Woman's Hour 2008-07-25

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On 25th July 2008, an eight-minute item in the BBC radio programme Woman's Hour was about Delia and her work, with an uncredited female voice interviewing Dick Mills and Elizabeth Parker, interspersed with a fragment of Blue Veils and Golden Sands and a recording of Delia's spoken voice.


Numbers in square brackets are the times from the start of the item to the start of the quote, in minutes and seconds.


Interviewer: I get the impression that Delia was somebody who was passionate, who would, if she had to, work right through the night to get something absolutely right.
Dick Mills: Yes. She was a mathematician by training and she brought this analytical gift to everything. I think she enjoyed more actually planning what she was going to do than actually arriving at the conclusion.


Dick Mills: Delia analysed the film of the Tuaregs in the desert, she counted the number of camels' feet going across and she based her music on the tempo of the camels walking along and also she recorded a single voice note of her own and repitched that to do the tune over the top.


Elizabeth Parker: Delia, I didn't really know exactly what she did because nobody actually had credits at the point and I only learned afterwards, all the beautiful stuff that I really admired had been created by her.


Elizabeth Parker: I saw her walking up to Portland Place, at least I saw this figure with a great flowing cloak and an enormous hat and I thought “That has to be Delia.” We were going to a Radiophonic Workshop party and when we got inside, lo and behold, it was her and very elegant, very beautiful and a very distinctive voice too.


Interviewer: She was, though, apparently, Dick, addicted to snuff.
Dick Mills: Yes. She took tobacco in its alternative form. [...] The working hours were self-imposed long because you can't turn creativity on and off from nine 'til five and if it's going well you tended to stay there until it was finished.


Delia: I find myself much more bass-sensitive than most other people, as other people have more sensitivity to certain frequencies. We did an experiment about sensitivity to high frequencies. All of us had an extreme sensitivity to a frequency which was nine hundred and something cycles. One girl had a fantastic peak at something over two K and we eventually had to put that down to the fact that she had just recently had a new baby and she was really sensitive to this particular high frequency which was probably the frequency of the baby's cry.
[From the sound of Delia's voice, this is probably from one of John Cavanagh's phone interviews with Delia.]