From Nigella Lawson to Michael Caine, presenter Matt Stadlen has interviewed them all. In this podcast, he continues to delve into the minds of our leading public figures, to uncover what it really takes to succeed in their journeys to the top.
In this bonus edition of How I Got There, Matt welcomes actor Hermione Norris into the studio. Before rising to fame on ‘Spooks’, ‘Wire In The Blood’ and, more recently, ‘Luther’, Hermione was poised to become a ballerina after winning a scholarship to Elmhurst School for Dance when she was just 11. It was there, in an afterschool drama club, that her path was changed forever, and she realised her passion for the stage. Hear Matt and Hermione discuss her time at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, life on the theatre circuit, her father’s untimely death and the breakout roll: Karen Marsden on ‘Cold Feet’.
In this episode of How I Got There, Matt is joined by television presenter Anita Rani. In her own words, Anita grew up on the 'right side' of the Pennines after her Hindu Father was brought to Bradford as a 4-year-old by Anita's Grandfather. Her interest in a broadcasting career started early on, and from the age of 14 she had a show on the local Asian radio station. Hear how Anita carved out her career from University to Countryfile, whilst keeping a grounded home life.
This week on How I Got There, Matt is joined by the Guardian editor who presided over the Edward Snowden NSA surveillance revelations. Alan Rusbridger was also editor when the Guardian took on elements of the Murdoch press, and revealed the phone hacking scandal that led to News International paying Millions of pounds in damages & legal costs. Alan reveals what it's like to be an editor when your newspaper is coming under the utmost scrutiny as you publish stories which criticise another news organisation, or even see you clashing with the British and US governments.
In this episode of How I Got There, Matt is joined by comedian David Baddiel. His career started in the mid 80's and followed on from a well-trodden path of Cambridge footlights to professional performer. This route wasn't quite as easy by the time of the alternative comedy circuit though, and when he called the comedy store and announced himself as vice president of footlights, they put the phone down on him. He still managed to become the first 'rock star comedian' with Rob Newman selling out Wembley Arena. His second comedy partner was Frank Skinner, and together they wrote the most successful English football song 'Three Lions' along with the Lightning seeds. Hear why David ended up renting a room to Frank Skinner for 6 years for £40 a week despite Frank becoming 'super famous'.
This week on How I Got there, Matt is joined by Mail on Sunday columnist, eight-time author and Conservative pundit Peter Hitchens. Together they explore Peter's political transition from Bolshevism to social conservatism, witnessing the fall of Easterm Bloc as a foreign correspondent, the difficult relationship with his brother Christopher, and converting to Christianity.
This week, Matt is joined by the man of many voices, Rory Bremner. Rory started his career whilst at University in London doing up to 3 stand-up comedy gigs a night. By the time he finished University, he'd already been spotted by TV and was performing in satirical shows such as Spitting Image. Rory talks to Matt here about how he honed his skills as a mimic while at school, and also what a big influence his brother was in developing the talent. Rory's impressions moved from the sporting commentators he started out with on the parody single '19' to mostly political figures in the long running show Bremner, Bird & Fortune. Rory finishes telling us about his hopes for the next 10 years and what ambitions he has left.
This time Matt is joined by Ian Hislop, editor of Private Eye, team Captain on 'Have I got news for you' and most sued man in Britain. Ian and Matt discuss how school and then university shaped his future as a writer, journalist and satirist. At the age of just 26, Ian was made editor of Private Eye, an appointment that was not widely supported by his colleagues and very nearly scuppered by a coup. Hear how Ian has juggled this job alongside his appearances on 'Have I got news for you', the only person to appear in every single episode.
This time on How I Got There Matt welcomes Sir Simon Schama (CBE) into the studio. From nation-building and revolution to the power of art and human memory, Simon has authored eighteen books which have been translated into sixteen languages. He’s a prolific writer, art sleuth, travel journalist, political pundit and university professor, who's summed up life using these six words: “recklessness undeservedly rewarded by good fortune”. Together Matt and Simon discuss the influence of Dickens and Shakespeare, his formidable mother: “she used to stick me in a basket and put me on the door steps on one of the neighbouring houses”, his father’s fantastical story-telling and financial ruin, as well as the importance of hard work and savouring the finer things in life.
In this episode of How I Got There, Matt welcomes Elif Shafak into the studio. An award-winning novelist, political commentator, Oxford university professor and activist, Elif has achieved much in her life. She is a prolific writer who has authored 16 books published in 48 languages and is one of the most widely read novelists in her homeland of Turkey. Matt and Elif consider her unusual upbringing: “my grandmother’s house was full of magic”, the writer’s solitude, the dangers of free speech, and her desire to give a voice to the voiceless.
This week, Matt is joined by a man rarely lost for words. From the streets of Tottenham to the heart of British politics, Labour MP David Lammy has battled class inequality, racial discrimination and personal loss yet remains undaunted. In this episode of How I Got There, Matt and David discuss the jump from urban poverty to the halls of Harvard, diversity in 80’s London, the day his father left for good, and the power of independence in politics.
In this first episode of How I Got There, Matt is joined best-selling author, Telegraph columnist, mental-health advocate, and fellow podcaster Bryony Gordon. Together they explore what it means to succeed in the face of poor mental health, conquering addiction and maintaining sobriety: "Right now, success to me is getting through a day without picking up a drink". Along the way, they also consider the power of motherhood, Prince Harry and finding joy in falling apart.