Further to my earlier post I have just received a preview copy of the broadcast from the director, Dirk Maggs.
I can’t really say much as the programme has not been broadcast yet and the recording was marked ‘For your ears only’.
However, as I suspected it is a fictional play, but very loosely based on the events leading up to the first ever Sky at Night in April 1957. But, to make it entertaining for the masses, conversations have been invented between various people, in the BBC and the BAA. Also, various events that occurred between 1954 and 1957 have been stirred and mixed in a dramatic way so the chronological sequence of events is not preserved at all. But I guess the listening public, keen on radio drama, will not mind the factual innaccuracies…. Think of it as the events of Patrick’s life in the 1950s, but in a parallel universe! I imagined I would cringe a lot more than I actually did. It is quite amusing in places and I feel that Patrick’s general character has been captured well and the voice is very ‘Culshaw-like’ even if it isn’t Jon Culshaw doing Patrick’s voice! Even so, it is a work of fiction. But I did find it quite entertaining…….
Henry King wrote a number of BAA book reviews, but his reviews of Patrick’s ‘Suns, myths and men’ and several of Wilkins’ books were very scathing indeed….one could even say, dripping in sarcasm. The Radio 4 fictional Henry King is pretty much like I would imagine him to be, although the conversations between him and Patrick have been invented…..
I can’t really say any more as it has not been broadcast, but if you have an open mind and are a Patrick fan I think you will find it amusing in the same way as a Jon Culshaw impersonation of Patrick is entertaining….