Neneh Cherry, David Constantine, April de Angelis
Ian McMillan presents Radio 3's cabaret of the word. With singer Neneh Cherry, David Constantine on Brecht's love poems and April de Angelis on erotic language on the stage.
Ian's guests on the 'cabaret of the word' include Neneh Cherry, David Constantine and April de Angelis.
The singer-songwriter Neneh Cherry rose to fame with her debut solo album 'Raw Like Sushi', which featured the number 1 single 'Buffalo Stance'. Cherry's latest album is 'Blank Project', and she discusses her songwriting process.
After the death of Bertolt Brecht, 2,000 poems were discovered, which are now being translated into English for the first time. David Constantine has edited a selection of 78 poems in 'Bertolt Brecht: Love Poems' (Liveright), and discusses what we can learn about Brecht from these personal poems.
The dramatist April de Angelis has adapted 'The Life and Times of Fanny Hill' for the stage. She tells us about working with erotic language on the stage.
This programme contains Adult Themes.
Produced by Faith Lawrence.
April de Angelis
The dramatist April de Angelis first adapted John Cleland’s 1748 erotic novel ‘Fanny Hill’ for the stage in 1991. Now, ‘The Life and Times of Fanny Hill’ is being revived at the Bristol Old Vic. For The Verb, April has written her ’10 dos and don’ts’ – her advice for those adapting erotic texts for the stage. April explains why she made Fanny into a writer, and discusses the variety of sexual euphemisms which Cleland uses. April De Angelis is currently writer in residence at the National Theatre.
Neneh Cherry’s ‘Blank Project’ is her first solo album in 16 years. She tells Ian about the importance of the title, and why she enjoys the sense that the music and the lyrics are pulling away from each other on this album. She also explains how her writing process has been changed by working on a computer. Neneh Cherry will be performing at the 6Music festival in Newcastle on 22nd February.
The Verb’s ‘punctuation czar’ Will Abberley returns to examine the ellipsis. First used in medieval manuscripts, the possibilities for the ellipsis were opened up by 20th Century writers such as Dorothy Richardson and Virginia Woolf were attracted to the way it can destabilise a sentence, and make the reader work harder. For Will part of the attraction of the ellipsis is that it can help portray the reality of our disordered thought processes. Will Abberley is one of Radio 3’s New Generation Thinkers
Bertolt Brecht wrote roughly 2,000 poems over his lifetime, and these are now being translated into English for the first time by Brecht scholar Tom Kuhn and the poet David Constantine. ‘Love Poems’ (Norton) is the first volume to be translated. A collection of poems both tender and brutal, David explains how many of the poems were informed by his love affair with actress and writer Margarete Steffin. David Constantine is the author of the short story collection ‘Tea at the Midland’, which won the Frank O’Connor Prize in 2013 and his latest poetry collection, ‘Elder’, is published by Bloodaxe.