Symphonie Espagnole Opus 21 (5) Edouard Lalo
Sir Derek Jacobi heads the cast for Classic FM’s Christmas Day 2013 drama, which retells the story of events immediately following the Nativity from the point of view of contemporary eye-witnesses.
The cast of The Bethlehem Tales gather for a rehearsal. They are Simon Greenall, Pippa Heywood, Sir Derek Jacobi, Kris Marshall, Sally Bretton and Pip Donaghy.
Interwoven with music drawn from the best of three centuries of Christmas Cantatas and Oratorios, The Bethlehem Tales is part thriller, part magical comedy: a radio play for the family that offers a different perspective on the Christmas story.
The Bethlehem Tales is produced by the same team who previously adapted Michael Morpurgo’s On Angel Wings, narrated by the author, with Jack Shepherd and Imogen Stubbs. They then went on to make The Christmas Mysteries, an original script, based on the Second Shepherd’s Play from the Wakefield Mysteries, with Jack Shepherd, Mark Benton and Simon Greenall.
Sir Derek Jacobi is one of the world's preeminent classical actors. He was one of the eight founding members of Olivier's National Theatre Company. The classic TV drama serial, 'I, Claudius' (1976) made Jacobi a household name. He has also played such historical figures as Lord Byron, Thomas Becket, Adolf Hitler and the painter Francis Bacon. He was knighted in 1994 for his services to the theatre.
Pippa Haywood is best remembered for playing Helen Brittas in the comedy series, 'The Brittas Empire' (1991-1997). She was also the hot-tempered human resources director Joanna Clore in 'Green Wing' (2004-2006), for which she won the "best comedy female performance" award at the 2005 Rose d'Or television festival in Lucerne, Switzerland.
Kris Marshall played Nick Harper in 'My Family' (2000-2005), Colin Frisell in 'Love, Actually' (2003) and Dave in 'Citizen Khan' (2012).
Sally Bretton is best known for appearing in TV sitcoms including 'Absolute Power', 'Green Wing', 'The Office', and, most recently, 'Not Going Out'.
Cumberland-born Simon Greenall has appeared in a wide variety of roles in TV, film, radio and the theatre, and is best known for his role as Michael in the TV series, I'm Alan Partridge, and as the voice of headmaster Iqbal in Bromwell High.
Pip Donaghy is best known for his appearances in the TV series 'The Invisible Man' (1984), 'Nineteen Eighty-Four' (1984), 'Prime Suspect: Scent of Darkness' (1995) and 'This Is Personal: The Hunt for the Yorkshire Ripper' (2000).