This second of this year’s gala readings celebrates the power of persuasion and words. From calls to arms to demands for peace, this performance captures the voices of prophets and politicians, rebels and tyrants, soldiers and statesman. Speeches' is inspired by Simon Sebag Montefiore’s new book which will be published in October and by the two great Penguin speeches anthologies edited by Brian MacArthur, who died in March this year, and to whom this event is dedicated.
The full cast will be announced on the day.
Building a sustainable society is perhaps the greatest test that the world’s population has ever faced. Today we have borrowed from the future by grabbing prosperity now and imposing the cost on the next generation.
The new, savagely funny novel from the Orange Prize-winning author of We Need To Talk About Kevin. When Pandora picks up her older brother Edison at her local Iowa airport, she literally doesn’t recognize him. The once slim, hip New York jazz pianist has gained hundreds of pounds. What happened?
In her autobiography, the novelist brings us face to face with a literary life of high drama and contemplation. And along the way there are encounters with Hollywood giants, pop stars and literary titans – all of whom lend this life, so gorgeously, sometimes painfully remembered here, a terrible poignancy.
We are delighted to be launching the new novel by one of the most daring and incisive prose writers. Uniting our most urgent contemporary concerns: from the ubiquitous mobile phone to a family in chaos; from the horror of modern war, to the end of privacy, Phone is a stunning novel that combines the high-concept bravura of Self’s Great Apes and The Butt with the deep literary scope and scale of Umbrella and Shark.
Anne-Marie Casey was a TV and film producer in the UK before becoming a full-time writer in 2000. She has written numerous scripts for TV and film; her adaptation of Little Women for the Gate Theatre in Dublin was a huge success, and her first novel An Englishwoman in New York was published in 2013 in the US and UK to critical acclaim, and was an Irish bestseller. She talks to Lisa Dwan.
Britain faces extraordinary challenges, from climate change to growing inequality and global economics, but as a nation has no plan for the future. This unique book asks a simple question: how it can organise itself, not just for survival, but to build a fairer and a sustainable society?
The poet swaps the moorland uplands of the north (Walking Home) for the coastal fringes of Britain’s south west, once again giving readings every night, but this time through Somerset, Devon and Cornwall, taking poetry into distant communities and tourist hot-spots, busking his way from start to finish.
From the surreal pleasure-dome of Minehead Butlins to a smoke-filled roundhouse on the Penwith Peninsula, then out to the Isles of Scilly and beyond, Armitage tackles this personal Odyssey with all the poetic reflection and personal wit we’ve come to expect of one of Britain’s best loved and most popular writers.
As a classic ceremony to close the Hay Festival Segovia, Antonio Muñoz Molina, this year’s Príncipe de Asturias de las Letras, and the maestro Josep Pons, musical director of the Liceo, speak about the two bicentennial geniuses - Richard Wagner and Giuseppe Verdi - in a conversation moderated by Jesús Ruiz Mantilla. The Avanti Quartet, part of the Orchestra of Castilla y León, opens and closes the event.
Co-organized with Junta de Castilla y León and Fundación Lara
For a number of years The Parson and The Publican have travelled the highways and byways in search of refreshment for body and soul. With many years between them of accumulated wisdom on matters pertaining to pew and pump it was but a short step to committing their experiences to print. The authors have scoured Worcestershire, Herefordshire and The Wye Valley to amass these tales, which are delightfully illustrated with watercolour sketches from the brush of the Publican. Some of the places in their delightful book are well known, while others are more obscure but, never discouraged, our plucky pilgrims get out the map, freely exchange opinions and then do precisely what the driver wishes. Not for them the wonders of the 'Sat Nag'. Rather, instinct and an unwavering nose for musty hassocks, malted barley or fermented apple juice draws them ever onwards.
Little India, East London: Shyama, aged 44, has fallen for a younger man. They want a child together. Meanwhile, in a rural village in India, young Mala, trapped in an oppressive marriage, dreams of escape. When Shyama and Mala meet, they help each other realise their dreams. But will fate guarantee them both happiness? The author of Life Isn’t All Ha Ha Hee Hee launches her new novel.