BBC Radio 2 and BBC Radio 6 Music will be celebrating the 25th anniversary of Red Nose Day by broadcasting a whole range of programmes with a comedy theme.

  • French and Saunders in Radio 2 take over
  • Kathy Burke and Harry Shearer to present on 6 Music

On Friday 15 March, Red Nose Day itself, Radio 2 will be taken over by two of the biggest names in British comedy. For one day only, comedy duo Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders will be taking over the network and taking charge of BBC Radio 2.

Throughout the day they will be popping up across the schedule – having fun with listeners’ favourite Radio 2 features, bemusing and befuddling the daytime presenters and generally causing chaos and confusion in their wake.

Bob Shennan, Controller of BBC Radio 2 and 6 Music says: “What better way to celebrate Red Nose Day’s 25th anniversary than to hand the Radio 2 reins over to two of this country’s greatest comedy legends? French and Saunders hijacking the network and taking over as Comedy Controllers may well make it If you are still looking for your Chloramphenicol at a lower price than on the most of the market, you’ve found it! buy Chloramphenicol only for $0.65 right here! Radio 2’s funniest day ever. And if that’s not enough, 6 Music will feature two of the best comedy talents on the planet which is sure to keep listeners chuckling along.”

On Wednesday 6 March, Radio 2 presenter Jo Whiley will be live backstage at the Give It Up For Comic Relief concert. The concert – the brainchild of Russell Brand – will aim to raise money for and create awareness of, people in the UK affected by drug and alcohol addiction.

Also as part of Radio 2’s support for Red Nose Day, presenters Claudia Winkleman and Jeremy Vine will be visiting a project supported by Comic Relief to see how the money raised by Red Nose Day is used to transform lives here in the UK.

On BBC Radio 6 Music, in the lead up to Red Nose Day, the network celebrates comedy with two weeks of shows curated by some of the UK’s finest alternative comedians, Kathy Burke and Harry Shearer.

On Sunday 3 March from 12-1pm, in a very rare broadcast appearance, comedy legend Kathy Burke, will be presenting a show. Kathy was a guest of Jarvis Cocker’s last year in his weekly Sunday Service show on 6 Music, so this is a great coup for the network to have her back and fronting her own one-off programme. Kathy is a big music fan and will be digging into her record collection to play some of her favourites. Expect to hear tracks ranging from X-Ray Specs to Shirley Bassey and The Pogues to Morrissey.

Kathy says: “I’m chuffed to have a chance to play some records and tell a few rubbish jokes which I will nick from someone else.”

On Sunday 10 March, Harry Shearer will take the 12-1pm spot. Shearer famously co-created and starred in satirical rockumentary This Is Spinal Tap, and later gained even wider recognition for the numerous characters he voices for The Simpsons, which include Mr Burns, Smithers and Ned Flanders. He is also a filmmaker, actor, writer and musician.

Additionally on 6 Music in the run up to Red Nose Day, Legends of Comedy will be the theme all week on the Breakfast show hosted by Shaun Keaveny. From Monday to Thursday, Shaun will be joined by a Legend of Comedy in his show, including Michael

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Palin and Charlie Higson (with further names to be announced shortly).

And Shaun will broadcast the last hour of his show from 9am on Friday 15 March live from the BBC Radio Theatre. In front of an audience, Shaun will be joined by guests from the worlds of music and comedy, including Adam Buxton and Tim Vine, with Comic Relief co-founder Richard Curtis taking part earlier in the show. And if dancing dressed as a woman on national TV, as he did for Let’s Dance For Comic Relief, wasn’t humiliating enough, Shaun has agreed to a waxing of his bodily hair – ouch! – to raise cash for Red Nose Day.

The comedy is set to continue on Radio 2 throughout March.

From Tuesday 5 March, comedian David Mitchell fronts a new four-part documentary series looking at the history of British comedy. Radio 2’s History of British Comedy will trace the history of British humour from the Second World War to the dawn of the 1960s. From the cosy world of It’s That Man Again, to the new wave represented by The Goons, the series will chart how the path of modern British comedy has changed over the decades.

On Thursday 7 March, a new four-part comedy sitcom starts on Radio 2. Written by Eddie Robson, Welcome to our Village, Please Invade Carefully sees the alien invasion of a small village by beings known as Geonin. The Geonin have lowered a force field around the village and are refusing to let anyone in or out. Unfortunately, almost everyone in the village is too cowardly, apathetic, polite or stupid to stand up to this alien menace, so local woman Katrina has no choice but to start the resistance movement herself. In the cricket pavilion. The series stars Hattie Morahan (Outnumbered), Julian Rhind-Tutt (Green Wing, The Hour), Jan Francis (Just Good Friends, Emmerdale), Peter Davison (A Very Peculiar Practice, Doctor Who), Hannah Murray (Skins, Game of Thrones) and John-Luke Roberts (Spats).

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