi Hedd, Adele: Pauline Siddle, Walpurga: Kathhyn Hurlbutt. Other parts played by Christian Comber, Michael Jenner and Alex Jennings. Music: Elizabeth Poston, performed by The Richard Hickox Singers and the City of London Sinfonia Instrumental Ensemble. Music direction: John Rutter. Director: Glyn Dearman. (Repeat from 28 August 1983)

26 December 1984:
Babes in the Wood (and the Good Little Fairy Birds)
By H.J. Byron. Adaptation and additional lyrics by Maurice Browning, Denis Martin and Reginald Woolley. A burlesque Christmas pantomime, first produced at the Theatre Royal, New Adelphi, on 18 July 1859, traditionally presented by the Players’ Theatre, London. Three witches: Dilys Laye, Jane Wenham and Julia Sutton, Sir Rowland Macassar: John Turner, Lady Beth Macassar: Jan Waters, Queen of the Fairy Birds: Catherine McCord, Sir Rupert: Brett Usher, Sir Roger: David Sinclair, Oliver: Geoffrey Collins, Brown: Alec Bregonzi, Miss Jones: Ann Beach, Tommy: Josephine Gordon, Sally: Sheila Bernette. Musical arrangements: Geoffrey Brawn (organ, celeste and grand pianoforte). Directors: Ian Cotterell and Christopher de Souza


31 January 1984:
When We Are No Longer Children, We Are Dead
An impression of the Romanian sculptor Constantin Brancusi (1876-1957) compiled by Sanda Miller. Brancusi: Alfred Marks. His Friends and Enemies: Kate Beswick, Michael Bilton, Magdalena Buznea, Geoffrey Collins, Kerry Francis., James Kerry, Moir Leslie, Clive Panto and George Pravda. Director: Piers Plowright. (Repeated on 22 July 1984)

10, 17, 24, 31 January, 7, 21 February 1984:
Book, Music and Lyrics
Robert Cushman presents a personal view of musicals. He introduces songs from original cast recordings, some familiar, some less well-known. Producer: Jonathan James Moore. (Repeated in June 1985)

1: Evils, Villains and Anti-Heroes
2: Rodgers and Hart: The 20s and 30s
3: The Cole Porter Revue: The 1920s
4: Make Mine Manhattan: Broadway Today
5: The Cole Porter Revue: The 1940s.
6: A Tribute to E. Y. Harburg
7: Life Begins at 40

12, 19 & 26 March 1984:
Three conversations between Colin McLaren and contemporary writers of enduring literature for children. Producer: Louise Parslow

1: P. L. Travers 
Friend Monkey is thought by many to be the most accomplished novel by the creator of Mary Poppins, who reflects on her childhood, her long and close friendship with “A.E.”, the artist and editor George Russell. 

2: Rosemary Sutcliff 
The creator of historical novels for young people and for adults, and a re-teller of romance and legend, reflects on the lure of Roman and Celtic Britain for her and her readers. (Repeated on 10 December 1984)

3: Roger Lancelyn Green
The Kipling and Carroll scholar, friend of C. S. Lewis and best known as a re-teller of classical mythology, reflects on his adventures as an actor, bookseller, novelist and schoolmaster. (Repeated on 27 November 1984)

15 April 1984:
Origins Within the Soul
A feature by Tim Dartington exploring how poet and novelist Hermann Hesse was influenced by the theories and practice of Jungian psychoanalysis. Hermann Hesse: John Moffatt, Carl Gustav Jung: Robert Lang, Roland Rolland: Timothy Bateson. Various characters from Demian, Siddhartha, Steppenwolf, Narziss and Goldmund and The Glass Bead Game played by Michael Bilton, Geoffrey Collins, Kerry Francis, Nigel Graham, Brenda Kaye, Clive Panto, Peter Tuddenham and Fiona Walker. Director: John Theocharis. (Repeat from 17 October 1983)

20 April 1984:
The short, sharp life of the writer and film-maker Rainer Werner Fassbinder (1945-82), written and presented by Ronald Hayman. Eyewitnesses: Rudolf Waldemar Brem, Michael Fengler, Johanna Hofer, Dieter Schidor, Thomas Schuhly, Ursula Stratz., Barbara Sukowa, Margarethe Von Trotta. Actors: Tony Haygarth as Fassbinder, Philip Barnes, Anna Bentinck and Maggie McCarthy. Producer: Piers Plowright. (Repeated on 4 January 1986)

28 April 1984:
The Dentist and the Dancing Master
First of four theatrical reminiscences compiled by Carole Rosen. Joey Grimaldi: Joe Melia. Producer: Piers Plowright. (Repeated on 18 April 1986)

29 April 1984:
Struggles with Richard III 
Second of four theatrical reminiscences compiled by Carole Rosen. Alfred Bunn: Bill Wallis. Producer: Piers Plowright. (Repeated on 22 April 1986)

30 April 1984:
A Most Bewitching Presence
Third of four theatrical reminiscences compiled by Carole Rosen. Marie Wilton: Marjorie Westbury. Producer: Piers Plowright. (Repeated on 26 April 1986)

1 May 1984: 
I Wonder if Grossmith 
The last of four theatrical reminiscences compiled by Carole Rosen. George Grossmith: Peter Pratt. Producer: Piers Plowright. (Repeated on 29 April 1986)

15 May 1984:
A Thespian Republic
Under Peter Stein, the Schaubuhne theatre in West Berlin has become one of the world’s leading companies. Ronald Hayman presents a portrait of a theatre in which the director has to lobby for the votes of the actors. With Peter Stein, Miriam Goldschmidt, Elke Petri, Gerd Warmeung, Friedrich Luft and John Retallack. Producer: Peter Brod. (Repeat from 7 August 1983)

9 July 1984:
An Honest Profession
Max Frisch, the Swiss novelist and playwright of such works as The Fire Raisers (1953) and Andorra (1961), talks to Ronald Hayman about the relationship between experience and fiction in his work, the special position of Swiss-German writers and his friendship with Bertolt Brecht. Producer: Peter Brod. (Repeat from 12 October 1983)

5 August 1984:
Sold Out
John Elsom, the writer and theatre critic, talks to theatre administrators, artistic directors and politicians about the effects of financial and bureaucratic organisation on what appears on stage. Producer: Thomas Sutcliffe. (Repeated on 1 December 1984)

9, 10, 11, 12 August 1984:
Salesman in Beijing
By Arthur Miller, abridged in four parts by Michael Bakewell. Producer: Ned Chaillet. (Repeated on 19, 22, 26 & 29 August 1985. Also on Radio 4 in three parts on 6, 7, 8 February 2006) 

Part 1
Invited to Beijing to direct his play Death of a Salesman in Chinese, the author recounts his arrival and his first meeting with the Chinese actors.

Part 2
The author goes into rehearsals with his Chinese company and they begin to comprehend their task.

Part 3
The absence of make-up on Chinese actors playing foreigners proves an artistic breakthrough with rich connections revealed between the two contrasting cultures. .

Part 4
The author recalls the first preview and the first night as Death of a Salesman opens in Beijing to a joyfully energetic Chinese audience.

15 October 1984:
Let’s Murder the Moonshine 
Feature by Catherine Itzin. Avant-garde theatre movements flourished from about 1880 to the 1930s, of which Futurism was one. Futurist Filippo Marinetti (1876-1944) believed theatre was a means of “introducing the fist into the artistic battle” and of enabling “the brutal entry of life into art”. Marinetti: Kenneth Griffiths, Lecturer: Angela Down. With Timothy Bateson, Carole Boyd, William Eedle, Clive Panto, Hilda Schroder, David Sinclair, Colin Starkey and Jane Wenham. Contributors: Professor Katherine Worth and Dr Enrico Palandri. Producer: John Theocharis. (Revised repeat on 30 September 1986)

15 November 1984:
On Being Ludicrous
Thoughts on the perils of playwrighting by David Cregan (1931-2015), associated with the Royal Court in the mid-1960s and author of many radio plays and dramatisations. (Repeated on 29 July 1985)

8 December 1984:
An exploration of the journeys, kings, gods and rogues in the work of the Nigerian writer Wole Soyinka, written and presented by David Jones.  With Angus Calder, Buchi Emecheta, William Gaskill, Ngugi Wa Thiongo, Ben Okri, George Wilson Knight and Wole Soyinka. Excerpts performed by Narissa Knights, Joy Lemoine, John Matshikiza, Abraham Oswagwu and Brian Smith. Producer: Piers Plowright. (Repeated on 25 June 1985)


1 January 1984:
The Two Volodyas by Anton Chekhov (read by Jill Balcon)
Coming home from a dinner party, a young wife reflects on her unhappy marriage to a much older colonel and the unrequited passion for another man. Translated by Ronald Wilks. Producer: Graham Gauld

2 January 1984:
The Terror by Anton Chekhov (read by Peter Marinker)
A former civil servant is worried by his past life in St Petersburg and his current life as a father, husband and father. Translated by Ronald Wilks. Producer: Graham Gauld. (Repeat from 27 September 1983)

3 January 1984:
Nativity by John Rizkalla (read by Jean Trend)
Producer: Alec Reid

5 January 1984:
At the End of Lonely Street by Roy Kelly (read by Kika Markham)
Producer: Alec Reid

7, 8, 14, 15, 21, 22, 28 29 January, 4 February 1984:
The Romance of the Rose
An abridged translation into modem English verse in 10 parts by Terence Tiller of the Chaucerian version of the 13th-century French poem. The Narrator: Stephen Moore. Incidental music & conductor: Michael Berkeley. Director: Piers Plowright

1. The Garden Enclosed
Idleness: Frances Jeater

2. The Joyous Company
The Lover: Graham Pountney, Lady Courtesy: Wendy Murray

3. The Fountain of Narcissus 
The Lover: Graham Pountney

4. Love's Liegeman 
The Lover: Graham Pountney, Cupid: John Livesey

5. The Guardians of the Rose
The Lover: Graham Pountney, Cupid: John Livesey, The Lady: Wendy Murray, Bel Accoyle: David Gooderson

6. Exile and Return
The Lover: Graham Pountney, Bel Accoyle: David Gooderson, Danger: Stuart Organ, Reason: Katherine Parr, The Friend: Stephen Garlick, Franchise: Jill Lidstone, Venus: Frances Jeater, Pity: Patience Tomlinson

7. The Kiss and After
Danger: Stuart Organ, Jealousy: Alan Dudley, Shame: Wendy Murray, Shame: Spencer Banks

8. The Voice of Reason
The Lover: Graham Pountney, Reason: Katherine Parr

9. The Council of Love
The Baron: John Warner, False Pretence: John Green, Cupid: John Livesey

10. The Castle Unbarred
Wicked: John Warner, Forced: Jean Trend, False: John Green, Cupid: John Livesey, Lord: Stephen Garlick

15 January 1984:
Lochivor Lights by Ronald Frame (read by Annabel Leventon)
Producer: Alec Reid

15 January 1984
Bulbs by Elspeth Davie (read by Finlay Welsh)
A Mr Springer’s pursuit of a brighter light bulb at the Brackenbank boarding house reflects a restless life. Producer: Marilyn Ireland. (First broadcast on Radio Scotland)

19 January 1984:
A Field in Space by Elspeth Davie (read by Robert Trotter)
An expert’s specialism stuns a whole meeting. (Also read by Crawford Logan on Radio 4 on 16 January 2002). Producer: Stewart Conn. (First broadcast on Radio Scotland)

21 January 1984:
A Family Man by V. S. Pritchett (read by Anna Massey) 
Berenice has been waiting for her lover, whom she hasn't seen for several weeks. But when the doorbell rings, it isn't William but his wife, Florence, who accuses her of having an affair. Producer: John Theocharis. (Repeated on 15 May 1984. Also read on Radio 4 by Ysanne Churchman on 13 May 1980 and Lin Sagovsky on 22 August 1989)

23 January 1984:
The Gigolo by Francoise Sagan (read by Rosemary Leach)
A middle-aged woman breaks with her young lover. Short story by the author best known for Bonjour Tristesse. Translated by Joanna Richardson. (Repeated on 7 July 1984)

27 January 1984:
Full of Perfume and Sad Sound by Alan W. Lear (read by Arthur Boland)
Short story by the Scottish author (1953-2008). Producer: Patrick Rayner. (Repeat from 24 July 1983)

28 January 1984:
The Ape and the General by Slavomir Mrozek (read by Geoffrey Collins)
Short story by the Polish writer and dissident playwright (1930-2013), translated by Jacek Laskowski. (Repeated on 10 April 1984]

28 January 1984:
Oswald in the Chink of Light between Heaven and Earth by Geoffrey Heptonstall (read by Brian Carroll)
The personal manifesto of a monomaniac with marital plans and extraordinary visionary powers. Producer: Clare Taylor. (Repeat from 26 November 1982 and 27 February 1983)

30 January 1984:
Mirror Mirror by Julia Stoneham (read by Joan Hart).
Producer: Piers Plowright. (Repeat from 2 October 1983)

3 February 1984:
In the Chinese Restaurant by Iain Crichton Smith (read by Tom Watson)
Dining out prompts dream-like recollections of the past and home. (Also read by Jill Balcon on BBC2 on 2 December 1976). Producer: Patrick Rayner

4 February 1984:
My Heart Belongs to Daddy by Jessica Hallam (read by Adrienne Burgess) 
The relationship between a father and daughter is always a special one, but for some children that relationship is a nightmare, and one which the mother chooses to ignore. Producer: Jane Morgan

4 February 1984:
Vow of Silence by Robert Forrest (read by David Hayman)
“Everyone around the table had lapsed into a deep stillness, but the brother standing in the corner did not falter in his reading of Jesus' words – that out of the hearts of men proceed evil thoughts.” Producer: Patrick Rayner (BBC Scotland). (Repeat from 29 June 1983)

5 February 1984:
Penman in a Public Library by Colin McLaren (read by Jeremy Clyde)
“‘Only four fiction tickets here. Rest are NF -Non-Fiction,’ she explained with the lucidity that has distinguished librarians from Leibniz to Philip Larkin.  ‘You can’t take out sea stories on them.’” Producer: Louise Purslow. (Repeat from 17 September 1983)

7 February 1984:
By Any Other Name by Edwin Ornstein (read by David Kossoff)
Producer: Alec Reid

9 February 1984:
The Death of Hektor by Brian Coffey (read by Cyril Cusack) 
This 1979 long poem by Coffey (1905-1995) sets the story of Hektor and the Trojan War in a bleak modern world with the Greek hero-warrior seen as a violent and vengeful soldier. Producer: Margaret Windham. (Repeat from 28 June 1983)

11 February 1984:
The Bucket Rider by Franz Kafka (read by Kenneth Cranham).
Written in 1917, Kafka’s story follows the efforts of a poor man to fill his bucket with coal. Producer: Piers Plowright. (Repeat from 14 July 1983)

11 February 1984:
The Talking Doll by Jack Trevor Story (read by Kenneth Cranham)
Producer: Margaret Windham. (Repeat from 23 October 1983)

14 February 1984:
The Voice by V.S. Pritchett (read by John Rowe)
After an air raid during the London Blitz, a rescue party gathers round a ruined church. Beneath the debris they hear a curious sound: a man singing. (Also read on the Home Service on 9 December 1946, Radio 4 on 15 February 1978, 30 September 1985 and 27 July 1990). Producer: John Theocharis

19 February 1984:
The Inkerman Street Massage Parlour Catastrophe by Derek Nicholls (read by Brian Glover)
Producer: Peter King. (Repeated on 8 May 1984)

20 February 1984:
Joey Santa’s Death by Doeschka Meijsing (read by Miriam Margolyes)
Short story by the Dutch writer, translated by Herunde Coolens. (Repeated on 16 April 1985)

21 February 1984:
English for Immigrants by Edwin Ornstein (read by Sara Kestelman)
“’I am starting a new life now,' she thought, 'teaching immigrants and doing other good work, if I can find some. I am a do-gooder and proud of it.' Producer: John Theocharis

21 February 1984:
In the Silence by Iain Crichton Smith (read by Diana Olsson)
A boy’s imagination is captivated by the silence of a mown field of corn at night. Producer: Patrick Rayner (BBC Scotland). (Repeat from 25 October 1983)

23 February 1984:
Thicker Than Water by William Sutherland (read by Julia Lang)
Producer: Alec Reid

28 February 1984:
Force by Paul Nicholson (read by Eric Allan)
(Repeat from 16 October 1983)

3 March 1984:
25 August 1983 by Jorge Luis Borges (read by Benjamin Whitrow)
The author (1899-1986) encounters an older version of himself during the last moments of his life. Translated by Norman Thomas Di Giovanni. (Repeat from 23 August 1983)

3-6 March 1984:
Russian Service by Zinovy Zinik (read by John Shrapnel)
The adventures of an ordinary, middle-aged Moscow clerk, who defects to London, bringing his Soviet preconceptions to bear on Western society.  Translated and adapted by Frank Williams.

1: Ten Days that Shook the World
2: The Moscow Connection
3: The Making of a Martyr
4:The Umbrella Man

4 March 1984:
The Sea-Round Rocks by Alan Golightly (read by Mike Gwilym).
A short story mystery. Producer: James Runcie. (Repeated on 18 May 1984)

9, 16, 23 & 30 March 1984:
Father to Son
Drawing on unpublished letters, Ann Thwaite offers new light on the intense and problematic relationship between Edmund Gosse and his father. P.H. Gosse: Maurice Denham, Edmund Gosse: Nicholas Geeks. Producer: Fraser Steel

1: The Postal Inquisition
2: Poetry and Piety 
3: Roses and Raptures
4: Drawing the Line

17 March 1984:
She Used to Like Waltzes by Jack Trevor Story (read by Kenneth Cranham)
A psychotherapist recalls a woman from his past, a sculptress with a sweet temperament but an iron will for perfection. Director: Margaret Windham. (Repeat from 11 December 1983)

18 March 1984:
The Devil to Pay by Elaine Eveleigh (read by Jane Wenham)
Director: Margaret Windham. (Repeat from 23 November 1983)

21 March 1984
Aubades and Serenades by Igor Pomerantsev (read by Ronald Pickup)
A series of vignettes about the animal inhabitants of a society under threat. Translated by Frank Williams. With music by Ilona Sekacz (and oboist Keith Marshall). Producer: Cherry Cookson. (Repeat from 10 May 1983)

24 March 1984:
Moontiger by Benedict Blathwayt (read by Sara Kestelman)
“'Life was not a cosy revolving cycle, there was no peace or magic beyond death. Life finished and it was revolting”. Producer: John Theocharis. (Repeated on 18 February 1985)

30 March 1984:
The Battle of Brunanburgh (read by Julian Glover).
Brunanburgh is the last heroic poem surviving in Old English to have been composed in the high style best known from Beowulf. Translated from the Anglo-Saxon by Michael Alexander. Producer: Brian Miller (BBC Bristol). (Repeated on 15 September 1985)

31 March 1984:
The Fur Coat (written and read by Diana Bishop). 
Producer: Alec Reid. (Repeated on 1 July 1984)

3 April 1984:
Petra by Rosalind Corfe (read by Elizabeth Bell)
Short story by the author, who also wrote radio plays for BBC radio and in Ireland. Producer: Alec Reid. (Repeated on 15 July 1984)

9 April 1984:
In the Gold Room
A selection of the poetry of Oscar Wilde, devised and set to music by Jim Parker. With Keith Michell and Prunella Scales. Director: Martin Jenkins

10 April 1984:
On Sausages and Sandwiches by George Saintsbury (read by Ralph Richardson)
Pages from the scrapbooks of the English scholar, literary historian, critic and wine connoisseur (1845-1833), selected by Alan Bell.

17 April 1984:
Family Circus by James Hill (read by Henry Stamper)
Producer: Alec Reid

18, 24, 25 April, 1, 2 & 8 May 1984:
Six vignettes by Colin McLaren (read by Michael Hordern). Producer: Louise Purslow. (Repeats from 12, 14, 19, 21, 27 & 28 December 1983)

1: A Question of Perspective
A painted landscape made with a camera obscura reveals more to the Duke about his Duchess than he should know. 

2: Taking Sides 
A silhouette artist during the French revolution almost loses his head.

3: Mr Gladstone's Mot
When Mot Clutterbuck asks to take the Prime Minister's likeness in costume, he gets the reply: “My mission is to pacify Ireland, not personify Greece.”

4: The Codex of Bishop Bartos 
A scholar on a visit to Czechoslovakia, x-raying a medieval manuscript, turns up a most unsocialist religious martyrdom. 

5: Damned Spots
An attempt to sneak a picture of the Haydn manuscripts hidden in the Castle of Zend.

6: Sweet Sinning in the Choir 
Visiting choirs from Israel and Jordan choose to sing Jerusalem out of courtesy to their host, but their renditions cause scuffles to break out.

19 April 1984:
Five Minutes by Paula Kelly (read by John Forrest)
The shortest murder story in the world. (Repeat from 15 August 1983)

20 April 1984:
On Old Age by Marcus Tullius Cicero (read by Robert Edison)
A philosophical reflection by the Roman philosopher, in a new translation by Charles Bland. (Repeat from 3 October 1983. Also on 2 September 1985)

23 April 1984:
Shakespeare as I Knew Him by Geoffrey Heptonstall (read by Richard Vernon)
An extract from the memoirs-in-progress of the celebrated ham actor, Sir Swindon Reynold. Producer Peter King. (Repeated on 14 August 1985)

27 April 1984:
The Funny Farm by Mary Gladstone (read by Diana Olsson)
Muriel, under psychiatric care, tries to make sense of an accident on the family dairy farm. Producer: Patrick Rayner. (Repeated on 11 April 1985)

28 April 1984:
The Day of Rest by Jack Emery (read by Anton Rodgers)
Producer: Margaret Windham. (Repeated on 4 December 1984)

13 & 20 May 1984
Reynard the Fox by John Masefield (read by Ronald Pickup)
Part 1, in which members of the hunt meet and first sight the fox. Part 2, in which the hunt is on and the fox flees for his life. Producer: Alec Reid (BBC Bristol) 

17 May 1984:
The Tilting Room by Ron Butlin (read by Finlay Welsh)
“Broadcasters call it ‘dead time’. And you’re dead scared of dead time, of those gaps in eternity when we might talk to one another, aren’t you?” Producer: Patrick Rayner (BBC Scotland). (Repeated on 2 September 1985)

24 May 1984:
Eisenhower and the Tack-a-Tack Tac by Alfredo Bryce Echenique (read by Peter Jeffrey)
A short story by the Peruvian writer, translated by Elaine Fishburn. Producer: Margaret Etall. (Repeat from 9 November 1983)

29 May 1984:
The Heroines by Elaine Eveleigh (read by Jane Wenham) 
(Repeated on 16 January 1986)

3-8 June 1984:
My Merry Mornings
Six short stories by Ivan Klima (read by Alan Dobie)
Translated and adapted by Jitka Martin. Producer: Peter Kosminsky. (Repeat from 4-9 July 1982 and 6, 14, 22 February, 2, 10, 18 March 1983) 

1: Sunday Morning: A Mad Story 
Klima goes to stay with a friend in the country. hoping for some peace and quiet to work. But peace is the last thing he finds there. 

2: Monday Morning: A Crooked Story

3: Tuesday Morning: A Sentimental Story

4. Wednesday Morning: A Christmas Conspirator’s Story

5: Thursday Morning: An Erotic Story 
Klima has tried everywhere – repair shops, garages, warehouses – to get a new water pump for his car. Finally someone tells him to try a Mr Holy. But first he has to find him.

6: Friday Morning: A Hospital Porter’s Story 

10 June 1984:
Making Hay by Deborah Moggach (read by Norman Jones)
The day after learning he is seriously ill, a London coach driver takes a group of women to a peace rally and has a “tranquil” experience of his own. Producer: Cherry Cookson. (Repeated on 4 April 1985)

12 & 15 June 1984:
Mr Wolfe and Mr Perkins & Dear Max, Dear Tom
Two programmes by Mary Benson based on an exchange of letters between Thomas Wolfe and his editor Max Perkins. Thomas Wolfe: Rolf Saxon, Max Perkins: Bruce Boa. Narrator: Brett Usher. Director: Christopher Vennlng. (Repeated on 24 & 25 January 1985)

19, 20 & 21 June 1984:
Pleasure, Voyages and the Mad Doctor of Canton (Read by Norman Rodway
Pages from William Hickey 's memoirs in 1749-1809, compiled in three parts by Sue Limb.. Producer: James Runcie. (Repeated 14, 17 & 21 December 1984)

1: Childhood, and an introduction to the fascinating delights of sundry Women.

2: The Pursuit of Pleasure continues, as Hickey becomes a cadet in the East India Company. 

3: Hickey reaches China and experiences its eccentric Inhabitants 

21 June 1984:
My Sister and the Spider by Jalal Al-e Ahmad (read by Geoffrey Collins)
A 1971 short story by the Persian author in which a 10-year-old boy, the son of a mullah, tries to make sense of her older sister’s situation as she refuses treatment from a male doctor while cancer is “getting a grip on her like a spider”. Translated from the Persian by Robert Wells and A.R. Navabpour. Producer: John Theocharis. (Repeated on 15 November 1984)

25 June 1984:
Golden Cockerel by Alexander Pushkin (read by Alec McCowen)
An astrologer presents an aged king with a golden cockerel that foretells danger, but the king is later enraged when the astrologer claims the king’s young bride as his reward. Translated by Antony Wood. (Repeat from 18 October 1982 and 3 June 1983)

29 June 1984:
The Man Who Read Hemingway by Roy Kelly (read by David Warner)
Producer: Alec Reid

30 June, 2 & 3 July 1984:
Walton’s Lives
Three programmes based on Izaak Walton’s Short Life of John Donne, extracted and edited by Richard Mullen. Izaak Walton: John Moffatt, John Donne: Edward Woodward, King James, James Kerry, Dr Fox: Kenneth McLellan, George Herbert: Christopher Scoular, Sir Henry Wotton: Gordon Reid. Director: Christopher Venning. (Repeated on 14, 15 & 19 February 1985)

1: An Angel from a Cloud
2. New Houses for the Mind
3. Choice Meat and Better Discourse

8 July 1984:
The Professor’s Bust by Fred Uhlman (read by Brett Usher)
First of three “stories for artists” by the German-English writer, painter and lawyer (1901-1985), who was interned on the Isle of Man in 1940. Producer: Piers Plowright. (Repeated on 12 April 1985)

12 July 1984:
The Great Bilbo by Fred Uhlman (read by Brett Usher)
Second of three “stories for artists” about Jack Bilbo, founder of the Modern Art Gallery in London in 1941. Producer: Piers Plowright. (Repeated on 15 April 1985)

12, 14 & 17 July 1984:
The Memoirs of Lorenzo da Ponte (read by David Suchet)
Mozart’s librettist spent 10 years as court poet to the Austrian Emperor Joseph, as well as experiencing adventures in London and New York, where he died in 1838. Translated by Elizabeth Abbott and adapted in three parts by Carol Rosen. Producer: John Cardy. (Repeated on 9, 10 & 13 September 1985)

14 July 1984:
Eternal Art by Fred Uhlman (read by Brett Usher)
Subtitled “or The Memories of A. S. Shortrick”. Producer: Piers Plowright.

26 July 1984:
The Angel on the Train by Eugene Dubnov (read by Michael Pennington)
Short story by the Estonian poet and author. Translated by Christopher Newman and John Heath-Stubbs. Producer: James Runcie. (Repeated on 22 December 1984)

27 July 1984:
Scar by Richard Walker (read by Meg Wynn Owen)
A Welsh university lecturer relives a nightmare experience when she was a young student in Spain, which has scarred her for life. Producer: Cherry Cookson. (Repeated on 9 February 1985)

28 July 1984:
My Motherland is Solitude by Igor Pomerantsev (read by Ronald Pickup) 
An exiled writer revisits a mountain region, which has been a particular source of inspiration to him. Translated by Frank Williams. Producer: Cherry Cookson. (Repeated on 21 February 1985)

29 July 1984:
The Third Secretary’s Story by Tom Hopkinson (read by Paul Scofield)
A senior British diplomat recalls one night of love with a woman while he was a young man posted to an East European state and reveals his obsession to find her again. Director: John Tydeman. (Repeat from 4 October 1983)

7 August 1984:
The Saint by V.S. Pritchett (read by John Rowe) 
A man recalls losing his faith aged 17 when it cannot answer questions about evil. (Also read by Denys Hawthorne on the Home Service in February 1964). Producer: John Theocharis

14 August 1984:
Brightflight (written and read by Marcella Evaristi) 
Producer: James Runcie (BBC Scotland)

21 August 1984:
Incident at Lima Junction by Florence Turner (read by Paul Birchard)
In the Depression and Prohibition era of 1929, the three Doran children head west from Buffalo by train in the luxury of a private Pullman car. Producer: Patrick Rayner (BBC Scotland). (Repeated on 15 March 1985)

27 August 1984:
The Last One by Grazia Deledda (read by Hilda Schroder)
A short story by the Sardinian novelist (1871-1936), translated by Susan Ashe. Producer: Piers Plowright. (Repeated on 2 May 1985)

4 September 1984:
Travelling Through England by Alan Golightly (read by Mike Gwilym)
Producer: James Runcie

13 September 1984:
A Matter of Nettles by Kate Ingells (read by Minoo Golvala)
Producer: Alec Reid. (Repeat from 10 December 1983)

19 September 1984:
My Cousin from des Moines by Ronald Frame (read by Sandy Neilson)
“The face we’d never seen was hidden under a black felt fedora, which I felt none of the women we knew in our closed circle would have had the courage to put on their heads.” Producer: Patrick Rayner (BBC Scotland)

24 & 26-28 September 1984:
Penge Papers
The confessions of an unwaged metropolitan househusband in five programmes. Written and read in five parts by Brian Wright. (Repeated on 17, 24 February, 3, 10 & 17 March 1985. Also on Radio 4 on 26-28 & 30 May 1986)

1. Tired of Eng Lit, our Pengeian hero swaps teaching for house husbanding and finds his real vocation as a voyeur of suburban life. “Personally, I like living in a comic ghetto. I feel I’m in touch with something mysterious, profound, beyond myself. For me, Wigan and Penge are holy places – Glastonbury and Lindisfarne, smothered in custard pie.” 

2. Long-term residents talk only to neighbours of 15 years’ duration, while newcomers pass through to the lush lands of Beckenham and beyond.

3. “Now I'm an unemployed teacher, I spend a lot of time in Egnep; that’s Penge spelt backwards. What I call the other Penge. the hidden Penge. The one the visitor or unobservant native never sees.”

4. “Penge is a white elephant's graveyard. First the Crystal Palace, now its very own department store. Should white elephants be a protected species, one wonders?”

5. “Teenagers in Penge stick to each other like egg stains on an old pullover. Little Reg – Reg’s son – is still going around with the same dubious bunch of characters he met on his first day at nursery school.”

9 October 1984:
How It Happened by Mary Burns (read by John Shedden)
Producer: Patrick Rayner (BBC Scotland). (Repeat from 9 September 1983)

12 October 1984:
Woman with Bicycle by Jane Oxenford (read by Maurice Leitch)
Producer: Maurice Leitch

17 October-19 December 1984:
Ladies Lost and Found 
A free translation into modem English verse in 10 parts by Terence Tiller of Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Book of the Duchess and The House of Fame. Chaucer: Martin Jarvis. Music: Michael Berkeley. Director: Piers Plowright. (Repeated 10 October-12 December 1986)

1. The Wakeful Poet
Alcyone: Helena Breck, Juno: Narissa Knights, Ceyx: Anthony Hall, Messenger: William Hope 

2. The Sorrowful Knight 
Huntsman: Anthony Hall, Knight: Jon Strickland 

3. The Lost Beloved 
Knight: Jon Strickland 

4. The Stroke of Twelve 
Knight: Jon Strickland 

5. Dreams, and the Good Deeds of Venus

6. Encounter with an Eagle 
Eagle: Michael Bilton 

7. The Summit 
Eagle: Michael Bilton 

8. The House of Fame 
Male Voice: Mark Straker, Female Voice: Helena Breck 

9. The Acts of the Goddess
Fame: Carole Boyd, Aeolus/Sixth Petitioner: William Eedle, First Petitioner: Geoffrey Collins, Second Petitioner: Helen Atkinson Wood, Third Petitioner: Brett Usher, Fourth Petitioner: Maggie McCarthy, Seventh Petitioner/Messenger: William Hope 

10. The Happy News 
Courteous Stranger: Timothy Bateson, Eagle: Michael Bilton, First Gossip/Truth: Helen Atkinson Wood, Second Gossip/Lie: Brett Usher, Third Gossip: Maggie McCarthy, Fourth Gossip/Herald: William Eedle

21 October 1984:
Refrain by Jim Arnott (read by Derek Halligan)
Belfast, 1984: Jack lies in a hospital bed reliving the terror of a sectarian attack he experienced as a youth and suffering the consequences of a similar attack in his adult life. Producer: Penny Gold (BBC Northern Ireland). (Repeated on 16 June 1985)

25 October 1984:
Long Ago by Ivan Bunin (read by Arnold Diamond)
Short story by the author (1870-1953), the first Russian writer to receive the Nobel Prize for Literature. Translated by Sophie Lund. (Repeated on 27 April 1985)

4 November 1984:
In the Summerhouse by Ron Butlin (read by lain Agnew)
Producer: Patrick Rayner (BBC Scotland). (Repeated on 2 November 1985)

6 November 1984:
A Long Weekend with Marcel Proust by Ronald Frame (read by Stella Forge) 
“‘This room,’ Martin reminds me: 'Proust said it was like an aquarium.’ I smile, rather tiredly, through our reflections out into the darkness.” Producer: Patrick Rayner (BBC Scotland). (Repeated on 24 October 1985)

7 November 1984:
Steps by Christopher Osborn (read by Victor Greene)
A man imagines that he is being followed, and the steps that pursue him gradually take him over. Producer: James Runcie (BBC Scotland)

8 November 1984:
Shoe in the Sand by Elspeth Davie (read by Eileen McCallum)
“Well, this isn’t the Cinderella story. No use waiting around. It seems there’s no glass slipper, and I’m no prince. Personally, I wouldn’t say you're a princess either.” Producer: Patrick Rayner (BBC Scotland). (Repeated on 7 September 1985)

9 November 1984:
A Little Bit of Repartee by Brian McCabe (read by Finlay Welsh) 
Two people live together yet can only communicate by exchanging little bits of repartee before the customers come into their restaurant. How much longer can this go on? Producer: James Runcie (BBC Scotland)

10 November 1984:
The Basilisk by Scoular Anderson (read by Mary Riggans)
Producer: James Runcie (BBC Scotland)

22 November 1984:
Princess by Robert Forrest (read by Patrick Malahide)
“She couldn’t join in the celebrations: bonfires and booze and children up loudly late for the end of a war. No; she would be honestly alone, in the Princess, watching Ingrid Bergman.” Producer: Patrick Rayner (BBC Scotland). (Repeated on 29 July 1985)

29 November 1984:
Sylvanus, a Monk of Eynhallow by George Mackay Brown (read by Tom Fleming)
How Sylvanus returned from his first voyage. Producer: Patrick Rayner (BBC Scotland). (Repeated on 17 September 1985)

17 December 1984:
House and Garden by Alan Golightly (read by Maggie McCarthy)
Producer: James Runcie. (Repeated on 23 July 1985)

29 December 1984:
The Lag by R.H. Bowden (read by Philip Madoc)
A man is unclear whether he put himself in the path of an on-coming bus accidentally or on purpose, but his resulting injuries help to mend a relationship. Director: Kay Patrick. (Repeated on 1 March 1985)

30 December 1984:
Tell Me What You Want by Morris Lurie (read by Denis Lill)
A short story by the Australian writer (1938-1994), known for his comic novels, short stories, essays, plays and children’s books. Producer: Ed Thomason. (Repeated on 5 April 1985)

31 December 1984:
One Arm by Tennessee Williams (read by Tom Hunsinger)
A 1948 short story, later developed by the playwright into an unproduced 1967 screenplay, in which a handsome young boxer loses an arm in a car accident and is forced to hustle on the streets. Producer: Peter King. (Repeated on 3 September 1985)

Many thanks to Ian Johns for compiling the entries and doing the coding.

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