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The Waste land and Four Quartets - (BBC Radio Collection) Library Binding – Audiobook, 5 Apr 2004

3.9 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Library Binding: 1 pages
  • Publisher: BBC Physical Audio; Unabridged edition (5 April 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0563523352
  • ISBN-13: 978-0563523352
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 27.9 x 14 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 345,709 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Scofield's reading is richly resonant and compelling -- Times, May 1, 2004


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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By Michael Jacobs VINE VOICE on 5 Aug. 2005
Format: Library Binding Verified Purchase
Having heard Eliot's own readings of The Wasteland, I can say this is different in style but performed with slightly more emotion and dramatic energy. It is also read clearly, which means that although symbolism and literary references can remain hard to fully comprehend, the imagery is made as clear as possible. As well as an excellent reader, they are of course excellent poems. It probably won't be the kind of thing you listen to every other day, but nevertheless it's a fantastic thing to have in any CD collection.
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Format: Library Binding
The palpable sense of controlled emotion and depth, so much a feature of a Paul Scofield performance, is beautifully and appropriately deployed here. I've not yet heard the Eliot recording but, for me, this reading is convincing and moving.

My caveat concerns the intrusive, insensitive and frankly moronic inclusion of musical parentheses to the reading, the profundity of which absolutely demands dignified silence. What was in the producer's mind here entirely escapes me: if gilding the lily aspired to the level of criminality, this is an example.

Though far from enough to ruin the recording, its a real pity nonetheless.
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Format: Library Binding
Only modified rapture for this recording, alas. Schofield was a fine, intelligent actor, but here I find his voice dull and monotonous. Neither does he convince me that he has really grappled with the depths of the poetry, especially the Four Quartets. In addition, I was irritated by the intrusive and trashy music. I agree wholeheartedly with another reviewer that if you want to hear Eliot read aloud - and this is the test for all great poetry - you should go to Alec Guinness. I have yet to hear his reading of the Four Quartets surpassed, and it is a disgrace that his recording is presently unavailable, at least so far as I am aware.
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Format: Library Binding
Well, where do I start? The best version of either of these was recorded for the BBC by Alec Guiness in the 1970's. His rendering of the 4 quartets was excellent and he Waste Land had its little dramas but not too overplayed. Unfortunately, I found this version over dramatic and overplayed, so that I felt I was being performed to rather than read to for the understanding of the text. Much as Schofield has a fabulous voice, I was disappointed and would still recommend the Guinness version, if you can get it.
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