David Napthine Radio Plays

David Napthine lives in County Durham and is an actor and writer. His work for BBC Radio Drama includes Ecce Homo, A Suit of Lights, Act of Faith, Unforgettable, The Recall Man (a series of four plays) and The Glasgow Climbing Club. He has also written six plays for BBC Radio Schools and a six-part comedy series Katmandu or Bust for BBC Radio Light Entertainment.

He work for theatre includes Tess, Strays, Stink, Act of Faith, Set in Stone, Quartet, Deep and Dazzling Darkness, The Good Works and The Hit.

He has collaborated with artists from different disciplines including dance, video, visual artists, music, magic, variety. Playing for Time, the story of an episode in J.S. Bach's life, combines theatre with live music on viola da gamba and harpsichord.

He explores unusual avenues for writing, often with other artists. This has resulted in Alchemy, a mixed-media touring installation in a caravan; Tempus Fugit, an exploration of time; Web Walkers , an installation in a school; and Elevation, created with young people to accompany the theatre production.

His television work includes Thoughtfully for Channel 4 and contracts for Tyne Tees TV, Zenith North and Carlton. He has also worked as a researcher on The Friday Alternative for Channel 4 and A Man's World for BBC2.

He has created work in a number of forms for community organisations and schools including Equal Arts, West Cumbria Youth Service, Living History and Sunderland Education. He has also worked in schools, colleges, nurseries and hospitals.

12.06.97 Act of Faith
16.03.01 Ecce Homo - Behold the Man
10.06.01 A Suit of Lights
date nk Act of Faith
date nk Unforgettable
2003 The Recall Man (4 plays)
date nk The Glasgow Climbing Club (c2004?)
2005 The Recall Man (3 plays)
date nk Six plays for BBC Radio Schools
Katmandu or Bust (6 x 30m comedy series)


ACT OF FAITH ....1997
Thursday Afternoon Play. R4 12 Jun 97, 1400. An outsider visits a west Cumbrian family whose lives are woven around the Sellafield nuclear plant. With Gerard McDermott, Barbara Marten, Bill Speed, Blair Plant and Beth Wightman. Director Jonquil Panting. Unforgettable (Series).

Three plays about memory by David Napthine.

1. Have You Heard the Music Man?
R4, 27 Aug 98, 2.15pm. George can't remember his son's name, but put on some music and he recalls his days on the road. With Windsor Davies, Carol McGuigan and Jack McBride. Director Jonquil Panting.

2. Eraser
R4, 3 Sep 98, 2.15pm. Terri keeps notes to help her damaged memory - but these soon begin to contradict each other. With Sharon Percy, Sonia Beinroth, Jo-Anne Horan and John Lloyd Fillingham.Director: Jonquil Panting.

3. May All Your Wishes Come True
R4, 10 Sep 98, 2.15pm. Billy is found wandering the streets of Newcastle with no idea of his past. Until his memory returns, perhaps the only thing to do is wait. With Phillip King, Terence Mann, Derek Walmsley and Charlie Hardwick. Director Jonquil Panting.

A Suit of Lights....2001
Interesting play about the bullfighter Ignacio Sanchez Mejias and the poet Lorca, who wrote a lament on his death. R4, 27 Jun 01, 45m.

Ecce Homo- Behold the Man ....2001
A hilarious play about Birmingham, "City of Thought", and the appointment of a philosopher-in-residence. The trouble is, he has a mind of his own. R4, Friday play, 55m.

Dr. Joe Aston Investigates ....2001
Scientist Grace Hayle and her boss were working alone in the laboratory. Now he's dead and she's the only suspect in a murder case. She claims to have no memory of what happened and there's little evidence to go on. An expert in "recovered memory" attempts to uncover the truth. With Jeremy Swift, Rosie Cavaliero, Carolyn Pickles, Colin MacLachlan, Paul Brennen and Sue Scott Davison. Director Toby Swift. This was repeated on 24 Oct 03 and followed by three other new episodes, which I've numbered 1-3.

The Recall Man - Making Waves (1)....2003
31 Oct 03; a diver suddenly remembers what he thinks was a murder. Psychologist Joe Aston must try to make sense of his confused memory of that night. When the case reaches court, they both face tough sessions in the witness box. With Jeremy Swift, Paul Brennen, Andrew Harrison, James Gaddas, and Elizabeth Carling. Director Toby Swift.

The Recall Man - Over the Border (2)....2003
7 Nov 03: In Middlesbrough, a small-time criminal lies dead in the passenger seat of a taxi. The police suspect the involvement of a criminal gang. Tommy Sheldon, the driver, is in severe shock and can remember nothing after his fare got into the taxi in Bishop Auckland. Despite the risks the police feel is involved, Joe Aston works with Tommy by retracing his journey. With Jeremy Swift, Paul Brennan, Janet Dibley, Vincent Friell, Andrew Harrison. Director Toby Swift.

The Recall Man - Stepping Out (3)....2003
7 Nov 03: A spate of random attacks on women is baffling the police. When another psychologist, Beth Webster, claims to see a link between them, she is put on the case. So at a time when Joe Aston's attachment to the force is up for review, his confidence isn't helped when a rival psychologist is put on a baffling new case. With Jeremy Swift, Paul Brennan, Janet Dibley, Tessa Peake-Jones, Andrew Harrison, Suzanne Heathcote. Director Toby Swift.

I am grateful to Nicholas S for sorting out the details of the 2003 broadcasts and for sending the information on the three memory plays (1998), 'The Glasgow Climbing Club' and 'Act of Faith'. (1998).

The Glasgow Climbing Club....2004
R4, 12 Feb 04, 2.15pm. It is 1936 and a group of Glasgow shipyard workers have formed a climbing club with a difference: they have no equipment; they climb where they like- they're trade unionists; and they drink like there's no tomorrow. One stormy weekend, three of them set out on a climb, and are joined by a stranger. But who is he and can they trust him? With Tom Mannion, Vincent Friell, Mark Bonnar, Forbes Masson. Producer/Director Jonquil Panting.

The Recall Man (1) - 2005
"Taken by Surprise" A man is abducted and released only when hisemployer pays the ransom. As he continues his work with the Teeside police, Joe Aston resorts to unorthodox methods to get a positive identification of the main suspect. With Jeremy Swift, Paul Brennen, Janet Dibley, Andrew Dunn. Dir. Toby Swift. R4 26 Sep 05 1415.

The Recall Man (2)....2005
"Can't see for looking" - A witness to an arson attack thinks she saw a rhinocerous throwing a petrol bomb. Joe Aston, a specialist in recovered memory, tries to discover what she really saw. With Jeremy Swift, Paul Brennen, Janet Dibley, Sharon Percy. Dir. Mary Peate. R4 3 Oct 05. 1415.

The Recall Man (3)....2005
"Best Forgotten" - Forensic pathologist Joe Aston uncovers information about an unsolved robbery many years ago. But it's Joe's elderly uncle and his friend who are implicated. This episode was written by Steven Chambers. R4, 10 Oct 05, 1415.

The Recall Man....2014
"Unforgettable"; written for Radio 4 Extra and broadcast on 1 Jul 2014; rpt. 2 July. George can't remember his son's name, but music causes him to recall his days on the road. With Windsor Davies.

Compiled by Nigel Deacon / Diversity Website

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