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Clare Balding

Clare Balding shares her life told through books she loves with her readers Hugh Bonneville and Alice Arnold, and songs from the musicals sung by West End star Kerry Ellis.

Clare Balding shares her life told through books she loves with her readers Hugh Bonneville and Alice Arnold, and songs from the musicals Wicked and The Greatest Showman sung by West End star Kerry Ellis. A wonderfully funny piece by Bill Bryson, visionary landscape writing by Robert Macfarlane, a moving extract from War Horse by Michael Morpurgo, poems by Yeats and Emily Dickinson - all wrapped up in a gorgeous reading by Hugh of Village Christmas by Laurie Lee. Clare herself reads the epilogue from Roz Savage's Stop Drifting, Start Rowing, an account of one woman rowing across the Pacific alone. For Clare, it's been particularly influential in terms of decisions she's made in her life. A stirring new version of If performed by Deanna Rodger honours the wider achievements of women in sport. Kerry Ellis also sings In the Bleak Midwinter for Clare, and that bleakness is reflected in a deeply moving piece by Caitlin Moran, acknowledging that Christmas can be a time of loss and remembered happiness as well as a time of joy.
Producer Beth O'Dea

57 minutes

Last on

Christmas Day 2019 22:00

Clare Balding's choices

‘In the Bleak Midwinter’ instrumental played on piano by Craig Adams

The Snow by Emily Dickinson – read by Alice Arnold

Notes from a Small Island by Bill Bryson – read by Hugh Bonneville

Wild Places by Robert Macfarlane – read by Alice Arnold

‘Defying Gravity’ – taken from the musical Wicked - Performed by Kerry Ellis and accompanied on piano by Craig Adams

A Death in the Family by Caitlin Moran from The Times  – read by Alice Arnold - With permission from The Times / News Licensing

When You Are Old by WB Yeats – read by Alice Arnold

War Horse by Michael Morpurgo – read by Hugh Bonneville

Medley from The Greatest Showman – Performed by Kerry Ellis and accompanied on piano by Craig Adams

Archive – ‘If’ adapted and read by Deanna Rodger from the original by Rudyard Kipling

Stop Drifting, Start Rowing by Roz Savage – read by Clare Balding

‘In the Bleak Midwinter’ – performed by Kerry Ellis and accompanied on piano by Craig Adams

Village Christmas by Laurie Lee – read by Hugh Bonneville

‘In the Bleak Midwinter’ instrumental played on piano by Craig Adams

 

Broadcasts

  • Christmas Day 2019 08:00
  • Christmas Day 2019 22:00

Books & Authors Clip Collection

Books & Authors Clip Collection

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