‘Officer Karen’ on bananas, tea towels and Glenda Jackson

She’s probably best known as the long-suffering Officer Karen in BBC Scotland’s Scot Squad comedy.  But Karen Bartke  (pronounced like Barky, with a silent ‘t’)  owes much of her success to radio drama and comedy.  I spoke to her this week while recording interviews for the forthcoming Red Light Zone podcast. She’s a producer’s dream – just point a microphone at her and she tells one funny story after another.  She’s shares a few secrets too. Did you know, for instance, that actors required to eat in a radio play are, more often than not, given bananas to munch on? Apparently that’s one of the few foodstuffs that actually sound like real eating.  Biting into toast, on the other hand, sounds like someone walking on breaking twigs.

Ahead of the podcast launch – which will focus on people now working in different spheres of the radio business – I thought I’d give you this sneaky clip of Karen talking about her time in the  BBC’s radio drama company.


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