- Radio Times
- Review by:
- Laurence Joyce
The poet laureate Carol Ann Duffy does not come from a literary background — she was born in the notorious Gorbals district of Glasgow — but books, and her mother’s stories, were part of her early life. As was music. She learned the piano and was able to “melt her [mother’s] heart” when she found herself in her bad books.
And although a beautiful Chopin Etude opens her selection, Duffy says that she would quite happily have chosen all Mozart, represented here by exquisite excerpts from Figaro and Magic Flute. To close, she reads her poem The Thames from the anthology Jubilee Lines and exits, in burlesque vein, to the tune of The Stripper.
About this programme
Michael Berkeley welcomes Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy, the first woman, the first Scot, and the first openly gay person to hold the post. Born into a Roman Catholic family in the Gorbals, a poor area of Glasgow, she developed a passionate love of literature at school. Appointed Poet Laureate in 2009, having missed out to Andrew Motion a decade earlier, her work includes writing poems on everything from the MPs' expenses scandal to the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. Her musical choices include Chopin's Etude in E, Op 10 No 3, excerpts from Mozart's Marriage of Figaro and The Magic Flute, and Humperdinck's fantasy opera Hänsel und Gretel, plus Christy Moore performing a song with words by WB Yeats, and works by Bach and Schubert.
Cast and crew
- Chris Marshall