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John Hurt stars in this BBC radio dramatisation of Gustave Flaubert’s infamous tale of adultery and tragedy.
Beautiful Emma meets and marries Doctor Charles Bovary. He's happy for the first time in his life - but Emma is distraught that her marriage lacks the passion and romance of her fantasies.
Dazzled by the splendour of a marquis’ ball, she longs for excitement and soon becomes infatuated with a young solicitor, Léon Dupuis. But when Dupuis moves away, her memories of him lead her to despair - and into the arms of wealthy landowner Rodolphe Boulanger.
As she moves from one illicit liaison to another, Emma’s complicated life begins to unravel. Exhausted from her debts and her affairs, she feels she is left with only one course of action....
A French masterpiece of betrayal and wantonness, Flaubert’s notorious novel features Sarah Smart as Emma Bovary, Conrad Nelson as Charles, Jude Akuwudike as Rodolphe and James D’Arcy as Léon.
Cast and credits
Narrator - John Hurt
Charles - Conrad Nelson
Emma - Sarah Smart
Madame Bovary Snr - Brigit Forsyth
Monsieur Rouault/Maître Guillaumin - Russell Dixon
Viscomte/Dr Lariviere - Martin Reeve
Nastasie/Mère Rollet - Julie McCabe
Madame Lefrancois - Siobahn Finneran
Monsieur Homais/Priest - David Fleeshman
Léon Dupuis - James D’Arcy
Monsieur Lheureux - Seamus O’Neill
Félicité - Sarah Jayne Hallworth
Rodolphe Boulanger - Jude Akuwudike
Justin - Sam Curtis
Berthe Bovary - Daisy Jones
Written by Gustave Flaubert
Dramatised by Diana Griffiths from a translation by Margaret Mauldon
Pianist: Stephen Reynolds
Produced by Pauline Harris
First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 4th-15th September 2006