Hay Festival 2020 is cancelled

We deeply regret that Hay Festival 2020 is cancelled due to the Coronavirus/Covid-19 pandemic. Read more here.

Event HF51

Join the Flock: Shaun the Sheep Model Making

Venue: NFU Mutual Studio
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Celebrate this year’s Shaun the Sheep movie and the new Tales from Mossy Bottom Farm books. Join Aardman’s specialist model maker in this hands-on workshop, where in a series of stages you’ll make your own clay model of Shaun the Sheep to take home.
7+ years
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Join the Flock: Shaun the Sheep Model Making

Event 157

Jon Ronson

So, You’ve Been Publicly Shamed…

Venue: Telegraph Stage
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A powerful and sometimes humorous look at the phenomenon of artificial high dramas and public shamings that are characteristic of a world dominated by social media. Why do we do it and how does it affect the shamed? Ronson was prompted into looking at public shaming after his own online identity was stolen in 2012. He met famous shamers and shamees to discover how public ridicule and vitriol can devastate the victim, and to uncover the true reasons behind the rise in public shaming.

Ronson is a documentary maker and author of many bestselling books including The Psychopath Test, The Men Who Stare at Goats, Lost at Sea and Them: Adventures with Extremists. Chaired by John Mitchinson.

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Jon Ronson

Event 158

Andre Geim talks to Roger Highfield

The Royal Society Platform: Random Walk to Graphene

Venue: Good Energy Stage
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In 2010 Sir Andre Geim FRS was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics for his groundbreaking work on the material graphene. More unusually, he’s also known for inventing an adhesive tape based on geckos and for levitating live frogs. Geim talks about his prize-winning work and how his atypical approach to science and life led him to it.

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Andre Geim talks to Roger Highfield

Event 159

Will Hutton

How Good We Can Be: Ending the Mercenary Society and Building a Great Country

Venue: Llwyfan Cymru - Wales Stage
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The journalist and economics commentator examines the state of Britain today and looks forward to a Britain of tomorrow. Hutton argues that allowing the market to decide, irrespective of justice and equity, has led to a capitalism that extracts value rather than creates it – in turn leading to an unequal society organised for the benefit of the top 1%.

Hutton is author of many influential books including The State We’re In, The World We’re In and Them and Us: Changing Britain – Why We Need a Fair Society.

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Will Hutton

Event 160

Philip Gross and Valerie Coffin Price

A Fold in the River

Venue: Oxfam Moot
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A beautiful collaboration between TS Eliot Prize-winning poet Philip Gross and visual artist Valerie Coffin Price. Gross once lived on the banks of the River Taff in Wales and his journals are the source for the powerful poems. Price revisited the walking route along the river, from which evolved the prints and drawings that accompany the poems.

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Philip Gross and Valerie Coffin Price

Event 161

Justin Griffiths-Williams

Baby Doc Duvalier and Fort Dimanche

Venue: Starlight Stage
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The award-winning photo-journalist has been documenting the island of Haiti for the past 15 years and has produced an astonishing record of one of the world’s most extreme cultures and natural environments, racked by civil war, climatic catastrophe and violent deprivations. He shows his images and discusses his work with Oliver Balch.

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Justin Griffiths-Williams

Event 162

Daniel Hahn introduces Llŷr Gwyn Lewis, Valerie Fritsch, Marco Parlato and Elske Rahill

Scritture Giovani 2015 – Home

Venue: Scribblers Hut
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Four writers under the age of 30 are commissioned to write a story on the same theme of ‘home’ that is then translated into Italian, German and English. The writers visit four festivals (Mantova and Berlin in September, Hay in May, Kells in June,) to discuss their work. 

In collaboration with Festivaletteratura, Mantova and Literaturfestival, Berlin

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Daniel Hahn introduces Llŷr Gwyn Lewis, Valerie Fritsch, Marco Parlato and Elske Rahill

Event 163

Daniel Martyn Lewis

JS Bach: The Well-Tempered Clavier 1

Venue: St Mary's Church
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Warmly described by Harris Goldsmith in New York Concert Review as ‘a truly fine musician’, Daniel Martyn Lewis is a pianist who is achieving recognition for the purity and beauty of his Bach interpretations. He will perform one of the greatest masterpieces in the whole of western keyboard literature, the complete Well-Tempered Clavier. Its two books of 24 Preludes and Fugues cover every major and minor key, and display a breathtaking diversity of styles and genres. Concert 1 covers The Well-Tempered Clavier, Book One nos 1–12. BWV 846-857. Come and share this extraordinary emotional journey over four concerts, Monday–Thursday. 

See also events 204, 244, 279
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Daniel Martyn Lewis

Event 437

Marion Coutts talks to Rosie Boycott

The Iceberg – Winner of the Wellcome Book Prize

Venue: Elmley Foundation Cube
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A conversation with the winner of the 2015 prize. Chair of judges, Bill Bryson: 'Marion Coutts' account of living with her husband's illness and death is wise, moving and beautifully constructed. Reading it, you have the sense of something truly unique being brought into the world – it stays with you for a long time after.'

In 2008 the art critic Tom Lubbock was diagnosed with a brain tumour. The tumour was located in the area controlling speech and language, and would eventually rob him of the ability to speak. He died early in 2011. Marion Coutts was his wife. In short bursts of beautiful, textured prose, Coutts describes the eighteen months leading up to her partner's death. This book is an account of a family unit, man, woman, young child, under assault, and how the three of them fought to keep it intact. Written with extraordinary narrative force and power, The Iceberg is almost shocking in its rawness. It charts the deterioration of Tom's speech even as it records the developing language of his child. Fury, selfishness, grief, indignity and impotence are all examined and brought to light. Yet out of this comes a rare story about belonging, an 'adventure of being and dying'. This book is a celebration of each other, friends, family, art, work, love and language.

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Marion Coutts talks to Rosie Boycott

Event 445

Imagine…Colm Toibin: His Mother's Son

A BBC Screening at Hay

Venue: BBC Tent
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In this thoughtful, lyrical film, Imagine talks to the acclaimed and curiously divided Irish writer Colm Tóibín. Loud and affable in person, Tóibín writes sombre stories of grief and quiet heartbreak, repeatedly returning to the dark narrative of his own childhood and the complicated relationships between mothers and sons.

In the year that his bestselling novel Brooklyn is being adapted for the cinema and The Testament of Mary continues to provoke controversy, Tóibín publishes his most poignant and personal novel yet. With Fiona Shaw, Anne Enright and Nick Hornby.

Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult over 18 years.
Duration: 1 hour 15 minutes
Free but ticketed
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Imagine…Colm Toibin: His Mother's Son

Event 164

Texas

25th Anniversary Concert

Venue: Tata Tent
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With the release of White On Blonde in 1997 the Glasgow alt-rockers became major stars, propelled by huge pop hits such as Say What You Want and Black Eyed Boy. Many groups could be destroyed by such success, but Texas have continued writing and recording, sustained by their very particular love of music, and listeners can still enjoy the classic mix of Sharleen Spiteri’s distinctive vocals with an experienced band who know exactly what they’re doing.

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Texas

Event 165

Nina Conti

In Your Face

Venue: Telegraph Stage
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Groundbreaking ventriloquist, BAFTA-nominated filmmaker and British Comedy Award-winner Nina Conti welcomes you to see her new improvised show. With the help of Monkey and a bag of tricks, truly anything can happen in this unmissable improvised adventure of hilarious witchery.

The smash hit, total sell-out show of the Edinburgh Fringe 2014 from the star of Live at the Apollo, Russell Howard’s Good News, QI, Sunday Night at the Palladium and HBO’s Family Tree.

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Nina Conti

Event 166

John Bulmer

Wind of Change

Venue: Starlight Stage
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In 1962 the pioneering Sunday Times photographer embarked on a project to photograph the profound social and political changes sweeping across the world, from the slow disintegration of the Middle East, the early collapse of the Communist bloc and the rise of African nationalism, to the totalitarianism of China and North Korea, and the disparities of wealth and poverty in the Americas. Fifty years on, he shows his photogaphs and discusses them with filmmaker Corisande Albert.

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John Bulmer

Event 167

Jasmine Donahaye talks to Francesca Rhydderch

Finding Her Place

Venue: Elmley Foundation Cube
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The poet is publishing two books this spring: the first biography of Lily Tobias, a courageous, idealistic Welsh woman who wrote compellingly about Jewish life and experience in the twentieth century; and a memoir, Losing Israel. In 2007, in a chance conversation with her mother, a kibbutznik, Donahaye stumbled upon the collusion of her family in the displacement of Palestinians in 1948. When she set out to learn the story of what happened, what she discovered challenged everything she thought she knew about the country and her family, and transformed her understanding of the place, and of herself.
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Jasmine Donahaye talks to Francesca Rhydderch

Event 168

Mark Watson

Flaws – Stand-Up

Venue: Llwyfan Cymru - Wales Stage
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Flaws is Mark’s darkest, most personal show yet, but luckily also his funniest. Watson rips up his parental crisis, his relationships with Madonna (non-existent) and alcohol (over familiar), his contempt for tapas and his fondness for drunk-giving to charities. He makes glorious fun of himself, and spins comedy gold out of his return to health and happiness. It’s a life-affirming triumph of physical and verbal stand-up.

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Mark Watson

Event 423

How to Break into the Media

A BBC Event at Hay

Venue: BBC Tent
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A masterclass on how to get started in the media. Chaired by BBC Arts correspondent Rebecca Jones. Panellists include Head of Digital Development for Arts, Peter Maniura; Susie Worster, Head of Talent for Shed Media; Sally Garwood, one of the apprentices on BBC Radio’s Journalism scheme, and Creative Access Production trainee Ashley Francis-Roy.

Not for broadcast.

BBC
Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult over 18 years
Duration: 50 mins
Free but ticketed
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Event 420

River Walk 1

Venue: Meet at box office for bus
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Join the Wye & Usk Foundation trip around the Wye and its tributaries near Hay to see the rare and unusual creatures that live in the river, and to see what progress is being made to restore the run of salmon.

For all outdoors events and walks we recommend walking boots and warm and waterproof clothing.

Please bring a packed lunch.
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River Walk 1

Event 170

Daniel Hahn, John Boyne, Jenny Valentine

The New Golden Age

Venue: Telegraph Stage
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We are revelling in an exhilarating time for young readers, fired by the richest imaginable field of novelists creating work for teenagers. The editor of the new Oxford Companion to Children’s Literature hosts this celebration of great contemporary YA writing with two superstars of the genre, who pick a library of ten essential reads for teenagers. All ticketholders will be entered into a draw to receive the ten books they choose as well as copies of Boyne’s The Boy With The Striped Pyjamas and the forthcoming Valentine novel Fire Colour One.

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Daniel Hahn, John Boyne, Jenny Valentine

Event 171

Eileen Younghusband talks to Martin Chilton

One Woman’s War

Venue: Tata Tent
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Ninety-three-year-old Eileen Younghusband served as an officer in the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force in WW2. She decided to volunteer at the age of 18, and her mathematical abilities led to her training as a Clerk Special Duties, a vital part of the Radar chain. She found herself working in the Filter Room, the lynchpin between the coastal Radar Chain and the successful defence of Britain. She tracked the V1s over Kent and London and gave the first ‘Big Ben’ warning of a V2, which landed on Chiswick on 8 September 1944. After losing two fiancés, she eventually married; only to be posted overseas six weeks later to Second Tactical Air Force in Belgium. There she became part of a team tracking and destroying V2 launching vehicles, responsible for the devastating raids on Antwerp – the Allies’ vital port for landing troops and supplies. She tells her story to The Telegraph’s Martin Chilton.

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Eileen Younghusband talks to Martin Chilton

Event 172

Adele Nozedar and Lizzie Harper

The Garden Forager

Venue: Good Energy Stage
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Many of our own gardens contain an abundance of edible and medicinal plants, grown mainly for their ornamental appearance. Most gardeners are completely unaware that what they have actually planted is a rather exotic kitchen garden. The Garden Forager explores some of the most popular garden plants that have edible, medicinal or even cosmetic potential. Nozedar’s recipes and remedies are exquisitely illustrated in watercolours by Lizzie Harper. She talks while Harper illustrates live.

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Adele Nozedar and Lizzie Harper

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