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Rupert Everett, Nick Mason, Trudie Styler and Manic Street Preachers

Rupert Everett on playing Oscar Wilde, Nick Mason on his classic box set and director Trudie Styler tells us about her latest movie. Plus Manic Street Preachers perform live.

Chris chats to actor Rupert Everett about playing Oscar Wilde in his new film The Happy Prince. Pink Floyd's drummer and founder Nick Mason tells Chris about reissuing his three solo albums in a new box set: Unattended Luggage and his autumn UK tour. Trudie Styler gives us the behind the scenes scoop on directing her new movie Freak Show. Plus Welsh rockers Manic Street Preachers perform live in the studio.

2 hours, 59 minutes

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Pause For Thought

Pause For Thought

From Jim Harris, Art Historian:


Let’s start with the gross bit.  A little while ago I developed an unpleasant ear infection, my ears filled with wax and for the next three weeks I was unable to hear very much at all.
Now, to be honest, there are times when not being able to hear is a relief.  When a meeting is full of people talking across each other or when there’s an argument over who eats the last piece of pizza.

But this wasn't like that. Suddenly, I found myself isolated, excluded, unable to contribute.  Suddenly I wanted to hear everything and, instead of relief, I found myself trying to listen as hard as I could.  

And it forced me to think about listening as a conscious, deliberate choice, the act of paying attention to other people.

You all know how important that is.
It could be said that the best actor, Rupert, is the one who listens to the cast around them and reacts, adjusting their performance in response to others.

The best director, Trudie, listens to the voices of the cinematographer, the writer and the actors and weaves their contributions into a coherent, beautiful whole.
The best bands, Nick, Gentlemen of the Manics, listen to each other to make music where every note, every instrument, every voice adds to the shared complexity of harmony, counterpoint and rhythm.

Without listening, none of those things are possible.
Jesus was once asked why he told so many stories.  And he answered that he did it because the people he talked to ‘heard but did not listen’.  Stories got their attention.
It’s easy to hear and not to listen, to zone out when confronted by an uncomfortable truth. And that’s exactly why this is such an exciting room to be in today, because these voices, your voices, are the ones that tell us stories, in film, in theatre, in song.

Stories are amazing things, and the best stories are powerful not because they pound us with moral lessons and tell us what to do - but precisely because they don’t. But they do make us listen.  And when we listen carefully, we can join in, contribute, make a difference. And then we can start to think, and act, for ourselves.
And thankfully, to paraphrase Johnny Nash: I can hear clearly now, the wax has gone…


Farewell Chris Evans: The best bits from his last shows at Radio 2

Farewell Chris Evans: The best bits from his last shows at Radio 2

After eight years of hosting the Breakfast Show, Chris Evans leaves Radio 2.

500 Words

500 Words

BBC Radio 2's story-writing competition for kids.