Paines Plough at 40 on Radio 3

Published: 21 December 2014
Reporter: Philip Fisher

There is a rare treat on Radio 3 this weekend as the station celebrates the 40th anniversary of Paines Plough by broadcasting a 90-minute special.

This features three short plays together with some brief comments about the company by Joint Artistic Directors James Grieve and George Perrin.

The broadcast at 10PM on Sunday 21 December in the Drama on 3 slot features work by three writers who are well known to Paines Plough.

Without wishing to spoil the experience, which was a pleasure in the radio theatre, the short pieces showcase the company's artistic aesthetic, in each case both amusing and providing food for thought.

Each has a surreal undercurrent running through it, in addition to exploring the difficulties of life and human interactions in the 21st-century.

Happiness by Nick Payne views an unhappily married couple who both separately and collectively do everything that they can conceive in order to get their relationship back on track.

Silver Drills by Robin French is a kind of sci-fi comedy horror story set in the world of eccentric naturalists and their badly behaved subjects.

The Reunion by Katie Douglas is a quirky comedy looking at ageing from some quite unusual and unexpected angles.

The plays will also be available on iPlayer for those with better things to do on Sunday night.