Life in the Tomb by Stratis Myrivilis, Peter A. Bien

bookshelves: summer-2014, balkan, greece, wwi, epistolatory-diary-blog, under-500-ratings, published-1924, translation, war, radio-3

Recommended to ☯Bettie☯ by: Laura
Recommended for: BBC Radio Listeners
Read from July 04 to 11, 2014

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b048bh41

Description: Life in the Tomb: A masterwork of Greek fiction, Life in the Tomb provides a different perspective on the anniversary of the Great War. This new dramatisation from leading playwright April De Angelis in her first radio dramatisation features an original score by award winning composer Errollyn Wallen.

Originally published as extracts in a national Greek newspaper, the book takes the form of a series of letters from a young soldier back to his girlfriend in Lesvos, as his platoon moves deeper into trench warfare. Myrivilis based the book on his own experience of fighting on the Macedonian front. The book is so honest about how appalling conditions were and how badly the army was managed that it was banned on publication.

Stratis Myrivilis’ book brilliantly captures a complex Southern European view of World War I. Our narrator meets a wide range of nationalities on his journey to the trenches. The incidents he describes are rich and often unexpected – the Macedonian family who care for him when wounded, the enemy soldier with the voice of an angel and the Chinese cart driver who helps him when lost. The narrator is moving, unwittingly, towards his own death, a tragic accident in the last days of the conflict.

Stratis Myrivilis was a prolific author, nominated by the Greek society of authors for the Nobel Prize in 1960.
April De Angelis is a leading playwright. She has been produced by the Royal Court, the National Theatre, Royal Shakespeare Company and Hampstead Theatre. Recent productions include Playhouse Creatures at Chichester and Jumpy at The Duke of Yorks.
Errollyn Wallen is an award-winning composer and singer, whose work has been commissioned by the BBC, Brodksy Quartet and Royal Opera House amongst many others.
Overflow and notes:
Cast and crew:
Bouzouki and guitar player, Grant McFarlane Dowse
Violinist, Chris Elcombe
With thanks to Miranda Hinkley
Sound design, Eloise Whitmore
BA, Lucy Duffield
Executive producer, Joby Waldman
A Somethin’ Else production for BBC Radio 3.

A big thanks to Brazilliant for pointing me in this direction, I would have missed it.

For anyone following WWI centennial timeline, this is an important and gruelling inclusion.

The Magus by John Fowles

published-1965, spring-2014, film-only, re-visit-2014, greece, mythology, nazi-related, one-penny-wonder, paper-read, play-dramatisation, wwii

Read from January 01, 1973 to May 07, 2014

 

Stars: Michael Caine, Anthony Quinn, Candice Bergen

Description: An English teacher arrives on a sleepy Greek island to take up a vacant teaching post. The last man to hold the post committed suicide under mysterious circumstances. Slowly but surely, he is drawn into a bizarre game engineered by a reclusive local magician. The deeper into the game he is drawn, the more he senses danger… yet cannot seem to untangle himself from the fascinating and compelling influence that the game is having on his mind.

Quite ironic – this is the film of the book about the film of the meta-play of a real event.

Quinn was fantastic in this, and I cannot but help remembering when he was a young lad who turned up at one of Frank Lloyd Wright’s workshops and was advised to have a small operation on his mouth…

Pascali’s Island

bookshelves: film-only, spring-2014, booker-longlist, published-1980, lit-richer, turkish-and-or-ottoman-root, archaeology, greece, spies, filthy-lucre, mental-health, period-piece, historical-fiction

Read from April 06 to 07, 2014

Description: The year is 1908, the place, a small Greek island in the declining days of the crumbling Ottoman Empire. For twenty years Basil Pascali has spied on the people of his small community and secretly reported on their activities to the authorities in Constantinople. Although his reports are never acknowledged, never acted upon, he has received regular payment for his work. Now he fears that the villagers have found him out and he becomes engulfed in paranoia. In the midst of his panic, a charming Englishman arrives on the island claiming to be an archaeologist, and charms his way into the heart of the woman for whom Pascali pines. A complex game is played out between the two where cunning and betrayal may come to haunt them both. Pascali’s Island was made into a feature film starring Ben Kingsley and Helen Mirren.

Just short of 2 x 1 hour in length, you can watch Ben Kingsley, Charles Dance and Helen Mirren in action here

5* Sacred Hunger
5* Morality Play
4* Stone Virgin
WL The Quality of Mercy
4* Pascali’s Island
3* The Hide

The Furies by Aeschylus

bookshelves: currently-reading, classic, families, betrayal, fradio, greece, legal-courtcase, lifestyles-deathstyles, lit-richer, mythology, play-dramatisation, published-458bc, radio-3, revenge, winter-20132014

Recommended for: BBC Radio Listeners

 

R3 A new version by Rebecca Lenkiewicz of The Furies, the last play in Aeschylus’s trilogy.

BBC description: The Oresteia: The Furies By Aeschylus. A new version by Rebecca Lenkiewicz

The final play in Aeschylus’ classic trilogy about murder, revenge and justice. Orestes has avenged his father Agamemnon by murdering his killer, his own mother Clytemnestra. Now the Furies, deities of revenge, are on his trail and baying for blood. Can the young gods Apollo and Athena stop this cycle of revenge?

BBC Concert Orchestra Percussionists: Alasdair Malloy, Stephen Webberley and Stephen Whibley Sound design: Colin Guthrie.

To halt the blood feud spreading to yet another generation we are introduced to the emergence of the first homicide court.

Any Human Heart

bookshelves: impac-longlist, booker-longlist, fraudio, published-2002, winter-20132014, tbr-busting-2014, spies, historical-fiction, lit-richer, lifestyles-deathstyles, art-forms, epistolatory-diary-blog, south-americas, uruguay, britain-england, cults-societies-brotherhoods, sport, gr-library, france, paris, oxford, glbt, spain, books-about-books-and-book-shops, norfolk, teh-brillianz, greece, adventure, cover-love, epic-proportions, eye-scorcher, london, madrid, war, wwii, lisbon, portugal, filthy-lucre, nassau, bahamas, switzerland, britain-scotland, iceland, suicide, teh-demon-booze, new-york, germany, picaresque, tongue-firmly-in-cheek, travel, edinburgh, those-autumn-years, too-sexy-for-maiden-aunts, washyourmouthout-language, north-americas, music, midlife-crisis, african-continent, afr-nigeria, skoolzy-stuff, dodgy-narrator, afr-somalia

Read from November 28, 2013 to January 16, 2014

Read by Mike Grady

From the description: The journals begin with Mountstuart’s boyhood in Montevideo, Uruguay, then move to Oxford in the 1920s and the publication of his first book, then on to Paris where he meets Joyce, Picasso, Hemingway, et al., and to Spain, where he covers the civil war. During World War II, we see him as an agent for naval intelligence, becoming embroiled in a murder scandal that involves the Duke and Duchess of Windsor. The postwar years bring him to New York as an art dealer in the world of 1950s abstract expressionism, then on to West Africa, to London where he has a run-in with the Baader-Meinhof Gang, and, finally, to France where, in his old age, he acquires a measure of hard-won serenity. This is a moving, ambitious, and richly conceived novel that summons up the heroics and follies of twentieth-century life.

In the fashion of Zelig, Forrest Gump and the 100 year old man, Mountstuart is in all the right places meeting all the important people, however Any Human Heart is an absolute joy as Boyd’s writing leaves those also-rans in the starting gates.

Purringly enjoyed Logan’s slamming of the Bloomsbury set, that circle of spite who lived in squares and loved in triangles. Not sure about the portrayal of Duke and Duchess and for this reason I support a flawed, dodgy narrator scenario.

And that goodreads product description box – WTF! It is just a review filched over from Amazon book sales, with its inherent bias. Bad News! Check the product description elsewhere.

Born on April 20, 1893 in Barcelona, Joan Miró Ferra was a Spanish painter.

From wiki: Sir Harry Oakes, 1st Baronet (December 23, 1874 – July 7, 1943) was an American-born British Canadian gold mine owner, entrepreneur, investor and philanthropist. He earned his fortune in Canada and in the 1930s moved to the Bahamas for tax purposes, where he was murdered in 1943 in notorious circumstances. The cause of death and the details surrounding it have never been entirely determined, and have been the subject of several books and four films.

Have the TV miniseries to watch at some stage, however, for now, I will mull over the full life of Logan MS – I am in my weeds for you.

4* Restless
5* Any Human Heart – recommended
4* Brazzaville Beach
WL Waiting for Sunrise
3* Armadillo
AB Solo

Agamemnon (Ορέστεια #1)

bookshelves: play-dramatisation, radio-3, published-458bc, winter-20132014, tbr-busting-2014, greece, mythology, tragedy, classic, lit-richer, fradio, gorefest, revenge

Recommended for: BBC Radio Listeners
Read from January 10 to 15, 2014

Coming Sunday 12/1/2014 to R3. The first part of Aeschylus’s trilogy in a new version by playwright Simon Scardifield.

Clytemnestra Gonna Getcha

What a wonderful way to bust a TBR!

BBC Description: The Oresteia: Agamemnon By Aeschylus. A new version by Simon Scardifield.

The first of the three plays in Aeschylus’ classic trilogy about murder, revenge and justice. Agamemnon returns home to Argos after his victory at Troy. But his wife, Clytemnestra, has determined to take terrible revenge for his sacrifice of their eldest daughter Iphigenia.

BBC Concert Orchestra Percussionists . . . . . Alasdair Malloy, Stephen Webberley and Stephen Whibley

Sound design: Colin Guthrie

Over the coming weeks, Drama on 3 will broadcast all three plays in the Oresteia in accessible, fast-moving, contemporary versions by three of this country’s most imaginative writers. The second play, The Libation Bearers, is written by Ed Hime and the third, The Furies, is by Rebecca Lenkiewicz.