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Blanche Marvin

Kirsty Young talks to theatre critic Blanche Marvin.

Kirsty Young's castaway is the critic, actress, and producer Blanche Marvin.

Blanche has been immersed in the theatre for seven decades. She worked with James Mason, Yul Brynner, Deborah Kerr and Peter Ustinov and calmed the nerves of Tennessee Williams. She brought Samuel Beckett to an American audience and persuaded Peter Brook to launch a series of awards to encourage artistic risk-takers.

A doyenne of the West End, she's at nearly every opening night and her reviews are read by producers on Broadway - looking for the next hit that could cross the Atlantic.

She says: "people say, how can you go to the theatre for 50 years and still be enthusiastic? Every time I go, I think, Oh, I'm going to see something, I'm going to be surprised!"

Producer: Isabel Sargent.

Available now

45 minutes

Last on

Fri 16 Nov 2012 09:00

Music Played

Add music you love and enjoy it with My Tracks
  • Ludwig van Beethoven

    Concerto for Violin and Orchestra in D Major, Op. 61 Allegro ma non troppo

    Performer: Moscow Philharmonic Orchestra with David Oistrakh

    • Beethoven Violin Concerto, etc. /Menuhin.
    • BBCL.
  • Castaway's Favourite

    • Heitor Villa‐Lobos

      Bachiana Brasileira No 5 I Aria (Cantilena)

      Performer: French Radio National Orchestra, Heitor Villa-Lobos

      • Villa-Lobos Bachianas brasileiras.
      • HMV Classics.
  • The Fron Male Voice Choir


    • Voices of the Valley.
    • UCJ Music.
  • Stephen Sondheim

    Not while I’m Around

    Performer: Mandy Patinkin, conducted by Eric Stern, Orch. Larry Hochman

    • Mandy Patinkin Kidults.
  • Josh White

    Strange Fruit

    • Southern Blues.
    • Mercury.
  • Richard Wagner

    Wagner: Tristan und Isolde: Dolce e calmo (5 VIII. 1957, Athens)

    Performer: Maria Callas and the Athens Festival Orchestra conducted by Antonino Votto

    • Maria Callas: Live In Concert.
    • EMI.
  • Edward Elgar

    Enigma Variations

    Performer: London Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by sir Charles Mackerras

    • Desert Island discs 1942 - 1992.
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

    Concerto for Piano and Orchestra no. 23 in A major, K. 488 (1. Allegro)

    Performer: Vladimir Horowitz and Orchestra del Teatro alla Scala conducted by Carlo Maria Giulini

    • Horowitz Plays Mozart.
  • Book Choice

    • The Golden Bough - James Frazer

  • Luxury Choice

    • Paper, pens and pencils


Role Contributor
Presenter Kirsty Young
Interviewed Guest Blanche Marvin


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