Arts > Another whirl

30 March 2017 | by D.J. Taylor

Another whirl

Ed Balls’ Dream Dinner Party, BBC RADIO 4


Chairman of Norwich City FC, game adornment of Strictly Come Dancing, all-purpose media operator – Ed Balls’ transformation into a national treasure in the two years since he lost his parliamentary seat is one of the wonders of the age. His latest stunt – a “dream dinner party” in which he invited five of his dead heroes to partake of a self-cooked meal of smoked salmon pâté, lasagne and chocolate mousse – will have stirred the gravest forebodings among anyone who knows how difficult this kind of programme is to make, and yet the end result turned out to be wholly engaging.

Perhaps this had something to do with the guests: Denis Healey, Joan Rivers, Nancy Astor, Les Dawson and Danny Kaye. These were “creative, theatrical, flamboyant, performing types”, Balls assured us, as the doorbell rang and he dealt with the coats, and so it proved.


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