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Browse audiobooks narrated by Matthew Parris, listen to samples and when you're ready head over to Audiobooks.com where you can get 3 FREE audiobooks on us
Household names nominate leaders from the past for BBC Radio 4's Great Lives Since its inception in 2001, Great Lives has been one of Radio 4's most popular programmes, presented by Joan Bakewell, Humphrey Carpenter, Francine Stock and Matthew Parris. The format is simple, but compelling: each week, a distinguished personality is invited to select an inspirational figure who has influenced them. Talking with the presenter and a guest expert, they assess the importance of their chosen candidate. This special collection, celebrating the programme's 20th birthday, comprises the very best episodes featuring leaders' lives, from the worlds of politics, religion, royalty, business and the military. Some are heroes, some tyrants, and several spark controversy. Among them AA Gill puts forward the case for Neville Chamberlain, Maxine Peake chooses Ellen Wilkinson, the Duke of Wellington is picked by Frederick Forsyth, and Leon Trotsky is selected by Christopher Hitchens in a hugely entertaining show that culminated in fireworks. In these cases, and many others, the life of the invited guest is as riveting as that of their subject - who wouldn't want to listen to Ken Livingstone discussing Robert Kennedy, George Monbiot champion Thomas Paine, and Trevor McDonald on Learie Constantine? From Nancy Dell'Olio on Lucrezia Borgia to Al Murray on Field Marshal Montgomery, these fascinating episodes showcase the lives of some of the most legendary figures from history, revealing their achievements and enduring influence and demonstrating why their greatness is undisputed. Episode list and date of first broadcast on BBC Radio 4: Robert Kennedy - 06/02/2009 Henry V - 08/12/2009 Richard Nixon - 17/08/2010 Bernard Montgomery - 01/10/2013 Richard III - 06/01/2015 Elizabeth I - 18/08/2015 Dag Hammarskjold - 23/08/2016 Neville Chamberlain - 20/09/2016 Gandhi - 26/12/2017 David Lloyd George - 30/05/2003 Queen Elizabeth 1 - 06/06/2003 Machiavelli - 02/04/2004 Thomas Paine - 23/04/2004 Lyndon B Johnson - 07/05/2004 Benjamin Disraeli - 28/05/2004 Michael Collins - 01/10/2004 Arthur Wellesly, the 1st Duke of Wellington - 03/06/2005 Genghis Khan - 01/04/2005 John Rockefeller - 06/05/2005 Ronald Reagan - 27/05/2005 Thomas Cromwell - 11/11/2005 Leon Trotsky - 08/08/2006 Eleanor Roosevelt - 22/08/2006 Millicent Garrett Fawcett - 22/12/2006 Julius Caesar - 25/05/2007 George Washington - 02/10/2007 Winston Churchill - 14/09/2010 Rommel - 26/08/2014 Ida B Wells - 19/08/2014 Learie Constantine - 07/04/2015 Abraham Lincoln - 26/01/2016 Lucrezia Borgia - 12/04/2016 Richard the Lionheart - 10/05/2016 Dadabhai Naoroji - 27/09/2016 Pope John XXIII - 24/01/2017 Sitting Bull - 09/05/2017 Emma of Normandy - 16/05/2017 Constance Markievicz - 19/09/2017 Ellen Wilkinson - 01/08/2017 Daniel O' Connell - 19/12/2017 Catherine the Great - 29/05/2018 Jayaben Desai - 10/04/2018 Copyright © 2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd. (P) 2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd Presented by Joan Bakewell, Humphrey Carpenter, Matthew Parris and Francine Stock Produced by Miles Warde, Peter Everett, Christine Hall, Perminder Khatkar, Mark Smalley, Charles Ledgard, Maggie Ayre, Beth O'Dea, Jolyon Jenkins, John Byrne, Polly Weston, Julia Johnson, Mary Ward-Lowery, Isobel Eaton, Toby FieldShow more
Famous fans choose their favourite writers for BBC Radio 4's Great Lives For 20 years, Great Lives has been a cornerstone of the Radio 4 schedules, presented by Joan Bakewell, Humphrey Carpenter, Francine Stock and Matthew Parris. Each week, a well-known personality is invited to select someone who has inspired them. They then discuss the 'Great Life' with the presenter and a guest expert to decide whether their hero really merits the accolade. This special collection, celebrating the programme's 20th anniversary, contains the very best episodes featuring authors' lives - from novelists to poets, playwrights to food writers. The eclectic selections include Armando Iannucci on Charles Dickens, Caroline Criado Perez on Jane Austen, and Rich Hall on Tennessee Williams. Two Prime Ministers, John Major and Boris Johnson, discuss the lives of Rudyard Kipling and Samuel Johnson respectively, while MP Rory Stewart champions Sir Walter Scott and Andrew Motion, Poet Laureate, nominates Alfred, Lord Tennyson. From Fay Weldon on H. G. Wells, to Prue Leith on Elizabeth David, the lives of the guests themselves are revealed to be just as fascinating as those of their chosen candidates for greatness. Illuminating and insightful, these gripping Great Lives episodes track the highs and lows of some of the most illustrious characters in the world of literature, sifting fact from fiction to show why they achieved so much and how they have inspired and influenced so many. List of episodes and date of first broadcast on BBC Radio 4: HG Wells 12.10.2001 George Eliot 7.6.2002 Lord Byron 19.7.2002 Charles Dickins 21.11.2003 Edith Wharton 14.5.2004 George Orwell 12.11.2004 Robert Burns 31.12.2004 Elizabeth Gaskell 20.5.2005 Robert Louis Stevenson 22.4.2005 George Sand 8.4.2005 Vasily Grossman 28.10.2005 Anton Chekhov 17.4.2007 George Bernard Shaw 29.5.2007 Elizabeth David 25.9.2007 Katherine Mansfield 22.1.2008 Charles Bukowski 8.4.2008 Dr Samuel Johnson 8.9.2009 Rudyard Kipling 29.9.2009 Alfred, Lord Tennyson 4.8.2009 Tennessee Williams 15.12.2009 Bertolt Brecht 06.04.2010 Michel de Montaigne 21.09.2010 Samuel Beckett 21.12.2010 DH Lawrence 14.12.2010 Lewis Carroll 3.5.2011 Simone de Beauvoir 19.04.2011 Hans Fallada 6.9.2011 William Shakespeare 30.08.2011 Sir Walter Scott 14.8.2012 John Updike 07.01.2014 Elie Wiesel 13.12.2016 CS Lewis 03.01.2017 Jane Austen 7.5.2019 Copyright © 2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd. (P) 2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd Presented by Matthew Parris, Francine Stock and Humphrey Carpenter Produced by Perminder Khatkar, Miles Warde, Jolyon Jenkins, John Byrne, Maggie Ayre, Toby Field, Alasdair Cross, Mary Ward Lowery, Peter Everett, Mark Smalley, Isobel Eaton, Jolyon Jenkins, Christine Hall, Lizz Pearson, Beth O'Dea, Paul Dodgson, Nicola Humphries, Chris Ledgard, Melvin Rickarby, Camellia Sinclair, Eliza Lomas, Beatrice FentonShow more
Distinguished guests nominate a great musician for BBC Radio 4's Great Lives For 20 years, Great Lives has been a linchpin of Radio 4, presented by Joan Bakewell, Humphrey Carpenter, Francine Stock and Matthew Parris. In it, a household name is invited to choose one of their heroes to discuss with the presenter and a guest expert. But will their chosen person live up to intensive scrutiny, and merit the description of having led a great life? In this special collection, celebrating the programme's 20th anniversary, the very best episodes featuring musicians' lives are collected together. From Marvin Gaye to Lonnie Donegan, here are examples both classical and contemporary. Simon Armitage expresses his admiration for on Ian Curtis, Phill Jupitus nominates Joe Strummer, pianist Joanna MacGregor selects Nina Simone, and former Children's Laureate Michael Morpurgo champions Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Whether it's Hanif Kureishi on David Bowie or Stuart Maconie on Ralph Vaughan Williams or the lives of the proponents are every bit as interesting as those of their nominees. Fascinating and engaging, these captivating episodes follow the ups and downs of some of the most iconic musicians of all time, separating the truth from the myths to reveal just what made them so great, and why they continue to influence and inspire us today. List of episodes and date of first broadcast on BBC Radio 4: Louis Armstrong 12.7.02 Sergei Rachmaninoff 11.4.03 Pyotr Tchaikovsky 16.4.04 Marvin Gaye 5.11.04 Sir Edward Elgar 19.11.04 Mozart 19.4.05 Samuel Coleridge-Taylor 21.10.05 Ella Fitzgerald 2.5.06 Nina Simone 19.9.06 Joe Strummer 3.4.07 Billie Holiday 1.5.07 John Cage 04.09.07 Paul Robeson 29.4.08 Ian Curtis 6.5.08 Alan Freed 26.8.08 Pavarotti 9.12.08 Thomas Beecham 21.04.09 John Coltrane 12.05.09 Miriam Makeba 15.09.09 Agustin Barrios Mangore 26.1.10 Malcolm McLaren 07.12.10 Kathleen Ferrier 26.04.11 Kirtsy McColl 09.08.11 Lonnie Donegan 03.1.12 Ralph Vaughan Williams 25.12.12 Fela Kuti 13.8.13 Jacqueline Du Pre 1.04.14 Dinu Lipatti 20.12.16 Captain Beefheart 03.04.18 Miles Davis 17.04.18 David Bowie 31.07.18 Ferruccio Busoni 30.04.19 Brian Epstein 14.5.19 Herbert Howells 06.08.19 Copyright © 2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd. (P) 2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd Presented by Humphrey Carpenter, Matthew Parris and Francine Stock Produced by Mark Smalley, Miles Warde, Perminder Khatkar, Peter Everett, Isobel Eaton, Jolyon Jenkins, John Byrne, Maggie Ayre, Christine Hall, Julia Johnson, Mark Smalley, Chris Ledgard, Beth O'Dea, Lucy Lunt, Eliza Lomas, Melvin RickarbyShow more
Well-known personalities pick their favourite entertainers for BBC Radio 4's Great Lives One of the BBC's most acclaimed programmes, Great Lives has been a regular Radio 4 fixture for 20 years, presented by Joan Bakewell, Humphrey Carpenter, Francine Stock and Matthew Parris. Every week, a famous name is invited into the studio to nominate a figure from the past who has inspired them, and discuss their subject with the presenter and a guest expert. Included in this special collection, marking the programme's 20th anniversary, are the very best episodes featuring the lives of entertainers - artists, comedians, clowns, magicians, sporting heroes and stars of stage and screen. Among them, Julian Clary champions Noël Coward, Anthony Horowitz advocates Alfred Hitchcock, Penelope Keith puts forward Morecambe and Wise and David Bailey plumps for Pablo Picasso. Here, the lives of the celebrity guests are as intriguing as those of the people they pick: as is also the case with Alan Davies on Richard Beckinsale, Mica Paris on Josephine Baker, Ken Dodd on Stan Laurel, Mark Gatiss on Peter Cushing and many, many others. From Simon Callow on Orson Welles, to Fiona Shaw on Eleonora Duse, these engaging episodes put some of the world's best-known entertainers under the spotlight, examining their achievements and probing their personalities to find out what made them so inspiring, influential and extraordinary. List of episode and date of first broadcast on BBC Radio 4: Umm Kulthum 22.11.02 Tommy Cooper 14.11.03 Charles M Schulz 15.4.05 Mae West 7.10.05 Morecambe & Wise 4.4.06 Noël Coward 18.4.06 Johnny Weissmuller 9.5.06 Tamara Karsavina 23.5.06 Max Miller 15.8.06 Joan Littlewood 5.1.07 Richard Beckinsale 9.1.07 Lilian Baylis 7.8.07 Thora Hird 11.12.07 Groucho Marx 15.1.08 Peter Cushing 1.4.08 Joyce Grenfell 20.5.08 Richard Pryor 12.8.08 Harry Houdini 22.9.09 Gerald Durrell 27.9.11 Stan Laurel 4.9.12 Pablo Picasso 19.01.10 John Ford 08.05.12 Karel Reisz 11.09.12 Dave Allen 14.01.14 Lucille Ball 30.09.14 Alfred Hitchcock 05.04.16 Joseph Grimwaldi 31.05.16 Gracie Fields 02.08.16 Orson Welles 08.05.18 Josephine Baker 15.05.18 Eleonora Duse 10.09.19 Copyright © 2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd. (P) 2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd Presented by Humphrey Carpenter and Matthew Parris Produced by John Byrne, Christine Hall, Beatrice Fenton, Perminder Khatkar, Miles Warde, Toby Field, Mary Ward-Lowery, Lucy Lunt, Jolyon Jenkins, Sarah Langan, Tim Dee, Maggie Ayre, Peter Everett, Mark Smalley, Camellia Sinclair, Beth O'DeaShow more
Dramatisations and readings of selected works by DH Lawrence - plus a radio play by Dan Allum and two bonus documentaries exploring Lawrence's life and writings Crowned 'the greatest imaginative novelist of our generation' by EM Forster, DH Lawrence has an undisputed place in England's canon of great authors. In this wide-ranging collection, dramatisations and readings of some of his major works are brought together, exploring themes such as romantic love and sexual desire, individual freedom, class division, war, the beauty of nature and the ugliness of industrialisation. This rich and varied anthology contains the radio productions of five of Lawrence's classic novels, and nine short stories and novellas. It includes: Goose Fair, The Christening, Daughters of the Vicar, Her Turn, Love Among the Haystacks, The Shades of Spring, Sons and Lovers, The Rainbow, Women in Love, The Fox, The Ladybird, Kangaroo, Rawdon's Roof and Lady Chatterley's Lover. Also featured is an original radio drama by Dan Allum, The Gypsy (inspired by Lawrence's The Virgin and the Gypsy), while two bonus radio documentaries - Great Lives and Michael Rosen: On the Trail of DH Lawrence - provide further insight into the inner life of the controversial author. Due to the archive nature of these recordings, sound quality may vary. With thanks to Keith Wickham, Greg Linden and Roy McMillan.Show more
The downloadable abridged audiobook edition of Matthew Paris' charming tale, A Castle in Spain, read by the author himself. Walking in the Pyrenees, twenty years ago, Matthew Parris and his sister came upon a magnificent medieval house. It had crests and a date - 1559 - chiselled into the stone: its walls and foundations were intact but the ancient oak ridge timber supporting the roof had split and was ready to collapse into the rotten floors beneath. Renovation would be an epic undertaking - a massive investment of time, money and emotion. And, the locals warned, nobody ever left L'Avenc with any money. A few years ago, Matthew (with his family's help) went back and bought the place. Astonishing and arguably idiotic, his decision resulted in a phenomenal amount of hard work, and this hugely enjoyable audiobook. Inspirational, instructional and utterly irresistible, this is the story of one man's dream to turn a forgotten ruin into his very own Castle in Spain.Show more
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