Lucy Prebble’s play A Very Expensive Poison opened last week at the Old Vic in London. It tells the story of the poisoning of Alexander Litvinenko in 2006 with a treatment ranging from the high theatricality of song, dance and puppetry to simple direct address to the audience - and has a love story at its core. Lucy Prebble joins Front Row to talk about putting truth on stage.
Mark Strong and Daniel Mays star in new Sky One drama Temple, set in a disused underground station being used as a covert hospital to treat criminals and CEOs of massive companies who need to keep their health a secret. David Butcher of the Radio Times reviews.
Lynda Clarke has been shortlisted for the BBC National Short Story Award with Ghillie’s Mum. The writer discusses her story which is about a shape shifting mother whose animal forms delight her son but horrify the wider world . The story is broadcast on Radio 4 at 1530 on Friday 13 September and the winner of the BBC NSSA is announced on Front Row on 1 October.
Lope de Vega wrote about 500 plays but there can’t be many writers with more plays to their name than years to their age. Alan Ayckbourn can claim that honour: he’s 80 and last night his 83rd play opened, like so many of his previous dramas, in Scarborough. Birthdays Past, Birthdays Present has all the deft stagecraft we expect from the playwright; it opens on the day of Micky’s 80th birthday party and works backwards to the birthdays of his wife, his son and daughter. What happens offstage is as important as what the audience sees. This is a family drama about rumour, reputation and what really happened. So, a play for our times. Nick Ahad, drama critic for the Yorkshire Post, reviews the production.
Presenter: Samira Ahmed
Producer: Hilary Dunn…read more