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Edna O'Brien

Edna O'Brien

Broadcast

First broadcast: Sun 14 Jan 2007

Novelist

Kirsty Young's castaway this week is the writer Edna O'Brien. Described as a 'poet of heartbreak' her lyrical storytelling captures the fragility and pain of the human condition, reflecting the drama of her own life as much as the imagined journeys of her characters. She was born and raised in a small village in County Clare, where the only books in the house were prayer books which sat alongside her father's bloodstock magazines. Her mother thought writing was in essence sinful and tried fiercely to stop her becoming an author.

She was living in England when she published her first novel, The Country Girls, in 1960. It was a huge hit and was critically well received - but in Ireland she was decried and her book was burnt in the streets. Although she's lived in London for most of her adult life, she continues to draw on her Irish background for inspiration - she says: "it's in my roots, and when I dream at night it's the place I go".

[Taken from the original programme material for this archive edition of Desert Island Discs]

Choices

The monks of the Benedictine Monastry of Santo Domingo de Silos

1.

The monks of the Benedictine Monastry of Santo Domingo de Silos

Mandatum Novum do Vobis

Giacomo Puccini

2.

Giacomo Puccini

Donda lieta usci (Mimi's farewell) (from La Bohème)

Soloist: Maria Callas

Others who chose this artist

Johann Sebastian Bach

3.

Johann Sebastian Bach

Goldberg Variations - Variations Nos. 1 & 2

Soloist: Glenn Gould

Others who chose this artist

The Chieftains & Sinéad O'Connor

4.

Castaway's favourite

The Chieftains & Sinéad O'Connor

The Foggy, Foggy Dew

Others who chose this artist

Michael Olatunji

6.

Michael Olatunji

Drums of Passion

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

7.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Requiem in D minor - Lacrymosa

Orchestra: Munich Philharmonic Choir: Chor des Bayerischen Rundfunks Conductor: Christian Thielemann

Others who chose this artist

Édith Piaf

8.

Édith Piaf

Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien

Others who chose this artist

Book

Ulysses by James Joyce

Others who chose this author

Luxury item

Vault of a very good white wine

Others who chose a similar luxury

Broadcast

First broadcast: Sun 23 Aug 1987

Novelist

The castaway this week is the Irish writer Edna O'Brien, whose first novel, The Country Girls, was published in 1960 to great acclaim. She's also become well-known for her appearances on radio and television. In conversation with Michael Parkinson, she looks back on her career and, in her choice of music, reveals a wide taste ranging from Elvis Presley to Carl Orff.

[Taken from the original programme material for this archive edition of Desert Island Discs]

Choices

The Johnstons

1.

The Johnstons

The Lands On The Green Hill

Others who chose this artist

Giuseppe Verdi

2.

Giuseppe Verdi

Va, pensiero, sull'ali dorate (Chorus of the Hebrew Slaves) (from Nabucco)

Soloist: Nicolai Ghiaurov

Others who chose this artist

Olantunji

3.

Olantunji

Drums Of Passion

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

4.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Requiem in D minor - Sanctus

Orchestra: Paris Orchestra

Others who chose this artist

Vincenzo Bellini

5.

Vincenzo Bellini

Ah! non credea mirarti (from La Sonnambula)

Soloist: Maria Callas

Others who chose this artist

Elvis Presley

6.

Elvis Presley

Are You Lonesome Tonight?

Others who chose this artist

Carl Orff

7.

Carl Orff

Dulcissime (from Carmina Burana)

Soloist: Carmina Burana

Others who chose this artist

Johann Pachelbel

8.

Castaway's favourite

Johann Pachelbel

Canon in D major

Soloist: Jean Francois Paillard

Others who chose this artist

Book

Complete Encyclopaedia Britannica by

Others who chose this author

Luxury item

Cristal champagne

Others who chose a similar luxury

Occupations

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