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Emma Bridgewater

Michael Berkeley's guest is businesswoman Emma Bridgewater. Her music choices include Pergolesi, Purcell, Kurt Weill, Boccherini and a carol by Britten.

Nearly 30 years ago Emma Bridgewater, a young English graduate, went shopping for a cup and saucer for her mother's birthday present. She couldn't find anything she liked - so she designed one herself, and enjoyed the process so much that she installed a kiln in her London flat. That small kiln has grown into a company with an annual turnover of 11 million pounds - and has revitalised the old potteries industry of Stoke-on-Trent. Her teapots and mugs covered in polka dots, hens, dogs and birds have become a staple of the middle class kitchen, symbols of cosiness and comfort.

In Private Passions, Emma Bridgewater talks to Michael Berkeley about our yearning for home - all the more intense as working lives become overwhelmingly demanding. She reveals the tragedy at the heart of her life - her mother's riding accident, which left her gravely brain-damaged but still alive, for 22 years. Under the pressure of that sorrow, Emma Bridgewater describes how work became a marvellous escape. She chooses music to remind her of her mother, and which consoled her after her mother's death last Christmas. She talks too about the adventure of setting up her business in Stoke-on-Trent, bringing derelict factories back to life - but missing her four children as she spent hour upon hour on the road.

Her music choices include Pergolesi, Purcell, Kurt Weill, Boccherini, a carol by Benjamin Britten - and the UK Theme Tune, which used to start the day on Radio 4 as she was getting up early to begin work.

Produced by Elizabeth Burke. A Loftus production, for BBC Radio 3.

1 hour

Last on

Sun 11 Jan 2015 12:00

Clip

Music Played

  • Benjamin Britten

    Balulalow (A Ceremony of Carols)

    Performer: Brian Davis. Choir: Worcester Cathedral Choir.
    • NOEL.
    • Griffin.
    • 5.
  • Benjamin Britten

    Balulalow (A Ceremony of Carols)

    Performer: Brian Davis. Choir: Worcester Cathedral Choir.
    • NOEL.
    • Griffin.
    • 5.
  • Trad

    Shenandoah

    Choir: US Navy Bank Sea Chanters Chorus.
    • The US Navy Band presents the Sea Chanters.
    • Naxos.
    • 3.
  • Trad

    Shenandoah

    Choir: US Navy Bank Sea Chanters Chorus.
    • The US Navy Band presents the Sea Chanters.
    • Naxos.
    • 3.
  • Luigi Boccherini

    La Musica Notturna delle Strade di Madrid No.6 Op.30

    Performer: Timothy Lindauer. Performer: Simon Oswell. Performer: Bruce Dukov. Performer: Richard Tognetti. Performer: Steve Erdody. Music Arranger: Iva Davies.
    • Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World - Music from the Motion Picture.
    • Decca.
    • 14.
  • Luigi Boccherini

    La Musica Notturna delle Strade di Madrid No.6 Op.30

    Performer: Timothy Lindauer. Performer: Simon Oswell. Performer: Bruce Dukov. Performer: Richard Tognetti. Performer: Steve Erdody. Music Arranger: Iva Davies.
    • Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World - Music from the Motion Picture.
    • Decca.
    • 14.
  • Kurt Weill

    Serauber Jenny (Die Dreigroschenoper)

    Orchestra: RIAS Berlin Sinfonietta. Conductor: John Mauceri. Singer: Ute Lemper.
    • Weill: Die Dreigroschenoper.
    • Decca.
    • 6.
  • Kurt Weill

    Serauber Jenny (Die Dreigroschenoper)

    Orchestra: RIAS Berlin Sinfonietta. Conductor: John Mauceri. Singer: Ute Lemper.
    • Weill: Die Dreigroschenoper.
    • Decca.
    • 6.
  • Henry Purcell

    When I am laid in Earth (Dido and Aeneas)

    Singer: Janet Baker. Conductor: Anthony Lewis. Orchestra: English Chamber Orchestra.
    • Purcell: Dido and Aeneas.
    • Decca.
    • 16.
  • Henry Purcell

    When I am laid in Earth (Dido and Aeneas)

    Singer: Janet Baker. Conductor: Anthony Lewis. Orchestra: English Chamber Orchestra.
    • Purcell: Dido and Aeneas.
    • Decca.
    • 16.
  • Alexander Gretchaninov

    The Creed

    Choir: Sofia Orthodox Choir. Conductor: Miroslav Popsavov.
    • Pater Noster: Sofia Priest Choir.
    • GEGA.
    • 12.
  • Alexander Gretchaninov

    The Creed

    Choir: Sofia Orthodox Choir. Conductor: Miroslav Popsavov.
    • Pater Noster: Sofia Priest Choir.
    • GEGA.
    • 12.
  • Giovanni Battista Pergolesi

    Stabat Mater Dolorosa

    Orchestra: Academy of Ancient Music. Singer: Emma Kirkby. Singer: James Bowman.
    • Pergolesi: Stabat Mater and Salve Regina.
    • L'Oiseau-Lyre.
    • 1.
  • Giovanni Battista Pergolesi

    Stabat Mater Dolorosa

    Orchestra: Academy of Ancient Music. Singer: Emma Kirkby. Singer: James Bowman.
    • Pergolesi: Stabat Mater and Salve Regina.
    • L'Oiseau-Lyre.
    • 1.
  • Fritz Spiegl

    Radio 4 UK Theme

    Music Arranger: Manfred Arlan. Orchestra: Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Paul Murphy.
    • Vintage TV and Radio Classics.
    • Naxos.
    • 5.
  • Fritz Spiegl

    Radio 4 UK Theme

    Music Arranger: Manfred Arlan. Orchestra: Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Conductor: Paul Murphy.
    • Vintage TV and Radio Classics.
    • Naxos.
    • 5.

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