Hay Festival 2023

Here are some early-bird events for Hay Festival 2023, a promise of spring to tide you through the winter months.

Book now to avoid disappointment. The full programme of events will be available in late March.

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Event T21

Events taking place live 25 May–4 June 2023

Connor Allen

New Children’s Laureate Wales Announcement

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Join Connor Allen, the current Children’s Laureate Wales, for a lively and interactive poetry event featuring poems from his upcoming new collection, Miracles.

In this event, Connor will announce the new Children’s Laureate Wales for 2023-25 and welcome them on stage for their first ever appearance as Children's Laureate Wales here at Hay Festival.

8+
Price: £7.00
Connor Allen

Event T22

Events taking place live 25 May–4 June 2023

Sarah Raven

A Year Full of Veg: A Harvest for Every Season

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The gardening expert shares the most reliable and bountiful varieties to grow, recommends her favourite crops, and unusual vegetables, herbs and salads that you can’t buy in the shops. As well as planting inspiration, she offers expert tips and techniques for growing and harvesting flavourful crops from January right through to December, all based on easy, efficient and productive techniques that work whether no matter how much outdoor space you have.

Price: £12.00
Sarah Raven

Event T23

Events taking place live 25 May–4 June 2023

Peter Coveney and Roger Highfield

Virtual You: How Building Your Digital Twin Will Revolutionize Medicine and Change Your Life

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The computational chemist (Coveney) and Science Museum director (Highfield) reveal what it takes to build a virtual, functional copy of YOU in five steps. This is a panoramic account of efforts by scientists around the world to build digital twins of human beings, from cells and tissues to organs and whole bodies. These virtual copies will usher in a new era of personalized medicine, one in which your digital twin can help predict your risk of disease, participate in virtual drug trials, shed light on the diet and lifestyle changes that are best for you, and help identify therapies to enhance your well-being and extend your lifespan. But challenges remain.

Price: £12.00
Peter Coveney and Roger Highfield

Event T24

Events taking place live 25 May–4 June 2023

The Proclaimers

Live at Hay Festival

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Twin brothers Craig and Charlie Reid emerged 32 years ago with their debut album This Is The Story and the single Letter from America. Since then their enduring appeal across generations has seen them enjoy huge success worldwide. Their songs are timeless, capturing a gamut of human emotions, written with poignancy, emotional honesty, political fire and wit. They feature at weddings, funerals and everything in-between and there is one song, an early celebration of falling head- over-heels in love that is known the world over. Plus, there are many other sublime songs embraced by a multitude that has kept up with The Proclaimers’ studio albums, compilation collections and extensive touring over three decades.

Price: £32.00
Last few remaining tickets
The Proclaimers

Event T31

Events taking place live 25 May–4 June 2023

Marina Hyde

What Just Happened?!: Dispatches from Turbulent Times

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No other writer is more suited to chronicling the absurd times in which we live. In What Just Happened?! Marina Hyde slashes her way through the hellscape of post-referendum politics, where the chaos never stops.

Clamber aboard as we relive every inspirational moment of magic, from David Cameron to Theresa May to Boris Johnson. Marvel at the sights, from Trumpian WTF-ery to celebrity twattery. And boggle at the cast of characters: Hollywood sex offenders, populists, sporting heroes (and villains), dastardly dukes, media barons, movie stars, reality TV monsters, billionaires, police officers, various princes and princesses, wicked advisers, philanthropists, fauxlanthropists, telly chefs, and (naturally) Gwyneth Paltrow. It's the full state banquet of crazy - and you're most cordially invited.

Drawn from her spectacularly funny Guardian columns, What Just Happened?! is a welcome blast of humour and sanity in a world where reality has become stranger than fiction.
Price: £14.00
Marina Hyde

Event T25

Events taking place live 25 May–4 June 2023

Peter Frankopan

The Earth Transformed: An Untold History

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Most people can name a number of influential leaders and major battles of the past. Few can name the most destructive storms, the worst winters, the most devastating droughts. In this book, the historian shows that engagement with the natural world and with climatic change and their effects on us are not new. He explores the development of religion and language and their relationship with the environment, traces how growing demands for harvests resulted in the increase in slavery, and explains how efforts to understand and manipulate the weather have a long and deep history. From the beginning of recorded history to the present day, The Earth Transformed forces us to reckon with humankind's continuing efforts to make sense of the natural world. Peter Frankopan is Professor of Global History at Oxford University and Senior Research Fellow at Worcester College, Oxford.

Price: £12.00
Peter Frankopan

Event T26

Events taking place live 25 May–4 June 2023

Eleanor Catton

Birnam Wood

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A landslide has closed the Korowai Pass in New Zealand’s South Island, leaving a sizable farm abandoned. This land offers an opportunity to ‘Birnam Wood’, a guerrilla gardening collective who plant crops where no one will notice. But they hadn’t figured on the enigmatic American billionaire, Robert Lemoine, also having an interest in the place. Can they trust him? And, as their ideals and ideologies are tested, can they trust each other?

The first novel in a decade from the Booker Prize-winning author, Birnam Wood is a brilliantly constructed tale of intentions, actions, and consequences, a skewering of political certainties, and an unflinching examination of the human impulse for survival. Ultimately, the reader is left to wonder: who will survive, and what will be left of them?
Eleanor Catton is the author of The Luminaries, winner of the Man Booker Prize and a global bestseller.
Price: £12.00
Eleanor Catton

Event T27

Events taking place live 25 May–4 June 2023

Dua Lipa

At Your Service

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With multiple Grammys and Brit Awards to her name, the music icon and global superstar last year revealed another string to her bow – as a talented and engaging interviewer on her podcast, Dua Lipa: At Your Service.

Dua’s love of books is no secret. As well as the likes of Elton John and Monica Lewinsky, Dua’s podcast has featured numerous star writers including Hanya Yanagihara, Min Jin Lee and Lisa Taddeo. Fresh from her Future Nostalgia world tour, Dua joins us at Hay Festival for an exclusive recording of her podcast featuring one of her favourite authors.

Price: £20.00
Dua Lipa

Event T28

Events taking place live 25 May–4 June 2023

Simon Armitage

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We are thrilled to welcome back the Poet Laureate Simon Armitage for this special event looking back on his career - with readings from the earliest collections to his book of lyrics, Never Good With Horses, and some new poems.

Price: £12.00
Simon Armitage

Event T29

Events taking place live 25 May–4 June 2023

Irene Vallejo in conversation with Charlotte Higgins

Papyrus

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Irene Vallejo presents her award-winning work Papyrus, an immersive journey through the history of books and libraries in the ancient world which has captivated millions of readers around the world. From the banks of the Nile and the battlefields of Alexander the Great, to the censorship of the humourists and the empowerment of women writers like Sappho, Vallejo enlivens the origins of the book. Its invention was as disruptive as the internet, and through these journeys into the past, Vallejo reflects on the dilemmas of our modern world and the challenges of the future. In conversation with Charlotte Higgins.

Price: £12.00
Irene Vallejo in conversation with Charlotte Higgins

Event T30

Events taking place live 25 May–4 June 2023

AC Grayling

Philosophy and Life

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There is a question everyone has to ask and answer – in fact, has to keep on asking and keep on answering. It is ‘How should I live my life?’, meaning ‘What sort of person should I be? What values shall I live by? What shall I aim for?’ The great majority of people do not ask this question, they merely answer it unthinkingly in conventional ways.

This is the ‘Socratic Question’, challenging us to examine the philosophy of life we live by. Everyone has a philosophy of life, but most people do not know that they have one, because they imbibed it unconsciously from society, parents, schools, friends. What are the assumptions of that unconscious philosophy, and the reasons for living according to it? Do these assumptions and reasons survive scrutiny? If one really thought about one’s life and the philosophy that underlies it, what changes would one make?

Philosophy and Life explores how to answer the Socratic challenge and examines the most important questions that arise in doing so: death, the great inevitable, love, the great desirable, meaning, the great mystery – and the great hope, happiness. What do these concepts mean – really mean? And what difference will exploring them, and other equally important questions, make to one’s life and its choices?

Philosophy and Life is a serious but accessible and stimulating account of what philosophy offers in thinking about life, its value and its meaning.

Price: £12.00
AC Grayling