Diverse conversation with Libby Purves and her four guests. The focus of Midweek is personal experience, the story behind the story. A mix of the famous, the infamous, and first time broadcasters.

Diverse conversation with Libby Purves and her four guests. The focus of Midweek is personal experience, the story behind the story. A mix of the famous, the infamous, and first time broadcasters.
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London, United Kingdom




Diverse conversation with Libby Purves and her four guests. The focus of Midweek is personal experience, the story behind the story. A mix of the famous, the infamous, and first time broadcasters.




Harriet Walter, Richard Curtis, Suzi Quatro, Declan Murphy

Actor Dame Harriet Walter; writer and director Richard Curtis; singer and songwriter Suzi Quatro and former jockey Declan Murphy join Libby Purves for the final edition of Midweek. Richard Curtis CBE is a writer, director and campaigner. His films include Four Weddings and a Funeral, Notting Hill, Bridget Jones's Diary, Mr Bean, Love Actually and The Boat That Rocked. His television comedies include Blackadder and the Vicar of Dibley. He is vice-chair of Comic Relief which he co-founded...


Alfie Boe, John Agard, Katy Brand, Allan Jenkins

Tenor Alfie Boe, poet John Agard, writer Allan Jenkins, and comedian and writer Katy Brand join Libby Purves. Alfie Boe is one of our most popular tenors. He is starring as Billy Bigelow in Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel alongside Katherine Jenkins at ENO's London Coliseum. He has performed in opera and musical theatre alike, from Baz Luhrmann's La Boheme on Broadway to leading the cast of Les Miserables in the West End. The youngest of nine children, he left school to work as a...


David Rodigan; Loudon Wainwright III; Jackie Malton; Hisham Matar

Singer and songwriter Loudon Wainwright III; reggae DJ David Rodigan; former detective Jackie Malton and writer Hisham Matar join Libby Purves. David 'RamJam' Rodigan MBE is a DJ, famed for his selections of reggae and dancehall music. He has played on stations from Capital 95.8 and Kiss to BBC 1Xtra and Radio 2 and is a regular on the club and festival circuit. A 65-year-old white man from Oxford who speaks in RP, he seems the very antithesis of the music that he loves and represents. In...


Patti Boulaye, Charlie Condou, Tracy Tynan and David Toole.

Singer Patti Boulaye; dancer David Toole; actor Charlie Condou and costume designer Tracy Tynan join Libby Purves. David Toole is an actor and dancer who played a starring role in the 2012 Paralympic Opening Ceremony. Born without the use of his legs, he turned his back on a job with the post office to study at the Laban Centre of Movement and Dance and follow his dream of becoming a dancer. He is performing with Stopgap Dance Company in The Enormous Room, a new touring piece about grief...


Patrick Stewart; Shappi Khorsandi; Oscar Duke; Mischa Pearson.

Actor Sir Patrick Stewart; comedian and writer Shappi Khorsandi; medic Oscar Duke and charity worker Mischa Pearson join Libby Purves. Mischa Pearson set up the Teapot Project in Ipswich, Suffolk. The charity collects good food from restaurants and supermarkets that would otherwise go to waste and distributes it to the local homeless through charities, youth hostels and churches. As a teenager Mischa was homeless for two years and spent time living in hostels before finding employment in...


Michael Mosley, Camille O'Sullivan, Peter Laws, Pradyumna Kumar

Broadcaster Michael Mosley; singer and actor Camille O'Sullivan; Baptist minister and writer Peter Laws and artist Pradyumna Kumar join Libby Purves. Peter Laws is an ordained Baptist minister who has written his debut crime novel, Purged. The protagonist is Matt Hunter, a sociology professor who also assists the police tackle religiously-motivated crimes. Peter also hosts a podcast and YouTube show, The Flicks That Church Forgot, which reviews horror films from a theological perspective....


Levison Wood; Kimberley Chambers; John de St Jorre; Annie Siddons.

Explorer and writer Levison Wood; author Kimberley Chambers; journalist and writer John de St Jorre and performer and playwright Annie Siddons join Libby Purves. Kimberley Chambers is a former market trader, DJ and minicab driver who is now a best-selling author. She came to fiction late in life, writing during her down time as a cabbie. Inspired by her 'colourful life', the books are gritty crime novels with a twist of dark humour set in and around London's East End and featuring a cast...


Professor Femi Oyebode; Sheila Kohler; Stephen Boxer; Heloise Tunstall-Behrens

Actor Stephen Boxer; writer Sheila Kohler; psychiatrist and poet Professor Femi Oyebode and composer Heloise Tunstall-Behrens join Libby Purves. Heloise Tunstall-Behrens is a composer and bee-keeper. Her new work The Swarm, a 60-minute opera performed by the Quorum, follows a swarm of bees in their search for a new home as they encounter a deadly extractor fan, a thunder storm and a fierce debate over two potential sites on which to build a hive. Inspiration for the piece came after...


Evelyn Glennie; Milton Jones; Xiaolu Guo; Arno Geiger.

Percussionist Dame Evelyn Glennie; comedian Milton Jones; writer and filmmaker Xiaolu Guo and novelist Arno Geiger meet Libby Purves. Evelyn Glennie is an award-winning percussionist. She played the first percussion concerto in the history of The Proms at the Albert Hall in 1992, which paved the way for orchestras around the world to feature percussion concerti. She also played a leading role role in the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympic Games. Profoundly deaf since childhood,...


Antonia Fraser; Stephen K Amos; Inua Ellams; Christopher Somerville

Writer Lady Antonia Fraser; comic and actor Stephen K Amos; travel writer Christopher Somerville and poet Inua Ellams join Libby Purves. Stephen K Amos is a comedian and actor. His Radio 4 series What Does the K Stand For? tells the story of his teenage years in 1980s South London. Stephen's parents came from the same town in south-west Nigeria, but met as adults in Lagos and emigrated to the UK in the late 1960s. Stephen is currently performing his new stand-up show. He has performed at...


Richard Osman; Peter Willcox; Rikki Beadle-Blair; Sacha Dench

Presenter and producer Richard Osman; campaigner Peter Willcox; playwright and actor Rikki Beadle-Blair and conservationist Sacha Dench join Libby Purves. Sacha Dench is a conservationist. She's the first woman to cross the English Channel in a motorised paraglider during a 4,500-mile journey following migrating birds from the Russian tundra to Britain. She made her trip to highlight the problems facing the endangered Bewick's swan population. Illegal hunting, newly erected power lines and...


Katie Melua, Nigel Havers, Tom Kerridge, Alex Wheatle

Singer-songwriter Katie Melua, chef Tom Kerridge, writer Alex Wheatle and actor Nigel Havers join Libby Purves and the audience in the BBC Radio Theatre. Katie Melua, the singer and songwriter, was born in Georgia, when it was part of the Soviet Union, and moved to Belfast when she was nine. She returned to her homeland to make her new album, In Winter, working with the Gori Women's Choir. Katie recalls her early years in Georgia, and the very different life she found in Belfast, and she...


Sophie Thompson; Jonathan Franklin; Leon Bosch; Brian Wheeler

Actor Sophie Thompson; writer Jonathan Franklin; musician Leon Bosch and actor Brian Wheeler join Libby Purves. As a boy Jonathan Franklin rescued two orphaned tawny owlets and kept them with him at boarding school. His book, Two Owls at Eton, was first published when he was 16 and tells the story of Dee and Dum who lived with him during the summer of 1959. They trashed his room, made him late for many classes and caused mayhem at every turn yet Dum and Dee charmed the entire faculty. The...


Ken Follett, Fr David Delargy, Hannah Peel, Joseph Cook

Novelist Ken Follett; scientist Dr Joseph Cook; musician Hannah Peel and Roman Catholic Priest and singer Fr David Delargy join Libby Purves. Fr David Delargy is a Roman Catholic priest and a member of the classical singing trio, the Priests. The group recently released a new album, Alleluia, and manage to balance the responsibilities of parish life in Northern Ireland with a global music career. Friends from an early age, the three later studied in Rome as seminarians and have sung...


Tom Mangold, Nick Yarris, Catie Munnings, Vanessa Toulmin.

Television reporter and writer Tom Mangold; death row survivor Nick Yarris; rally car driver Catie Munnings and Professor Vanessa Toulmin of the National Fairground Archive join Libby Purves. Catie Munnings is an 18-year-old rally car driver. She won the FIA European Rally Championships Ladies' trophy 2016 after only her first season in the sport. At 13 she could execute a perfect handbrake turn and then followed her father Chris, a former rally driver who ran the London Rally School at...


Bradley Walsh, Salley Vickers, Ed Victor, Debbie Young-Somers.

Actor Bradley Walsh; novelist Salley Vickers; literary agent Ed Victor and Rabbi Debbie Young-Somers join Libby Purves. Rabbi Debbie Young-Somers is community educator at the Movement for Reform Judaism. Formerly a rabbi at the West London Synagogue of British Jews, she is performing stand-up comedy for the first time at the JW3 Jewish Comedy Festival. She is a regular contributor for Radio 2's Pause for Thought, and has appeared on 4ThoughtTV. The JW3 Jewish Comedy Festival, West Hampstead,...


Melanie C, Douglas Hodge, Howard Webb, John McAvoy

Singer and songwriter Melanie C; actor and director Douglas Hodge; Ironman competitor John McAvoy and football referee Howard Webb join Libby Purves. Melanie Chisholm, otherwise known as Melanie C, is a singer and songwriter. Formerly one of the Spice Girls, she went solo in 1999 and has enjoyed two number one singles and released four albums. In 2004 she launched her own label, Red Girl Records. She has also starred in musical theatre including Jesus Christ Superstar and Blood Brothers, for...


Soweto Kinch; Ken Clarke MP; Melanie Lamotte; Alex Bellos

Ken Clarke MP, jazz saxophonist Soweto Kinch, historian Melanie Lamotte and writer and puzzle-historian Alex Bellos join Libby Purves. Alex Bellos is a writer and broadcaster who writes a maths blog and a puzzle blog for the Guardian newspaper. His book Can You Solve my Problems? reveals the story of the puzzle through 125 of the world's best brainteasers, from ancient China to medieval Europe, Victorian England to modern-day Japan, with stories of espionage, mathematical breakthroughs and...


Helen Czerski; Odaline de la Martinez; Paapa Essiedu; Jim Richards.

Physicist Helen Czerski; composer Odaline de la Martinez; actor Paapa Essiedu and geologist and gold prospector Jim Richards join Libby Purves. Physicist and oceanographer Helen Czerski studies the bubbles underneath breaking waves and their effects on weather and climate. In her book, Storm in a Teacup, she explains how the same scientific principles behind the little everyday things we see all around us link to some of the most important science and technology of our time because the...


Marcus Wareing, Adrian Edmondson, Adele Bellis, Nick Littlehales

Sleep coach Nick Littlehales, Adele Bellis, a survivor of an acid attack, actor Adrian Edmondson and chef Marcus Wareing, join Libby Purves. Nick Littlehales is a sport sleep coach to some of the biggest names in sport including the British Cycling team, top Premiership and International football squads, and Olympic and Paralympic athletes. In his book, Sleep, he explains the strategies we can all use to get a better night's sleep by debunking the myths including why we might need less sleep...


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