|What though the field be lost?|
|All is not lost—the unconquerable will,|
|And study of revenge, immortal hate,|
|And courage never to submit or yield:|
|And what is else not to be overcome.|
BBC 7 Radio is running a dramatization of Milton's Paradise Lost. It's in 41 parts, 15 minutes each, running 1 episode per day Mon-Fri. Dennis Quilley narrates and Ian McDiarmid plays Satan. I just listened to the first couple parts and it's very good. The Listen Again option for each episode is good for seven days.
I just relistened to the first three parts (because I have book reviews to finish and if I'm going to procrastinate, I may as well do it in the company of Milton) and I'm not as enamored of the production as I was at first. I don't think Ian McDiarmid's performance as Satan is all that great. First of all, it's a little hard for me to separate his voice from Emperor Palpatine. But mostly, I think he's a little too old for Satan. He sounds like a wizened old troll and Milton's Satan should sound much more young and vigorous, not a scheming veteran, but rather a seasoned leader in his prime whose voice charms, thrills and inspires at once. Perhaps this is too tall order for any actor. I'll keep listening. It's still a rip-roaring epic.