Sharon Oakes Radio Plays

Sharon was a secondary school teacher for many years. She gained a Distinction in Script Writing from Sheffield Hallam University and went on to be an associate lecturer at Hallam. Her script writing tutor was veteran Radio Drama Writer Mike Harris. She submitted a sample script to BBC Writers Room and from that went on to write for BBC TV Doctors and BBC Radio Drama. She has had poems published in small presses and anthologies including Mslexia, The North, Anvil and Wide Skirt.

Sharon is also Co-Chair of Script Yorkshire, a voluntary organisation promoting and supporting new writing in Yorkshire.

2004-07-31 14-30, The Haunt of Swans
2006-03-17 14-15, Blind Eye,
2007-12-06 14-15, Take-Away, Ciao Chapeltown
2011-02-21 14-15, Market: Eclipse
2013-03-10 15-00, Esther Waters Ep 1, dram
2013-03-17 15-00, Esther Waters Ep 2, dram
2020 The Pallisers, eps 5 and 6, dram, scheduled for Feb broadcast
2021-01-28 Voodoo Macbeth


31 Jul 04, rpt. 2006-07-08 Saturday Play: The Haunt of Swans
When a recently widowed young woman retreats to a remote part of Scotland to get away from everything, she not only falls in love, but also finds herself caring for an injured whooper swan. By Sharon Oakes. Fiona: Kaye Wragg, Cameron: Alex Ferns, Rachel: Susan Cookson, Producer: Pauline Harris.

2006-03-17 14-15 Afternoon Play: Blind Eye
Carl is a policeman about to get a medal for bravery. Yet he is troubled. He can't go near his wife and he avoids all physical confrontations. Carl: Shaun Dooley, Trish: Sue Kelly, Phil: Deka Walmsley, Niamh: Sinead Douglas, Lorna: Lois Taylor, Callum: Jack Hanson Micky/Jim: Russell Shaw, Darren: Greg Milburn, Charlie/Craig: Geoffrey Wilkinson, music by Tom Kirkpatrick ; producer - Gary Brown.

2007-12-06 14-15 Afternoon Play: Take-Away
Ciao Chapeltown. A series of five linked comedy dramas about an immigrant fish-and-chip shop run by different families through the decades. It is 1953 and the buildup to the Coronation. Vito is expecting his mother from Italy for the celebrations. So why is he dreading her visit? By Sharon Oakes. Eileen: Sue Kelly, Gianni: Joseph Alessi, Caterina: Flaminia Cinque, George: Russell Dixon, Andonis: James Anthony, Fred: Seamus O'Neill, Producer: Gary Brown.

The Child in Time, 26 Jan 09
By Ian McEwan, dram. Sharon Oakes. 15m drama (5 x 15m). The story is about a man whose daughter has been kidnapped. It won the Whitbread Prize in 1987. Christopher Hitchens regarded it as McEwan's best book. BBC notes for Ep. 1, edited slightly: Stephen takes his three-year-old daughter on a trip to a supermarket whilst his wife Julie has a lie-in. Then something unthinkable happens, and the couple's comfortable life changes for ever. Stephen: Jamie Glover, Julie: Zara Turner, Kate: Ray Dowland, Policeman/Headmaster: Richard Sinnott, Shopper: Maggie Fox, Mandy: Balvinder Sopal, Thelma: Janice McKenzie, Charles: Toby Hadoke, Mr Lewis: Rob Plckavance, Mrs Lewis: Maggie Fox, Chloe: Balvinder Sopal. Producer: Gary Brpwn.

    "Skilfully adapted, tightly directed and beautifully acted. I must admit I was worried about how such an intricately woven book with its complex themes could be pared down and still retain its integrity. I was not disappointed". (...can't remember where I found this review - ND)

2011-02-21 14-15 Afternoon Drama - Market, Eclipse
'Market'is a series of six plays about people who work in and around its stalls. Each story is self-contained. In this tale, Carrie runs a flower stall. She also has a birthmark on her face. Maybe that's the reason she has never married. But Mrs Kaminsky knows she has an ardent admirer. Romantic comedy. Carrie.....Michelle Holmes, Gordon....Andrew Westfield, Mrs Kaminski....Melissa Jane Sinden, Maurice......Ian Champion, Lisa.........Claire Lever, Original Music by Steven D Reid, Produced by Gary Brown.

2013-03-10 15-00 Classic Serial - Esther Waters, 1
By George Moore. Dramatised by Sharon Oakes. The story is et against a background of gambling and horseracing. It is a tale of how a servant girl makes her way in Victorian England. Forced to leave the home of her brutal stepfather, Esther takes a job as a maid at a country estate owned by a nouveau riche racing family. Colm Toibin promoted the book as a neglected Classic for Radio Four's "Open Book" programme. The book covers single parenting, wet nursing, divorce, gambling, and religious zealotry. Through her we discover what it was like to be poor and powerless. The book was banned until Gladstone revoked the ban, saying it was compassionate, moral and humane. After that it became a best seller. Esther ..... Lyndsey Marshal, William ..... Matthew McNulty, Sarah ..... Joanne Froggatt, Mrs Rivers ..... Joanne Froggatt, Leopold ..... Hugh Simon, George ..... Hugh Simon, Demon ..... Stephen Hoyle, Peggy ..... Lisa Brookes, Mrs Latch ... Melissa Jane Sinden, Mrs Barfield ..... Melissa Jane Sinden, Anne ..... Fiona Clarke, Mrs Spires ..... Fiona Clarke, Producer ..... Gary Brown.

    David Hepworth in the Guardian review ..."It's difficult to imagine a better way to spend a Sunday afternoon on the sofa than by following Esther's story" "Fanny and Alexander" by Ingmar Bergman, produced and directed by Gaynor McFarlane for the BBC Radio 3 Drama "Moving effortlessly between various moods - melancholy, elation, serenity - enhanced by Carl Prekopp's atmospheric music, "Fanny and Alexander" is a listening experience not to be missed, even for those already acquainted with the Bergman source-text. It proves once and for all the uniqueness of radio drama as an art form." Laurence Raw in his review of the play said “Remarkably creative”.

2013-03-17 15-00 - Esther Waters, 2
Esther leaves the workhouse with her baby. She is desperate for them to stay together. But how can she earn money? Esther ..... Lyndsey Marshal, William ..... Matthew McNulty, Sarah ..... Joanne Froggatt, Leopold and the judge: ..... Hugh Simon, Fred ..... Graeme Hawley, Demon ..... Stephen Hoyle, Mrs Barfield and Mrs Empson ..... Melissa Jane Sinden, Bill ..... Greg Wood. Producer ..... Gary Brown

Scheduled for broadcast in Feb 2020:
Episodes 5 and 6 of The Pallisers based on the novels of Anthony Trollope. Produced by Gary Brown and directed by Emma Harding.

28 Jan 2021: Voodoo Macbeth
By Sharon Oakes. In 1936, the newly-formed Federal Theatre Project’s Negro Unit decided to stage a production of Macbeth. The production was spectacularly successful: Voodoo Macbeth (q.v.) directed by Orson Welles. This drama records the impact of staging this production on both cast and director. Possibly Welles' greatest achievement. Orson Welles – Tom Bateman, Jack Carter – Ariyon Bakare, Edna Thomas – Clare Perkins, John Houseman – John Hollingworth, Abe Feder/John Barrymore – Tom Lawrence, All other parts – Adam Courting, Maggie Service, Lloyd Thomas. Produced by Gaynor Macfarlane.

Nigel Deacon / Diversity website

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