by Abi Morgan

Abi Morgan - Splendour

BBC Radio 3: Drama on 3

Broadcast: Sunday 24th June 2007 @ 8:00 p.m.

Kathryn, a photojournalist, arrives at the home of the dictator of an unnamed European state that is being torn apart by civil war. She is supposed to be photographing the dictator but he is not there. Micheleine, the dictator's wife, welcomes Kathryn and her interpreter, Gilma, and they all wait for him to arrive.

As they wait, Genevieve, Micheline's best friend, arrives. The dictator never arrives, but as the day progresses it is obvious that the rebels are getting closer and that the city is falling to them. In the course of the day, we see relationships and loyalities dissolve. Past guilts emerge. Silences are broken and resentments, anger and all kinds of destructive emotions surface.

With wit and a characteristic delight in the strange, Abi Morgan's writing brilliantly encompasses the cruel veneer of our lives.

Adapted for radio from Abi Morgan's stage play, "Splendour", first performed in 2000 at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

With Sian Phillips [Micheleine], Anna Massey [Genevieve], Kate Isitt [Kathryn], and Sophie Stanton [Gilma].

Music composed and played by Nicolai Abrahamsen

Directed by Jessica Dromgoole.

85 min.


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