British Universities Film & Video Council

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Twelfth Night

Synopsis
Shakespeare’s comedy adapted for radio and produced by Cathleen Nesbitt, who also plays both Viola and Sebastian to Gerald Lawrence’s Orsino. With music by Henry Purcell performed by the Wireless Quintet. The lyrics by Roger Quilter are sung by Norman Notley. Cecil A. Lewis speaks the prologue.
Language
English
Country
Great Britain
Medium
Radio
Transmission details
28 May 1923 at 19:30 (Channel: BBC)
Duration
110 mins
Availability
No archive copy known

Credits

Producer
Cathleen Nesbitt
Writer
William Shakespeare
Adaptor for Radio
Cathleen Nesbitt
Cast
Cathleen NesbittViola (later disguised as Cesario)
Enid RossOlivia
Gerald LawrenceOrsino, Duke of Illyria
Herbert WaringMalvolio
George HayesClown (Feste)
Arthur R. BurrowsCaptain
Cathleen NesbittSebastian
Cecil A. LewisNarrator
Henry CaineSir Toby Belch
Mabel TaitMaria
Nigel PlayfairSir Andrew Aguecheek
Norman NotleySinger

Additional Details

Production type
Television and Radio Drama
Plays
Twelfth Night
Subjects
Drama
Keywords
Shakespeare, William (1564-1616); Doubling of roles
Related items
Epiphanous Use of the Microphone, An

Notes

Notes
Broadcast from the BBC London Station ‘2 LO’
History
This was the first complete Shakespeare play to be broadcast on British radio. It was followed by full-length productions of The Merchant of Venice (15/06/1923), Romeo and Juliet (05/07/1923), and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (25/07/1923). They were all produced in the Savoy Hill studio in London. See separate entries.
Reviews
G. B. Shaw, who had been consulted by Lewis on how to best to introduce the play for listeners, advised him to "Scrap all that foolish twaddle, and read the play straight through just as Shakespear [sic] who really knew better than you) wrote it, with the reader saying what I told you he should say and no more" (C. A. Lewis, ‘G.B.S. Lectures the B.B.C.', Radio Times, 14 November 1924, p. 357).
Source: BBC Programme as Broadcast, BBC Programme Records, The Times

Production Company

Name

BBC

Notes
The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)

Record Stats

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