A collection of BBC radio full-cast dramatisations of Jane Austen's six major novels. Jane Austen is one of the finest writers in the English language, and this volume includes all six of her classic novels. Mansfield Park: on a quest to find a position in society, Fanny Price goes to live with her rich aunt and uncle. Northanger Abbey: young, naïve Catherine Morland receives an invitation to stay at the isolated Gothic mansion Northanger Abbey.
Three powerful radio productions from the BBC archives starring Ian McKellen, Ronald Pickup and Paul Scofield and a host of celebrated acting talent. These three legendary plays, performed by some of the best-known theatrical actors of the 20th century, are the perfect way to commemorate England's greatest dramatist.
Orphaned Jane journeys from a harsh childhood to become the loving caregiver of a child at the mysterious manor of Mr. Rochester. Jane is drawn to her enigmatic employer, but as dark secrets emerge, she must choose between her newfound security and the uncertainty of a life lived for oneself.
Four classic comedies from one of the wittiest playwrights in Western literature: Lady Windermere's Fan, A Woman of No Importance, An Ideal Husband and The Importance of Being Earnest, all featuring star-studded casts with the likes of Jacqueline Bisset, Miriam Margolyes, James Marsters, Alfred Molina, Roger Rees, Yeardley Smith, Eric Stoltz, and many more. Also includes a chilling dramatization of Wilde's sole novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray.
Written in 1593, King Richard III is one of Shakespeare's earliest plays. This play differs from its predecessors, being amore structured piece, examining the development and motivations of a single character, Richard Duke of Gloucester, who will stop at nothing to gain control of the throne occupied by his brother Edward IV.
Joss Ackland, Roger Allam, and Leslie Phillips star in this BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation of Victor Hugo's classic novel. When poverty drives Jean Valjean to steal a loaf of bread from a baker's window, it is an action that will haunt him for the rest of his life. A citizen of postrevolutionary France, he is sentenced to nineteen years' hard labour.
"Radio doing what it does best"
The idealistic son of a wealthy businessman seeks to expose his father's duplicity and to free his childhood friend from the lies on which his happy home life is based. When skeletons are brought out of the closet, the foundations of the Ekdal family are torn apart - with drastic consequences.
"Excellent play, Very disappointing production."
William Shakespeare is of course England's greatest play right and revered the World over. The Merchant of Venice is a masterly tale and is on a par with many of his other works. In his creation of Venice Shakespeare revels in his characters and story. Perhaps best well known for the creation of the character Shylock in a world of money lending the play has survived admirably down the years. This play is performed by a quite magnificent cast and in the lead role of Shylock we have Michael Redgrave.
Baptista, a rich Paduan merchant, announces that his fair young daughter, Bianca, will remain unwed until her older sister, Katharina, a hellish shrew, has wed. An unabridged cast performance of Shakespeare's comedy about the courtship of Petruchio, a gentleman of Verona, and Katherina, the headstrong, obdurate shrew.
The major texts of Western culture are a gateway to wisdom that can widen your views on self and society in enduring ways. And now you can examine its most important works - whether drama, poetry, or narrative - in this series of 64 penetrating lectures that reveal astonishing common ground.
"Interesting, Informative English Literature course"
A new recording of Henrik Ibsen's masterpiece, starring Calista Flockhart. Nora Helmer has everything a young housewife could want: beautiful children, an adoring husband, and a bright future. But when a carelessly buried secret rises from the past, Nora's well-calibrated domestic ideal starts to crumble. Ibsen's play is as fresh today as it was when it first stormed the stages of 19th-century Europe.
"Captivating performance of a classic drama"
Ever since the first night at the St James' Theatre on 14 February 1895, The Importance of Being Earnest has been recognised as one of the world's finest comic dramas. Now Judi Dench as Lady Bracknell leads an outstanding cast in this superb new production of Wilde's masterpiece, mounted to celebrate the centenary of the first performance.
"I could never marry a man called Earnest!"
King John of England is pitted against the united powers of France, Brittany, Austria, and the Papacy. Will England be destroyed by his fatal indecision? As alliances are made, broken, and remade, the paranoid and erratic John reveals his weakness and reliance on those around him - including his powerful mother, Queen Elinor, and Faulconbridge, the cynical and witty bastard son of the dead King Richard I.
Imogen, the daughter of King Cymbeline, is persecuted by her wicked stepmother, the Queen, and by Cloten, the Queen's doltish son. Disguised as a boy, she sets out to find her husband, the banished Posthumus. On her journey, she unwittingly meets her two brothers, stolen from the court as infants. Posthumus, meanwhile, has been convinced by the villainous Iachimo that Imogen is unchaste and agrees to a test of her faithfulness.
Henry James's novel, dramatised by Rachel Joyce. Young and beautiful, Isabel Archer thinks that she is in control of her fate. Little does she know, however, that others behind the scenes are pulling the strings. The beautiful and free-spirited Isabel Archer is now a very rich woman. Two men have declared their love for her but she does not want to be married. Resolved to enjoy her fortune, she begins her travels. Starring Anna Maxwell Martin, Haydn Gwynne, Robert Bathurst, Gayle Hunnicutt and full cast. Pianist Duncan Walsh Atkins. Directed by Tracey Neale.
There is now no doubt that not only is Waiting for Godot the outstanding play of the 20th century, but it is also Samuel Beckett's masterpiece. Yet it is both a popular text to be studied at school and an enigma. The scene is a country road. There is a solitary tree. It is evening. Two tramp-like figures, Vladimir and Estragon, exchange words. Pull off boots. Munch a root vegetable. Two other curious characters enter. And a boy. Time passes. It is all strange yet familiar.
"Above average performance"
This course will examine the social, historical, and political context of ancient Greek drama and equip listeners with a set of critical analytical tools for developing their own appreciation of this vitally important genre. The course will focus on the four extant playwrights, Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, and Aristophanes, and examine each of their plays closely.
A lord, his wife, her admirer and an infamous blackmailer converge in the irreverent satire that launched Wilde's succession of classic social comedies. This delicious comic feast serves up a scandal about good girls, bad husbands and hilarious hypocrisy - utterly contemporary and divinely funny.
When the crew of the Oceanus rescued a man close to death, its captain could barely have guessed at the incredible story that man would come to share. This is the story of Victor Frankenstein: a man obsessed with discovering the secret of life and cheating death; a man who brings to life to a body built from corpses; and a man who rejects this would-be child.... Soon Victor and his creature are entangled in a dangerous game of cat and mouse across Europe. But who is truly the monster?
An abridged version of Tolstoy's Anna Karenina, starring Ingrid Bergman and Gregory Peck. Anna (Bergman) is a wife and mother who has an affair with the handsome Count Vronsky (Peck).