Alexei Sayle on his return to stand-up; Vanessa-Mae; 500 word plays

Listen in pop-out player

With Kirsty Lang.

Alexei Sayle, often described as the godfather of alternative comedy, is returning to solo stand-up shows after a break of more than 16 years. Sayle, who was known throughout the 1980s for his politically charged rants, reflects on the reasons for his stage come-back, and gives his views on the current generation of comedians.

Anna Maxwell Martin, Tamzin Outhwaite and Gina McKee star in Di And Viv And Rose, a play written by Amelia Bullmore, well-known to TV audiences for her own roles in Twenty Twelve and Scott and Bailey. The play examines the relationship between three women, from a university house-share in 1983 to the traumas of middle age. Novelist Naomi Alderman reviews.

Violinist Vanessa-Mae is taking a year's sabbatical from performing, in order to try to qualify as a skier in the Thai Winter Olympics team. She explains her motives and talks about why she's prepared to risk - through possible injury - her musical career.

The Traverse Theatre in Edinburgh celebrates its 50th birthday this year. It's marking the occasion with a competition for new playwrights, to write a play in just 500 words. The theatre is now staging the 50 winning entries. Two of the writers discuss the challenge of writing such a short drama and playwright Zinne Harris, one of the judges, considers how to make an impact with a script only one page long.

Producer Rebecca Nicholson.

Available now

30 minutes

Last on

Thu 24 Jan 2013 19:15

Front Row's Cultural Exchange

Cultural Exchange

Seventy-five leading creative minds choose a favourite cultural work.

BBC Arts - Get Creative


The best of British culture live and on-demand.

Related Links

Added. Check out your playlist Dismiss