Main content
Sorry, this episode is not currently available

Jennifer Hudson, Dan Stevens, Simon Amstell and Mike + The Mechanics

Chris is joined by Jennifer Hudson, Dan Stevens and Simon Amstell plus Mike + The Mechanics perform live in the studio.

2 hours, 59 minutes

Music Played

Add music you love and enjoy it with My Tracks
  • Pulp

    Disco 2000

    • (CD Single).
    • Island.
    • 6.
  • Emeli Sandé

    Highs & Lows

    • (CD Single).
    • Virgin.
    • 014.
  • Stevie Nicks

    Edge Of Seventeen

    • (Single).
    • WEA.
    • 4.
  • Arctic Monkeys

    I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor

    • Whatever People Say I Am, That's What I'm Not.
    • Domino.
  • David Bowie

    Changes

    • David Bowie - Best Of Bowie.
    • EMI.
  • The Kinks

    You Really Got Me

    • The Singles Collection.
    • Sanctuary.
    • 7.
  • The Kinks

    All Day And All Of The Night

    • The Kinks - The Definitive Collection.
    • Polygram Tv.
    • 23.
  • Marc Almond

    A Kind Of Love

    • (CD Single).
    • BMG.
    • 1.
  • The Walker Brothers

    The Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Anymore

    • The Best Of.
    • Fontana.
    • 3.
  • Paper Lace

    Billy Don't Be A Hero

    • Living In The 70s (Various Artists.
    • BMG.
    • 1.
  • Ed Sheeran

    Galway Girl

    • ÷ Divide.
    • Atlantic.
  • Oasis

    Rock 'N' Roll Star

    • Creation Records.
  • Oasis

    Cigarettes & Alcohol

    • Definitely Maybe.
    • Big Brother Records.
    • 008.
  • Oasis

    Up In The Sky

    • Definitely Maybe.
    • Big Brother Recordings Ltd.
    • 4.
  • The Weeknd

    Can't Feel My Face

    • Beauty Behind The Madness.
    • Republic.
    • 7.
  • Pratt & McClain

    Happy Days

    • Television's Greatest Hits Volume 3 70s & 80s.
    • Silva Screen Records Ltd.
  • Jennifer Hudson

    Remember Me

    • (CD Single).
    • Epic.
  • Whitney Houston

    I Will Always Love You

    • The Bodyguard (Original S/Track).
    • Arista.
  • Texas

    Let's Work It Out

    • (CD Single).
    • BMG Rights Management (UK).
  • Katy Perry

    Chained To The Rhythm (feat. Skip Marley)

    • (CD Single).
    • Capitol Records.

Pause For Thought

Pause For Thought

From writer Abdul-Rehman Malik:

Chris, I have to admit that we have a bit of an obsessive streak in our family. My parents were very passionate about their likes and dislikes and they passed the same trait on to my siblings and I.

It didn’t matter what it was – a certain brand of tea (or even a household cleaner) – we’d not just get into it we’d downright advocate for it. That fanatical devotion particularly extended to film. Everyone had their favourite film, but I won’t lie – for a few years there the only movies we seemed to watch were animated classics. At the top of the list was “Beauty and the Beast”.

It played on our hardworking VCR in what felt like an endless loop. I want to blame this on my baby brother, but whom am I kidding: I loved it! I’m sure I wouldn’t make Jennifer’s cut on the Voice, but I’d invariably croon along to the songs. I knew all the words. My adolescent self loved the story’s essential lessons: don’t let appearances fool you; beauty without good character is only skin deep; and (the one I like the most) even an ugly beast can be loved. Though I think we can all agree that Dan looks dashing whether he’s in beast costume or not.

Looking back on the fable decades later, I am struck by something a bit more disturbing. The real beasts of the story are really the angry mob that set out to kill the so-called creature. They are outraged by Belle’s love for him and how she confronts her own fears. To this day it’s their intolerance and small mindedness that drives the fairy tale’s real conflict.

“The servants of the Merciful,” the Qur’an reminds us, “are those who walk humbly on the earth, and who, when the foolish and ignorant address them, reply, 'Peace'.”

I think we all have the capacity to be beasts – to be consumed by prejudice and blind rage. And we are made beautiful by our capacity for compassion, understanding and love. It’s the reason why such stories last lifetimes. They’ve got plenty to teach.

And to those who just can’t wait and are going to see the film this weekend: if you hear someone in the back singing along to the musical numbers with a bit too much gusto, well… I’ll just apologize in advance.

 

Broadcast

Get your tickets for CarFest 2019

Tickets for the fabulous weekend of music, cars and family fun are on sale now.

500 Words 2018

Catch up on highlights from BBC Radio 2's story-writing competition for kids.