Sarah Hall, Deborah Levy, John Harle, Josep Lluis Aguilo, Manuel Forcano
This week The Verb looks at the short story, the saxophone, and Catalan poetry, with Ian's guests Sarah Hall, Deborah Levy, John Harle, Steve Lodder, Josep Lluis Aguilo and Manuel Forcano.
Sarah Hall has won many awards for her writing, most recently the National BBC Short Story Awards for her story ‘Mrs. Fox’. Sarah reads from her work in progress, a novel imagining the reintroduction of grey wolves to Cumbria, and discusses the unsettling stories from her first short story collection, ‘The Beautiful Indifference’ (Faber), and the satisfaction of executing a good short story.
Discussing the art of the short story with Sarah Hall is Deborah Levy. Deborah writes plays, poetry and fiction. Her novel ‘Swimming Home’ (& other Stories) was shortlisted for the Man Booker prize 2012. Her latest short story collection is ‘Black Vodka’ (& Other Stories), which she describes as a ‘road movie through Europe’. Deborah has written a response to George Orwell’s ‘Why I Write’. Her essay is called ‘Things I don’t Want to Know’, and especially for the Verb, Deborah has taken the title of her essay and written us a short story.
Joseph Lluis Aguilo and Manuel Forcano
Josep Lluis Aguilo and Manuel Forcano are poets from Catalonia. They appear in a new collection, ‘Six Catalan Poets’ (Arc). They respond to hearing their poems in translation, tell us how Catalan is the language they use to express themselves and how poems are both a museum to conserve memories and the best way to tell a story.
John Harle and Steve Lodder
John Harle is a saxophonist, composer and conductor. John is currently writing a book about the saxophone, and he demonstrates for us the ways in which it can mimic the human voice, playing a recording of Alfred Deller’s ‘Flow My Tears’, and recreating it with the saxophone. John performs with the pianist Steve Lodder. John’s latest album is ‘Art Music’ (Sospiro), a soundtrack to his favourite paintings which takes lyrical inspiration from the poetry of William Blake. We hear ‘Angel Eyes’, featuring vocals from Marc Almond.