News - The Kinks


In the year of its 50th anniversary, and with a newly remastered double CD re-release out today, The Kinks’ album Arthur (Or The Decline And Fall Of The British Empire) has been transformed into an audio drama for BBC Radio 4....

Press Release

Arthur has been adapted by The Kinks frontman and modern music icon Ray Davies himself, alongside Olivier-nominated playwright, dramaturg and musician Paul Sirett.

The story - of both the drama and the original album - sees a close-knit, working-class family torn apart when Ray's brother-in-law, Arthur, decides to move his family half way around the world to Australia.

Ray Davies said, “The album Arthur (Or The Decline And Fall Of The British Empire) is inspired by real life events. Arthur’s generation returned from war to find Britain’s future in the midst of cultural and social change and political uncertainty, much like today. A play set yesterday about all our tomorrows.”

Arthur features songs written at a pivotal time in British culture that have been re-versioned especially for Radio 4, fifty years later. The cast includes Lee Ross as Arthur and Rosie Cavaliero as Rose (see below for the full cast list).

Radio 4 Commissioning Editor for Drama and Fiction, Alison Hindell, added “It's not often that a radio drama makes you want to dance as you listen but this reinvention of Ray Davies and The Kinks' seminal album really does. It's a heartfelt true story of a particular moment in recent history that has resonances today about the ways in which we connect as humans at times of great social change - through story, music, home and family.”

The audiodrama will be broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on Saturday 2nd November from 2.30-3.45pm



Today also sees the re-release of the original album on double CD with a deluxe box set coming on 25th, which includes the previously unreleased track The Future (listen to that below).

The box set contains 4 CDs comprising of 81 tracks in total, 5 of them unreleased and 28 previously unreleased versions. These include 2019 newly remastered versions of the original album from HD sources (in its original track listing), mono and stereo single versions, B-sides, alternate mono and stereo mixes, rehearsal tracks, BBC mixes and the lost Dave Davies’ solo album, with bonus tracks.

It also includes Ray Davies’ compiled medley of unreleased demo tracks, 2 new recordings of Ray Davies with The Doo Wop Choir, ‘Arthur & The Emigrants’ including one previously unreleased track, 3 previously unreleased ‘The Come Dancing Workshop Ensemble’ tracks, and new Ray Davies remixes of ‘Australia’ and ‘Shangri-La’.

A 68-page softback book has also been included, featuring extensive essays by world-renowned Kinks experts, original cancelled Arthur play co-scriptwriter Julian Mitchell, and original album sleeve designer Bob Lawrie. There are also new interviews with Ray Davies, Dave Davies and Mick Avory, as well as band photos, original release international cover artwork and printed memorabilia.

Four 7” singles from the album can also be found - ‘Drivin’, ‘Victoria’, ‘Shangri-La’ & ‘Hold My Hand’ (Dave Davies solo) - all reproduced with original international artwork. Finally, a bespoke, exclusive, metal & enamel Kinks logo pin badge is included for fans to wear.








The Songs in the audiodrama are:

Victoria… performed by The Kinks
The Future… performed by Arthur and the Emigrants
The Village Green… performed by Rosie Cavaliero
Arthur - version 1… performed by Arthur and the Emigrants
Arthur - version 2… performed by The Kinks
Some Mother’s Son… performed by The Kinks
The Future... performed by Mark Newnham
Yes Sir, No Sir - version 1… performed by The Kinks
Yes Sir, No Sir - version 2… performed by Lee Ross
Drivin’… performed by The Kinks, Lee Ross and Rosie Cavaliero
Mr Churchill Says… performed by The Kinks
Brainwashed… performed by Ben Norris, Mark Newnham, Stephen Lloyd and Arthur Hughes
Waterloo Sunset… performed by Mark Newnham
Australia… performed by Lee Ross and The Kinks
Pictures In The Sand… performed by Lee Ross
Young And Innocent Days… performed by Rosie Cavaliero
Nothing To Say… performed by Ben Norris
Postcard From London… performed by Rosie Cavaliero and Ray Davies
You Really Got Me… performed by the Kinks
Shangri-La... performed by The Kinks

Guitar by Bill Shanley
All Songs Written By Ray Davies

Cast and crew:
Arthur… Lee Ross
Rose… Rosie Cavaliero
Ray… Stephen Lloyd
Bobby… Arthur Hughes
Dave… Mark Newnham
Terry… Ben Norris
Julie/Sally… Emerald O’Hanrahan
Mr Henderson… David Holt
Mum… Karen Spicer
Dad/Jones… Wayne Norman

Sound Engineers: David Thomas and Matt Jaggar
Production Coordinator: Sarah Tombling
Musical Director: Harvey Brough
Director: Karen Rose
Producers: Karen Rose and Ray Davies

A Sweet Talk Production for BBC Radio 4