Tim Key's Late Night Poetry Programme. Key (Tim Key). Copyright: BBC.

Tim Key's Late Night Poetry Programme

BBC Radio 4 stand-up / sitcom starring Tim Key. 27 episodes (5 series), 2012 - 2020. Stars Tim Key, Tom Basden and Katy Wix.

Series 2, Episode 3 is repeated on Radio 4 Extra on Friday at 11pm.

Press Clippings

Radio 4 comedies nominated in BBC Audio Awards 2019

A number of Radio 4 comedy series have been nominated in the BBC Audio Drama Awards 2019.

British Comedy Guide, 21st November 2018

Radio 4 announces 18 new comedy shows

Radio 4 has announced a raft of new shows, including series from Matt Berry, Sara Pascoe, Richard Herring, Sam Bain, Andy Hamilton and Fred MacAulay.

British Comedy Guide, 26th August 2016

Tim Key's Late Night Poetry Programme (Radio 4) is back for a third series and this week's episode dealt with "the thorny issue of dating", featuring short, bathetic stanzas on flirting, speed dating and other disappointments of the heart. He plays a version of himself: a disappointed, slightly pompous fool with some very odd ideas about courting. This week he brought female companion Ann White (a perfectly deadpan Ellie White) for a romantic tour of the studio, complete with champagne, to the growing annoyance of Tom Basden, his brilliantly dour musical accompanist. While he provided tender flamenco strings, the hapless bard attempted to set a quixotic tone, but it wasn't long before their carping took centre stage and Ann White retreated to the control room with a Brian Cox podcast. "You've been a sourpuss for almost two minutes now," Key hissed as the guitarist tried to push on with the show.

It's only 15 minutes long but every episode perfectly showcases Key's supreme command of tone. His sentences never end where you expect them to and the oddly appealing atmosphere he creates is so spellbinding, it's like emerging from a nice fog when he spits you out at the other end. Fifteen minutes is both perfect and far too short.

Julia Raeside, The Guardian, 26th February 2015

I first noticed Tim Key on Charlie Brooker's Newswipe TV series on BBC Four, where he did readings of his "topical poetry" to camera. These were short, pointedly unpoetic monologues about the issues of the day, delivered with a comic poise that brought to mind the late Tommy Cooper. He now has his own radio show, Tim Key's Late Night Poetry Programme (Radio 4, Wednesday), in which he reads more of his poems and argues with his long-suffering assistant, Lord. By rights, it shouldn't be very funny; but it is.

Wednesday's programme was themed around chance, which had prompted Key to write six numbered poems. His plan was to roll a die and perform the poems in the order thus dictated, but the number four kept appearing. "Have you touched the dice with a magnet?" he asked Lord, who protested that Key had totally failed to understand the nature of probability. Key decided to read poem number three instead, provocatively titled The Wrong Number That Led to a Marriage ("He had woken her up/ but she had been charmed by his blustering apologies and his flattery/ after an hour or so, the pauses became longer, and more comfortable"). By this time I was spluttering into my tea and resolving to tune into this Wednesday's instalment, which tackles the theme of superstition.

Pete Naughton, The Telegraph, 13th March 2012

My Heroes and heroines: Tim Key

Comic poet Tim Key talks about some of his personal heroes including Mike Leigh, Harold Lloyd and Andy Murray.

Tim Key, The Telegraph, 28th February 2012