The National Theatre Of Brent's Iconic Icons. Image shows from L to R: Raymond Box (John Ramm), Desmond Olivier Dingle (Patrick Barlow). Copyright: CPL Productions.

The National Theatre Of Brent's Iconic Icons

BBC Radio 4 stand-up. 2 episodes (1 series), 2009 - 2011. Stars Patrick Barlow and John Ramm.

Press Clippings

The peerless National Theatre of Brent, led by artistic director Desmond Olivier Dingle (Patrick Barlow) and his hapless "entire company" Raymond (John Ramm), turns its attention to controversial Britartist Tracey Emin and in particular her infamous bed - one of the greatest beds ever unmade. Charged by collector Charles Saatchi to come up with a new work Tracey is motivated by the "inspirational ladies of history" following an argument with her boyfriend over the state of the flat. This is pomposity-pricking of the highest order and absolutely hilarious.

Tony Peters, Radio Times, 12th August 2010

And now, how about a couple of laughs? This week The National Theatre of Brent returned to Radio 4 and Jason Byrne has come back to Radio 2. Brent has always been silly stuff, with the laughs mostly lying in the pompous incompetence of Desmond Olivier Dingle and his sidekick/entire theatre company, Raymond. This short series is called "Iconic Icons" - this week's was Bob Dylan - and the Brent duo were, as ever, gently amusing rather than laugh-out-loud. But none the worse for that.

Miranda Sawyer, The Observer, 2nd August 2009

The esteemed National Theatre of Brent presents the first in an occasional series charting the lives of cultural giants of our time. First up is legendary, and indeed iconic, singer Bob Dylan. Artistic director Desmond Olivier Dingle and his entire company (Raymond) tell the story of how the young Robert Zimmerman left his home in Hibbin, Minnesota, and travelled to the folk clubs of New York in search of his hero Woody Guthrie. Once there he became Bob Dylan - taking his name from a book in Joan Baez's apartment: Dylan Thomas the Tank Engine - and adopted the life of a bohemian and fledgeling icon. It's an emotionally charged moment when our icon finally meets Guthrie and receives some salutary words of advice: "take off the stupid little hat, Bob".

Tony Peters, Radio Times, 29th July 2009

Desmond Olivier Dingle, co-founder and half the entire company of the famed National Theatre of Brent, proudly opens this new season with a portrait of Bob Dylan, supported by Raymond Box (John Ramm) whose script-mangling is quite peerless. Travel with them to the shivering plains of America's Midwest to observe Bob (played by Desmond) knocking on his sweetheart's door in Hibbin, Minnesota. "We'll be happy but dull for the rest of our days," she says. But Bob listens to a Woody Guthrie record. And everything changes.

Gillian Reynolds, The Telegraph, 29th July 2009