27 February 2010

Frieda Hughes on BBC Radio 3

For those able to listen to BBC Radio 3, Frieda Hughes, the daughter of Sylvia Plath and Ted Hughes, will be the guest of Michael Berkeley's Private Passions, Sunday 28 February 2010 at noon.

Thanks to Gail Crowther for bring this to our attention.


Anonymous said...

I'm able to listen to it right now, though it's too early for the "Frieda Show" - are we not supposed to be able to get this in the US? It appears that we can access it here - now, if I can only get up that early after being up this late....thx Peter! kim

Anonymous said...

thank you for having told about the programme,,im listening to it right in this moment.and it is the very first time i hear Frieda's voice. it's thrilling and moving for me because she's got a very similar tone of voice of her mother(most of all she gets it when she reads her poems) and it's emotional to me because she reminds me so much her mother and it's touching.
thank you Peter for having given this nice sunday gift ;)

p.s apologize for my horrible english.

best regards,Nina-Italy

Peter K Steinberg said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Peter K Steinberg said...

The musical selections were quite wild; all very lovely. It was great to hear Hughes read her poems. "For Nick", an elegy for her brother, tore a hole in my chest. "Doll" I like better hearing rather than reading and suspect that this could be the case for many of her poems.

Lots more one could say. Any other listeners out there??

Nina, thank you for your comment. Not too long at all!

Kristina Zimbakova said...

I am not sure but I think you can access the show in the next two weeks on bbc 3, that is what they do for the other radio programmes. Her voice is so similar to her mother', incredible. To me Frieda sounds like a very confident woman.

Anna said...

I'M DEVASTATED! I missed it! I really hope, I'll be able to listen to it somewhere!
If someone knows for sure, please please let me know!
I wanted to tune in sooo badly! :(

Anna said...

I was searching for the poem and I found the link to the show, available to listen for the next seven days ;)


Peter K Steinberg said...


Thank you for posting that link!!

Kristina, I also find the voice quite similar to that of her mother. The cadences, the words chosen, even. The attitude towards poetry and its composition...


angelictenderbutton said...

I heard the Private Passions programme before when Tori Amos was on, and I remember thinking how fascinating an idea it was to share musical selections and talk about their influence in the lives of the famous.

I enjoyed this throughly! Thanks for the link, Anna.

Anna said...

You're welcome ;)

I'm listening to it right now and loving it! :) When I listen to Frieda talking, it sounds like Sylvia reading her poetry, really, truly and honestly :)

By the way, Peter I bought your book and started reading immediately and I'm already loving it, even learned some new things in the indroduction ;)

Peter K Steinberg said...

Anna, I've heard of people buying my book to cure insomnia but never out of interest in the subject!!

Sorlil said...

Finally got the chance to listen to it. A strange experience, I really did not expect her to sound so much like Plath.

All the musical choices were either geared towards uplifting or empowering, what to make of that?

I'm not sure what I was expecting but I was surprised at her super-confident tone. I come away with the impression that she is a very resiliant woman with an great level of mental strength.

The children thing is very interesting and yet she writes books for children! She gives the impression that the burying of the doll story in the poem actually happened, a very strong emotional reaction for a child, I think - the kind of thing a psychoanalyst could have a field day with?!

Peter K Steinberg said...

Thank you for such a thoughtful post! Was this the first time you'd heard Frieda's voice? The music played a game of tug of war...

Remember all of Plath's children's books were written before she had children (and some of Ted Hughes' too) - so there is something there in the family gene that enables them to write for children.

When I read the poetry of Frieda Hughes, I too feel like they are all so grounded in reality, in the factual. I'm sure there are moments of spontaneous creativity or something, but I find them accessible when there is something anchoring the poem in her history.

Sorlil said...

Yes, it was the first time I had heard her voice. I haven't read a great deal of her poetry - it's hard to read it without comparing her (unfairly) to Plath and Hughes. However, I did enjoy parts of the 'Nick' poem that she read.

Julia said...

I caught this link (and your blog) in the nick of time! Thanks to Anna, and to this site for posting it.

I hadn't heard any of Frieda's new poems, but I have 45 and Waxworks. She is a different kind of poet from her parents--lacking in all that smart double-entendre and symbolism-- but it is honest and heartfelt, and you can't knock that.

Anna said...

Does anyone know if it's still online somewhere, somehow?

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Publications & Acknowledgements

  • BBC Four.A Poet's Guide to Britain: Sylvia Plath. London: BBC Four, 2009. (Acknowledged in)
  • Biography: Sylvia Plath. New York: A & E Television Networks, 2005. (Photographs used)
  • Connell, Elaine. Sylvia Plath: Killing the angel in the house. 2d ed. Hebden Bridge: Pennine Pens, 1998. (Acknowledged in)
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives." Plath Profiles 2. Summer 2009: 183-208.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives, Redux." Plath Profiles 3. Summer 2010: 232-246.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives 3." Plath Profiles 4. Summer 2011: 119-138.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives 4: Looking for New England." Plath Profiles 5. Summer 2012: 11-56.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. "These Ghostly Archives 5: Reanimating the Past." Plath Profiles 6. Summer 2013: 27-62.
  • Crowther, Gail and Peter K. Steinberg. These Ghostly Archives: The Unearthing of Sylvia Plath. Oxford: Fonthill, 2017.
  • Death Be Not Proud: The Graves of Poets. New York: Poets.org. (Photographs used)
  • Doel, Irralie, Lena Friesen and Peter K. Steinberg. "An Unacknowledged Publication by Sylvia Plath." Notes & Queries 56:3. September 2009: 428-430.
  • Elements of Literature, Third Course. Austin, Tex. : Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 2009. (Photograph used)
  • Gill, Jo. "Sylvia Plath in the South West." University of Exeter Centre for South West Writing, 2008. (Photograph used)
  • Helle, Anita Plath. The Unraveling Archive: Essays on Sylvia Plath. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2007. (Photographs used, acknowledged in)
  • Helle, Anita. "Lessons from the Archive: Sylvia Plath and the Politics of Memory". Feminist Studies 31:3. Fall 2005: 631-652.. (Acknowledged in)
  • Holden, Constance. "Sad Poets' Society." Science Magazine. 27 July 2008. (Photograph used)
  • Making Trouble: Three Generations of Funny Jewish Women, Motion Picture. Directed by Rachel Talbot. Brookline (Mass.): Jewish Women's Archive, 2007. (Photograph used)
  • Plath, Sylvia, and Karen V. Kukil. The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath, 1950-1962. New York: Anchor Books, 2000. (Acknowledged in)
  • Plath, Sylvia, and Peter K. Steinberg and Karen V. Kukil (eds.). The Letters of Sylvia Plath, Volume 1, 1940-1956. London: Faber, 2017. Forthcoming.
  • Plath, Sylvia. Glassklokken. Oslo: De norske Bokklubbene, 2004. (Photograph used on cover)
  • Reiff, Raychel Haugrud. Sylvia Plath: The Bell Jar and Poems (Writers and Their Works). Marshall Cavendish Children's Books, 2008.. (Images provided)
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "'A Fetish: Somehow': A Sylvia Plath Bookmark." Court Green 13. 2017.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "'I Should Be Loving This': Sylvia Plath's 'The Perfect Place' and The Bell Jar." Plath Profiles 1. Summer 2008: 253-262.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "'They Had to Call and Call': The Search for Sylvia Plath." Plath Profiles 3. Summer 2010: 106-132.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "A Perfectly Beautiful Time: Sylvia Plath at Camp Helen Storrow." Plath Profiles 4. Summer 2011: 149-166.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "Proof of Plath." Fine Books & Collections 9:2. Spring 2011: 11-12.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "Sylvia Plath." The Spoken Word: Sylvia Plath. London: British Library, 2010.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "Textual Variations in The Bell Jar Publications." Plath Profiles 5. Summer 2012.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "The Persistence of Plath." Fine Books & Collections. Autumn 2017: 24-29
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "This is a Celebration: A Festschrift for The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath." Plath Profiles 3 Supplement. Fall 2010: 3-14.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. "Writing Life" [Introduction]. Sylvia Plath in Devon: A Year's Turning. Stroud, Eng.: Fonthill Media, 2014.
  • Steinberg, Peter K. Sylvia Plath (Great Writers). Philadelphia: Chelsea House Publishers, 2004.