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Episode 1

15 Minute Drama, In the Van Episode 1 of 5

15 minutes
First broadcast:
Monday 21 May 2012

Written by Clare Bayley.

Recently promoted MI5 agent, Yasmin Zafiri is on her first stake out facing weeks, rather unglamorously, in a van, and with an unexpected supervisor. On Yasmin's first day in the MI5 surveillance van, she discovers her lover Jonathan is also on the case. They begin to eavesdrop on secret lives and test their own relationship.

Yasmin has the same pressures of many young professional women, but she also has the safety of hundreds of ordinary citizens in her hands. She's an MI5 agent making decisions to prevent a terrorist attack while struggling to preserve her relationship with fellow agent Jonathan.

It gives an insight into the pressures and preoccupations of an ordinary woman doing an extraordinary job for MI5. By hearing the conversations she is intercepting, we glimpse the invasion of privacy that phone tapping involves. Increasingly identifying with this loving, resourceful immigrant family, Yasmin's success in MI5 and her future marriage come at the cost of their happiness.

The drama was recorded on location in a flat and a vehicle parked in the streets of north London, creating the believable,tense interior world of one woman in a crisis, living the life of a spy. More real than TV's Spooks, and more movingly up-to-the-minute than Smiley.

Writer Clare Bayley's plays have won Fringe Firsts and and been produced at the National Theatre.

Yasmin ....... Amber Agar
Jonathan ...... Matt Rawle
Rachid ........ Nitzan Sharron
Samira ....... Sirine Saba
Bob ...... Felix Dexter

Directed by Marilyn Imrie
A Bona Broadcasting production for BBC Radio 4.


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