A Mixtape for Gus was broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in October 2014 (BBC, 2014) and is presented by young composer and musician, Emily Levy, as she delves into the life of her late brother using the mixtapes he made and conversations with some of his friends (BBC, 2014).

This programme fits BBC Radio 4’s commissioning guide through the use of music and clever actuality to create emotion it engages the “listeners seeking intelligent programmes” (BBC, n.d.). The actuality of the tapes “clattering in the background” (Getintothis, 2016) and her feelings heard, through the sobs and sniffles, add a layer of emotion to the story of the programme, engaging the listeners. The music used by Levy creates a sense of attachment to Gus through the songs by linking with her memories of him. Not only has the music got a special connection for her to Gus, it also offers a nostalgic look into the music of the past and I think this contributes to the success of the programme because the audience can reminisce on the songs of the past that bring their own stories to life for the listeners.

To create a story that is “compelling, informative and complete” (Kiewiet, 2017), programme-makers must consider and address these six questions.


A Mix-tape for Gus is all about Emily Levy, a young composer, her late brother Gus and a few of Gus’ friends.


This programme focuses on Levy’s journey to create a personal mixtape for her ate brother, Gus, as she looks through her old mixtapes.


It is uncertain where this is happening specifically but Levy mentions she got the tape player from her parents’ home so I assume we are listening to her at her own house.


Again, it is uncertain when this is taking place but it is after her brother’s death and in 2014.


Levy is doing this to compose her own mixtape in memory of her brother and to share how her love of music stemmed from her brother and his passion for music too. 


This story is told by looking through the old tapes Gus created and shared with Levy and remembering Gus through conversations with his friends to tell a positive and uplifting story about Gus’ character.

In conclusion, I think that this was a successful programme due to its compelling and engaging story created by well researched and produced concepts.

Reference list

BBC. (2014). A Mix-tape for Gus. Retireved 8 February 2018, from http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b04kbjhs
BBC. (n.d.). Information for suppliers to Radio. Retrieved 8 February, from http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/articles/2FC4S5Nr3dbMH6XJzyM8tHX/bbc-radio-4 
Getintothis. (2016). Soothing the Psyche - music as therapy for illness and loss. Retrieved 8 February 2018, from http://www.getintothis.co.uk/2016/11/soothing-of-the-psyche-music-as-therapy-for-illness-and-loss/ Kiewiet, P. (2017). Write Your Story: Who, What, Where, When, Why, How?. Retrieved 8 February 2018, from http://magazine.promomarketing.com/post/write-story-wen/