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Jacqueline Mitton

Journey to the Planets

Hay Festival 2015, 
Space holds a fascination for everyone. What exactly is out there? Take a journey around the planets with astronomer Jacqueline Mitton, who delivers a talk illustrated with amazing facts and stunning images that all the family will enjoy.
8+ years
Jacqueline Mitton

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Daniel Morden

Tales From Grimm

Hay Festival 2014, 

Daniel is one of the UK’s most popular tellers of traditional stories. Here he tells tales from the timeless collection of magical fairytales. Expect impossible quests, mysterious strangers,sudden jumps, dramatic twists, moments of high drama and low comedy…
7+ years

Daniel Morden

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Ava Vidal

Stand-up

Hay Festival 2017, 

Ava’s always felt out of place: at public school, as a prison officer and a struggling teenage single mum. Luckily, the rising star of C4’s Kings Of Comedy and BBC2’s The Sack Race can laugh at her misfortunes.  She’s consistently, delightfully, funny. ‘Vidal juggles the profound and the irreverent, rapidly alternating between the two.’

Ava Vidal

Hay Player

Hugh Hunt

Cambridge Series: Refreezing the Arctic

Hay Festival 2017, 

We may want to cool the planet if (when) we fail to meet our CO2 emissions targets.  There are technologies out there almost ready to go and some sound quite scary.  Is it safe to meddle with the climate when we only have one Earth? Hunt is a Reader in the Department of Engineering. Chaired by Gabrielle Walker.

Hugh Hunt

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John Dougherty

Stinkbomb and Ketchup-Face

Winter Weekend 2014, 

The funniest, craziest book featuring bananas that you’ll ever read. Anarchic, fun and clever – a proper, funny story for children to get their teeth into. 

7+ years

John Dougherty

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Gore Vidal, Mark Lawson

The Essential Gore Vidal

Hay Festival 2000, 
The great American novelist, historian and politico in conversation with the BBC broadcaster and writer.

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Ed Gillespie talks to Andy Fryers

Only Planet – a Flight-free Adventure Around the World

Hay Festival 2016, 

Slow traveller Ed Gillespie takes us on an inspirational global circumnavigation without going anywhere near an airport. From cargo ships to camels, hitchhiking to hovercrafts, Ed proves that getting there really is half the fun. Crossing Shamanic lakes, Mongolian deserts and climbing jungle volcanoes, he meets grizzled sea dogs, drunken smugglers, peckish pythons and billions of butterflies. This highly visual talk focuses on the exhilaration of taking it slowly and rediscovering hope both for humanity and for the planet we all share.

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Stephen Hawking

Hay Festival 1998, 
The Cambridge scientist celebrates the tenth anniversary of his book A Brief History of Time with this lecture.

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Julia Leigh talks to Bryony Gordon

Avalanche: A Love Story

Hay Festival 2017, 

Writing in the immediate aftermath of her decision to stop IVF treatment, Leigh lays bare the truths of her experience: the highs of hope and the depths of disappointment, the grip of yearning and desire, the toll on her relationships and the unexpected graces and moments of black humour. She navigates the science of IVF, copes with the impact of treatment and reconciles the seductive promises of the worldwide multi-billion dollar IVF industry with the reality.

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Paul Cartledge

Cambridge Series 13: Democracy, A Life

Hay Festival 2016, 

The classics super-prof explores the myths surrounding ancient and modern concepts of democracy, from its Athenian origins to the tests of Rome and the Middle Ages, and from its rebirth in C17th Britain all the way to the current state of the European Union.

Paul Cartledge

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Cecelia Ahern and Christopher Vick

Hay Festival 2016, 

The best-selling author of Flawed and the debut author of Kook discuss teen life, the key issues in writing YA fiction and what really matters to their readers. Chaired by HAYDAYS director Julia Eccleshare.

12+

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Aneirin Karadog and Martin Daws

Bilingual Poetry, Rap and Spoken Word

Hay Festival 2015, 
Aneirin Karadog and Martin Daws – Bardd Plant Cymru and Young People’s Laureate for Wales – meet in an interactive performance and discussion, taking the audience on a bilingual journey of poetry, rap and spoken word, through anecdotes and banter. Language will be no barrier to enjoyment, and beware, as you may be called upon to become a poet yourself!
9+ years
Aneirin Karadog and Martin Daws

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Antony Sher talks to Sarah Dunant

Hay Festival 1995, 
Sher's new novel Cheap Lives is a murderous love story contrasting its protagonists' experiences of the divided country of South Africa as it strumbles towards democracy. Sher's acting roles have included The History Man on television and Richard III on stage. He has written two other novels The Indoor Boy and Middlepost - praised by The Guardian as "fearfully accomplished... peeling away skeins of history with blinding imaginative certainty."

Hay Player

Kate Summerscale talks to Stephanie Merritt

The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child Murderer

Hay Festival 2016, 

Early in the morning of Monday 8 July 1895, 13-year-old Robert Coombes and his 12-year-old brother Nattie set out from their small, yellow-brick terraced house in East London to watch a cricket match at Lords. They told their neighbours their father had gone to sea the previous Friday, and their mother was visiting her family in Liverpool. Over the next 10 days Robert and Nattie spent extravagantly, pawning their parents’ valuables to fund trips to the theatre and the seaside. But as the sun beat down on the Coombes’ house, a strange smell began to emanate from the building. When the police were finally called to investigate, the discovery they made sent the press into a frenzy of horror and alarm... Summerscale won the Samuel Johnson Prize for The Suspicions of Mr Whicher.

Kate Summerscale talks to Stephanie Merritt

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Emma Rutland

Capability Brown and Belvoir: Discovering a Lost Landscape

Hay Festival 2016, 

The Duchess of Rutland tells the story of the rediscovery of the great landscape designer’s abandoned plans for the Leicestershire estate. In a sumptuously illustrated lecture she shows how the original vision has now been articulated at one of Britain’s most spectacular country houses. Chaired by Rosie Goldsmith.

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Nadine Gordimer talks to Sheena McDonald

The P.E.N. Lecture

Hay Festival 1995, 
The Nobel Prizewinner gives a rare interview about her novels and her work in the new South Africa. Gordimer's latest novel None to Accompany Me is published by Bloomsbury.

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Jay Griffiths

Kith

Kells 2015, 

An examination of childhood and the freedoms of space, time and the natural world, from West Papua and the Arctic to suburban western Europe.

Jay Griffiths will be the International Hay Festival Fellow for the next 12 months, visiting all our festivals around the world. Her visionary and poetic work explores her interest in nature, anthropology and art. Her books include Kith: The Riddle of the ChildscapeWild: An Elemental JourneyPip Pip: A Sideways Look at Time, and her fictionalised hymn to Frida Kahlo, A Love Letter from a Stray Moon.

Jay talks to Tiarnán de Hál.

Jay Griffiths

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Deborah Bull, Rupert Chistiansen

Hay Festival 2000, 
The Royal Ballet's principal dancer kepy a fascinating and wittily entertaining diary of the company's work during the year of the Covent Garden closure. A Member of The Arts Council, a nutritionist and programme director of the new Clore Studio, she discusses her book Dancing Away and her insiders view of The Royal Opera House with writer Rupert Christiansen. Christiansen is the author of Visitors: Culture Shock in 19th Century Britain. The last chapter deals with the status of ballet and the foreign ballerina in the late nineteenth century London.

Hay Player

Clive Aslet

War Memorial: The Story of One Village’s Sacrifice from 1914 to 2003

Hay Festival 2014, 

In an intimate portrait of a single countryside community, the historian traces in vivid detail the lives of the twenty-two men and one woman from the Dartmoor village of Lydford who made the supreme sacrifice fighting for Britain in the two World Wars, the Falklands and Iraq.

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James Runcie talks to S J Parris

The Grantchester Mysteries

Hay Festival 2016, 

The creator of the romantically troubled Grantchester priest and sleuth introduces his new novel in the series Sidney Chambers and The Dangers of Temptation.

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Jonathan Haslam

Near and Distant Neighbours

Hay Festival 2016, 

Based on a mass of newly declassified Russian secret intelligence documentation, Haslam reveals the true story of Soviet intelligence from its very beginnings in 1917 right through to the end of the Cold War. Covering both branches of Soviet espionage, civilian and military, he charts the full range of the Soviet intelligence effort and the story of its development: in cryptography, disinformation, special forces, and counter-intelligence. He shows how their greatest weapon and ironically their greatest weakness was the human factor: their ability to recruit secret agents. Haslam is the George F Kennan Professor at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton. Chaired by Oliver Bullough.

Jonathan Haslam

Hay Player

Sabrina Ghayour and Oliver Rowe

Talking About Food

Hay Festival 2016, 

Two great international chefs discuss their taste and imagination with John Mitchinson. Ghayour follows her iconic cookbook Persiana with Sirocco: Fabulous Flavours from the East. Rowe, who trained at Moro and later opened Konstam, has written Food for All Seasons - a touching and informative culinary journey exploring the way our lives and our food are intertwined.

Hay Player

James Hawes

We Need to Talk About Germany

Hay Festival 2017, 

Hawes takes a long view to ask: did the Germans destroy the culture of Rome or inherit it? Did Bismarck unify Germany or conquer it? Where are the roots of Adolf Hitler's Third Reich? Why did it lose? By what miracle did a better Germany arise from the rubble? Is Germany now the last Western bastion of industrial prosperity and rational politics? Or are the EU and the Euro merely window-dressing for a new German hegemony?

James Hawes

Hay Player

Beau Lotto

Deviate: The Science of Seeing Differently

Hay Festival 2017, 

Perception is the foundation of human experience but few of us understand how our own perception works. By revealing the startling truths about the brain and perception, the world-renowned neuroscientist shows that the next big innovation is not a new technology: it is a new way of seeing.

Beau Lotto

Hay Player

Alex Renton talks to Matt Stadlen

Stiff Upper Lip: Secrets, Crimes and the Schooling of a Ruling Class

Hay Festival 2017, 

Confronting the truth of his own schooldays and the crimes he witnessed, Renton reveals a profound malaise in the British elite, shown up by tolerance of the abuse of its own children that amounts to collusion. This culture and its traditions, and the hypocrisy, cronyism and conspiracy that underpin them, are key to any explanation of the scandals over sexual abuse, violence and cover-up in child care institutions that are now shocking the nation.

Alex Renton talks to Matt Stadlen