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Episode 3: Family

Love goes very badly wrong. Dramatised by Dan Rebellato, based on Zola’s 20 novel Rougon Macquart cycle. With Glenda Jackson, Anna Maxwell Martin and Samuel West.

Starring Glenda Jackson, Anna Maxwell Martin and Samuel West, and inspired by the epic saga of the Rougon Macquart families by literature’s greatest ever whistle-blower, Emile Zola

Adelaide Fouque (Dide) is 104 years old, trapped in her small room in the local asylum, but omniscient as she broods over her extended family.

As a young woman, she gave birth to two dynasties that exemplified French society: one legitimate - rich, powerful, obsessive and corrupt; the other - illegitimate, poor, vulnerable, weak and depraved. France is on the brink of a new Empire. Her family is a turbulent mix of the good, the bad and the misguided.

This third episode, Family, takes place over one evening, in the luxurious mansion belonging to Aristide Rougon. Inviting his politically influential brother Eugene round to help clinch the engagement of his feckless son Maxime to a rich young heiress seems a simple enough matter. All his exquisite trophy wife Renee needs to do is look pretty and entertain. So very simple - yet by the end of the evening this rich, seemingly united family has completely unravelled, exposing the rotten core at its heart.

Dan Rebellato is a Sony nominated writer and Professor of Theatre at Royal Holloway.

Dide..............Glenda Jackson
Aristide..........Samuel West
Renee............Anna Maxwell Martin
Eugene...........Robert Jack
Maxime...........John Heffernan

Dramatised by Dan Rebellato
Sound Designer: Eloise Whitmore

Produced and Directed by Polly Thomas
Executive Producer: Melanie Harris
Series Producer: Susan Roberts

A Sparklab production for BBC Radio 4

44 minutes


Role Contributor
Dide Glenda Jackson
Aristide Samuel West
Renee Anna Maxwell Martin
Eugene Robert Jack
Maxime John Heffernan
Adaptor Dan Rebellato
Sound Designer Eloise Whitmore
Director Polly Thomas
Producer Polly Thomas
Executive Producer Melanie Harris
Series Producer Susan Roberts
Author Emile Zola


  • Mon 9 May 2016 14:15
  • Mon 21 Sep 2020 14:00

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