May 12, 2019

31. The Hare’s Bride

In The Hare’s Bride, a young maiden minding her cabbages gets whisked off to an unexpected wedding under a rainbow.

In desperately trying to unpick the meaning of the story, we discuss ‘animal bridegrooms’ in folklore, beauty and the beast, and blade runner.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Johannes Brahms's 16 Waltzes, Op. 39, #2 - Performed by Martha Goldstein// Ludwig van Beethoven's Sonata no. 15 in d major, op. 28 'pastorale' - iv. rondo. allegro, ma non troppo - Performed by Karine Gilanyan

April 28, 2019

30. The Juniper Tree

Decapitation, magical singing birds, and human black puddings – it can only be the long-awaited story 'The Juniper Tree'.

After we read the story, we discover what Björk, the bible, and a painter named Philipp have to do with it all.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Beethoven's Violin Sonata No. 5 in F Major, Op. 24 "Spring" by Corey Cerovsek, (violin) & Paavali Jumppanen (piano) // Chopin's Opus 10, No. 7, Twelve Grand Etudes C Major performed by Martha Goldstein

April 14, 2019

29. The Riddle

In ‘The Riddle’, a princess pits her wits against a wandering king’s son. But who will win? And where does a gang of murders, a witch, a hungry raven, golden syrup and Batman fit into all this?

After the story, we go on a riddling journey through time from the Queen of Sheba to Turandot.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Johannes Brahms's 16 Waltzes, Op. 39, #4 Performed by Martha Goldstein // Ludwig Van Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 28 in A Major, Op 101 Movement II performed by Daniel Veesey

 

March 31, 2019

28. The Fox And The Cat

After three stories of carnage and mayhem, has the fox finally met his match?

In the final episode of The Fox Quadrilogy the fox boasts to a friendly cat of his skills, but perhaps the cat knows something the fox doesn't.

An Greek proverb unlocks the key message behind the entire Quadrilogy, sending us on a journey from medieval France to ancient India.

And we pick the next four stories we'll be reading and we read out some listener messages.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Red by Scott Buckley (www.scottbuckley.com.au), Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 28 in A Major, Op. 101 Movements I and III performed by Daniel Veesey.

In this episode our old friend Thumbling is back with more wacky adventures! In Thumbling as Journeyman (AKA Thumbling’s Travels) our hero joins a gang of thieves on a heist job before trying his luck as a barman.

After the story, we deep-dive into the fascinating world of different thumbling stories, exploring the mysterious roots of this tale type from Tom Thumb in the UK to The Inch-High Samurai in Japan.

 

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Johannes Brahms' Waltz Op 39 No 15 performed by Paul Cantrell / Brahms's 16 Waltzes, Op.39, #1 performed by Martha Goldstein

 

Tricked by a lying goat, a tailor kicks out his three sons. After acquiring magical gifts, they head back home to their father, but a dastardly inn-keeper has other plans…

In "The Wishing-table, The Gold-Ass, and the Cudgel in the Sack" we meet a table with no appearance, a gold-depositing donkey, and a time-keeping cudgel.

The story then leads us on to investigating a potentially still running London ice cream parlour and the grisly French fairy tale ‘Donkey Skin’.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Beethoven's Sonata 'Waldstein', Op. 53 - III. Rondo-Allegretto moderato by Michael Hawley / Chopin's Concerto 2 in F minor, 3rd movement performed by the Seattle Philharmonic conducted by Nico Snel

Welcome to a special episode where we reveal the winner of our book competition and read out some of our listener’s messages and votes.

Afterwards, we treat ourselves to one of the “hands down freakiest” of the Brothers Grimm tales: The Strange Feast.

This leads us on nicely to exploring why the brothers erased many of their stories and uncovering the history behind the deleted tales.

And finally, we give our review of the 2005 Brothers Grimm movie!

Thank you so much to everyone who got involved in the competition. If we didn’t read out your message, hold tight - we’re planning to get round to them in our forthcoming episodes.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Brahms' 16 Waltzes, Op.39, #12 and Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 4, 2nd & 3rd movements

 

Three unlikely kitchen survivors set off on an adventure. But will they overcome their first challenge, a very small stream?

In 'The Straw, The Coal And The Bean' we learn why you shouldn’t mock the misfortune of others and uncover the truth behind that biggest of mysteries - how beans got a black seam.

The competition is now closed! Thanks to everyone who entered and sent us such lovely messages, the winner will be announced in the next episode!

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music:Brahms's 16 Waltzes, Op.39, #8 and #15 performed by Martha Goldstein

It’s a double whammy of foxy fun as we read parts two and three of The Fox Quadrilogy: The Wolf And The Man & The Wolf And The Fox.



Afterwards, we delve into the spicy world of the Kitsune: the shapeshifting nine-tailed fox of Japanese folklore.



Join us by the fire as we try to answer The Riddle of the Sphinx, finally discover what a cudgel is, and Adam chooses the next four stories we’ll be exploring on Grimm Reading.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 28 in A Major, Op. 101 - III & IV performed by Daniel Veesey / 和風管弦楽「イザナギ・イザナミ by 魔界 Symphony

January 20, 2019

23. The Queen Bee

On an adventure with his brothers, an insignificant dwarf rescues some animals before stumbling upon a mysterious castle. In return, they help him unlock the bedroom door of identical triplet princesses. But will he pass the three deadly challenges and deliver the castle from enchantment?

In ‘The Queen Bee’ we meet a rampaging unicorn, hear how a Greek man became a lion’s pet, and we learn why kindness always triumphs.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Brahms's 16 Waltzes, Op.39, #1 and #9 performed by Martha Goldstein

January 1, 2019

22. Hansel And Gretel

Witches and breadcrumbs, giant ducks and gingerbread houses. This week we explore one of the most famous fairy tales of all time: Hansel and Gretel.

After our surprise Christmas episode, we thought why stop the fun there? We're kicking off 2019 with a bona fide classic!

We discover how this story was used in a U.S supreme court ruling, learn how it all started with a terrible famine, and we dissect various highfalutin analyses of this uber famous story. 

Happy new year everyone!

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Beethoven's Piano Trio No7 in B-flat Major Op97 / Chopin's Mazurka D major Op.33 no.2 performed by Lubka Kolessa / Hänsel and Gretel Opera: Evening Prayer performed by the National Philharmonic Orchestra and the Ambrosian Singers / Chopin's Liszt Zyczenie (The Maiden's Wish) performed by Brian Young

December 25, 2018

2018 Christmas Special

Join us at Castle Grimm for our first ever Grimm Reading Christmas party! In this special festive episode we indulge in some yuletide treats including port, mince pies, and maybe even the odd Christmas fairy tale...

Thank you so much to everyone who's been listening to us, sending messages and writing kind reviews. We hope you enjoy this special episode!

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Tchaikovsky - Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy performed by Kevin Macleod // Holst - First Suite Intermezzo performed by the U.S. Marine Band

December 9, 2018

21. The Singing Bone

A tale of familial betrayal, divine justice and rampaging boars. Thanks to a magical horn, a body has been discovered under the bridge (downtown), but what is the story behind this tragedy? And how will the truth ever come to light?

’The Singing Bone’ sees a forensic team, led by a maverick King, uncover the truth behind a brutal murder.

In this episode, the haunting, powerful story of justice and peace leads us on a journey across Europe and on to America where stories and ballads of singing body parts have become a staple of the folk and country tradition. In doing so we discover our new favourite folk sub-genre: the murder ballad.

This episode is Certified Grimm for ‘dark themes’ and ‘upsetting situations’ and may not be suitable for all listeners.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Brahms's 16 Waltzes, Op.39, #3 Performed by Martha Goldstein / Beethoven's Piano Trio B-Flat Major No.7 Op.97 / Chopin's Mazurka D-Maj Op.33 #2 performed by Lubka Kolessa

November 28, 2018

20. The Three Snake-Leaves

Viking vampires, Cretan honey murderers and dyscalculic snakes - yes, Grimm Reading is back!

War, death and infidelity feature in a rollercoaster of an adventure this week, as a young hero fights for his life (and his wife) with the help of magical foliage in ‘The Three Snake-Leaves.’
 
We go deep into the history of this story type and have a few addendums to confess to as well. This leads us nicely onto discussing a debate raging at the heart of the study of folklore - are fairy tales the true voice of the people or just literary creations of the learned? 
 
Thanks for waiting patiently, we’re now once again firmly and happily planted by the Grimm castle fireside.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Brahms's 16 Waltzes, Op. 39, #4 performed by Martha Goldstein  / Brahms's 16 Waltzes, Op.39, #1 performed by Martha Goldstein

October 14, 2018

19. The Pink

A magical gift destroys a family, but perhaps out of the ashes something beautiful will bloom. 

In this week's episode we read 'The Pink': a tale of deception, love, justice, health and safety breaches and fire-breathing poodles. 

There's also an extra special treat in the form of 'The Myrtle', a related story by the titanic Neapolitan fairy tale writer Giambattista Basile. Seduction, murder and high drama - it's quite the roller coaster.

And finally, we pick the next four stories we'll be giving the Grimm Reading treatment.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 1 in F minor I. Allegro and F Minor II. Adagio performed by David Ezra Okonsar / Brahms's 16 Waltzes, Op.39, #13 performed by Martha Goldstein

 

September 30, 2018

18. The Fox And His Cousin

 

A kindly wolf invites cousin fox to be her child’s godfather to teach it some valuable foxy skills. But the dastardly fox has other intentions and leads the wolf through the worst day of her life…
 
In part 3 of The Fox Quadrilogy - the epic story of the rise and fall of the Reynard the fox- discover how peasants wash and why you should never get a barn and stable confused. 
 
We reflect on some shocking fox behaviour and trace the idea of the trickster fox from Aesop through to medieval France and Geoffrey Chaucer, where along the way he picks up the name Raynard. 

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Piano Sonata No. 28 in A Major, Op. 101 - IV performed by Daniel Veesey

 

September 16, 2018

17. The White Snake

Sneakily gorging on some delectable white snake gives one servant extraordinary powers and sets him on the journey of a lifetime.

With the help of new faunistic friends, the servant tackles a series of perilous challenges to win the heart of a fair princess.

We hunt down other stories featuring white snakes in Europe to try to discover what it all means and why everyone is chowing down on yummy albino serpents.

Over in Botswanna, Matt outlines his outlandish pagan snake theory and in China we learn why you should never go into business with an immortal snake women.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Beethoven's Piano Trio No7 in B-flat Major Op97

September 3, 2018

16. The Robber Bridegroom

Shakespeare, Dickens, cannabalistic serial killers and talking birds all make an appearance in this week's twisted episode 'The Robber Bridegroom' as voted for by our wonderful listeners!

Yet another miller has promised his daughter away to a mysterious, handsome suitor. But our bride is filled with horror at the thought of him and only after much cajoling does she reluctantly agrees to visit his house in the deep dark woods.

Standing on the threshold of the forest, a trail of ash leads the way to the lonely house and our heroine begins a terrifying escapade in what uncannily resembles a modern horror movie.

This week's story introduces many new fairy tale tropes as well as a brand new colour of deadly wine. We also explore other stories from the ATU type 955 including the fantastic English story, Mr. Fox.

Thank you so much to everyone who voted, we're very excited to present the listener poll's winning story this week and hope you enjoy! 

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: 

Ludwig Van Beethoven's Violin Sonata No. 8 in G major performed by Paul Rosenthal and Edward Auer

Ludwig Van Beethoven's Violin Sonata No. 9 — 3rd Movement performed by Paul Rosenthal and Edward Auer

A triple whammy of Grimm fun this week as we reveal the results of our listener poll, dip our toes in the academic world of folklore and perhaps even read a couple of stories...

You've been voting and we've been counting; It's been a head to head between Elves & the Shoemaker, Rapunzel and The Robber Bridegroom - but which will emege victorious?

After revealing the results, we then dive into the Aarne Thompson Uther Classification of Folktales, exploring how folktales are categorised and the hidden history of folklore from across the world.

And finally a hungry wolf and speedy pancake make an unexpected appearance.

Music:
Intro sonata by Robert Schumann / Beethoven's Violin Sonata No. 8 in Gmajor performed by Paul_Rosenthal & Edward Auer

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Three poor brothers hit the forest to seek their fortune, but can earthly riches mend a broken heart?
 
A magical wishing cloth gives one brother the power to offer a selection of meats which help him rob his way to power and world domination. But his ascension is threatened when a beautiful, brave and judgemental Princess discovers his secret. 
 
We go on an adventure filled with magic, war, love, loss and dirty charcoal burners.
 
We also recount a bizarre Danish version of the tale and finally we choose the next three stories we’ll be exploring on Grimm Reading. 
 

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Johannes Brahms's Hungarian Dance No. 5 performed by the Fulda Symphonic Orchestra

Ludwig Van Beethoven's Piano Sonata No. 28 in A Major, Op. 101, Movement II: Lebhaft, marschmäßig (Vivace alla marcia) performed by Daniel Veesey

Ludwig van Beethoven's Symphony no. 8 in f major, op. 93 - iv. allegro vivace performed by the Bucharest College Orchestra

August 12, 2018

14. Godfather Death

An unusual choice for Godfather changes the fate of one man's life forever, or does it? Things get fatalistic, subversive and skeletal in this week's episode: 'Godfather Death'.

We explore the meaning of the story, alternative versions, folk medicine recipies and briefly examine the history of the personification of death in western culture.

And of course we finally meet Death himself, the latest and most withered character in the franchise. And just maybe, we have our first big scoring divergence...

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Robert Schumann's Fantasiestucke Op 88 / Chopin's Bercuse performed by Veronica Van Der Knaap

“If I could but shudder!”

With nothing more than his good looks and a fifty dollar donation, a banished youth goes on an adventure to learn the art of fear in ‘The Story of the Youth Who Went Forth To Learn What Fear Was'.

Facing demonic cats, maniacal old men and an evening of bowling with skeletons, can our hero survive three nights in a haunted castle and win the princess?

We explore what it means to feel fear and uncover a bad case of ichthyophobia, in undoubtedly the most gruesome and also most fun episode we’ve made yet!

This episode is ‘Certified Grimm’ for dark themes and potentially upsetting situations and may not be suitable for all listeners.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 4 in G major (Op. 58) 2nd & 3rd movements performed by Debbie Hu

July 22, 2018

12. Rumpelstiltskin

This week on Grimm Reading we read, review and explore one of the best known Brothers Grimm stories: Rumpelstiltskin.
 
Yet another miller has accidentally promised his daughter away. This time to a greedy king who mistakenly believes she can spin straw into gold. Can our maiden find a way to achieve the impossible? And will... Ah, you know the story.
 
We explore the origins of the famous little man, assess popular interpretations, make a few of our own and take a look at other versions of the tale from across the world. Well, Britain mostly.
 
And finally, we choose the next three stories we'll be giving the Grimm Reading treatment. 
 
 
 
Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko
 
Other music: Johannes Brahms's Waltz Op 39 No 15 performed by Paul Cantrell / Beethoven’s Violin Sonata No.8 in G major performed by Paul Rosenthal & Edward Auer / Fréderic Chopin’s Prelude Op 28 No 9 performed by Paul Cantrell
July 15, 2018

11. Clever Elsie

Eat, sleep or work?

A simple deliberation leaves Elsie in the throes of a physco-philosophical breakdown on this week's episode 'Clever Elsie'.

Hans needs a wife and goes a-wooing, but there's one condition - she's got to be clever. Will Elsie be enough? And just what exactly is a fowler's net?

On Grimm Reading this week, we learn all this and more as we explore one of the least known tales and discover our new favourite American golfer.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Johannes Brahms's 16 Waltzes, Op.39, #8 (b-flat major), performed by Martha Goldstein

In 'Cat and Mouse in Partnership', sheer force of love sees a cat and mouse overcome their natural differences and set up house together.

But winter is coming, and the mouse is growing suspicious at the unreasonable amount of christening invitations the cat's receiving...

Learn why all people are innately greedy, selfish and just nasty. Or perhaps maybe it's just a few cats.

We also explore other tales of the (spoiler) 'partner steals keg of butter' narrative type from Norway, Scotland and America. The latter of which explains, most importantly of all, why foxes have a white tail end...

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Beethoven's Violin Sonata No. 9 in A major ("Kreutzer", Op. 47), 1st movement and 2nd movement, performed by Paul Rosenthal and Edward Auer

Schumann's Scenes from Childhood, Op. 15, No. 1 "Of Foreign Lands and Peoples" performed and recorded by Leonard Vertighel

 

In this week’s tale 'The Louse and the Flea’ we’ve unexpectedly unearthed the most intense story on Grimm Reading so far.

BFFs little Louse and little Flea are happily living together making artisanal craft ale in egg shells when tragedy strikes. Things escalate quickly as the neighbours hear of their terrible misfortune.

Buckle up and prepare for a wild ride as we learn the principles of chaos theory, the importance of empathy and why you ought to rein it in when in mourning.

We briefly introduce the all important Aarne-Thompson-Uther fairytale classification system and then read 'Titty Mouse and Tatty Mouse’, the English cousin of 'The Louse and the Flea’.

And, of course, we choose the next batch of Brothers Grimm tales we’ll be diving into...

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music:

Johannes Brahms's Hungarian Dance No. 5 performed by the Fulda Symphonic Orchestra

Frédéric Chopin's Nocturne Op 27 No. 20 performed by Gabriele Piccinnu

This week on Grimm Reading we meet Germany's finest animal supergroup: 'The Bremen Town Musicians'.

Fearing for his life, a lute playing donkey escapes his owner and hits the road to Bremen. On route he forms a band with a hound, a cat and a cock, and plans for a string of tour dates begin to form.

Getting closer to Bremen they spy a cottage and head over to investigate. But little do our musicians know, it's occupied by a gang of nasty robbers...

This cult favourite Grimm tale has inspired artists and musicians across the world. Does it deserve the hype and just what exactly has got the cock in such a tizz?

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Johannes Brahms's Lullaby performed by Howie Mitchell and Ruth Meyer

This week on Grimm Reading we meet our first Big Bad Wolf in 'The Wolf and the Seven Little Kids'.

A mother goat inexplicably leaves her seven kids all alone at home. Can her peculiarly specific survival advice keep the wolf from the door, literally?

Find out what bakers get up to with left over dough, an unexpected use for chalk and learn why miller's are so cowardly. 

We also discuss the similarities with this story and it's cousin across the channel, The Three Little Pigs, and in a final twist we consider whether or not the wolf is really so bad after all.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other Music: ohannes Brahms's 16 Waltzes, Op.39, No 14 performed by Martha Goldstein

 

In this week's tale the Brother's Grimm meets Marvel in the epic caper 'How Six Men Got On In The World'. 

Despite his superb behaviour, upon returning from war, a budding Art Historian gets mistreated by the realm. On his way to find the king and justice he meets an unlikely band of rogues, each with a unique special ability...

Discover the ultimate origin story in an early imagining of the Marvel cinematic Universe and the very first iteration of Avengers Assemble, complete with an epic final battle! 

Things also take a distinctly marxist-communist turn as we discover our first 'Certified Soviet' tale.

Quite possibly your only chance to ever hear a communist superhero fairytale.

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Theme Music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other Music: Beethoven's Violin Sonata No. 2 in A Major, Op. 12, No. 2 performed by Corey Cerovsek & Paavali Jumppanen. 

Things get pious in this episode of Grimm Reading. The devil makes his debut and a father gives the ultimate lesson in bad parenting.

In the Girl Without Hands a god-fearing heroine finds herself married to royalty, but a pesky war calls away her husband and the devil seizes his chance to make mischief. Can the power of prayer and extreme fasting prevail in the face of evil?

This episode is 'Certified Grimm' for extreme cruelty and excessive violence and may not be suitable for children or the faint of heart.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other Music: Johannes Brahms’ Intermezzo Op 116 No 4 performed by Paul Cantrell

Elves, Princesses, Kings, evil stepmothers, magic, defenestration and strawberries – we are finally in full-on fairytale territory!

The daughter of a man with serious boot problems gets on the wrong side of her stepmother and finds herself picking strawberries in winter in a paper frock. But deep in the woods three peculiar little gentlemen come to her aid with three generous gifts...

Find out why it pays to be beautiful and also the best way to rinse yarn as things get fantastical and trippy in this week's Grimm Reading: the Three Little Men in the Wood.

This episode is 'Certified Grimm' for excessive violence and may not be suitable for children or the faint of heart.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other Music: Chopin's Etude in A-flat, Op. 25, no. 1 performed by Michal Hambourg

This week we follow the adventures of adrenaline junkie Thumbling as he meets some disreputable types, briefly falls into a life of crime and has some unfortunate dealings with hungry animals.

Hang about, is this not the Tom Thumb we know and love? We explain the difference between Tom Thumb and Thumbling and other little man European legends and even recount the story of Tom Thumb himself.

And finally we pick the next three stories we'll be exploring.

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Theme music: Bicycle Waltz by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Johannes Brahms' Waltz Op 39 No 15 performed by Paul Cantrell
Fréderic Chopin's Nocturne Op 15 No 2 performed by Paul Cantrell

A special episode this week, as we explore the history and evolution of the works of the Brothers Grimm, as well as delving into the confusing world of the various English translations of this frightfully delightful collection of fairy tales.

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Domestic bliss has been established in a certain household where everyone has just the right job. What could possibly go wrong? 

Things get moralistic in this episode of Grimm Reading as we dive into the fable of The Mouse, the Bird and the Sausage. Some good old fashioned values and questionable gender politics inform the story line and we definitively learn to not let sausages go into the woods alone.

We also unveil the 'Certified Grimm' rating system, whereby in future episodes we'll be able to warn listeners of any potentially offensive or unsuitable material. 

Theme music: 'Bicycle Waltz' by Goodbye Kumiko

Other music: Beethoven's Sonata No. 21 in C Major 'Waldstein' Op. 53 performed by Michael Hawley

Welcome to the first ever episode of Grimm Reading! We kick off proceedings with two Brothers Grimm tales: Hans in Luck and Old Sultan.

When is a pig a trifle? And just exactly what is a clock? We learn this and so much more as we join the imperturbable Hans on his journey home to his mother.

In our second story we join Sultan, the shepherd's toothless old dog, as he does his level best to avoid being permanently retired with the help of a wily cat.

This is the start of a journey into the world of the Brothers Grimm. Neither of us know anything about the stories or brothers at this point and will be learning as we go. We look forward to having you join us on this adventure!

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