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“Geraldine McEwan really got the essence of it, probably because she had more time and space in it. She has more scope to express herself.” – Dame Muriel Spark, The Herald, December 23, 2003
Almost a decade after Maggie Smith won an Academy Award for her performance in the film of the same name, Scottish Television undertook a television dramatisation of Dame Muriel Spark’s much loved novel.
With Geraldine McEwan in the title role, this seven-part series explored more fully and at length the rich and varied characters that populated her work and in so doing, created a superbly satisfying drama, a strikingly different yet complementary partner to its big screen counterpart. Despairing of dreary rain-soaked Newcastle, Miss Brodie is reinvigorated by the opportunity to teach at the Marcia Blaine School for Girls in her beloved Edinburgh. The visionary Miss Brodie soon finds herself at odds with some members of the teaching staff, and some parents, with her outspoken attitudes towards her girls, the curriculum she swiftly casts aside, and her beloved Mussolini.
Taking those girls with potential under her wing, the inquisitive, the attractive, the talented, the outcast, Miss Brodie inspires a spirited rebellion in her charges, much to the chagrin of the aptly named Miss Gaunt, whilst befriending likeminded teachers of art and music. “I am a teacher, first, last and always… that is what I am here for; to keep your mind alive until the curriculum catches up with it.”
Dame Muriel Spark on Miss Jean Brodie
Dame Muriel Spark Biography