Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Alan Plater on BBC Four (Thursday 29 July)

As a tribute to the late Alan Plater, BBC Four is showing one of his films and a documentary on Thursday evening. Presumably they'll both turn up on iPlayer as well.

9.20pm The Last of the Blonde Bombshells

The Last of The Blonde Bombshells tells the story of Elizabeth (Dame Judi Dench) who realises upon the death of her husband that the happiest days of her life were when she played tenor saxophone in an all-girls dance band, The Blonde Bombshells, during the Second World War. 

To the horror of her children Elizabeth starts busking in Camden where she is spotted by Patrick (Sir Ian Holm), a dedicated Lothario who played drums in the band to dodge conscription. Encouraged by her granddaughter Joanna, Elizabeth sets out to reunite the band with a reluctant Patrick.

10.40pm Alan Plater: Hearing the Music

Spanning four decades, writer Alan Plater's work has been described as a meeting of Coronation Street and Chekhov. With his spare dialogue and irreverent attitude, Plater helped introduce an entirely new voice to the world of television drama. 

He is perhaps best known for the Beiderbecke Trilogy but has written in all forms and is especially known for his radio, stage and television work and also for his passion for jazz. The principles of jazz are at the very heart of the man and his writing.

In this Time Shift programme, television critic Chris Dunkley, director John Glenister, writers Alan Bleasdale and Lee Hall ('Billy Elliot') and jazz critic Dave Gelly tell us about Alan's individual style, life, work and love of music.

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