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Slices of 19th-century London life from the pen of Charles Dickens.
Here are 10 gloriously comic stories from Sketches by Boz, Charles Dickens's earliest collection of short pieces in which he honed his literary genius. Each tale is dramatised with a full cast.
Cast and credits:
Written by Charles Dickens. Directed by Sally Avens. Starring Nicholas Farrell as Boz.
The Tuggses at Ramsgate
The nouveau riche Tugg family discover that money cannot buy you love.
Cast: Christopher Hancock, Frances Jeater, Colleen Prendergast, Julian Rhind-Tutt, Sean Baker, Tracy-Ann Oberman. First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 1st September 1998.
The Bloomsbury Christening
The arrival of a bouncing baby boy is wonderful news - but not for miserable misanthrope Nicodemus Dumps.
Cast: Alison Reid, Geoffrey Whitehead, Robert Harper, Charlie Simpson, Elaine Pyke. First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 8th September 1998.
The Great Winglebury Duel
Alexander Trott finds it is possible to become betrothed in even the most trying circumstances.
Cast: Peter Gunn, Julia Deakin, David Timson, Kim Wall and David Antrobus. First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 15th September 1998.
The Private Theatricals of Mrs Joseph Porter
A household becomes obsessed with amateur dramatics - with farcical results.
Cast: Geoffrey Whitehead, Frances Jeater, David Antrobus, Jane Holm, Shirley Dixon, Charles Simpson. First broadcast on BBC Radio 4, 22nd September 1998.
Mr Watkins Tottle
All Mr Tottle wants is to enter the blessed state of matrimony - but the course of true love never did run smooth.
Cast: David Collings, John Hartley, Jenny Howe, Patience Tomlinson, Christopher Scott. First broadcast on BBC Radio 4, 29th September 1998.
Love and Oysters
Meeting an oyster seller sparks disruption for orderly John Dounce.
Cast: David Calder, Samantha Spiro, Siriol Jenkins, Elizabeth Conboy, David Allister, loan Meredith. First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 5th July 1999.
The Steam Excursion
A boat trip on the Thames proves the undoing of 'paragon of perfection' Percy Noakes.
Cast: Marston Bloom, Shirley Dixon, Joanna Monro, Jeremy Swift, Becky Hindley, Ben Crowe, Stephen Critchlow. First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 12th July 1999.
The Crumpton sisters are delighted when an MP's daughter arrives at their finishing school - until a romantic attachment comes to light.
Cast: Patience Tomlinson, Jane Booker, Gerard Murphy, Tilly Gaunt, Harry Myers, Elizabeth Conboy, Michael Mueller. First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 19th July 1999.
The Boarding House
The respectability of Mrs Tibbs' residential establishment is threatened by a mysterious new lodger.
Cast: Imelda Staunton, Annette Badland, Christopher Hancock, Tracy-Ann Oberman, Stephen Critchlow, Peter Gunn, Jason O'Mara. First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 26th July 1999.
The snobbish Maldertons are thrilled when their unmarried daughter receives the attentions of the gentlemanly Mr Sparkins. But who exactly is he?
Cast: David Haig, Tessa Worsley, Sarah-Jane Holm, Adrian Schiller, Julian Rhind-Tutt, Patrick Barlow. First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 2nd August 1999.
What listeners say about Sketches by Boz
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I Love ❤️Sketches by Boz
This is a lovely collection of Charles Dickens hilarious short stories
covering a multitude of life’s little difficulties or Dickens Silly Nonsense, all excellent fun. Good selection of actors do a great job.
This production is well worth listening over & over. I have an 1890 book edition of Charles Dickens ‘Sketches by Boz’ with 40 Illustrations by George Cruickshank and this BBC Radio Collection does it Justice. More please.
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