Hay Player

Greg Proops

The Smartest Man in the World

Hay Festival 2014, 

The comic from San Francisco, known here for his unpredictable improvisations on Whose Line Is It Anyway? brings his comedy proopcast to Hay for one night only. ‘Some of the boldest comedy on the podcasting frontier right now.’ Rolling Stone Magazine

Greg Proops

Hay Player

Simon Armitage

The Death of King Arthur

Hay Festival 2012, 
Our poet-in-residence reads from his astounding new version of the great medieval epic of warfare and politics.

Hay Player

Chris Riddell and Paul Stewart

Muddleearth

Hay Festival 2012, 
Join us as we’re transported to Muddle Earth, where the wizards are mad and the pink hogs are stinky. Make sure you bring your Wellies of Power and Woolly Gloves of Determination.
 
9+ years

Hay Player

Lemn Sissay

Reformations 17: Care

Hay Festival 2017, 

The passionate and powerful poet re-imagines the way in which the State might raise children placed in its care. Sissay is Chancellor of the University of Manchester. His foster parents placed him into care at the age of 12. He lived in care homes until he was 18. Chaired by Claire Armitstead.

Lemn Sissay

Hay Player

Lucy Hughes-Hallet

The Pike

Hay Festival 2013, 

The story of Gabriele D’Annunzio: poet, daredevil and Fascist, who in 1919 declared himself Commandante of the city of Fiume in modern-day Croatia to establish a utopia based on his fascist and artistic ideals. It was the dramatic pinnacle to an outrageous career. Chaired by Sarah Crompton.

Hay Player

NoViolet Bulawayo and Meike Ziervogel talk to Gaby Wood

Fictions – Elsewhere

Hay Festival 2013, 

The Zimbabwean novelist’s We Need New Names plays with the dreams and realities of leaving a terrible place of hunger and things falling apart for the paradise of the West. Ziervogel’s Magda is an uncompromising rendering of the mother-daughter relationships of the wife of Hitler’s propaganda minister, Joseph Goebbels.

Hay Player

Katherine Woodfine and Robin Stevens

Dastardly Villains (and Iced Buns for Tea)

Hay Festival 2015, 
Robin Stevens’ Wells and Wong schoolgirl detective stories are thrilling books for tween detectives who adore solving dastardly murders. Think St Trinians meets Miss Marple. Katherine Woodfine’s readers of The Mystery of the Clockwork Sparrow enter a world of bonbons, perfumes and mysteries around every corner. Gasp as our bold heroines vow to bring the villains to justice before devouring another iced bun.
9+ years
Katherine Woodfine and Robin Stevens

Hay Player

The King of the Sky

With actors, puppets and music

Hay Festival 2015, 
An Italian boy comes to live in a Welsh mining village, where his parents own a café. He misses his home but the cooing of Mr Evans’ racing pigeons reminds him of a sunlit Roman piazza, and draws him into an unlikely friendship with the old man. Together, they pin their dreams on a race across Europe and the special bird they hope can win it, ‘The King of the Sky’. This is a story about the meaning of home and finding friends where you don’t expect to. An inventive adaptation with actors, puppets and music, created by Pontardawe Arts Centre.

Photo: Illustrations from the first trial of the book, by Laura Carling

7+ years
The King of the Sky

Hay Player

Gary Shteyngart talks to Gaby Wood

Super Sad True Love Story

Hay Festival 2011, 
A comic love story masterpiece set in a catastrophically fallen USA, from the author of Absurdistan. Magic.
 
Read a review of Super Sad True Love Story www.guardian.co.uk/books/

Hay Player

James Campbell

Comedy 4 Kids

Hay Festival 2009, 
Forget clowns, join one of the UK's top comedians for some proper comedy for kids. Guaranteed to tickle your ribs and your fancy.

7 years +

Hay Player

Philippa Gregory

The Changeling

Hay Festival 2012, 
Join the best-selling author of The Other Boleyn Girl as she reveals the dark myths, medieval secrets and intrigue that populate the pages of her first-ever series for young people.
 
12+ years

Hay Player

Tony Fitzjohn talks to Ben Fogle

Born Wild

Hay Festival 2011, 
A story of passion, adventure and skulduggery on the frontline of African conservation in Kenya and Tanzania.
 
Read a review of Born Wild

Hay Player

David Vann talks to Mónica Carmona

Segovia 2011, 
David Vann is a brilliant North American novelist who received the Medicis award for the best foreign novel in 2010 for Sukkvan Island, set in a remote island in Alaska in which a father and a son fight for survival. His latest work, Caribou Island, has just been published in Spanish. In his novels Vann immerses the reader in a suffocating atmosphere, explores human relationships and questions the myth of the American dream. He will talk with Mónica Carmona, publisher of Mondadori.
 
Simultaneous translation will be available from English into Spanish.

Hay Player

David Nott talks to Rosie Boycott

War Doctor: Surgery on the Front Line

Hay Festival 2019, 

For more than twenty-five years, David Nott has taken unpaid leave from his job as a general and vascular surgeon with the NHS to volunteer in some of the world’s most dangerous war zones: Afghanistan, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Darfur, Congo, Iraq, Yemen, Libya, Gaza and Syria. He has also volunteered in areas blighted by natural disasters, such as the earthquakes in Haiti and Nepal. Driven by both the desire to help others and the thrill of extreme personal danger, he is now widely acknowledged to be the most experienced trauma surgeon in the world. Since 2015, the foundation he set up with his wife, Elly, has disseminated the knowledge he has gained, training other doctors in the art of saving lives threatened by bombs and bullets.

Hay Player

Orson Welles – Hello Americans

Simon Callow

Hay Festival 2006, 
The actor introduces the second volume of his biography taking the American wunderkind through the career-disaster years from Citizen Kane to Macbeth.

Hay Player

Paul St George with Polly Stenham and Jessie Burton

Slow Fiction

Hay Festival 2015, 

Slow Fiction is inspired by the predella, the sequence of four or five pictures under a Renaissance altarpiece that tell the story of the annunciation, the adoration, or the pietà. If the large altarpiece painting is one moment in time, the predella shows the moments leading up to that key frame and sometimes what happens after. The artist Paul St George works with writers, translating selections of their writing into small sequences of sculptures making three-dimensional stories. Two of the first authors to be excited by this new way of bringing readers to writing are Polly Stenham, author of Hotel, and Jessie Burton, author of The Miniaturist: ‘To see my written words reimagined for a different audience, giving another take on the story-telling process – what we omit, what we emphasise, and what we leave behind – in a newly-configured presentation, is a true thrill.’

Paul St George with Polly Stenham and Jessie Burton

Hay Player

Atef Abu Saif and Abdallah Tayeh

Fictions – The Book of Gaza

Hay Festival 2014, 

The novelist Atef Abu Saif introduces his groundbreaking anthology of ten Palestinian writers who have been translated into English for the first time. Each story takes place in a different part of the Strip and provides a ‘literary map’, navigating its readers around the cities. He is joined by one of the contributing short story writers, Abdallah Tayeh. They talk to Georgina Godwin.

Hay Player

Dannie Abse

Reading

Hay Festival 2009, 
The great Welsh poet celebrates the launch of his New Selected Poems.

Hay Player

Gillian Clarke

Kells 2014, 

The National Poet of Wales celebrates Dylan Thomas’s centenary with readings and discusses both how the poet influenced her life and his importance to poetry in the English language everywhere.

Gillian Clarke

Hay Player

Paul Dolan

Happy Ever After: Escaping the Myth of the Perfect Life

Hay Festival 2019, 

Happiness expert Professor Paul Dolan draws on a variety of studies ranging over wellbeing, inequality and discrimination to bust the common myths about our sources of happiness. He shows that there can be many unexpected paths to lasting fulfilment. Some of these might involve not going into higher education, choosing not to marry, rewarding acts rooted in self-interest and caring a little less about living forever. By freeing ourselves from the myth of the perfect life, we might each find a life worth living. Chaired by Horatio Clare.

Hay Player

Edna O’Brien

Byron in Love

Hay Festival 2009, 
The Irish novelist is a perfect match for the subject of her biography, the heroic Romantic poet. Chaired by Peter Guttridge.

Hay Player

Andy Stanton

Mr Gum

Hay Festival 2012, 
Bigger, better, grislier, crazier... No, not Andy, Mr Gum of course! Make sure you and your Snocklehead friends don't miss out.
 
7+ years

Hay Player

Melvyn Bragg

Autobiography and Fiction

Hay Festival 2009, 
The award-winning novelist and biographer explores his book Remember Me and the ethics and practice of writing fiction that reflects real lives.

Hay Player

David Boyle

Broke: How to Survive the Middle-Class Crisis

Hay Festival 2014, 

For the first time ever, today’s middle classes will struggle to enjoy the same privileges of security and comfort that their grandparents did. Sidelined by the mega-rich, the middle classes really are under severe threat. How did this situation come about? To survive, they will have to carve a new niche for themselves.

Hay Player

Maurice Gourdault-Montagne, Helen Mountfield and Simon Schama talk to Katya Adler

The Scramble for Europe

Hay Festival 2018, 

Europe, the richest economic area in the world, faces unprecedented challenges: a protectionist US administration, Russian interventions, a Chinese leader who has defied succession planning, and the parliamentary success of the far-right in Germany, Italy and Austria. And then there’s Brexit. Something must be done. But what? And how? And by whom? The distinguished diplomat Gourdault-Montagne is now Secretary General of the French Foreign Ministry, Mountfield is a British QC, Schama is an historian. Chaired by the BBC’s Europe Editor.