Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Alan Ayckbourn: Radio Producer

A rarely heard side of Alan Ayckbourn's long career is currently playing on the BBC iPlayer.
Between 1965 and 1970, Alan was employed as a Radio Drama Producer for the BBC and was based in Leeds working with the renowned producer Alfred Bradley, who was a great champion of northern writing.
Despite this period having a significant impact on his future career and influencing him as director and writer, it is not a well-documented area of his career and very little information is known about it.
During these six years, Alan directed dozens of radio plays and one of them, Roy Clarke's The Events At Black Tor, can currently be heard on the BBC iPlayer.
The six half-hour episodes tells a gothic horror story set on the North Yorkshire Moors in the vein of the classic film The Wicker Man. The first episode can be found here with all episodes here. They will be on BBC iPlayer for approximately three more weeks.
If you would like to learn more about Alan Ayckbourn's career at the BBC, further details can be found at his official website by clicking here. It is a fascinating area of his career as it is not widely known, Alan had relatively little contact with the theatre during much of this period - between 1965 and 1970, he wrote just four plays.
Very little is documented of Alan's time as a radio producer and there have been very few repeats of any of the productions he directed. This makes The Events At Black Tor a fascinating insight into such a little-known part of his professional life.

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