I am sorry, but it is one day too late that I am able to give you this news: Nat is narrating a four part docu-series on BBC Two called "Dickens in America".

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It stars Miriam Margolyes as a presenter and it retraces Dickens' route during his visit to America in 1842. Dickens gave a report on his travels and experiences in his book "American Notes".

Nat portrays Charles Dickens - as the invisible narrator. The next three episodes will be airing each Monday from 19:00 - 20:00 (GMT) and it will be on until December 19.

As far as I understand there will be no repeats of this one, unfortunately. But I am very happy to give you some more details - thanks to the kind help of Lion Television Scotland. Here the episode descriptions:

 

Episode 1 (air date Nov 21, 2005)
The Passage Out

Miriam Margolyes retraces the route of Charles Dickens’ 19th century road-trip though America to find out what has changed in the USA since the great author’s visit to the States – and what hasn’t. 

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After visiting the V&A to see the original handwritten manuscript of Dickens’ book Margolyes sets out on the first leg of her 6,000 mile journey on board the Queen Mary 2.

After her transatlantic voyage she visits Boston’s extraordinary School for the Blind - Helen Keller’s alma mata.  She is hauled before the Chief Justice of The Supreme Trial Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in Worcester, attends a politically inspired church service at New Haven’s gay-friendly Metropolitan Community Church, is serenaded by Yale University Glee Club and has a strangely surreal encounter with the Connecticut Branch of the International Dickens Fellowship.

 

Episode 2 (air date Nov 28, 2005)
The Republic of my Imagination

Miriam Margolyes is halfway through her literary road movie following the trail left by Charles Dickens’ on his 19th century journey across America, a journey he immortalized in his controversial travel book AMERICAN NOTES.  Margolyes aims to discover what’s changed and what hasn’t in the intervening 160 years as she arrives in New York where she visits the little-known Roosevelt Island and makes a surprisingly emotional discovery at New York Public Library.

Philadelphia - an unnaturally Dickens-obsessed city – still has the prison that Dickens writes about in AMERICAN NOTES as well as the most active Dickens Societies in America, a ‘Dickens Drinking Club’ for men only, Dickens’ pet raven – stuffed, mounted and on display in the local library - and the only life size statue of Dickens anywhere in the world.  Margolyes finishes this leg of her journey in the security obsessed Washington.
 

Episode 3 (air date Dec 5, 2005)
Pistols, Preachers and Prisons


Miriam Margolyes is on the trail of her literary hero Charles Dickens through the United States, following him in the footsteps of the journey he recorded in his 1842 travel book AMERICAN NOTES. 

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This week she follows Dickens inland 1,000 miles along the course of the Ohio River to Louisville Kentucky in the company of cowboys and crazies and attends the Kentucky Derby. 

She meets a pistol-packing Christian Minister, visits the women inmates of the local Federal penitentiary and tours the tobacco factories of Virginia. 

She sails down the Ohio River on board one of the last remaining original Mississippi steamboats, meets members of the United Houma Indian Nation on a sacred burial ground and is taught how to improve her manners by an American Etiquette instructor. 

 



Episode 4 (air date Dec 19, 2005)
Journey’s End

Miriam Margolyes comes to the end of her 6,000 mile journey through North America following the route taken by Charles Dickens on his 1842 American journey, recorded in his book AMERICAN NOTES. 

This final episode sees Margolyes visit Canada to meet several obsessive Victorian collectors and take part in a reconstruction of a play produced by Dickens during his stay in Canada. 

She visits Niagara and explores a very snowy Montreal before heading back to New York where she visits the Shaker community of Mount Lebanon and the army cadets of West Point Military Academy and she meets the unlikely Dr Mesmer and the curious Harmonites of the New Society for Universal Harmony before taking to the stage to perform in a one-woman presentation in front of a specially invited audience at New York’s Lincoln Center. 

Ratings for this show

Episode date Viewers in mio. Audience share 
Nov 21
1.1
 5%
 

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