Hay Festival 2019 Programme

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Event 103

Robert Macfarlane talks to Horatio Clare

Underland: A Deep Time Journey

Venue: Baillie Gifford Stage
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A conversation between two writers renowned for their explorations of nature and landscape. Robert Macfarlane's Underland, perhaps the most eagerly anticipated non-fiction book of 2019, takes us on a journey into the worlds beneath our feet. From the ice-blue depths of Greenland's glaciers to the underground networks by which trees communicate, from Bronze Age burial chambers to the rock art of remote Arctic sea-caves, this is a deep-time voyage into the planet's past and future, and into darkness and its meanings. Global in its geography, gripping in its voice and haunting in its implications, it is both an ancient and an urgent work.
Macfarlane, a winner of the Hay Festival Prose Medal, is the author of Mountains of the Mind, The Wild Places, The Old Ways, Landmarks and (with Jackie Morris) The Lost Words. Horatio Clare’s latest books are The Light in the Dark and Something of his Art: Walking to Lübeck with JS Bach – Hay Festival’s Book of the Month for December 2018.

See also event [235] on 29 May – Spell Songs, a musical performance of The Lost Words – Macfarlane's multi-award-winning collaboration with the artist Jackie Morris.

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Event 104

Bettany Hughes, Jon Lee Anderson, David Olusoga and Paul Dolan

The Aftermaths

Venue: Oxfam Moot
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The polarised intensity of Brexit can seem like a very British civil war. What might healing and reconciliation look like? What can we learn from the past, and from present examples? Classicist Bettany Hughes reflects on her 2014 documentary series What’s The Point of Forgiveness? and takes a long view of ancient historical paths to peace. War correspondent Jon Lee Anderson discusses the political wrangling of peace terms and treaties he’s witnessed, the amnesties and the long recovery from totalitarian oppressions. Olusoga is an historian and author of Black and British: A Forgotten History. Paul Dolan is Professor in Behavioural Science at the LSE, where he works on measures of happiness and subjective wellbeing that can be used in policy and by individuals looking to be happier.

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Event 105

Sophie Ratcliffe talks to Philippe Sands

The Lost Properties of Love

Venue: Llwyfan Cymru – Wales Stage
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Sophie Ratcliffe’s book is about the things we hide from other people. Love affairs, grief, domestic strife and the mess at the bottom of your handbag. Part memoir, part imagined history, Ratcliffe combines her own experience of childhood bereavement, a past lover and the reality of motherhood and marriage with undiscovered stories about Tolstoy and trains, handbags and honeymoons, to muse on the messiness of everyday life.

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Event 106

Margaret J Snowling

Dyslexia: A Very Short Introduction

Venue: Hay Festival Foundation Stage
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The contemporary view of dyslexia has emerged from a century of research in medicine, psychology and, more recently, neuroscience. Considering the potential causes of dyslexia, and looking at both genetic and environment factors, Professor Snowling shows how cross-linguistic studies have documented the prevalence of dyslexia in different languages. Discussing the various brain scanning techniques that have been used to find out if the brains of people with dyslexia differ in structure or function from those of typical readers, Snowling moves on to weigh up various strategies and interventions which can help people living with dyslexia today. Chaired by Stephanie Boland of Prospect magazine.

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Event 107

Alys Conran and Tishani Doshi

Fictions: A Common Wealth of Stories

Venue: Starlight Stage
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Conran’s Dignity is a powerful novel about belonging, race, British India and contemporary Britain, by the Dylan Thomas Prize-shortlisted author of Pigeon. Doshi’s Small Days and Nights is a captivating and original story of family, of the ties that bind and the secrets we bury, set against the vivid and evocative backdrop of modern India. Doshi is the award-winning author of Girls Are Coming Out of the Woods and The Pleasure Seekers. They talk to Oliver Balch.

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Event 108

Tonight at Hay

BBC Radio Wales

Venue: BBC Tent
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Lively discussion from Guto Harri and guests. Comedian and classicist Natalie Haynes brings an all-female perspective to the devastating consequences of the Trojan War and economist Victoria Bateman explores how women made the West rich. Plus poet Ifor ap Glyn on the intersections of language and landscape and geneticist Steve Jones on why our past - and our future - is a story told in the stars.

Free but ticketed
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Event 109

Stephen Fry

Mythos

Venue: Baillie Gifford Stage
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The actor and writer tells stories from his two books Mythos: The Greek Myths Retold and Heroes: Mortals and Monsters, Quests and Adventures.

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Stephen Fry

Event 110

Deborah Lipstadt talks to Rosie Boycott

Antisemitism: Here and Now

Venue: Llwyfan Cymru – Wales Stage
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The award-winning author of The Eichmann Trial and Denial: Holocaust History on Trial gives us a penetrating and provocative analysis of the hate that will not die, focusing on its current, virulent incarnations on both the political right and left, in America, across Europe and in Britain. She addresses what can be done about it.

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Deborah Lipstadt talks to Rosie Boycott

Event 111

Dolly Alderton talks to Clemency Burton-Hill

Everything I Know About Love

Venue: Oxfam Moot
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When it comes to the trials and triumphs of becoming a grown-up, journalist and former Sunday Times dating columnist Dolly Alderton has seen and tried it all. In her memoir she vividly recounts falling in love, wrestling with self-sabotage, finding a job, throwing a socially disastrous Rod Stewart themed house party, getting drunk, getting dumped, realising that Ivan from the corner shop is the only man you’ve ever been able to rely on, and finding that that your mates are always there at the end of every messy night out. Alderton’s captivating memoir is about bad dates, good friends and – above all else – about recognising that you and you alone are enough.

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Event 112

Kamal Ahmed

The Life and Times of a Very British Man

Venue: Hay Festival Foundation Stage
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Ahmed’s childhood was very British in every way – except for the fact that he was brown. Half English, half Sudanese, he was raised in 1970s London at a time when being mixed-race meant being told to go home, even when you were born just down the road. The memoir by the Editorial Director of BBC News makes the case for a new conversation about race in Britain through personal stories, political analysis and a passionate belief in the ultimate good of this country. He talks to Thea Lenarduzzi of the TLS.

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Kamal Ahmed

Event 113

James Meek talks to Misha Glenny

To Calais in Ordinary Time

Venue: Starlight Stage
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The writer discusses his magnificent 2014 Siberian novel The People’s Act of Love and his new work of reportage Dreams of Leaving and Remaining – an anatomy of Britain on the edge of Brexit. He previews his forthcoming novel To Calais in Ordinary Time, a 14th century epic narrative.

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James Meek talks to Misha Glenny

Event 114

Political Thinking

BBC Radio 4

Venue: BBC Tent
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Nick Robinson talks about what’s really going on in British politics.

Free but ticketed
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Event 420

Wine Tasting

Venue: Writers at Work
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Simon Leschallas, Director of Southern Wines Ltd, will be holding two tastings this year at the Hay Festival. The other will be on Monday 27 May at 7pm.

On Sunday, I will show a range of wines from the Vondeling Vineyards of South Africa, and on Monday I will show a collection of white and red wines from the Old World of France and Italy. I will take you through the wines and answer any questions you might have – if I can!

Once tasted, you will have the opportunity to purchase these wines, including delivery within mainland Britain, at a 15% discount off our retail price including vat, for a minimum 12 bottle mixed case order. I very much look forward to meeting you on one of the evenings at the Festival, or both.
Free but ticketed
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Event 116

Simon Armitage, Lavinia Greenlaw, Andrew Motion, Daljit Nagra, Richard Scott and Hannah Sullivan

The Faber Poetry Party

Venue: Llwyfan Cymru – Wales Stage
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The Poet Laureate hosts an all-star line-up to celebrate the ninetieth birthday of the iconic publisher, home of one of the world’s greatest poetry lists. Each of the poets reads from their own work and from the work of a Faber poet from a previous generation. The readings are interwoven with audio recordings from the Hay Player archive by the late, great Faber poets Derek Walcott, Ted Hughes and Seamus Heaney.

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Event 117

Simon Schama and Martin Sorrell

60 Years and Counting

Venue: Hay Festival Foundation Stage
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A conversation about the nature of the lifelong friendship between historian and writer Simon Schama and Martin Sorrell, businessman and advertising legend. The two men have known each other since their school days.

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Event 118

Michael Pennington

An Evening with Anton Chekhov

Venue: Starlight Stage
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The actor’s celebrated one-man show takes the form of an evening spent in the company of the Russian writer towards the end of his life. In it he reminisces about his life, his times and work; he demonstrates his writing technique by telling stories, speaks about the theatre and engages deeply and humorously with his English audience. The show premiered at the National Theatre in 1984, since when it has toured the world. “Chekhov in all his humour and humanity” – Sunday Telegraph. “Marvellously done” – New York Times.

1 hour 30 mins
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Michael Pennington

Event 119

BBC Hereford & Worcester: BBC Introducing: Live Session 1

Carmen Lees-Green, Jeremy Johnson

Venue: BBC Tent
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At BBC Music Introducing in Hereford & Worcester, we support the very best new music from across the region. Since 2005 we’ve broadcast more than a thousand sessions, helping to showcase some of our area’s most talented musicians. We’ve handpicked some of our favourite acts to join us on stage at Hay. These artists didn’t even know they were being considered – and we hope this inspires people to keep sending in their music, because we really do listen to everything. bbc.co.uk/introhw

Carmen Lees-Green is a graduate of the Hereford College of Arts and has been songwriting since her teens. Inspired by artists such as Amy Winehouse and Jorja Smith, she brings an eclectic sound to the table that is not to be missed!

Evesham's Jeremy Johnson pursued an international career as a geoscientist in his twenties, working, living and travelling across four continents. Jeremy's passion for music endured, but it wasn't until his late 20s that his development as a songwriter began to flourish. Chronicling his varied and individual experiences, Jeremy completed his first album of work in the months leading up to his 30th birthday. His latest album was released in February this year.

These sessions will be broadcast throughout June on BBC Hereford & Worcester on Saturdays at 8pm and Sundays at 6pm.

Free but ticketed
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Event 120

Bill Bailey

Larks in Transit Tour

Venue: Baillie Gifford Stage
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A compendium of travellers’ tales and the general shenanigans of twenty years as a travelling comedian. With musical virtuosity, surreal tangents and trademark intelligence, Bill Bailey tackles politics, philosophy and the pursuit of happiness. Plus, he fashions a symphony from a ringtone, tells the real story of Old McDonald and reimagines the Stars and Stripes. Two decades of touring larks from a comic described by the Daily Telegraph as “the brainiest comic of his generation”. “Joyous, playful, effortlessly funny” – Time Out.

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Bill Bailey

Event 121

Natalie Haynes

Troy Story

Venue: Hay Festival Foundation Stage
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The devastating consequences of the fall of Troy stretch from Mount Olympus to Mount Ida, from the citadel of Troy to the distant Greek islands, and across the oceans and sky in between. These are the stories of the women embroiled in that legendary war and its terrible aftermath, as well as the feud and the fatal decisions that started it all. With wit and humour, stand-up comedian, Radio 4 broadcaster and classicist Natalie Haynes brings the story of the Trojan War to life from an all-female perspective, giving voices to the women, girls and goddesses who, for so long, have been silent.

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Event 405

BBC Hereford & Worcester: BBC Introducing: Live Session 2

Paul Menel, Ben Crosland

Venue: BBC Tent
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At BBC Music Introducing in Hereford & Worcester, we support the very best new music from across the region. Since 2005 we’ve broadcast more than a thousand sessions, helping to showcase some of our area’s most talented musicians. We’ve handpicked some of our favourite acts to join us on stage at Hay. These artists didn’t even know they were being considered – and we hope this inspires people to keep sending in their music, because we really do listen to everything. bbc.co.uk/introhw

Paul Menel is a singer/songwriter with a musical background both varied and eclectic.
He was frontman for top prog rock band IQ who were signed to Phonogram by Def Leppard's larger than life managers Peter Mensch and Cliff Bernstein. Their first album "Nomzamo" was released to huge critical acclaim. The first single "Promises (As The Years Go By) was a radio hit in Germany and was used as the theme tune for a soap opera in Argentina!
Festivals supporting Foreigner, Jethro Tull, Ronnie Wood and T'Pau followed as well as a sell out UK tour.

Worcester's Ben Crosland started playing piano aged 5. As a teenager, he developed a keen interest in composition and synthesis. He is based in Worcester, England, where he lives with his wife and two daughters.
Ben credits the beautiful countryside that surrounds the area of Worcester and the Malvern Hills, where he has lived for over 35 years as his inspiration.
His first album "Songs from Rainbow Hill" on the Bigo & Twigetti label is a collection of 14 pieces in contemporary classical style, featuring 13 works for solo piano and one for piano and cello.

These sessions will be broadcast throughout June on BBC Hereford & Worcester on Saturdays at 8pm and Sundays at 6pm.

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