Drama & Readings  permalink

A story long ago

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  • Message 1. 

    Posted by caissier (U14073060) on Tuesday, 29th March 2011

    I would like to ask if anybody remembers this story or knows of it. It was broadcast as a short reading on r4 possibly in the early 80s. It has stayed with me since then because of what it suggested about relationships.

    It was about a nanny who came to look after a young girl in a wealthy family in Paris possibly in the late 40s. The girl was quite neglected by her parents, The nanny was in her late twenties or early thirties. She was foreign, very educated, worldly, and had had a lot of experiences and hardships. She was kind, tough and good-looking and rather exotic. She fascinated the young girl, who came to adore her, with her stories and charisma. She might have been called Eva.

    All was going well with the girl's life transformed and enlivened when, one day, Eva said she was leaving. "But why?!" asked the girl, heartstruck, "Aren't you happy here with me and my family?"

    Eva said "You give me nothing...You reveal nothing of yourselves. You do not trust me with your feelings. You never have."

    And she packed her things and left, leaving the girl with her memories of her.

    It has just reminded me of the plot of Pasolini's film Theorem where a young man enters the lives of an Italian family, again wealthy, and transforms their lives, particularly sexually, then also leaves.

    The story about Eva has stayed with me since Iheard it. I remember as well a story by Rebecca West, about a woman who is compelled to tell everybody she knows home truths and things they would be better unaware of, leavingdevastation in her wake. Eventually her husband has to take drastic action. There was a late-night thriller with Edward Woodward in August 1983, so heartbeatingly dramatic that after it ended there was silence, then the announcer quietly said, "wow".

    I mention these stories because I miss those kind of radio experiences. They formed my loyalty to Radio 4 but I do not hear things like that now, rather worthy tracting socialogical sermons. I think the response would be that they are somehow 'elitist'. There used to be stories by Saki, but how 'relevant' are they now?

    Anyway those are my feelings about Drama and Reading, then and now.

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