Andrew Marr and guests, who include French philosopher Bernard-Henri Levy , biographer Claire Tomalin , cosmologist Paul Davies and historian Andrew Roberts , set the cultural agenda for the week.
Producer Victoria Wakely Shortened repeat at 9.30pm
1/5. The Holy Grail. Michael Palin reads scintillating extracts from his diaries recounting the phenomenal success of the Monty Python comedy team during the 1970s. Today he recalls the making of their first film, Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Abridged by Lauris Morgan-Griffiths. Producer Louise Armitage
Repeated at 12.30am
RT DIRECT: Michael Palin Diaries: the Python Years is available for just E12.99 (RRP E20.00) including p&p. To order, call [number removed] (calls from land lines cost no more than 8p per minute) or send a cheque, payable to BBC Shop, to: BBC Shop, [address removed], quoting [text removed] Michael Palin , ex-python: page 23
What a nice man Michael Palin is. We all knew he embodied the best of British from his travelogues - humble, slightly eccentric, affable and always genuine. All of which qualities are reflected in these extracts from his diaries from the late 70s. Kept religiously from 1969, a few months after Python came into his life, they are records of his feelings and experiences, not all of which are Python orientated. Wednesday's extract deals with his father's last days and is as poignant as his recollections of his appearance as host of Saturday Night Live are hilarious. How very British of him to be embarrassed about a stain left on his sleeve by a stage-frightened cat rather than being concerned about how funny the SNL sketch was. Python freaks will not be disappointed about the tales of disaster and near-disaster associated with Holy Grail and Life of Brian, but don't expect any dished dirt, because that's not the Palin way. He's just too nice.
Read more on page 23. (Frances Lass)
Led by Andrew Graystone. Jubilate Deo (Dunn). Isaiah 56, vv1-8. Gather Us In (Haugen). Christians, Lift Up Your Hearts (Salve Festa Dies). Amen (Pergolesi). With the Choir of Abbots Bromley School for Girls. Director of music Colin Walker. Organist Richard Tanner.
6/6. Will Terrance Get a Degree? When Terrance first joined his Liverpool secondary school he was bottom of the class. Four years later he was head boy and had passed four A-levels with flying colours. Now he's won a place at Oxford University to study engineering. The only problem is that Terrance is a Ugandan refugee and, despite being resident here for four years, only qualifies as a foreign student. The race is on to raise E20,000 for his first year's fees - and term starts in three weeks' time. Producer Sarah Taylor and Caroline Adams
1/5. Eliza. These stories of a pompous idiot of a husband and his long-suffering wife were a literary hit of the 1900s, rediscovered in the 1980s. Eliza and her husband live in a small house somewhere in suburbia. He is a low-grade city clerk with delusions of grandeur, she is a housewife with the patience of a saint. Written by Barry Pain and adapted by Jonathan Dryden Taylor.
Director Ellen Dryden
6/17. Four contestants from the south of England compete in the continuing first round of the nationwide general knowledge contest. The chairman is Robert Robinson. Producer Richard Edis Repeated on Saturday at 11pm
RK Narayan 's comic narrative is a rich evocation of Indian life in the 1970s that looks at human absurdities through the eyes of a wild animal. An ageing tiger, now the companion of a monk, looks back on his life. Dramatised by Ronald Frame for the 100th anniversary of Narayan's birth.
Producer/Director Lu Kemp
Deputy/Zoo Keeper/Captain/ Jaddu:
Raja, the Tiger:
1/5. The Festival of the Immortals. Five renowned writers read their stories on the theme of memory. Today's story is written and read by Helen Simpson , and is about a rather unusual literary festival. Producer Mary Ward-Lowery
11/30. Like an Angelic Choir. When Britain's first Foundling Hospital was opened by Thomas Coram in 1741 it rightly met with huge acclaim, though the well-being of the individual children could sometimes be neglected for the sake of its public image. Michael Morpurgo continues his exploration of a thousand years of British childhood. The readers are Adam Godley and Timothy West. Producer Beaty Rubens
1/5. In a letter to her husband Lucia recounts the disastrous consequences of a secret meeting. Set in America during the Second World War, this dark story of humdrum family life threatened by blackmail, passion and deceit is by Elizabeth Sanxay Holding. Dramatised by Rachel Joyce.
Producer/Director Viv Beeby Repeated from 10.45am
2/2. Michael Gillard examines the background of some of Russia's oligarchs - the businessmen who have accrued such immense wealth and influence since the fall of the Soviet Union - and particularly those who have recently become involved in UK K pic. Editor David Ross ; Producer Jenny Chryss
5/9. Why Garden for Wildlife? A revolution in wildlife gardening over the last 30 years or so has been accompanied by a rash of information on how to attract birds, bees, butterflies and a host of other animals into our gardens. Paul Evans explores the pros and cons of gardening for wildlife, in discussion with Ken Thompson and Chris Baines. Producer Brett Westwood Repeated tomorrow at 11am
6/10. John le Carre 's latest novel continues. The contract is signed and Salvo is flown home, but his bag contains damning evidence of the terrible events on the island. Read by Paterson Joseph. Abridged by Katrin Williams. Producer David Blount
RT DIRECT: The Mission Song by John le Carre is available in hardback for E17.50 (RRP E18.99) including p&p. To order, send a cheque payable to RT Direct Book Offers to: [address removed]. Call [number removed] (calls from land lines cost no more than 8p per minute), quoting RT, or visit www.rtdirect.sparkledirect.com. UK delivery only
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