Broken Arts. Copyright: BBC.

Broken Arts

BBC Radio 4 sketch show. 6 episodes (1 series) in 2009. Stars David Quantick, Dan Maier, Richie Webb, Margaret Cabourn-Smith, Jane Lamacraft and John Davis.

Press Clippings

Also welcome in the prime 6.30pm slot is Broken Arts. It wasn't as consistently funny as Recorded for Training Purposes but I bet it will be, given a week or so. Even so, there were some moments of utter comic wonder, as in the DVD review of a classic (fictional) Doctor Who episode from 1974, The Catalogues of Argos, and an item on whether there should be Harold Pinter stamps (long ones, said one woman, to allow for the pause, as in Twenty... Nine pence). Best of all was the perfectly realised sketch where Gilbert and Sullivan come back to comment on such contemporary obsessions as football and talent shows.

Gillian Reynolds, The Telegraph, 19th January 2009

I looked forward to some lighthearted banter in the shape of Broken Arts, described by pre-publicity as 'a fast-moving and comical guide to culture'. "Just think South Bank Show for people who can't read," suggested host David Quantick.

It is an idea which has potential as there is much in both low and high brow culture that screams out for parody and satire. Unfortunately, though, this isn't the answer. By the end of the half hour, I was left slightly dumbfounded by how dull and unoriginal the majority of the material was. Admittedly, the idea of having Gilbert and Sullivan back from the grave - singing about things such as football and The X-Factor - was vaguely amusing, but on the whole it was an opportunity missed.

The exception was the Pinter set of stamps sketch (with the suggestion of a wide stamp with a pause in the middle) but the comedy pickings overall were poor. Five episodes remain for Quantick and company to raise their game.

Lisa Martland, The Stage, 19th January 2009

Popular culture is dangerously entertaining: the desire to consume leaves us helpless and clueless. Thanks heavens for the razor-sharp brain cells of David Quantick who, in this new series, presents a fast-moving and genuinely comical guide to culture. Front Row fans need not feel left out: he, and his assembled team of players, musicians and comedians, will be sneering at highbrow as well as Neanderthal-level performances through the medium of song, sketches, poems, reviews and interviews.

Jane Anderson, Radio Times, 13th January 2009

One of my favourite comic writers, David Quantick, turns his comedic gaze to the arts and popular culture. With assistance from Daniel Maier, Richie Webb, Margaret Cabourn-Smith and Jane Lamacraft. Expect humour on a par with The Now Show and Harry Hill's TV Burp (two projects Quantick has also had a hand in).

Scott Matthewman, The Stage, 9th January 2009