BBC / Open University Programmes

APPROACHING LITERATURE (A210) - 1996 onwards
4 x 50 minute TV programmes.

Tony series produced and directed:

  • TV1 BUILDING THE PERFECT BEAST was a 1996 RTS Educational Award Finalist, exploring the enduring power and contemporary manifestations of Dr. Frankenstein and his terrible Creature. Shot on location on a glacier in the Rockies, in Chico McMurtie's workshop in San Francisco, in the Ackermansion, L.A. and in a Mechanical Cabaret and the Wellcome Museum of Life exhibition in London.
  • TV2 BEHIND THE MASK, was produced and directed by Mags. It explored the work and lives of women writers primarily from the USA, from Louisa May Alcott (Little Women) to Alice Walker (The Color Purple). Shot on location in Massachusetts & New York, USA; London & Cambridge, UK the programme includes interviews with Madelaine Gilbert, Susan Gubar, Elaine Showalter, Sarah Elbert, Madelaine Stern and Juliet Mitchell.
  • TV3 THE AUTHENTICK AND IRONICAL HISTORIE OF HENRY V - looked for the real King in mediaeval history, on the Shakespearean stage and in Olivier's Second World War post-Arnhem film, showing how each age rewrites the history to get the image of the King it wants... or needs.
  • TVs 5 & 6 THE ROVER represented a remarkable collaboration between The Open University and The Women's Playhouse Trust. Working closely with WPT, over 10 days Tony restaged and shot Jules Wright's innovative 3 hour production of Aphra Behn's The Rover. Set in an abandoned movie studio in 72 tons of sand, the production starred DANIEL CRAIG (Our Friends in the North, Love is the Devil, Elizabeth), ANDY SERKIS (Mojo, Bill Sykes in Oliver Twist and the voice of Gollum in The Fellowship of the Ring) and DOUGRAY SCOTT (Deep Impact, Mission: Impossible 2 and Enigma).
    This video features a series of self contained performance exercises, around two scenes from Ibsen's A Doll's House, though primarily centred on the final scene of the play. This scene is presented "in performance" by the same actors and with the same production team, in three different period sets and costumes - 1870's (when the play was written and first performed), 1950's and 1980's. The effects of the historical context on issues of gender and performance are explored, with particular attention to changes in language and body language. However, any performance is an interpretation of the play, and the video also examines the production/rehearsal process to see how certain decisions were arrived at for the three "productions" - including choice of text, set, costumes, make-up, staging, camera angles, characterisations etc.
    The BBC performance of Top Girls, introduced by Lizbeth Goodman and played in full. This full performance is supported by interviews with the playwright Caryl Churchill and the director Max Stafford Clarke, together with cast members Lesley Manville, Deborah Findlay and Lesley Sharpe and academics Julie Burk and Carol Smith.
  • SUSAN GLASPELL'S TRIFLES - a full audio production.
    Recorded with American cast in Boston, USA.

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