Culture on the Brink
Ian McMillan presents Radio 3's cabaret of the word. As part of Radio 3's Music on the Brink season, the Ruby Dolls perform cabaret typical of that heard in Le chat noir in 1914, Kevin Jackson describes a fantasy meeting between writers of the age, and George Szirtes explores the work of Rainer Maria Rilke.
The Ruby Dolls
The Ruby Dolls create theatre inspired by their love of cabaret, song and storytelling. In this programme they celebrate the work of the German actor, singer and playwright Frank Wedekind. They perform satirical songs typical of the pre-war cabaret scene in Munich.
Verb regular Kevin Jackson is the author of ‘Constellation of Genius’. (Hutchinson). Especially for The Verb, Kevin has written an imaginary Paris Literary Salon, featuring encounters with Anna Akhmatova, Gabriele D'Annunzio, Rainer Maria Rilke and Marcel Proust.
Lucy Hughes-Hallett is a biographer and cultural historian. Her biography of Gabriele D'Annunzio ‘The Pike’ (Fourth Estate), won the Samuel Johnson Prize for non-fiction and the Costa Book Award for biography. Lucy explains how his charm seduced all those he met, and how, despite his abhorrent politics, his language seduces the biographer.
George Szirtes is a poet and translator whose latest collection ‘Bad Machine’ (Bloodaxe) has been nominated for the TS Eliot Prize. George examines the work of Rilke, focusing on a poem written in 1914, ‘The Vast Night’, and discusses why Rilke’s work resonates with readers today. He also shares his late night Twitter adventure ‘Langoustine’ (Miel) – a philosophical conversation between a crabby doctor and a langoustine.