Slow Motion



Given that we’re led to believe that the majority of television comes into existence through a war of attrition, it’s reassuring that programmes such as last night’s Dawn Chorus: The Sounds of Spring make it all the way through to broadcast. Shown as part of a short season of programmes praising the dawdle over the sprint, Dawn Chorus saw BBC4 set aside an hour of its schedule for a narration free recording, by sound supremo Chris Watson, of an April morning’s birdsong in an oak wood on the edge of Dartmoor, a lowland heath in East Devon and a small park in Exeter.

Considering the cost of most television programming in comparison – the budget for this was described (perhaps unsurprisingly) as a “pittance” – I’m hoping that this short season doesn’t need to gather together too much interest to be deemed successful enough to repeat (although before the programmes went out Channel Editor at BBC4 Cassian Harrison admitted that the concern over potential ratings was “slightly nerve wracking” – so perhaps it’s not quite as straightforward as I’d have hoped).


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