Radio Plays: Violins

Radio plays where violins, or violinists, are central to the plot ...

By Lucy Rivers. Afternoon drama, 31 Oct 14. Life for 16 year old Hannah is pretty miserable. Her mother's a drunk and her baby brother Gethin is an evil little gremlin child. But then one night she meets an alluring violinist who plays the most seductive melodies. He offers Hannah the chance to fulfil her darkest desires. How far will Hannah go to get what she wants? A wickedly playful dark modern fable with an original score composed and performed by Lucy Rivers. (........From the Radio 4 website - thanks Alistair).

23 Feb: Einstein in Cromer....2006
By Mark Burgess. In the summer of 1933, Professor Albert Einstein - arguably the greatest scientist of the 20th century - stepped off the ferry at Dover carrying one bag and a battered violin case. He was to spend a month's 'cheerful exile' in Cromer. Albert Einstein ...... David Suchet, Douglas ...... Robert Harper, Mrs Rose ...... Jean Trend, Commander Locker-Lampson ...... John Evitts, Inspector Hutchinson ...... Trevor Nichols, Father/Harry Herbert ...... Trevor Littledale. Pianist David Angus. Violinist Chris Phipps. Director David Blount.

11 Feb 05. A childhood prodigy of a violinist goes on strike - even parental bribes won't get her playing. By Philip Palmer. This was a well-written play, showing lots of musical know-how: techniques, tensions, and how to overcome them. Stephanie Fearon was the prodigy, Tilly Vosburgh was Mum, and Ray Fearon and Nicholas Farrell were the concert violinist and the father. Sonia Slany played the violin, Carol Bayne directed.

(17-01-2004; 22:15) Kindertotenlied - Song On The Death Of Children:
Nothing touches us quite like the death of a child. For a parent, it's the worst thing that can happen, almost too painful to contemplate. But artists have nevertheless been drawn to reflect on the loss. The son of violinist David Harrington died suddenly on Easter Day 1995. Terry Riley composed a 'Requiem for Adam' for David's group, the Kronos Quartet to perform in his memory. Evie Clarke began writing poems after being diagnosed with a tumour in the spring of 2003. Her father Nigel now treasures his 8 year old daughter's poetic legacy. Inspired by Mahler's settings of poems on the deaths of two of the poet Rückert's children, Kindertotenlied reflects on how art can help confront the inexpressible. (30m, R3)

R4, 1415, 29 Sep 03; by Robin Brooks and Richard Heacock: In 1907, the young Hungarian violinist Stefi Geyer was at the height of her fame, enchanting audiences as much with her physical beauty as with her playing. That summer, two men fell seriously under her spell. Both were composers and both were besotted with her. Otherwise, they could not have been more different: the intense, fiercely intellectual and pathologically shy Hungarian, Bela Bartok; and the dashing, hell-raising Swiss Lothario, Othmar Schoeck. Each rival sought to immortalise his new-found muse by writing her a violin concerto. A descendant of Schloek contacted me in 2005 about the play ... what a small world. With Cathy Sara, Tom Goodman-Hill, James Howard, Alexander Delamere, Bella Merlin. Directors Rosie Boulton and Peter Leslie Wild.

......Music at Night....2002
..... by Don Taylor, superb play with an eerie violinist and a strange plot... (R4, 1415, 18 Nov 02)...VRPCC newsletter, Dec 02

Living alone in his Norfolk cottage, a man has got into the habit of walking after dark. One night he hears music, a solo violin, coming from a remote cottage. He has to investigate. With Timothy West, John Wood, Patience Tomlinson, and Benedict Martin.

In quest of Joseph Emidy....2000
5 Aug 00; by Nick Darke. Story of a slave who eventually became a violinist in the Lisbon Orchestra. He fought in the Napoleonic Wars, then settled in Falmouth and became a successful composer. With contributions from Richard McGrady (historian), Tunde Jegede (composer), Nancy Naro (slavery expert) and Emidy's descendants.

By Hattie Naylor. An English journalist (Tom Baker) tries to find the secret of Paganini's phenomenal violin playing. He doesn't get very far. Dir. Jeremy Mortimer.With Marcello Magni, David Bamber and Bart Ruspoli. Very peculiar play.

Fair Hearing....1997
By Steve May. Sunday play. During the Second World War, Charlie, a young violinist, finds a place in Michael Tippett's Voluntary Employment Orchestra. LIke the man he so admires, Charlie wants to be a virtuoso musician and a conscientious objector, but for a poor kid from Peckham, even to get a fair hearing is not that easy. With Julian Rhind Tutt, Samuel West, Gavin Muir, Bill Wallis, Tessa Worsley and Denys Hawthorne. Director Eoin O'Callaghan.

(25-10 to 15-11-1997; Rpt) The Hydro (Ronald Frame)
A four-part entertainment set in a luxury hotel in the Scottish Highlands, with Eliza Langland and David Rintoul, Sheila Donald, Ann Scott-Jones, Finlay McLean and Crawford Logan. Director Patrick Rayner. In episode 3, a distinguished concert violinist suffers stage fright on the eve of the Edinburgh Festival.

R4, Saturday Playhouse, 19 Oct 96. Gothic fantasy tale.

By Diana Griffiths. With Dillwyn Owen and Ray Llewelyn. Directed in Wales by Jane Dauncey. Thirty Minute Theatre, 20 Sep 94. An all-male string quartet faces problems when their violinist disappears and the only available replacement is a woman.

Radio Times.... Jonathan Smith continues his dramatic preoccupation with the Third Reich: after his play about Speer, there's a new one - The Butcher, the Baker - on the assassination of Remhard Heidrich (Monday play, 8pm), with Barry Foster and David Buck.

Heydrich was effectively head of the Nazi secret police and the organiser of the Final Solution.He was brilliant, handsome, and an excellent violinist. In 1941 he was appointed Protector of Bohemia and Moravia in German-occupied Czechoslovakia. Benes was President of the Czechoslovak Government in Exile in london. He was efficient, enormously hard-working, and of peasant stock. In 1942 he ordered the assassination of Heydrich.

Cast: Benes - Barry Foster, Heydrich - David Buck, Lina Heydrich - Hazen McBride, Admiral Canaris - John Abineri, Erika Canaris - Ingrid Hafner, Kubis - Christian Rodska, Gabcik - David McAlister. Other parts by Hugh Dickson, Rex Holdsworth, John Livesey, David Ponting; violinists Diana Dixon and Peter Tanfield. Producer Shaun McLaughlin, BBC Bristol.

By Noel Coward, R4, 24.1.1970. One of Coward's lesser-known plays.

FINALLY - some recordings made by a friend of a friend, used by permission ... Alexandre Dubach, a virtuoso violinist and composer living in Switzerland ...

La Nuvola ...Fantasy on a yodelling song
Jingle Bells ...played as you've never heard it before.
Paganini Caprice no. 5

compiled by Nigel Deacon / Diversity website

Above plays known to exist in vrpcc collections.

Back to top

Radio Plays
Wine Making
Cosby Methodist Church
Gokart Racing
Links to other sites
Contact Us