(copyright BBC Radio4)
I’ve just started to listen to a fascinating WWI radio play, Home Front, these days.
It’s a “Drama serial tracking the fortunes of a group of characters on the home front as they try to maintain normality while Britain is involved in the First World War.”
Official page http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b047qhc2
As you can see from the Characters, the cast is terrific and there is a good amount of interesting roles (eight families and other people) and the story takes places following exactly the real First World War Centenary timeline.
Every character has a page with information about date and place of birth, age at outbreak of WWI, occupation and even address! Plus a description of personality.
And audience can listen to it day by day or later with podcasts (single episodes or Omnibus week by week) and downloading the mp3 files. Well done BBC Radio4! A voice even says “thank you!” if you download the files, hehe! They appreciate if you do so!
Each episode is 11 minutes long and it’s aired from Monday to Friday at 12.04 am.
For each episode there’s the cast & creatives list in the page and they repeat it on the podcast. There are some beautiful illustrations along the days, too, I don’t know who is the author.
Plus links to articles on WWI real people and events.
I’m downloading all the Omnibus podcasts so that I can listen to the story from the beginning: it started the 4th of August 2014, but I didn’t know. So, as soon as the “RSC Oppenheimer” actor Jack Holden announced he joined the cast last Summer, I was taking a look to his character Roland Pemble.
As Jack tweeted yesterday: <<It’s my and Alex Tregear’s juicy episode of
#BBCHomeFront on @BBCRadio4 at 1204 today! Photography’s never been so steamy…>> and he producer Allegra McIlroy tweeted: <<“Let’s go into the darkroom and see what develops” – sweetness + photography today #BBCHomeFront @Jassicrea @jackholdenactor @littlehailes>>, I liked a lot the episode and the previous others with them.
Lilian and Roland are two very charming characters, I like their personalities as described in their profiles: a bright and independent young woman who works in Photography (a kind of art I love and that was still in development and so open to creativity in those decades) at the beginning of the XX Century, when independence was not easy for women, side by side with a young assistant who loves his work and admires and loves…someone! You can well imagine what it’s going on between them through their voices, but in last’s episode…oh well, find out yourself!
Here the 9 October episode: <<HomeFront, 9 October 1915 “Lilian Frost sees Roland in a new light as they share a day of photographic discoveries” http://bbc.in/1L3ragC>>
And I will keep an eye on actress Alex Tregear, as well: she got a beautiful voice, like Jack!
I also found moving what happens to another woman, but I don’t want to spoil you the story, so it’s better if we all start it from the beginning.
Even if so tragic and dreadful, I still find The Great War era interesting and here it’s seen under the point of view of those who lived it in first person.
Radio/Audio plays are great to listen to. My favorite between those I was lucky to find so far are:
- Hood, Spiteful Puppet audio play on CD, fascinating story of Robin Hood with Lee Ingleby in the title role, find out more here
- War Horse, radio play with Luke Treadaway as Albert, you know how I love the story and the audio play is as good as the play and the movie, find BBCR4 page here and here 8.15 minutes of Luke reading the book
- Home Front, as I’ve just told,
- The Great Gatsby, with Bryan Dick as Nick Carraway, find it on Amazon, iTunes, Audible,
- The History Of Titus Groan, with Luke Treadaway in the title role, find more on BBC blog, BBCRadio4 page and Radiolisting, (there are many other links there),
- Pandemic, with Ben Daniels as Dr Jan Roldanus, find it on BBCRadio4 page, Amazon v1 and Amazon v2, (and other links there).
I hope all the BBC radio allow more works like these for audience outside the UK!
It’s not only a good exercise to improve my English, it’s amazing how the cast & creatives are able to make your imagination run using only voices and sounds effects. Even purer performances than on Theatre! I don’t know if you get what I mean…
This play, Home Front, will be added to my Favorites pages soon…