Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw #Audiobook #Review

I am delighted to share my thoughts on Pygmalion by George Berard Shaw. I listened to the Radio 4 Full Cast Version via Borrowbox and my local library.

I love the film “My Fair Lady” and Pygmalion is a book I have been meaning to read for a while now so when I saw this recent version I couldn’t resist.

Let’s have a look and see what it is all about…

  • Shaw wrote the part of Eliza Doolittle – an east-end dona with an apron and three orange and red ostrich feathers – for Mrs Patrick Campbell, with whom he had a passionate but unconsummated affair. From the outset the play was a sensational success, although Shaw, irritated by its popularity at the expense of his artistic intentions, dismissed it as a potboiler. The Pygmalion of legend falls in love with his perfect female statue and persuades Venus to bring her to life so that he can marry her. But Shaw radically reworks Ovid’s tale to give it a feminist slant: while Higgins teaches Eliza to speak and act like a duchess, she also asserts her independence, adamantly refusing to be his creation.
  • Cast and credits
    Pygmalion
    Henry Higgins……………………Alistair McGowan
    Eliza Doolittle……………………Morgana Robinson
    Alfred Doolittle……………………Al Murray
    Colonel Pickering……………………Hugh Fraser
    Mrs Higgins……………………Siân Phillips
    Mrs Pearce/Maid……………………Charlotte Page
    Mrs Eynsford-Hill……………………Georgie Glen
    Clara Eynsford-Hill……………………Maeve Bluebell Wells
    Freddy Eynsford-Hill…..……………………Tom Forrister
    Nepommuck……………………David Sturzaker
    Ambassador……………………John Dougall
    Ambassador’s wife……………………Sarah Ridgeway
    Bystander……………………David Sterne
    Written by Bernard Shaw
    Produced and directed by Emma Harding

    The ‘B’ Word
    Bernard Shaw……………………Alistair McGowan
    George Alexander……………………David Sturzaker
    Mrs Patrick Campbell…..……………………Charlotte Page
    Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree……………………Richard McCabe
    Charlotte Shaw……………………Georgie Glen
    Merivale……………………Philip Fox
    Gurney/Fishman……………………Simon Ludders
    Bell……………………Charlie Clements
    Maid……………………Sarah Ridgeway
    Written by Alistair McGowan
    Produced and directed by Emma Harding
  • Published by:BBC Digital Audio
  • Duration:2 Hours 38 min
  • Fiction/Non-Fiction:Fiction
  • Genre:Classics, Performing Arts
  • Target Audience:Adult
  • Released:31 Oct 2018
  • File Format:MP3 (27MB)
  • ISBN:9781787531536

I adore My Fair Lady and for me, Audrey Hepburn is Eliza Doolittle. What I know as the film My Fair Lady forms part of the play by Shaw in which Professor Higgins has a bet that he can teach and train a cockney flower girl to sound, look and act like a lady. That section of the story is a play to be shown and in which a certain “B” word will be used for the first time on stage. I do hope that makes sense! 🤔

So if you like this is a story of two parts. There is the stage play where I got to meet the actors and, it also includes some backstage banter and part the opening night reactions, then there is the play itself with the characters of Eliza and Professor Higgins. Does that make any more sense…I think not!!! 😬😜😀

How about I just tell you about how I found the listening side of it instead of trying to explain the story!

This is such a wonderful audio to listen to with a fabulous cast adding the voices to the various characters who bring the story to life. As this is a version that has a full cast it was very easy for me to follow the changes of character.

The story of Eliza and her transformation is one I absolutely adore and I was completely addicted to it. As it just over 2 and 1/2 hours long I was able to do some weeding and listen to it easily in one afternoon.

This is such a wonderful version to sit and listen to, mesmerising and very addictive. If you are new to listening to plays or audio books then this would be a very good place to start.

It is one I would definitely recommend!

And then I sat down and watched the film… 😁💖

Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be wonderful 🙂 xx

Jeff Wayne’s War of the Worlds : The Musical Drama #Audible #review

I am delighted to be sharing my review of Jeff Waynes War of the Worlds. This is a new release and Audible Original Drama version released in 2018.

I did wonder how I would get on with this as I am such a huge fan of the Richard Burton version…

An Audible Original Drama

One of the world’s most recognisable sci-fi stories, H. G. Wells’ The War of the Worlds established numerous conventions for the genre, including the threat of an invasive extraterrestrial species, space travel and intergalactic conflict, inspiring directors, gamers, producers and writers alike with its sobering story of struggle and survival. 

Marrying the suspense, drama and urgency of Wells’ original novel with Jeff Wayne’s rousing and flamboyant score, Audible’s new and exclusive dramatisation uses action, narration, original music and evocative sound design to immerse listeners in a world that’s as thrilling as it is desolate. 

Jeff Wayne’s The War of the Worlds: The Musical Drama stars Michael Sheen, Taron Egerton, Adrian Edmondson, Theo James and Anna-Marie Wayne. 

Also featuring: Rachel Atkins, Pippa Bennett-Warner, Josh Bond, Nicholas Boulton, Philip Bulcock, Jessica Dennis, Stephen Fletcher, Pete Gold, David Holt, Roger May, Harry Myers, Richard Reed, Mark Straker, Ben Whitehead and Sarah Whitehouse. 

I am not going to go into the ins and outs of the story, it is based on HG Wells and has been adapted into various films and shows.

I heard this for the first time while at primary school. One of the teachers brought in the vinyl record in and I absolutely fell in love with it. That would have been The Musical Version and I would have been 10 ish years old at the time. Since then I have listened and seen different versions of this and I have to be honest nothing has come close to the sound of Richard Burton’s voice. It just has just the right tone to it. So why I hear you ask would I listen to yet another version? Well, why not!

The memorable and chilling music is something that is so well known and adds an ominous and chilling atmosphere. The music is something that I have always loved. This version does not have the songs as it is the drama and not the musical version. There is a new feel to the music score and while a lot of the original content is there I discovered changes. It has a more modern feel while still holding the original style.

So to the narrator, I loved Richard Burton narrating the musical version and for me when I listened to it as a child, his voice seemed to fill the room. Michael Sheen has a different tone to his voice and adds something different. He seems to have more variation to his voice that was I admit a very nice change from the more monotone Burton.

I have to say that I am always going to be a fan of the first recording I heard. It filled me with awe, fear and also excitement. It opened up a world of mystery and my imagination loved it. This Drama version does do a brilliant job, it has the drama, excitement and atmosphere. While for me it will never be as good as the one I first heard, it comes in at a magnificent second. I will say that the voices and the music really did work well for this slightly more modern feeling of this re-working.

I would love to see a live show of this and it has been on my bucket list for a long time.

This is one I will listen to more than once and I would Highly Recommend.

Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be great 🙂 xx