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Kevin Cryan
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Afternoon Play BBC Radio 4
« : 23.02.10 at 20:11 »
Quote

on 24.10.07 at 09:56, Kevin Cryan wrote:

 
A six part radio adaptation* of the sequel The Glittering Prizes, Fame and Fortune, directed by Pete Atkin begins in the Saturday Play slot Saturday the 27th of October on BBC Radio 4 at 2.30pm.
 
Kevin Cryan
 
*Above the Title Productions Ltd
 

 
And two years and some months later comes Final Demands , a new six part series  written by Fredric Rapheal, and directed by Pete Atkin, which more or less takes up where Fame and Fortune left off.  The first part of this series is scheduled to be broadcast on  Thursday March the 4th at 2.15 pm.  
 
For more information, consult the next week's schedule or the 25th of February to 5th of March edition of Radio Times.
 
Kevin Cryan
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Kevin Cryan
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Re: Afternoon Play BBC Radio 4
« Reply #1: 24.02.10 at 10:01 »
Quote

on 23.02.10 at 20:11, Kevin Cryan wrote:

 
And two years and some months later comes Final Demands , a new six part series  written by Fredric Rapheal, and directed by Pete Atkin, which more or less takes up where Fame and Fortune left off.  The first part of this series is scheduled to be broadcast on  Thursday March the 4th at 2.15 pm.  
 
.......................................
Kevin Cryan
 

In last  Saturday's edition of The Torygraph,  Frederic Raphael has written a piece which is useful introduction to Final Demands, the novel and the series.
 
Quote:
.................................................
 
In Final Demands, the concluding volume of my "Glittering Prizes" trilogy (which will be dramatised, in six episodes, with the unmatchable Tom Conti in the lead, on radio 4 during March), I take a wry look at what has become of our juvenile aspirations and how the old guard are being overtaken by their clever juniors, male and female.
 
Today's politicians pride themselves, left and right, on the collapse of the class system. Etonians pretend to be ordinary people. Our betters are, they promise, no better than anyone else. If the social-nexus has collapsed, the cash-nexus is all. The Old Boy net has been replaced by the New-Girl net: females now determine taste, especially in the arts and allied trades, to a degree inconceivable when nice girls rocked the cradle, not the boat.  
 
The glittering prizes are no longer in the gift of men in black coats and striped trousers. Who would work in the Ministry of Transport when Simon Cowell can promise them a limousine? Why write good books when bad ones are festooned with awards and commissioned with multi-million-pound advances?  
 
Back in the 1960s, Eartha Kitt won fame by singing "Who wants to be a millionaire?" In egalitarian, never-had-it-so-level England, who doesn't, especially if it needn't involve a lot more than getting lucky? The loudest laurels are awarded by judges who grow more famous, and richer, than the recipients. Life has learnt to imitate bad art. The inquiry into the Iraq War is staged in a fashion midway between Rumpole of the Bailey and Mastermind. Politicians defer to showbiz. James Cameron can claim to rule the world; David Cameron never will.  
 
Higher education was always alleged to foster critical minds. The Humanities, they said, enabled you to tell when people were talking rot. But when rot is what sells or wins votes, who needs contrary people like that? Today's elite are well-advised not to advertise their brains. Who would guess that Jonathan Ross had a degree (and a Fellowship already)? He is as careful to vulgarise his accent and vocabulary as Joan Bakewell has told us she once was to gentrify her Brummy vowels.  
 
When modern man hears the word "Culture", he reaches for his remote. If you want to be clever, get popular. History is topped and retailed on TV by promenading professors to flatter the common vanity. Civilisation used to be what the patrician Kenneth Clark knew best about. Today, art is what the dynastically-advantaged David Dimbleby tells you it is, as if he knew.  
 
"Literature" is what doesn't sell, which proves it doesn't matter. The bottom line is now at the top of everybody's calculations. Everything we need to read, or our betters think we'd like, will soon be clickable on the electronic buffet. Whatever is deemed worth knowing (don't ask by whom or why) will be only a download away.  
 
Most of what the universities used to teach is being judged redundant, innit? And unless what's left of their Science Parks can come up with paying propositions, they'll be for the chop too and all. Glittering Prizes? Honestly, today's guys and dolls would sooner have the money. As for yesterday's hot-shots, we can count ourselves lucky if there's honey still for tea
 
.

 

 
Kevin Cryan
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Re: Afternoon Play BBC Radio 4
« Reply #2: 24.02.10 at 15:39 »
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He mentions Clive:
 
And I loved:
 
Unlike today's debt-saddled students, no one with a degree feared unemployment. But then no one read Sociology or Media Studies. Books mattered.
 
And I feel old
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Keith Busby
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Re: Afternoon Play BBC Radio 4
« Reply #3: 24.02.10 at 22:56 »
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But at least you never read Sociology or Media Studies. I always used to joke that if it hadn't been for my French teacher, I might have become an accountant or, worse still, a sociologist. Apologies to all MV accountants. Grin
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dr_john
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Re: Afternoon Play BBC Radio 4
« Reply #4: 05.03.10 at 12:34 »
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Having listened to the first episode of Final Demands yesterday (available on iPlayer now) I can only say, top notch job, Pete! I expect it took several takes to get Rachel's stomach-slap sounding just right, and for Tom Conti to sound sufficiently world-weary about anything other than council parking charges.
 
As ever, Frederic Raphael's characters all talk like Frederic Raphael (see Torygraph piece above), a style which was once enthralling but can now sometimes be ever so slightly irritating. Perhaps it's me - I would once have killed to have come up with a line like "A plaque on both your houses", but now, hearing the scene where Adam is attempting to console his bereaved daughter over the telephone, I can only think that in similar circumstances I wouldn't be quoting Wittgenstein, George Herbert, the Emperor Vespasian and Beatrix Potter.
Still, looking forward to the rest of the series.
 
Dr John
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Rob Spence
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Re: Afternoon Play BBC Radio 4
« Reply #5: 05.03.10 at 18:27 »
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on 05.03.10 at 12:34, dr_john wrote:
I can only think that in similar circumstances I wouldn't be quoting Wittgenstein, George Herbert, the Emperor Vespasian and Beatrix Potter.

Yep, know what you mean: la Potter just doesn't have the requisite gravitas... Wink
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Kevin Cryan
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Re: Afternoon Play BBC Radio 4
« Reply #6: 10.03.10 at 20:05 »
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on 05.03.10 at 12:34, dr_john wrote:
Having listened to the first episode of Final Demands yesterday (available on iPlayer now) I can only say, top notch job, Pete! I expect it took several takes to get Rachel's stomach-slap sounding just right, and for Tom Conti to sound sufficiently world-weary about anything other than council parking charges.
 
As ever, Frederic Raphael's characters all talk like Frederic Raphael (see Torygraph piece above), a style which was once enthralling but can now sometimes be ever so slightly irritating.....
Dr John

 
I think I'd go along with that. However, there are occacions when Rapheal forgets himself and shows what a really fine writer he can be.  The second episode, The Lesson of the Master, is well worth listening to, firstly, because it has contains some well-judged writing, and secondly, because that writing had been put into the mouths of Annabel Leventon and Julian Glover, who were nigh on heartbreaking as Sheridan and Patricia Reece, the elderly academic couple trying to cope with the onset of (his) dementia.  
 
Kevin Cryan
 
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Jan
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Re: Afternoon Play BBC Radio 4
« Reply #7: 23.03.10 at 20:37 »
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Here's Gillian Reynolds' review of Final Demands in the Online Telegraph.
(Oval records?)
Jan
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