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Front Row

Podcast Front Row
Podcast Front Row

Front Row


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  • Booker Prize Book Group: Anuk Arudpragasam on A Passage North
    Live magazine programme on the worlds of arts, literature, film, media and music
  • Bradford Postcard; Ron’s Gone Wrong; Re-directing a play
    Producer-director Sarah Smith made her animation debut with the festive favourite, Arthur Christmas. Ten years on she’s back with Ron’s Gone Wrong, a warm-hearted romp with a robot and a critique of social media’s impact on young minds. For this week’s audio postcard, presenter and local boy Nick Ahad is in Bradford. He dons his hard hat to check out what’s happening at the famous art deco building, known as the Bradford Odeon, as it’s turned into a new cultural centre for live music. He also visits Kala Sangam, an intercultural arts centre established by two consultant doctors that provides a place for locals to try new arts and crafts and which supports local artists and arts organisations. And he meets one of those emerging local artists, playwright and actor Kamal Kaan. And how can theatre respond to a seismic event like the coronavirus pandemic, or the murder of George Floyd? Erica Whyman, Acting Artistic Director of The RSC and Roy Alexander Weise, joint Artistic Director of the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester, discuss the experience of returning to their respective productions of The Winter’s Tale and The Mountaintop with fresh eyes and renewed urgency. Presenter: Nick Ahad Producer: Ekene Akalawu Photo: Nick Ahad at The Bradford Odeon building site Photo credit: Mark Nicholson
  • BBC National Short Story Award and BBC Young Writers' Award winners
    We announce the winners of the BBC National Short Story Award 2021 and the BBC Young Writers' Award 2021. Kirsty Lang is joined for the show by National Short Story Award judges James Runcie and Fiona Mozley and Young Writers' Award judges Katie Thistleton and Louise O'Neill. The BBC National Short Story Award is one of the most prestigious for a single short story, with the winning author receiving £15,000, and four further shortlisted authors £600 each. This year's shortlisted stories are ‘All the People Were Mean and Bad’ by Lucy Caldwell, ‘The Body Audit’ by Rory Gleeson, ‘Night Train’ by Georgina Harding, ‘Toadstone’ by Danny Rhodes and ‘Maykopsky District, Adyghe Oblast’ by Richard Smyth. Now in its seventh year, The BBC Young Writers’ Award with Cambridge University 2021 is open to all writers between the ages of 14 –18 years and was created to discover and inspire the next generation of writers. It is a cross-network collaboration between BBC Radio 4 and Radio 1. The 2021 BBC Young Writers’ Award shortlisted stories are ‘Fatigued’ by Luca Anderson-Muller, 18, from Belfast, ‘Another Boring Friday Night’ by Isabella Yeo Frank, 18, from London, ‘Super-Powder by Tabitha Rubens, 19, from London, ‘Blood and Water’ by Eleanor Ware, 17, from Bedfordshire and ‘Pomodoro (and Nasturtium Seeds) by Madeleine Whitmore, 16, from Bath. Kirsty also speaks to Denis Villeneuve about directing the movie remake of Dune, with a screenplay by Jon Spaihts, Villeneuve, and Eric Roth. It is the first of a planned two-part adaptation of the 1965 novel of the same name by Frank Herbert, Presenter: Kirsty Lang Producer: Simon Richardson
  • Arinzé Kene on playing Bob Marley; Clare Norburn sings John Dowland; the first Working Class Writers Festival
    Arinzé Kene talks to Samira Ahmed about playing Bob Marley in the new musical Get Up, StandUp! Singer Clare Norburn is live in the studio to perform a piece by 16th Century composer John Dowland and discuss her new play about Dowland, I, Spie. We discuss the inaugural Working Class Writers Festival taking place in Bristol this weekend with organiser Natasha Carthew and publisher Sarah Fortune. Presenter: Samira Ahmed Producer: Olivia Skinner
  • The RIBA Stirling Prize for architecture, Succession, John Le Carré’s final novel, The London Film Festival
    Front Row goes live to Coventry to announce the winner of the 2021 Riba Stirling Prize and discuss the shortlist with BBC Arts and Media correspondent David Sillito and architecture critic for the Guardian, Oliver Wainwright. Author Charlotte Philby and arts and books editor for Prospect Magazine Sameer Rahim join Tom Sutcliffe to review the new series of Succession and Silverview, John le Carré’s last novel. Film critic Hanna Flint fills us in on the highlights of this year’s London Film Festival. Presenter: Tom Sutcliffe Producer: Laura Northedge Photo: Brian Cox as Logan Roy in Succession Photo Credit: Sky Atlantic

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