TV UK TV

Dance To The Music Of Time, A (Channel 4 1997, James Purefoy)

Dance to the Music of Time

In the fabulous drama serial A Dance to the Music of Time we travel across five decades of upperclass life in Britain, from the 1920’s onwards especially for two men Nicholas Jenkins and Kenneth Widmerpool. Based on the mammoth collection of twelve novels by Anthony Powell this serial could never hope to match up to the brilliance of the novels but was still a superb piece of work,.

Dennis Potter had once been commissioned to write a serial around A Dance to the Music of Time novels but could not condense the material enough to make it work for TV, indeed this version at 8 hours is a mere glimpse of the detail in the books.

production details
UK / Channel 4 / 4×120 minute episodes / Broadcast 9 – 30 October 1997

Writer: Hugh Whitmore / Novels: Anthony Powell / Producer and Director: Alvin Rakoff

cast
JAMES PUREFOY as Nicholas Jenkins
SIMON RUSSELL BEALE as Kenneth Widmerpool
PAUL RHYS as Charles Stringham
CLAIRE SKINNER as Jean Duport
MIRANDA RICHARDSON as Pamela Flitton
ZOE WANAMAKER as Audrey MacLintock
ALAN BENNETT as Sillery
EDWARD FOX as Uncle Giles
JONATHAN CAKE as Peter Templar
JOHN GIELGUD as St John Clarke
EMMA FIELDING as Isobel
NICOLA WALKER as Gypsy
CARMEN DU SAUTOY as Miss Weedon
JOHN STANDING as Older Nicholas (episode 4)