|Today Programme Report - Text Only Version|
BBC Radio 4
|Print This Page|
Back to HTML version
|29th May 2004 |
Stratford Outside Broadcast.
It feels like every time we take the programme out on the road, it gets a little bit grander. This time we visited the RSC Swan Theatre in Stratford.
From a modest but welcoming village hall in the Peak District, to a busy lecture theatre at Oxford Brookes University, and now for Whitsun weekend onto the somewhat larger stage of the RSC's Swan Theatre in Stratford.
Putting aside the desire to pepper every cue with Shakespeare quotes, we focused on the issue of women's involvement in politics - the Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell, herself a critic of what she called the 'macho' style of Westminster politics, popped in to tell us that it was fine for grown-up politicians to disagree.
She cited the current row over the nation’s health, saying she disagreed with Peter Hain over whether her department should have been involved in a campaign run by a chocolate manufacturer to provide vouchers for school sports equipment - and that we should all be prepared to accept that sometimes politicians in the same cabinet won't agree over every issue.
The same theme was picked up later in the programme when we were joined by a panel of guests to talk about raising the levels of participation by women in politics. The panel comprised of Spectator political editor Peter Oborne, former IDS aide Vanessa Gearson and Minister Estelle Morris - who resigned as Education Secretary because she was worried she wasn't up to the job.
Outside the theatre on the banks of the Avon we considered the need to survey our bee population. Entomologists want you to see how many you can spot in the garden and of what type. You can link to their site here as Tom Feilden explained while poking a jar of bees with a big stick in an attempt to get them to buzz loudly enough for radio.
Our grateful thanks to the RSC who not only provided us with the theatre and a Green Room full of fried breakfasts for all the team, but also lent us one of the stars of this year's summer season Sian Thomas, who gave us her Lady Macbeth and her thoughts on the potential redevelopment of the main auditorium.
She was joined in discussion by Professor Carole Rutter from Warwick University, an academic who watches and writes about Shakespeare in performance, and Nancy Meckler who is directing one of those Spanish plays here at the Swan - "House of Desires".
But thanks most of all to those of you who turned out to see the programme go out. We'll see more of you in North Wales at the end of June - watch this space for further details.
The BBC is not responsible for external websites