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Friedrich Durrenmatt



THE PLEDGE....2005
Saturday Play. 24 Sep 05. Inspector Matthai discovers the horrific murder of an eight-year-old girl. When he tells the girl's mother, she makes him swear on his soul to find the killer - and so, Matthai's obsession with the case and the dark world beneath the polite veneer of 1950s Swiss society begins. Dram. Steve Chambers. 55m.

Cast:
Chief of Police ...... Roy Marsden
Inspector Matthai ...... Kenneth Cranham
Sergeant Henzi ...... Nicholas Boulton
Von Gunten ...... Gerard McDermott
Lotte ...... Teresa Gallagher
Dr Locher ...... Clive Swift
Landlord ...... David Timson
Frau Moser ...... Colleen Prendergast
Herr Moser ...... Harry Myers
Fraulein K ...... Sophie Roberts
Ursula/Annemarie ...... Jessica Crossley
Farmer ...... John Cummins

There was a version of this broadcast in the 90s - details below.

ONCE A GREEK....1995
This very odd play concerns a middle-aged bachelor and his meeting with a beautiful young girl. R4, 20 Mar 93. With Jim Broadbent, Mia Soteriou and Ellie Haddington. Dir Peter Thompson. I think 60m. (ND)

THE PLEDGE....1993
By Friedrich Durrenmatt. ...Matthews is a gifted detective, but his clinical approach makes him unpopular. When a child is murdered he risks everything to solve the case. R4, 25 Jan 93, 90m, and 20 Sep 93.. With Keith Drinkel and Tom Georgeson. Adapted by Peter Thompson. 90m. Another version (55m) went out on 1 Oct 05, dramatised by Steve Chambers, also very good.

THE PHYSICISTS....1991
Short of nuts for your fruitcake? Here are Newton, Leibniz and Moebius living in an asylum in Switzerland; a police inspector trying to work out which one of them is guilty of murder. An earlier adaptation of this story is described below. By Friedrich Durenmatt, translated by James Kirkup, with Nickolas Grace, John Shrapnel, Jonathan Cecil, Sian Phillips, Brett Usher, Jenny Howe and Petra Markham. Adapted and directed by Hilary Norrish. World Service, 7 Jul 91.

THE VISIT....1987
18 Oct 87, afternoon play. Globe Theatre, play no. 6. Also on World Service, 23 Jul 89; I think the same version. 90m.

    Translated by Maurice Valency and adapted by Gordon House from the 1956 play. With Sian Philips and Joss Ackland; directed by Gordon House. Sun 18 Oct 87 on BBC World Service and, simultaneously, Radio 4.

    An elderly millionairess returns to her home town after many years. On the promise of her millions,shw turns what has been a depressed area into a boom town. But there is a condition attached.

    Music by Bernard Graham Shaw and performed by Tony McVey, Peter Washtell, Ben Grove, and Bernard Graham Shaw.


THE QUARRY....1987
Reading, by Gavin Campbell, book at bedtime 5 x 14m, 26-30 Jan 87.

THE JUDGE AND HIS HANGMAN....1984
by Frederick Durrenmatt in 6 x 14m. Thriller, Oct84. Reading; book at bedtime.

DANGEROUS GAME ....c1980?
Another gritty tale by Friedrich Durrenmatt.57m. Dramatisation of one of his short stories. Sounds c1980 judging by the recording. A commercial traveller's car breaks down and he has to find a bed for the night. A retired judge puts him up, and introduces him to two other old men - two retired barristers and a retired hangman. They start to play a game. The commercial traveller is put on trial. The trouble is, he hasn't really done anything ... but being Durenmatt, expect the worst.

CONVERSATION AT NIGHT....1976
In series "Murder International". 11 Aug 76. 30m. Play no. 5.

THE CONFORMER....1975
An Expressionist drama by Durrenmatt set in a crime-ridden future. Translated by James Kirkup from a radio version by Hans Hausmann. Produced by Jane Morgan, 80m. Original broadcast R3, 7 Jul 75. Rebroadcast by ABC. In a bleak future dominated by criminal gangs, a scientist becomes the body disposal specialist for the nefarious 'Boss' in a cellar five floors below ground.

CAST:
Doc..............................................Alan Dobie
Boss...................................Christopher Benjamin
Cop...........................................Patrick Magee J
im................................................John Hug
Ann..........................................Rosalind Ayres
Bill.....................................Christopher Muncke
Jack...........................................Gerald Cross
Sam..............................................Peter Holt

OPERATION VEGAS....1975
On the brink of World War Three, the West sends envoys to recruit aid from the penal colony on Venus, only to learn a hard lesson in morality from the sub-culture which has evolved out of the brutal living conditions there.

This is "Operation Vega" from Earplay, which I think was first broadcast in the US in 1975. In the UK, a play with this title was broadcast as the Afternoon Theatre on 7th October 1970, with Anthony Jacobs, James Thomason and Raf de la Torre in the cast. (GL)

The Physicists....1963
Murder in the Grand Villa -the last descendant of the family makes her living there by treating the neuroses and psychoses of the "spiritually confused elite". Three of the patients believe themselves to be Newton, Einstein and Mobius - hence the title. October, 1963 Royal Shakespeare Companyís production. Cast list (in order of speaking): Narrator.........Norman Claridge, Inspector Voss........John Nettleton, Head Nurse............Doris Hare, Newton...........Tony Church, Dr. von Zahnd...........Irene Worth, Einstein.............Derek Godfrey, Frau Lina Rose..........Patience Collier, Herr Oskar Rose........Michael Burrell, Moebius...........Cyril Cusack, Nurse Monika Stettler....Patricia Connolly. Other parts played by Barry Ashton, John Cobner, John Harwood, Gordon Honeycombe, Tony Steedman, Dane Howell, Ian Lindsay, Pip Rolls. Einsteinís violin played by Tessa Robbins. Piano played by Wilfrid Parry. Stage production by Peter Brook; Radio adaptation and production by William Glen-Doepel.

ONE EVENING IN LATE AUTUMN....1959
The Thursday Play, Home Service. 24 Sep 59. I also have a reference to this being broadcast on the same date on the Third programme.

compiled by Nigel Deacon, with help from 'radiofans'.

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