300 episodes

Eight tracks, a book and a luxury: what would you take to a desert island? Guests share the soundtrack of their lives.

Desert Island Discs BBC

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.5 • 100 Ratings

Eight tracks, a book and a luxury: what would you take to a desert island? Guests share the soundtrack of their lives.

    Billie Piper, actor

    Billie Piper, actor

    Billie Piper is an Olivier Award winning actor and former pop star.

    She was born in Swindon in September 1982, and her parents nurtured her interests in dance and drama from a young age.

    After a winning a scholarship to study at the Sylvia Young Theatre School, she moved to London as a young teenager, leaving the family home. By the age of 15, she was a full time pop star. She became the youngest female artist ever to go straight to number one in the UK charts when her debut single was a hit in 1998.

    Just three years later, after releasing more successful singles and two albums and touring furiously to promote them, Billie left the music industry. She married the DJ Chris Evans, and found herself the frequent subject of newspaper stories.

    She decided to turn to acting, her first love, and by 2005 she was back in the spotlight playing Rose Tyler in the BBC’s revival of Doctor Who. Since then she has taken on a wide range of acclaimed screen and stage roles, most notably picking up all six available awards for Best Actress – including the Olivier Award – when she starred in a new version of Lorca's play Yerma. Her recent TV series I Hate Suzy, which she co-created, has been BAFTA nominated and she has also written and directed her first film, Rare Beasts.

    DISC ONE: Pure Imagination by Gene Wilder
    DISC TWO: This Must Be the Place (Naïve Melody) by Talking Heads
    DISC THREE: Sara by Fleetwood Mac
    DISC FOUR: Out of Space by The Prodigy
    DISC FIVE: Champagne Supernova by Oasis
    DISC SIX: Turn The Page by The Streets
    DISC SEVEN: Halo by Beyoncé
    DISC EIGHT: Juicy by The Notorious B.I.G

    BOOK CHOICE: The Cost of Living by Deborah Levy
    LUXURY ITEM: Billie’s children’s art work
    CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Champagne Supernova by Oasis

    Presenter Lauren Laverne
    Producer Sarah Taylor

    • 36 min
    Classic Desert Island Discs - Desmond Tutu

    Classic Desert Island Discs - Desmond Tutu

    Sue Lawley talks to former Archbishop of Capetown Desmond Tutu in a programme first broadcast in 1994. Desmond Tutu celebrates his 90th birthday this year.

    • 37 min
    Classic Desert Island Discs - Helen McCrory

    Classic Desert Island Discs - Helen McCrory

    Lauren Laverne talks to the actress Helen McCrory, in a programme first broadcast in 2020. Helen McCrory died in April 2021, at the age of 52.

    • 35 min
    Classic Desert Island Discs - Kathleen Turner

    Classic Desert Island Discs - Kathleen Turner

    Sue Lawley interviews the actor Kathleen Turner in a programme first broadcast in 2000.

    • 34 min
    Classic Desert Island Discs - Russell T Davies

    Classic Desert Island Discs - Russell T Davies

    Russell T Davies is one of the U.K.'s most successful television writers. He spent his teenage years learning his dramatic craft with the West Glamorgan Youth Theatre, and his career in television began in the children's department at the BBC.

    His first solo hit TV series was the ground-breaking, sexually frank drama Queer as Folk, first broadcast on Channel 4 in 1999.
    A lifelong Doctor Who fan, he relaunched the series in 2005 for a new generation of viewers. Such was its success, he found himself working around the clock.

    More recently, he wrote the highly-acclaimed series A Very English Scandal, starring Hugh Grant as Jeremy Thorpe, and the dystopian drama Years and Years.

    DISC ONE: Julie Covington, Charlotte Cornwell, Rula Lenska - Sugar Mountain
    DISC TWO: Hora Staccato (1950 version) performed by Jascha Heifetz and Emanuel Bay
    DISC THREE: The New Christy Minstrels - Three Wheels on My Wagon -
    DISC FOUR: Leonard Bernstein's Gloria in excelsis, performed by The Norman Scribner Choir
    DISC FIVE: Kate Bush - Wuthering Heights
    DISC SIX: The OT Quartet - Hold That Sucker Down (Builds Like A Skyscraper Mix)
    DISC SEVEN: Neil Hannon - Song For Ten
    DISC EIGHT: Electric Light Orchestra - Mr. Blue Sky
    BOOK CHOICE: Asterix and the Roman Agent by by René Goscinny with illustrations by Albert Uderzo

    LUXURY ITEM: A black Ball Pentol Pen
    CASTAWAY'S FAVOURITE: Leonard Bernstein's Gloria in excelsis

    Presenter: Lauren Laverne
    Producer: Sarah Taylor
    (First broadcast in 2019)

    • 42 min
    Classic Desert Island Discs - Murray Walker

    Classic Desert Island Discs - Murray Walker

    Kirsty Young talks to motor racing commentator Murray Walker, in a programme first broadcast in 2014. Murray Walker died in March 2021, at the age of 97.

    • 38 min

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5
100 Ratings

100 Ratings

Mktdec ,

Insight through Music

How wonderful! Gaining an insight of people who make a difference through music. This wonderful, calm, restorative presence in all our lives. Thank You Hosts of Desert Island.

Farukwaja ,

☑️💯

Luuurve this show.. & Kirsty 🥰

MLQ14 ,

Brilliant podcast

Thoroughly enjoy this show. The questions are perspective and Kirsty Young really gets to know the guests. The intro music takes me back to my childhood in the UK. I live in South Africa and left England in 1966!

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