NOEL MCADAM – 16 DECEMBER 2013
A NEW translation by Seamus Heaney -- one of his final works -- is to become a major television event in the new year.
The late Nobel laureate had finished translating the work of the medieval Scots poet Robert Henryson before his sudden death in August.
The work makes up the programme which is to be called 'Five Fables'.
They are to be narrated by another, more modern, Scottish legend, Billy Connolly and the music has been composed by Barry Douglas.
State-of-the-art animation has been produced by Flickerpix, based in Holywood, Co Down -- part of the Waddell media group -- which also produced the 'Gerry Anderson On the Air' series for BBC NI.
The project is set to form part of the celebrations planned to mark the 90th anniversary of the BBC in Northern Ireland.
A spokesperson for the BBC in Belfast said no broadcasting date has been finalised yet.
But Mr Johnston told Stormont's culture and arts committee: "...as we approach our 90th anniversary in 2014... we have some really interesting things to come up in that regard.
"One that I will highlight is 'Five Fables', which is a really interesting project. It is from the work of an ancient Scots poet called Henryson.
"It was translated by Seamus Heaney before he tragically died.
"It is voiced by Billy Connolly and animated by Flickerpix.
"It is an amazing example of a very rich cultural programme that I hope will have a very wide appeal."