Insight & Analysis

BBC re-runs play for listener who missed ending 45 years ago!

Published: Aug 2023

BBC radio has re-broadcast a play for one listener who missed the ending 45 years ago.

Closed red stage curtains in theatre

Sue Reilly was totally gripped by the Alex Coppel comic murder mystery play called The Gazebo when she first heard it on the World Service back in August 1978. However, she missed the closing minutes and never heard the ending to the story.

When the BBC station, Radio 4 Extra asked listeners to suggest programmes they would love to hear again, Ms Reilly immediately decided to write to them.

Her letter read: “Years ago, when I used to listen to the radio under the blankets, there was a play on the World Service which I’m sure was called The Gazebo. It was a thriller and I believe the body was buried under the gazebo. Unfortunately, just as it was getting to the denouement, someone came upstairs, and I had to turn the radio off, and I never heard whodunnit! If you could play it one day that would be really great, and then after 45 years I will finally know what happened.”

The Gazebo was written by Coppel as a stage play in 1958 and the following year it was turned into a Hollywood film starring Glenn Ford, Debbie Reynolds and Carl Reiner. Coppel also worked on the screenplays for the Alfred Hitchcock films Vertigo and To Catch a Thief.

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