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Robert Macfarlane talks to Horatio Clare

Woodland Trust Series 3: Landmarks

Hay Festival 2015, 

Words are grained into our landscapes, and landscapes are grained into our words. Landmarks is about the power of language to shape our sense of place. It is a field guide to the literature of nature, and a glossary containing thousands of remarkable words used in England, Scotland, Ireland and Wales to describe land, nature and weather. The author of The Old Ways, Mountains of the Mind and The Wild Places shows that language, well used, is a keen way of knowing landscape, and a vital means of coming to love it.

Robert Macfarlane talks to Horatio Clare

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Camila Batmanghelidjh, Helena Kennedy and Sue Berelowitz talk to Jon Snow

Why Does it Happen?

Hay Festival 2015, 

The sexual abuse of children by adult men is a global problem. It appears to happen in every sector of society and the exposure of paedophile rings is a daily news story. But why does it happen at all? Batmanghelidjh runs Kids Company, Kennedy is a human rights lawyer, Berelowitz is Chair, national inquiry into child sexual abuse linked to the family.

Camila Batmanghelidjh, Helena Kennedy and Sue Berelowitz talk to Jon Snow

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George Zarkadakis

Artificial Intelligence

Hay Festival 2015, 

We explore AI’s history, technology and potential; its manifestations in intelligent machines; its connections to neurology and consciousness, as well as – perhaps most tellingly – what AI reveals about us as human beings. Zarkadakis is the author of In Our Own Image: Will Artificial Intelligence Save or Destroy Us?

George Zarkadakis

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Paul Dolan, Shashi Tharoor and guests

Magna Carta 800 – What Do We Want?

Hay Festival 2015, 

We know that, as individuals, we often 'miswant' – that is, want things that will not improve our wellbeing. How can we miswant as citizens, policymakers, or societies? How might some of the 'good' desires also have a darker side to them? Desires around hope, choice, and achievement, for example, can all make things worse as well as better. Dolan is a Professor of Behavioural Science at LSE. Tharoor is an Indian MP with over 1 million constituents in Thiruvananthapuram, and 3 million Twitter followers.

Paul Dolan, Shashi Tharoor and guests

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Kate Saunders

Five Children on the Western Front

Hay Festival 2015, 
Join the Costa Award-winning author to hear all about her sequel to E. Nesbit’s classic Five Children and It stories. Witty, tender and full of insights into life, love and politics, this is a brilliant book in its own right as well as a worthy tribute. Find out about Kate’s inspirations for the book and her love for the original novels. She talks to literary critic Julia Eccleshare.
9+ years
Kate Saunders

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Emily Bell, Richard Sambrook, Tony Phillips and guests

Magna Carta 800 – What Do We Want? A Free Press

Hay Festival 2015, 

Do we need a First Amendment? What’s the best we can argue for in terms of independence, regulation, ownership, and authority? Bell is a member of the Scott Trust and Director of the Tow Center for Digital Journalism; Sambrook was Director of the BBC World Service and now runs Cardiff School of Journalism. Tony Phillips is Commissioning Editor, Documentaries, World Service. Chaired by Jon Snow.

Emily Bell, Richard Sambrook, Tony Phillips and guests

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Gavin Francis

Adventures in Human Being

Hay Festival 2015, 

We have a lifetime’s association with our bodies, but for many of us they remain uncharted territory. The doctor takes us on a journey through health and illness, offering insights on everything from the ribbed surface of the brain to the secret workings of the heart and the womb; from the pulse of life at the wrist to the unique engineering of the foot. If the body is a foreign country, then to practise medicine is to explore new territory: the explorer and author of Empire Antarctica leads the reader on an adventure through what it means to be human.

Gavin Francis

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Dominic Lieven

Cambridge University Series 18: Empire, War and the End of Tsarist Russia

Hay Festival 2015, 

'As much as anything, World War I turned on the fate of Ukraine...' The decision to go to war in 1914 had catastrophic consequences for Russia. The result was revolution, civil war and famine in 1917–20, followed by decades of Communist rule. Dominic Lieven explains why this suicidal decision was made and explores the world of the men who made it. But by looking at the origins and results of the First World War from a mostly Russian angle he also offers a radically different view of why Europe descended into disaster, overturning assumptions about the war's causes and consequences in a way that still has major implications for world history down to the present day. Chaired by Oliver Bullough.

Dominic Lieven

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Pioneering fashion designer Orsola de Castro and co-founder of Fashion Revolution Day, discusses the future of sustainability in fashion with Margareta van den Bosch, H&M’s former design director and now creative advisor, Jessica Bumpus from Vogue and Catarina Midby, H&M's Sustainable Fashion Advisor. They talk to Dilys Williams, Director of the London College of Fashion’s Centre for Sustainable Fashion. The panel will also offer their insights on the final garments created by 12 students from H&M’s Garment Recycling Programme after a week-long workshop with leading designers. The workshops will have encouraged students to use and consider sustainable sourcing and techniques in the production of their garments as well as ensuring the finished product is beautifully designed and presented.

Orsola De Castro, Jessica Bumpus, Margareta van den Bosch, Catarina Midby and Dilys Williams

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Michael Morpurgo

The Mozart Question Concert

Hay Festival 2015, 

Author Michael Morpurgo is joined by actress Alison Reid, violinist Daniel Pioro and The Storyteller’s Ensemble (a quartet of strings). Together they interweave words and music, to tell his haunting tale of survival against the odds, set against the background of the Holocaust. Adapted and directed by Simon Reade.

‘It is difficult for us to imagine how dreadful was the suffering that went on in the Nazi concentration camps during the Second World War. The enormity of the crime that the Nazis committed is just too overwhelming for us to comprehend. In their attempt to wipe out an entire race they caused the death of six million people, most of them Jews. It is when you hear the stories of the individuals who lived through it – Anne Frank, Primo Levi – that you can begin to understand the horror just a little better, and to understand the evil that caused it.

‘For me, the most haunting image does not come from literature or film, but from music. I learned some time ago that in many of the camps the Nazis selected Jewish prisoners and forced them to play in orchestras; for the musicians it was simply a way to survive. In order to calm the new arrivals at the camps, they were made to serenade them as they were lined up and marched off, many to the gas chambers. Often they played Mozart.

‘I wondered how it must have been for a musician who played in such hellish circumstances, who adored Mozart as I do – what thoughts came when playing Mozart later in life? This was the genesis of my story, this and the sight of a small boy in a square by the Accademia Bridge in Venice, sitting one night, in his pyjamas on his tricycle, listening to a busker. He sat totally enthralled by the music that seemed to him, and to me, to be heavenly.’ Michael Morpurgo.

8+ years
Duration 1 hour 15 minutes. No interval.
Michael Morpurgo

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Laura Bates, Nimko Ali, Sonia Faleiro and guests

Magna Carta 800 – What Do We Want? Equality

Hay Festival 2015, 

Is equality law working to deliver equality for women? If not, what’s it going to take? Bates is the founder of the Everyday Sexism project. Nimko Ali is a social activist, an FGM survivor and campaigner, co-founder of Daughters of Eve. Journalist and writer Sonia Faleiro is the author of Beautiful Thing: Inside the Secret World of Bombay's Dance Bars and 13 Men.

Laura Bates, Nimko Ali, Sonia Faleiro and guests

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The Devil’s Violin presents

The Forbidden Door

Hay Festival 2015, 

What would you sacrifice for the sake of the one you love? The Forbidden Door tells passionate, funny and hauntingly interwoven stories. Twisting human nature’s need to disobey the rules into beautiful tales of love and loss, this is storytelling for adults; there are no big eyes or nursery rhymes. Expect impossible quests, heart-stopping twists, love, loss, high drama, low comedy and pure moments of total abandonment from the real world. The Devil’s Violin is Daniel Morden – story, Oliver Wilson-Dickson – violin, Sarah Moody – cello, and Dylan Fowler – guitar.

The Devil’s Violin presents

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Tracey Thorn talks to Xan Brooks

Naked at the Albert Hall

Hay Festival 2015, 

The riveting follow-up to her Bedsit Disco Queen. Part memoir, part wide-ranging exploration of the art, mechanics and spellbinding power of singing, Naked at the Albert Hall takes in Dusty Springfield, Dennis Potter and George Eliot; Auto-tune, the microphone and stage presence; The Streets and The X Factor. Including interviews with fellow artists and portraits of singers in fiction as well as Tracey’s real-life experiences, it offers a unique, witty and sharply observed insider’s perspective on the exhilarating joy and occasional heartache of singing.

Tracey Thorn talks to Xan Brooks

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Peter Florence: The Pity of War

For Hay Library

Hay Festival 2015, 

A performed reading of the play about Wilfred Owen, who died in action on 4 November 1918 having written some of the greatest war poetry in the English language. The play is edited from Owen’s poems and letters and tells his story from the outbreak of war when he was teaching in provincial France. Owen joins up and is drafted straight into the realities of trench warfare on the frontline; he is invalided back to hospital in Edinburgh where he meets Robert Graves and Siegfried Sassoon before returning to his men in France, where he wins the Military Cross. Owen’s writing was savagely critical of church and state, and hugely compassionate towards the soldiers sacrificing their lives: ‘All a poet can do today is warn. That is why the poet must be truthful.’

Peter Florence: The Pity of War

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Broadcasting House – LIVE ON AIR

A BBC Radio 4 Event at Hay

Hay Festival 2015, 

On Sunday 31 May, BBC Radio 4’s Broadcasting House comes live from Hay Festival with presenter Paddy O’Connell, for an hour of interviews and entertainment.

Broadcast every Sunday morning on BBC Radio 4 at 9am.

BBC Radio 4
Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult over 18 years
Duration: 1 hour
Broadcasting House – LIVE ON AIR

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Marcus Brigstocke, Carrie Quinlan, Andre Vincent and guest

The Early Edition

Hay Festival 2015, 

The home team satirists read the Sunday papers.

Marcus Brigstocke, Carrie Quinlan, Andre Vincent and guest

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Rick Stroud

Kidnap in Crete

Hay Festival 2015, 

On a moonlit night in April 1944 a small band of fearless partisans, led by the British SOE agent Patrick Leigh Fermor, kidnapped a high-ranking Nazi general on the German-occupied island of Crete. Stroud is the author of The Phantom Army of Alamein: The Men Who Hoodwinked Rommel and The Book of the Moon. Chaired by Con Coughlin.

Rick Stroud

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Pamela Butchart

Blue Peter Best Story Award Winner

Hay Festival 2015, 
Pamela will share the brilliantly bonkers world of Izzy in a lively session based on her book The Spy Who Loved School Dinners, winner of the Blue Peter Best Story Award. The latest in the series is My Headteacher is a Vampire Rat.
7+ years
Pamela Butchart

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Jenny Agutter, Heidi Thomas, Pippa Harris

Call The Midwife

Hay Festival 2015, 

The star, screenwriter and producer of the television drama discuss the stories and period of Jennifer Worth’s best-selling books with Virginia Nicholson.

Jenny Agutter, Heidi Thomas, Pippa Harris

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Marian Keyes

Fictions – The Woman Who Stole My Life

Hay Festival 2015, 

Keyes’ stunning new novel The Woman Who Stole My Life is about losing the life you had and finding a better one. Her international bestselling novels include Rachel’s Holiday, Last Chance Saloon, Sushi for Beginners, Angels, The Other Side of the Story, Anybody Out There, This Charming Man, The Brightest Star in the Sky and The Mystery of Mercy Close. Chaired by Rosie Goldsmith.

Marian Keyes

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Gareth P Jones

Steam Punk Pirates

Hay Festival 2015, 
Attack of the Giant Sea Spiders is the second in the gloriously daft series The Adventures of the Steampunk Pirates by Blue Peter Award-winner, Gareth P Jones. Dropping anchor in Hay with his trusty ukulele, his musty accordion and his rusty cutlass, Gareth gives us an event like no other. Prepare for clashing cutlasses, rowdy readings, raucous sea shanties, and other such shenanigans. Piratical attire optional.
6+ years
Gareth P Jones

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Mary Evans

Story Stew

Hay Festival 2015, 
Join children’s author Mary Evans for a fun, anarchic and downright daft introduction to story writing. Using a host of ingredients, a dollop of imagination and a side helping of silliness, you can learn a basic recipe that will enable anyone to write a story. That’s right. Anyone. Especially you. Back by popular demand, Story Stew helps you to write stories that leave a great taste in the imagination.
7+ years
Mary Evans

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Bear Grylls

Ghost Flight

Hay Festival 2015, 

The adventurer launches his thriller, in which his hero is sent deep into the Amazon jungle on the hunt for a WW2 secret. Grylls’ recent non-fiction includes True Grit, Extreme Food and Your Life – Train For It. He talks to Clemency Burton-Hill.

Bear Grylls

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William Nicholson

Fictions – The Lovers of Amherst

Hay Festival 2015, 

William Nicholson’s new novel, The Lovers of Amherst, interweaves the stories of a young, contemporary researcher into the life and work of the reclusive American poet, Emily Dickinson, with that of the poet’s milieu during a turbulent period in the 1880s. The story from the past revolves around an illicit love affair conducted by Emily Dickinson’s married brother, in which the poet colluded. The theme stems from William Nicholson’s long-standing fascination with Emily Dickinson’s work as well as his interest in the wellsprings and consequences of erotic passion. Nicholson’s plays include Shadowlands and Life Story. He co-wrote the script for the film Gladiator and he has scripted Les Misérables and Mandela. Emily Dickinson’s poetry will be read by actress Lisa Dwan.

William Nicholson

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Gary Northfield

Julius Zebra. Rumble with the Romans!

Hay Festival 2015, 
Meet the cartoonist and graphic novelist who created The Terrible Tales of the Teenytinysaurs! graphic novel and is a cartoonist for phenomenally successful comics and series including The Phoenix, The Beano, The Dandy and Horrible Histories. 

Join in this interactive family event full of tips for budding young cartoonists, illustrators and writers. Gary introduces his hilarious brand new series Julius ZebraRumble with the Romans! and dazzles with lots of images, live drawing and plenty of Roman facts.
7+ years
Gary Northfield

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