David Tennant stars as Malvolio in Shakespeare's comedy of disguise, madness and love. One of Shakespeare's happiest plays, Twelfth Night is both a comedy of misrule and a trenchant attack on puritanism. Disguise and deceit leads to misadventure, madness and mistaken love. Orsino loves Olivia, but she loves Cesario, who really does love Orsino (for Cesario is actually Viola).
Samantha Spiro, David Troughton, and Amanda Root are among the cast of this new BBC Radio 4 dramatisation of Jane Austen's famous novel. Mrs Bennet is determined to see her five daughters married off and secure a future for them all. When the wealthy Mr Bingley arrives in the neighbourhood, Mrs Bennet wastes no time in making his acquaintance. His friend Mr Darcy, however, discourages Mr Bingley from marrying Jane Bennet, and also appears to snub her sister Elizabeth.
"can't hear it too much"
Toby Stephens and Juliet Aubrey star in a BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation of Wilkie Collins' chilling Gothic drama. A lonely stretch of road on Hampstead Heath is the venue for Walter Hartright's midnight first encounter with a mysteriously distressed figure in white. As he helps the woman to escape from unnamed pursuers, he has little understanding of the way she will affect his future. At Limmeridge House in Cumberland, Walter meets and falls in love with Laura, who strangely resembles the woman in white.
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.
"Stay go leave stay...it's all the same"
Featuring a fictional version of himself - 'Marcel' - and a host of friends, acquaintances, and lovers, In Search of Lost Time is Proust's search for the key to the mysteries of memory, time, and consciousness. As he recalls his childhood days, the sad affair of Charles Swann and Odette de Crecy, his transition to manhood, the tortures of love and the ravages of war, he realises that the simplest of discoveries can lead to astonishing possibilities.
"BBC does Proust proud"
We find ourselves in the austerity of the 1950s, when England's aristocracy was feeling the pinch. Bertie Wooster has gone to a residential self-help school to learn how to darn his socks. Until he re-emerges, Jeeves has signed up with Bill Rowcester (pronounced Roaster), an earl who is failing to make ends meet in trade, and yearning to sell his stately home, which has charm and damp in equal measure. In his new environment Jeeves is required to exert his mammoth brain to what would be breaking point for any normal intellect.
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"
In the hands of Sophocles, the master dramatist, the anguished tale of a man fated to kill his father and marry his mother retains its power to shock and move beyond any Freudian reference.
Orley Farm, described as a "[B]rilliantly choreographed legal thriller" (Mail on Sunday), centres on the pathos of the main character, Lady Mason. Youthful marriage choices, middle-aged marital crisis, love and loss revolve around the legal action and the complex portrayal of Lady Mason, who is both sympathetic and wily.
A ruthlessly ambitious Scottish lord siezes the throne with the help of his scheming wife - and a trio of witches. Anthony Quayle, Robert Hardy, Ian Holm, Stanley Holloway, and Jill Balcon star in an unabridged performance of Shakespeare's Macbeth.
Prince Kreon, enforcing an arbitrary mandate, is enraged that Antigone would abide by a natural law of sisterly respect in contradiction of his will. As neither can be reconciled with the other's acts, the drama grows devoutly tenebrous. This translation is iambic, as is most of the text in Greek.
A BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation of Elizabeth Gaskell's classic novel of everyday provincial life in the 1820s, 'Wives and Daughters', first broadcast in the 'Woman's Hour Drama' slots from 29 November 2010 - 10 December 2010.'Wives and Daughters' was written in the 1860s and serialised in the Cornhill Magazine. It is set in the 1820s and deals to a large extent with the position of women in society.
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.
Telling his followers he is leaving the city on affairs of state, the Duke of Vienna appoints the puritanical Angelo to govern in his absence. Will Angelo prove as virtuous as he seems once power is in his hands? Roaming the city disguised as a friar, the duke looks on as Angelo's lust for the virtuous Isabella sweeps him into the corruption he has so sternly condemned in others. The duke's manipulation at last produces a happy ending for this dark comedy, with its brilliant exploration of the themes of justice and mercy.
A lavish BBC Radio 4 full cast dramatisation of Anthony Trollope's much loved novel. Anthony Trollope's series of witty and gently satirical stories of provincial life, The Barchester Chronicles, are set in the fictional town of Barchester and the surrounding county of Barsetshire. The Last Chronicle of Barset is the last of six books and dramatisations, following on from The Warden, Barchester Towers, Dr Thorne, Framley Parsonage & The Small House at Allington.
Hedda Gabler, the daughter of a deceased General, marries dull George Tesman and foresees a life of middle class tedium stretching ahead when they return from their honeymoon. Increasingly, she is drawn into the clutches of her admirer, Judge Brack, who seeks to establish a ménage a trois. Then the brilliant but dissolute Eilert Lovborg, a former flame, arrives to rival her husband for an academic post.
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"
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.
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!"
This widely studied play is one of the "best sellers" of the Shakespeare canon. This production is the sixth Shakespeare play in the series undertaken by Naxos AudioBooks in conjunction with Cambridge University Press.
A solo recording of Julius Caesar in an American dialect.
In the cosmopolitan Paris of the 1880s, the new proprietors of the Opera House are amused to discover that their costly acquisition is said to be haunted. But their smiles quickly vanish as tragedy follows misfortune: a murdered stagehand, a fatal accident, a missing girl. Fearful tales of the Opera Ghost race through the corridors and dressing rooms of the theatre. And with good reason - for deep in the catacombs beneath the Opera House, something is stirring.
A lavish BBC Radio 4 full cast dramatisation of Anthony Trollope's much-loved novel. Anthony Trollope's series of witty and gently satirical stories of provincial life, The Barchester Chronicles, are set in the fictional town of Barchester and the surrounding county of Barsetshire. The Small House at Allington is the fifth of six books and dramatisations, following on from The Warden, Barchester Towers, Dr Thorne and Framley Parsonage.
A solo recording of A Midsummer Night's Dream in an American dialect.
Julius Caesar is one of Shakespeare's greatest and most performed plays. With this new guide, you will have an even better understanding of the story. Included in this guide: a biography of author William Shakespeare, a look at the play's context, its literary elements, detailed scene summaries, character analysis, and much more. This is the definitive guide to Julius Caesar, concise, easy to understand, and guaranteed to add to your enjoyment of this classic play.
The Proposal is a one-act farce written in 1888. It is a play of dialogue-based action and situational humor. In the center of the play, there are two lovers, Ivan Lomonosov and Natalia Chubukov. Ivan receives Natalia father's permission to propose to her, but, being a hypochondriac, he can't but fail to do this and moreover gets into several arguments with her.