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Damon Albarn on going solo; Maxine Peake; Jonathan Yeo; Suranne Jones; Kiran Leonard

John Wilson presents live from the BBC6Music Festival in Manchester, talking to Damon Albarn about going solo, Maxine Peake about Silk and Hamlet, and Suranne Jones about Orlando.

Presented by John Wilson

Since Damon Albarn's introduction to the public as the lead singer of Blur, he's become famous for his collaborations with a wide range of partners including artist Jamie Hewlett, the next Artistic Director of the National Theatre Rufus Norris, and Soul legend Bobby Womack. As he prepares to play songs from his forthcoming debut solo album, for a special 6Music festival gig, Damon talks to John about going it alone.

Maxine Peake is one of the subjects in a new exhibition at the Lowry dedicated to portrait painter Jonathon Yeo. Maxine and Jonathan describe the experience of creating a portrait from their different perspectives. And when she's not being captured in oils, Maxine is the star of the BBC legal drama Silk where she plays the role of barrister Martha Costello QC. The new series of Silk starts this week and Maxine discusses how Martha's character has developed.

Suranne Jones plays one half of television police duo Scott and Bailey. The series, described as the "Cagney and Lacey of Manchester", arose out of Suranne's desire to find better parts for women. She's now playing one of Virginia Woolf's most distinctive creations, Orlando, in a new production at the Royal Exchange Theatre. Suranne discusses with John what this play, about a character who lives as a man and a woman, can contribute to our contemporary view of the gender divide.

The musician Kiran Leonard will be performing on the main stage of the 6Music festival on Saturday 1 March. He released his debut album last year at the age of 17 and he's a multi-instrumentalist who lists Mothers of Invention, Sufjan Stevens, Albert Ayler, Krzysztof Penderecki, and the Beach Boys, as just a handful of his influences. He'll be playing live on Front Row.

Producer: Ekene Akalawu.

Available now

30 minutes

Music and featured items

  • Damon Albarn

    Damon talks to John about going solo and his new album

    Duration: 05:03

  • Damon Albarn

    Everyday Robots

  • Maxine Peake

    Maxine Peake discusses how her character Martha has developed in the TV drama Silk

    Duration: 05:08

  • Jonathan Yeo

    Jonathan Yeo discusses his portraits along with his most recent of Maxine Peake

    Duration: 07:05

  • Suranne Jones

    Suranne discusses what her latest role can contribute to our view of the gender divide

    Duration: 07:24

  • Kiran Leonard

    Kiran Leonard talks to John about his music and performs his track; Dear Lincoln

    Duration: 02:33

  • Kiran Leonard

    Dear Lincoln

Maxine Peake

Maxine Peake

Silk starring Maxine Peake as Martha Costello QC continues on Monday 3 March 2014 at 21:00 on BBC One.


Image: Maxine Peake by Jonathan Yeo

Jonathan Yeo

Jonathan Yeo - Portraits is on at The Lowry, Salford from Saturday 15 March until Sunday 27 July 2014.

Damon Albarn

Damon Albarn

Damon Albarn's new solo album Everyday Robots is released on Monday 28 April 2014.


Image: John Wilson & Damon Albarn at BBC MediaCityUK, Salford Quays.

Suranne Jones

Suranne Jones

Suranne Jones performs as the title role in Orlando on at The Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester until Saturday 22 March 2014.


Photo Credit: Jonathan Keenan


Role Contributor
Presenter John Wilson
Interviewed Guest Damon Albarn
Interviewed Guest Maxine Peake
Interviewed Guest Suranne Jones
Performer Kiran Leonard
Producer Ekene Akalawu


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