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Front Row

Vince Gilligan, What Maisie Knew, Nadifa Mohamed

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
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Mark Lawson interviews Vince Gilligan, creator of the TV drama series Breaking Bad.

Vince Gilligan on his hit TV series Breaking Bad, author Nadifa Mohamed on her novel The Orchard of Lost Souls, What Maisie Knew reviewed, and how actors cope without understudies.

With Mark Lawson.

Mark meets Vince Gilligan, the creator of hit American TV series Breaking Bad, about a chemistry teacher who becomes a drugs overload after being diagnosed with cancer.

Meg Rosoff reviews the film What Maisie Knew. Based on the 1897 novel by Henry James, the film is set in modern day New York and stars Julianne Moore and Steve Coogan as parents going through an acrimonious custody battle, in which their young daughter Maisie has become a pawn.

Nadifa Mohamed, the award winning author of Black Mamba Boy, discusses her second novel The Orchard of Lost Souls. Set in her birthplace of Somalia, the novel tells the stories of two women and a young girl who are living through the destruction of the 1988 civil war. Mohamed talks about the difficulties of writing the book, her relationship with Somalia and the experience of moving to London.

A London theatre has had to cancel some performances of one of its productions as a cast member is indisposed and there are no understudies. Actor Michael Simkins discusses the balancing act between cancelling a performance, carrying on with the show despite illness or injury and calling in an understudy at the last minute.

Producer: Olivia Skinner.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
Vince Gilligan
Interviewed Guest
Nadifa Mohamed
Interviewed Guest
Michael Simkins
Producer
Olivia Skinner
Editor
John Goudie

Brand

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Fran Healey from Travis; Simon Bird and Jonny Sweet on Chickens; Identity theft in crime fiction

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
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Mark Lawson meets Travis's Fran Healy and Simon Bird and Jonny Sweet of TV comedy Chickens

Fran Healy of Travis, back with a new album after a six-year gap; Simon Bird and Jonny Sweet on their TV comedy Chickens; crime writers discuss how to make characters disappear.

With Mark Lawson.

Fran Healy, lead singer of the band Travis, discusses their first new album for six years, and reflects on a career which includes the hits Why Does it Always Rain on Me, Driftwood and Sing.

At the recent Harrogate Crime Writing Festival, Mark talked to three writers about how new technology makes it more difficult for characters to disappear without trace, or to hide or change their identities. With Lottie Moggach, Colette McBeth and Michael Robotham.

Simon Bird, one of the stars of The Inbetweeners, and Jonny Sweet discuss their TV comedy series Chickens, which they co-wrote with Joe Thomas. It focuses on three young men who have avoided active service in the First World War.

Producer Timothy Prosser.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
Fran Healy
Interviewed Guest
Simon Bird
Interviewed Guest
Jonny Sweet
Interviewed Guest
Lottie Moggach
Interviewed Guest
Colette McBeth
Interviewed Guest
Michael Robotham
Producer
Timothy Prosser
Editor
John Goudie

Brand

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Harrogate Crime Writing Festival

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
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With Mark Lawson, who reports from the 2013 Harrogate Crime Writing Festival.

Mark Lawson reports from the Harrogate Crime Writing Festival, with Kate Atkinson on Jackson Brodie, Ruth Rendell and Jeanette Winterson on their relationship, and Val McDermid.

With Mark Lawson, who reports from this year's Harrogate Crime Writing Festival.

Ruth Rendell and Jeanette Winterson discuss their friendship, which began when Winterson was a house-sitter for Rendell in 1986. The writers also discuss crime plots, exercise regimes and mammoth book signing sessions.

Kate Atkinson turned to crime-writing with Case Histories, which has become a TV series with Jason Isaacs playing private investigator Jackson Brodie. Atkinson reveals her reluctance to call herself a crime-writer and why she often comes up with titles before stories.

For the second year running Denise Mina received the Novel of the Year award. But there were times when she feared her winning book wouldn't be published. Mina discusses rewriting her book in a weekend.

Val McDermid, Erin Kelly, David Mark, Steve Mosby and Nicci French - husband and wife duo Nicci Gerrard and Sean French - discuss debut writers and JK Rowling's The Cuckoo's Calling, writers' block and tweeting, pure evil and taking inspiration from real life events.

In front of an audience, Stuart MacBride, Catriona McPherson, Manda Scott and Cathi Unsworth reflect on how crime novels of the future could change, in the light of new technology and online developments.

Producer Claire Bartleet.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
Ruth Rendell
Interviewed Guest
Jeanette Winterson
Interviewed Guest
Kate Atkinson
Interviewed Guest
Denise Mina
Interviewed Guest
Val McDermid
Interviewed Guest
Erin Kelly
Interviewed Guest
David Mark
Interviewed Guest
Steve Mosby
Interviewed Guest
Nicci Gerrard
Interviewed Guest
Sean French
Interviewed Guest
Stuart MacBride
Interviewed Guest
Catriona McPherson
Interviewed Guest
Manda Scott
Interviewed Guest
Cathi Unsworth
Producer
Claire Bartleet

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One Direction film; John Byrne; director Nic Roeg; the comedy 'straight man'

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
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One Direction film, John Byrne's new mural in Edinburgh, and film director Nic Roeg.

Morgan Spurlock's One Direction film reviewed; playwright and artist John Byrne; Nic Roeg the director of Walkabout and Don't Look Now; Steve Punt on the 'straight man' in comedy.

With Mark Lawson.

Super Size Me director Morgan Spurlock's latest film is a 3D documentary about the boy band One Direction. The film promises a behind-the-scenes look at the famous five-piece who were brought together on The X Factor in 2010. Rosie Swash gives her verdict.

Scottish playwright and artist John Byrne has added his distinctive visual style to the King's Theatre in Edinburgh, where he has created a new mural for the auditorium's dome. He explains how the commission emerged from a visit to the theatre to watch a production of The Ladykillers.

Nic Roeg, the acclaimed director of classic films such as Walkabout and Don't Look Now, discusses his career, sex scenes and much more besides, in the light of his newly-published memoir.

With the announcement of the death of comedian Mike Winters, half of a double-act with his brother Bernie, comedy performer and writer Steve Punt considers the role of the 'straight man' in comedy.

Producer Kate Bullivant.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
John Byrne
Interviewed Guest
Nicolas Roeg
Interviewed Guest
Steve Punt
Producer
Kate Bullivant

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Conductor Marin Alsop, Philip French, Jean Seberg, returning TV series

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
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Mark Lawson interviews Marin Alsop, the first woman to conduct the Last Night of the Proms

Marin Alsop, the first woman to conduct the Last Night of the Proms, film critic Philip French on retiring after 50 years, the life of actress Jean Seberg, and returning TV series.

With Mark Lawson.

American conductor Marin Alsop discusses becoming the first woman to conduct the Last Night of the Proms. She also reflects on toying with the idea of conducting with one hand after injuring her wrist, and falling in love with Leonard Bernstein at the age of nine.

As Philip French puts away his pen after being The Observer's film critic for 50 years, coinciding with his 80th birthday today, he discusses the 2,500 films he has watched and the changes he has seen in cinema in that time.

As Bonjour Tristesse is re-released in cinemas, the tragic life of actress Jean Seberg is re-assessed by her biographer Garry McGee. The star of A Bout De Souffle and Saint Joan was a political activist and supporter of the Black Panther movement and became the subject of an investigation by the FBI. She committed suicide in 1979, after her film career had faded away amid bad press and conspiracy theories.

American drama series The Newsroom, created by Aaron Sorkin (The West Wing, The Social Network), returns to our TV screens this week for a second series, and Bad Education, a comedy written by and starring Jack Whitehall, also begins its second run. TV critic Chris Dunkley considers different ways to approach the potentially tricky second series.

Producer Jerome Weatherald.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
Marin Alsop
Interviewed Guest
Philip French
Producer
Jerome Weatherald

Brand

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About Time reviewed; UB40 interview; school documentaries

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
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Richard Curtis' About Time reviewed; reggae group UB40; documentaries set in schools.

Richard Curtis' new film About Time reviewed; British reggae group UB40 on their new album; Estelle Morris and Toby Young discuss two documentary series set in schools.

With Mark Lawson.

About Time, a new film written and directed by Richard Curtis, is the story a 21 year old, played by Domhnall Gleeson, who is told by his father (Bill Nighy) that he has the ability to travel back in time and change events. He uses this ability to woo future girlfriend Mary, played by Rachel McAdams. Camilla Long reviews.

British reggae group UB40 are back with Getting Over the Storm, their 20th studio album, which includes new versions of country and western songs, including covers of tracks made famous by Jim Reeves and Willie Nelson. Saxophonist Brian Travers and drummer Jimmy Brown, original members of the band, discuss the inspiration behind the album, and reflect on recent financial troubles.

Two new TV documentary series starting this week go behind the scenes at two very different schools. Sky 1's Harrow: A Very British School charts life at one of the UK's most famous boarding schools, while Channel 4's Educating Yorkshire follows staff and pupils at Thornhill Community Academy in Dewsbury. Former Education Secretary Baroness Estelle Morris and free school founder Toby Young review.

As actor Dominic West makes a cameo appearance on the new album by British rappers Rizzle Kicks, David Quantick examines the tradition of using actors' voices on records, including songs featuring Stephen Fry, Brian Blessed and Sadie Frost.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
Brian Travers
Interviewed Guest
Jimmy Brown
Interviewed Guest
Estelle Morris
Interviewed Guest
Toby Young
Interviewed Guest
David Quantick
Producer
Olivia Skinner

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Stephen Fry; Liz Lochhead on The Great Tapestry of Scotland; The Great Beauty

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
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Stephen Fry on Verdi and Wagner; The Great Beauty - acclaimed at Cannes - reviewed.

With Mark Lawson. Stephen Fry on Verdi and Wagner, and the political situation in Russia; Liz Lochhead discusses the Great Tapestry of Scotland; and film The Great Beauty reviewed.

With Mark Lawson

The Italian film The Great Beauty was acclaimed at this year's Cannes Film Festival, and now arrives in British cinemas. Set in contemporary Rome, it's the story of an ageing writer looking back with bitterness on his passionate youth. Sarah Crompton reviews.

Stephen Fry is curating the Deloitte Ignite Festival at the Royal Opera House, London. Events focus on Verdi and Wagner, to mark the bicentenaries of their births. Stephen Fry discusses his ideas for the Festival, which include taking QI panellist Alan Davies to his first opera for a scientific experiment. He also talks about the political situation in Russia, and not wanting to make a career out of his personal life.

The Great Tapestry of Scotland, thought to be the longest in the world, is being unveiled today in Edinburgh. It is more than 140 metres long and depicts the history of Scotland from pre-history to the present. The work was conceived by author Alexander McCall Smith, and the panels were designed by artist Andrew Crummy, with input from the historian Alistair Moffat. More than 1000 stitchers from every corner of Scotland have been working on the project for a year. Poet and dramatist Liz Lochhead discusses one of Scotland's biggest community arts projects.

Producer Claire Bartleet.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
Sarah Crompton
Interviewed Guest
Stephen Fry
Interviewed Guest
Liz Lochhead
Producer
Claire Bartleet

Brand

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Actress Tamsin Greig; novelist Jonathan Coe; Martin Bailey on Van Gogh's Sunflowers

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
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Actress Tamsin Greig; novelist Jonathan Coe; Martin Bailey on his Van Gogh discoveries.

Tamsin Greig reflects on comedy and tragedy; Jonathan Coe on his latest novel, Expo 58; Martin Bailey on his Van Gogh discoveries; and who has released the most albums?

With Mark Lawson.

Tamsin Greig, familiar to Radio 4 listeners as Debbie Aldridge in The Archers, is also well known from TV comedies such as Black Books and Green Wing, along with numerous acclaimed stage roles. This week she stars in the TV drama series The Guilty, as a mother who is also leading a police investigation into the death of a young boy. She reflects on the relationship between comedy and tragedy, corpsing on stage and the importance of pauses.

Jonathan Coe, best known for What a Carve Up! and The Rotters Club, discusses his new novel Expo 58. It's set at the 1958 World Fair in Belgium, where a naïve young civil servant is sent to run the British pavilion against a backdrop of the Cold War. Jonathan Coe discusses spies and intrigue in his latest comic novel.

A rare photograph of one of Vincent Van Gogh's sunflower paintings has been tracked down by writer Martin Bailey. The original painting, Six Sunflowers, was destroyed in Japan, during bombings in 1945. Martin Bailey explains how he found the image, and how he believes it enhances our understanding of Van Gogh's work.

As Cliff Richard prepares to release his 100th album, The Fabulous Rock 'n' Roll Songbook, David Hepworth attempts to chart which band or artist has recorded the most albums.

Producer Nicki Paxman.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
Tamsin Greig
Interviewed Guest
Jonathan Coe
Interviewed Guest
Martin Bailey
Interviewed Guest
David Hepworth
Producer
Nicki Paxman

Brand

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Rush; Ian Hislop and Nick Newman; Thomas Pynchon's new novel

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
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Mark Lawson reviews Rush, a film about the rivalry between Niki Lauda and James Hunt.

Rush, the film about Formula 1 rivalry in the 1970s; Ian Hislop and Nick Newman on their WWI TV drama The Wipers Times; US author Thomas Pynchon's new novel. With Mark Lawson.

With Mark Lawson.

The 1970s Formula 1 rivalry between Niki Lauda and James Hunt is the focus of a new film Rush, directed by Ron Howard with a script by Peter Morgan. Alyson Rudd reviews the film that includes Lauda's 1976 crash that nearly claimed the driver's life.

The Wipers Times is a 90-minute TV drama about the men behind a satirical newspaper created for soldiers on the Western Front in the First World War. Co-writers Ian Hislop and Nick Newman discuss their project which is based on a true story, and stars Michael Palin and Julian Rhind-Tutt.

Thomas Pynchon's new novel Bleeding Edge is a historical romance set in New York at a time between the early days of the internet and the events of September 11, 2001. Novelist and Pynchon expert Lawrence Norfolk reviews the eighth novel from this famously private author, who once told CNN "my belief is that recluse is a code word generated by journalists ... meaning, 'doesn't like to talk to reporters...'".

And Mark reports on a literary first: the new novel by the Scottish writer Angus Peter Campbell will be published simultaneously in Scots Gaelic and in English. Angus Peter has written two versions of the book, which is mostly set on the Isle of Mull, an English language edition entitled The Girl on the Ferryboat and a Gaelic-language edition called An Nighean Air an Aiseig.

Producer Dymphna Flynn.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
Ian Hislop
Interviewed Guest
Nick Newman
Producer
Dymphna Flynn

Brand

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Derek Jacobi; Naomi Watts on Diana; Orphan Black

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:

Mark Lawson talks to actor Derek Jacobi as he publishes his autobiography.

Derek Jacobi reflects on his life and career, Naomi Watts discusses playing Princess Diana on film, and the verdict on the TV drama Orphan Black, which focuses on human cloning.

With Mark Lawson.

Sir Derek Jacobi's acting career spans half a century. As he publishes an autobiography, he reflects on his early desire to act, stage fright, and still wanting to surprise in his 70s.

Orphan Black is a new 10 part TV drama serial which focuses on human cloning. Sarah Manning is the anti-heroine, and orphan, who stumbles into an intriguing set of circumstances that force her to realise she's not alone. Novelist Nicholas Royle reviews.

Naomi Watts discusses playing Diana, Princess of Wales, in a film which covers the final two years of her life and her relationship with Dr Hasnat Khan. She talks about preparing for the role, the problems associated with telling Diana's story and the balance between real life events and an artistic interpretation of them.

Producer Ekene Akalawu.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
Derek Jacobi
Interviewed Guest
Naomi Watts
Producer
Ekene Akalawu

Brand

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David Walliams and Sheridan Smith; poet Dannie Abse at 90; Booker Prize changes

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
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Mark Lawson talks to David Walliams and Sheridan Smith, on stage in a Shakespeare comedy.

Mark Lawson talks to David Walliams and Sheridan Smith, who star in A Midsummer Night's Dream, and poet Dannie Abse, who is 90 on Sunday. Plus news of changes to the Booker Prize.

With Mark Lawson.

David Walliams and Sheridan Smith talk about working together in a new staging of A Midsummer's Night's Dream, with Walliams in the role of Bottom and Smith as Titania/Hippolyta. They discuss the difficulties of taking on Shakespeare, the dark sensuality of the play and theatrical rituals and pranks.

The Man Booker Prize for Fiction is currently open to writers from the UK, Ireland and the Commonwealth - but in changes confirmed today, any novel originally written in English and published in the UK could be a contender, opening the Prize to writers from the USA in particular. Ion Trewin, Literary Director of the Booker Prize Foundation, reveals the details.

The distinguished Welsh poet Dannie Abse celebrates his 90th birthday on Sunday. Although best-known for his poetry, Dannie Abse is also a doctor, playwright and author - and he discusses his long career.

Producer Nicki Paxman.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
David Walliams
Interviewed Guest
Sheridan Smith
Interviewed Guest
Dannie Abse
Producer
Nicki Paxman

Brand

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Woody Allen interview, with Sally Hawkins and Mike Leigh

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
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Mark Lawson interviews Woody Allen, whose new film Blue Jasmine stars Cate Blanchett.

Mark Lawson talks to writer and director Woody Allen, whose new film Blue Jasmine stars Cate Blanchett and Sally Hawkins. Sally Hawkins and Mike Leigh also share their thoughts.

With Mark Lawson, who interviews writer and director Woody Allen.

Allen's new film Blue Jasmine stars Cate Blanchett as Jasmine, a wealthy Manhattan socialite, and Sally Hawkins as Ginger, her poor sister in San Francisco. They end up together when Jasmine's husband is declared bankrupt.

Blue Jasmine is already one of Woody Allen's most financially successful films, proving a hit at the US box office.

In this Front Row special, Mark talks to Woody Allen about Blue Jasmine, his unique methods of working and why he never watches his own films. And there are interviews with Mike Leigh, who Allen cites as one of his favourite directors, and actress Sally Hawkins, who has worked with both directors.

Producer Timothy Prosser.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
Woody Allen
Interviewed Guest
Mike Leigh
Interviewed Guest
Sally Hawkins
Producer
Timothy Prosser

Brand

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David Attenborough

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
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Mark Lawson interviews David Attenborough about his series on invertebrates.

Mark Lawson interviews David Attenborough about his series on invertebrates. He also talks about changes in broadcasting and technology.

Mark Lawson interviews David Attenborough about his series on invertebrates. He also talks about changes in broadcasting and technology which have allowed programme makers to view insects more clearly.

Credits

Interviewed Guest
David Attenborough
Presenter
Mark Lawson

Brand

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Hugh Jackman; The Wrong Mans; BBC National Short Story Award 2013

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
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Mark Lawson reviews Hugh Jackman and Jake Gyllenhaal in the film thriller Prisoners.

Hugh Jackman discusses his role in the film thriller Prisoners; the verdict on TV comedy The Wrong Mans, starring James Corden and Mathew Baynton; BBC National Short Story Award.

With Mark Lawson

Hugh Jackman returns to our cinema screens this week, starring alongside Jake Gyllenhaal in the thriller Prisoners, about a man who takes the law into his own hands when his young daughter goes missing. Jackman discusses his latest role, a far cry from playing Jean Valjean in Les Miserables.

The Wrong Mans is a new TV comedy drama written by and starring James Corden and Horrible Histories' Mathew Baynton, about two office workers who accidentally get entangled in a criminal conspiracy. Rebecca Nicholson reviews.

The next writer in Front Row's series of interviews with the contenders for the BBC National Short Story Award 2013 is Lisa Blower, whose story is about a disastrous family trip to Barmouth. You can hear her story tomorrow afternoon (Tuesday).

Last night the Netflix drama House of Cards became the first internet streamed programme to win an Emmy Award, as its director David Fincher picked up Best Director of a Drama Series. And Breaking Bad, also available on Netflix, won Outstanding Drama Series. Mark talks to Ted Sarandos, head of content for the video on demand service, about the change in how we consume entertainment.

Producer Timothy Prosser.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
Lisa Blower
Interviewed Guest
Ted Sarandos
Producer
Timothy Prosser

Brand

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Front Row

Fourth Plinth art; Stephen King reviewed; Alfred and Adrian Brendel; BBC Short Story Award

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
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Mark Lawson on the artworks competing to occupy the Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square.

The artworks competing to occupy the Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square, the verdict on Stephen King's The Shining sequel, Alfred and Adrian Brendel, and the BBC Short Story Award.

With Mark Lawson.

The artworks competing to occupy Trafalgar Square's Fourth Plinth in 2015 and 2016 were unveiled today. Shortlisted artists Marcus Coates and Liliane Lijn discuss their designs, along with Ekow Eshun, chair of the Fourth Plinth Commissioning Group, who make the final decision about which two artworks will be successful.

Stephen King publishes a sequel to his 1977 novel The Shining today. The boy Danny Torrance has grown up, but has he managed to escape the legacy of his alcoholic psychopathic father? Rachel Cooke reviews Doctor Sleep.

Lionel Shriver is the latest writer in our series of interviews with the contenders for the BBC National Short Story Award 2013. Her story called Prepositions is set around events during 9/11 and takes the form of a letter between two women. Prepositions is broadcast on Wednesday at 3.30pm on Radio 4.

Alfred Brendel, one of the world's greatest pianists, retired from playing in public in 2008, although at the age of 82 he still performs his own poems and is about to take part in a poetry and music event with his son, the cellist Adrian Brendel. They reflect on their artistic relationship and what it is like to perform together as father and son.

Producer Dymphna Flynn.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
Marcus Coates
Interviewed Guest
Liliane Lijn
Interviewed Guest
Ekow Eshun
Interviewed Guest
Lionel Shriver
Interviewed Guest
Alfred Brendel
Interviewed Guest
Adrian Brendel
Producer
Dymphna Flynn

Brand

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Front Row

Johnny Vegas, William Boyd, BBC Short Story Award

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
Latest broadcast:

Mark Lawson meets writer William Boyd, as he publishes a new James Bond novel.

Arts news with Mark Lawson. Johnny Vegas looks behind his now infamous persona, William Boyd is set to publish a new James Bond novel, and the BBC National Short Story Award.

With Mark Lawson

Comedian and actor Johnny Vegas - real name Michael Pennington - talks to Mark about dropping out of seminary school before embarking on a career in stand-up comedy and how his drunken persona threatened to take over entirely. His autobiography Becoming Johnny Vegas takes a candid look back at the person behind the persona.

This week sees the publication of Solo in which a 45-year-old James Bond, haunted by his memories of his service at the D-Day landings, is sent from 1960s London to help end a war in the fictional African state of Zanzarim. William Boyd discusses how he went through the Fleming canon to learn about the UK's most celebrated spy, writing him from a modern day perspective which meant dealing with his 70-a-day cigarette habit and ferocious drinking, plus why he includes a recipe for Bond's salad dressing.

The next writer in Front Row's series of interviews with the contenders for the BBC National Short Story Award 2013 is Lucy Wood, whose story is about a group of ghosts that watch over a Cornish house and its changing inhabitants. Notes from the House Spirits is broadcast tomorrow at 3.30pm on Radio 4.

Producer Ella-mai Robey.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
William Boyd
Interviewed Guest
Johnny Vegas
Interviewed Guest
Lucy Wood
Producer
Ella-mai Robey

Brand

Front Row

Front Row

Sunshine on Leith; Adil Ray; Malcolm Mackay; Art Under Attack

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
Latest broadcast:

Mark Lawson reports on Art Under Attack, an exhibition about physical attacks on artworks.

Mark Lawson on the film Sunshine on Leith; Adil Ray on his TV persona Citizen Khan; crime writer Malcolm Mackay; Art Under Attack, an exhibition of damaged or defaced works.

With Mark Lawson.

The film Sunshine on Leith follows two young soldiers struggling to re-adjust to life in Edinburgh after returning from Afghanistan. Based on a stage musical drawing on songs by The Proclaimers, it stars Jane Horrocks and Peter Mullan. Larushka Ivan-Zedah reviews.

Actor Adil Ray discusses his TV sit-com Citizen Khan, as it returns for a second series. Ray, who plays self-appointed Muslim community leader Mr Khan, talks about getting into character and addresses criticisms of the show - including complaints that it was offensive.

Art Under Attack: Histories Of British Iconoclasm is the first exhibition to explore the history of physical attacks on art in Britain, from state-sanctioned destruction of religious works during the Reformation, to defaced portraits in Jake and Dinos Chapman's series, One Day You Will No Longer Be Loved. Artist John Keane gives his verdict.

After receiving the award for Scottish Crime Book of the Year, Malcolm Mackay talks about the inspiration for his novels. Born and still living in Stornoway, in the Outer Hebrides, Mackay explains how he came to start writing a trilogy about organised crime in Glasgow.

Producer Nicki Paxman.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
Adil Ray
Interviewed Guest
Malcolm Mackay
Producer
Nicki Paxman

Brand

Front Row

Front Row

David Tennant and Gregory Doran; Bill Bryson; Sex on film and TV

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
Latest broadcast:

Mark Lawson talks to David Tennant as he prepares to play Richard II at the RSC, Stratford

David Tennant and Gregory Doran on their new staging of Richard II, Bill Bryson examines the year 1927, and sexual addiction and research are the focus for a new film and TV drama.

With Mark Lawson.

David Tennant and RSC Artistic Director Gregory Doran discuss their forthcoming production of Richard II. Tennant talks about switching accents and the difference between working on the stage and screen. Gregory Doran reveals his techniques for making Shakespeare understandable, why he won't change words and how he copes with his dual role of managing the RSC whilst directing his own plays.

The analysis and control of human sexuality are the focus of a new film and a TV drama series. The film Thanks for Sharing, starring Gwyneth Paltrow, Mark Ruffalo and Tim Robbins, is set in the world of recovering sex addicts, whilst the series Masters of Sex stars Michael Sheen as the pioneering sex researcher Dr William Masters. Advice columnist Bel Mooney gives her verdict.

Bill Bryson, whose bestselling books includes Notes form a Small Island and A Short History of Nearly Everything, discusses his latest work, One Summer: America 1927. Covering a period of just a few months in 1927, the book explores how events including Charles Lindbergh's non-stop flight from New York to Paris, a sensational murder trial and the President's shock decision not to stand for re-election gripped America and shaped its future. Bill Bryson discusses how concentrating on a snapshot of history gave him insights that might elude other biographers and historians.

Producer Olivia Skinner.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
David Tennant
Interviewed Guest
Gregory Doran
Interviewed Guest
Bill Bryson
Producer
Olivia Skinner

Brand

Front Row

Front Row

Saoirse Ronan; Thatcher meets the Queen; Erotic art from Japan

BBC Radio 4
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30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
Latest broadcast:

Mark Lawson meets actress Saoirse Ronan, who stars in the film How I Live Now.

Mark Lawson meets actress Saoirse Ronan; Moira Buffini's play about Margaret Thatcher's meetings with the Queen; the exhibition Shunga: Sex and Humour in Japanese Art.

With Mark Lawson.

Saoirse Ronan was only 13 when she was Oscar and BAFTA nominated as Best Supporting Actress for her role in Atonement. Since then, she has starred in The Lovely Bones, Byzantium and The Host. Now, at 19, she heads the cast of Kevin MacDonald's film How I Live Now, based on Meg Rosoff's book about children caught up in a third world war. She reflects on the transition from child to adult actor, dealing with death on set and the possibility of running for US President.

Handbagged, a new play from Moira Buffini, explores the relationship between Margaret Thatcher and the Queen during political events of the 1980s. Stella Gonet and Fenella Woolgar play older and younger versions of the former Prime Minisiter while Marion Bailey and Claire Holman play the older and younger Queen. Novelist Justin Cartwright gives his verdict.

The exhibition, Shunga: Sex and Humour in Japanese Art, at the British Museum, focuses on sexually explicit paintings, prints and illustrated books from Japan from 1600 - 1900, and examines why they became taboo in the 20th century. Writer and novelist Bidisha reviews

As Michael Symmons Roberts wins the Forward Prize for a book of poems each with a self-imposed limit of 15 lines, Front Row reflects on size restrictions in art - with Ian Christie on film, David Hepworth on music and Cathy Rentzenbrink on literature.

Producer Nicki Paxman.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
Saoirse Ronan
Interviewed Guest
Ian Christie
Interviewed Guest
David Hepworth
Interviewed Guest
Cathy Rentzenbrink
Producer
Nicki Paxman

Brand

Front Row

Front Row

John Eliot Gardiner, Le Week-End, Breathless

BBC Radio 4
BBC Radio 4 logo
30 minutes Available for over a year First broadcast:
Latest broadcast:

Le Week-End and Breathless reviewed, and John Eliot Gardiner on his new book about Bach.

Arts news. Le Week-End reviewed, John Eliot Gardiner discusses his new book on Bach, and neurosurgeon Henry Marsh reviews Breathless, ITV's new hospital drama set in the '60s.

With Mark Lawson

Breathless is a new prime-time period drama from ITV set in a London hospital during the early sixties. The programme follows the lives of a group of doctors and nurses and, like Mad Men and The Hour, combines period glamour with historical social commentary. Neurosurgeon Henry Marsh reviews.

Le Week-End stars Jim Broadbent and Lindsay Duncan as a middle aged couple who embark on a trip to Paris to celebrate their 30th wedding anniversary, with less than romantic results. The comedy is the latest collaboration from writer Hanif Kureishi and director Roger Michell. Jenny McCartney reviews.

The conductor John Eliot Gardiner discusses the life and music of JS Bach, who he regards as the greatest composer. Gardiner's book, which he has spent the last decade writing, presents an "unsanitised" version of Bach, revealing his brutalising schooling, his brushes with the law, and the difficult conditions in which he wrote such masterpieces as The St Matthew Passion and the B Minor Mass.

Producer Stephen Hughes.

Credits

Presenter
Mark Lawson
Interviewed Guest
John Eliot Gardiner
Producer
Jerome Weatherald

Brand

Front Row

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