Gabriel's Oboe (from The Mission)
Composer: Ennio Morricone
Sue Lawley's castaway this week is the high wire walker Philippe Petit. Since the age of 17 Petit had been, in his own words, a 'wandering troubadour', making a living by doing magic in the salons of Paris. Notre Dame became the site of Petit's first illegal wirewalk, on 6th June 1971. On 7th August 1974 Philippe Petit committed 'the artistic crime of the century' when he put a rope between the towers of the World Trade Centre in New York and spent nearly an hour walking back and forth across it, pausing to kneel and lie down on the wire. He brought much of Manhattan, a quarter of a mile below him, to a standstill, and succeeded in pushing Richard Nixon's resignation off the front pages of the newspapers the following day.
Since walking between the twin towers Petit has done wire-walks all over the world including Tokyo and Jerusalem. He has, uniquely, devised plays to be performed on the high wire and has also become artist in residence at the cathedral of St John the Divine in New York, the largest Gothic cathedral in the world.
[Taken from the original programme material for this archive edition of Desert Island Discs]
Trois Gymnopédies - No. 1
Performer: Evelyne Crochet
B'Amud Onon, Psalm 99 v. 7-9
Performer: Boas Bischofswerder
Palabras para Julia
Performer: Jose Agustin Goytisolo
Search the whole archive by typing into the box below. To find out who has picked particular music, books or luxuries on the programme use the buttons to refine your search.
This site contains archive material. To comment or bring something to our attention, please get in touch.
This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.