13 episodes

Documentary adventures that encourage you to take a closer listen.

Lights Out BBC Radio 4

    • Society & Culture
    • 5.0 • 5 Ratings

Documentary adventures that encourage you to take a closer listen.

    Dust

    Dust

    "I noticed that language seems to fail us. How do you write about the foundations of our existence? That is how mythology enters very naturally into the story, because history is about ideas, religions, empires, wars and culture. Mythology is about the fundaments. Sun, moon, wind, oceans, great floods and tragic gods... We are living in mythological times, where we are shaking the fundaments." - Andri Snær Magnason
    Drawing on ideas in his book, On Time and Water, the Icelandic writer Andri Snær Magnason and the Scottish artist Katie Paterson explore how our imagination can help us hold the moment we live in. From handfuls of dust to watching geological time mark the landscape, this documentary flows from the night skies into the deepest known point in our oceans.
    Archive recording from Raddir - Voices: Recordings of Folk Songs courtesy of the Árni Magnússon Institute
    'Vatnajökull (the sound of)' recording courtesy of Katie Paterson
    Recording of the journey to Okjökull by Guðni Tómasson
    Music composed and performed by Phil Smith and Zac Gvi
    Produced by Eleanor McDowall
    A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 4

    • 28 min
    Four Walls

    Four Walls

    Documentary adventures that invite a closer listen.
    For generations, queer people have moved to London from more conservative parts of the UK, in search of community and to live as their authentic selves. Now, with housing so unstable, queer people are among the marginalised communities for which homelessness is on the rise. They continue to come to London now to find their place, but the trade off is extreme financial insecurity.
    Can you really feel at home when the four walls around you are unstable?
    Jesse Lawson talks to Karen Fisch, Topher Campbell, Carla Ecola and Reggie Lennox about what it means to have to choose between one form of home over another.
    Music by Femi Oriogun-Williams
    Produced by Jesse Lawson
    A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 4

    • 28 min
    Crossings

    Crossings

    Documentary adventures that invite a closer listen.
    Sahid has spent years on a relentless journey. Crossing international borders, he has confronted the harrowing realities of human trafficking, slavery, and rafting across the Mediterranean Sea. But his journey isn't over yet - Sahid is at risk of being sent back to the first European Union country he arrived in, a country where he was unlawfully imprisoned and tortured.
    This is the story of one man's search for safety, from Sierra Leone to Strasbourg.
    Produced by Phoebe McIndoe and Redzi Bernard
    A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 4

    • 28 min
    Threads

    Threads

    Documentary adventures that invite a closer listen.
    Infamous during the Greenham Common protests of the 1980s for the recklessness of her activism and her multiple prison sentences (as heard in Lights Out: Greenham Convictions), Lyn Barlow now lives quietly in Somerset. She spends her time making textile art, huge tapestries that document the turbulence of her childhood in care and the struggles of her adulthood - both with the State and herself.
    Now that her work is on display in Watchet's East Quay gallery, in an exhibition shared with Grayson Perry called Common Thread, Lyn reflects on the textures, the threads and the imagery of her life.
    Produced by Alan Hall
    (with music by Alabaster DePlume, licensed courtesy of Domino Publishing Company Limited.)
    A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 4

    • 28 min
    Lithified

    Lithified

    “I was well aware of this synchronicity: that Cornwall was going onto lithium, or what I prefer to call ‘lithifying’, just as I was ‘delithifying’, or coming off it. This wasn’t an accidentally aligned pairing of incidents. I’d planned it that way.”
    In 2022, Laura Grace Simpkins made two big life changes. She decided to stop taking lithium (a medication she was prescribed for her mental health) just as she moved to Cornwall—the only place where lithium is being mined in the UK. In 'Lithified', Laura gets ready for her future without the silvery-white metal, while exploring the landscape it will soon be coming from.
    Featuring the voices of:
    Marcia Bjornerud, Professor of Geology and Environmental Studies at Lawrence University
    Jeremy Wrathall, Founder and CEO of Cornish Lithium
    Dr Beth Simons, Cornish geologist and author of ‘Variscan Coast’
    Written and narrated by Laura Grace Simpkins
    Music and sound by Alice Boyd
    Produced by Alice Boyd and Laura Grace Simpkins
    A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 4

    • 28 min
    Dead Ends

    Dead Ends

    “Should we delete the sex tape?” Should we get rid of the crime scene photographs? How do I find a true image of my mum amidst the recordings, fragments and images she left behind?"
    Exploring an archive of home videos, photographs, memories and news reports, Talia Augustidis reflects on how we choose to remember someone. Told through five chapters, each part focuses on a single image of her mum, who died when Talia was three.
    Dead Ends is an exploration of what privacy and control is afforded to people who sit at the heart of our news stories, as accidental absences and fragments of memory piece together these self-contained narratives of loss.
    Talia collected the tape for Dead Ends over several years. In 2022 she received a Content is Queen micro-grant, which allowed her to begin piecing these stories together.
    Original music composed by Jeremy Warmsley
    Produced by Talia Augustidis
    A Falling Tree production for BBC Radio 4

    • 28 min

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