Welcome to our Early Bird programme. The full programme will be released at the end of March.
Join the audience of BBC Radio 4’s flagship news and current affairs programme as we broadcast live from Hay.
Wake up and re-energise with our morning yoga class. Iyengar yoga is characterised by precision, alignment and attention to detail and is an inclusive and accessible yoga practice. Mats are provided; wear comfortable clothing; all abilities welcome.
While the land is familiar, even reassuring, the sea is unknown and threatening. Why, then, did humans become seafarers? Part of the answer is that we are conditioned by our genetics to be acquisitive animals: we like to acquire rare materials and we are eager for esoteric knowledge, and society rewards us well for both. And our innate inquisitiveness drives us to explore. The pre-eminent archaeologist looks at the development of seafaring on the Mediterranean and the Atlantic, two contrasting seas, the Mediterranean without a significant tide, enclosed and soon to become familiar, the Atlantic with its frightening tidal ranges, an ocean without end. Chaired by Gabrielle Walker.
The statistician and data scientist offers an up-close and user-friendly look at artificial intelligence: what it is, how it works, where it came from and how to harness its power for a better world. A revolution of intelligent machines, from self-driving cars to smart digital assistants, is now remaking our world, just as the Industrial Revolution remade the world of the 19th century. Doctors use AI to diagnose and treat cancer. Banks use it to detect fraud. Power companies use it to save energy. AI is changing our lives at lightning speed. Many of these changes offer great promise, including freedom from drudgery, safer workplaces, better health care and fewer language barriers. But others elicit worry - whether about jobs, data privacy, political manipulation or the prospect of machines making biased decisions with no accountability. Scott shows how intelligent machines operating on massive data sets are changing the world around you, and how you can use this knowledge to make better decisions in your own life. Chaired by Hannah MacInnes.
Drawing on his experience as UK Minister for Universities and Science from 2010 to 2014, Willetts offers a powerful account of the value of higher education and the case for more expansion. He discusses access for disadvantaged students, tuition fees, the potential for business and universities to work together in promoting innovation, and envisions how globalisation and technological progress may change the university significantly. He talks to Owen Sheers, Professor in Creativity at Swansea University.
Llew Jones wanted to see the States and write about the experience. Then he met Joe Bosco, a butterfly salesman as charismatic as he was infuriating, and they were soon hurtling across 1980s America together, caught up in an adventure that got way, way out of control. Now Llew is in jail, his friend is gone, and he has to give his side of the story if he’s ever going to get free . . . Part existential road trip, part neo-Gothic thriller, part morality tale, The Killing of Butterfly Joe is a dazzling and propulsive novel full of characters you’ll never forget. The film of Brook’s novel The Aftermath starring Keira Knightley and Alexander Skarsgård comes out later this year. He talks to Peter Florence.
Artist and illustrator of The Lost Words, written by Robert Macfarlane, The Ice Bear, Tell Me a Dragon and Song of the Golden Hare leads an art and story workshop in the landscape, for adults. Sketchbooks and pencils will be provided but bring your own if you wish. The workshop will be by the River Wye looking at river wildlife (but there is a wet-weather plan should it rain).
Join the New York Times duo as they conspire again on two slyly funny tales about some creative shapes. Visually stunning and full of wry humour, these thoughtful offerings about different shapes from two of today's most irreverent picture-book creators emphasize the importance of keeping your eyes and your mind open to wonder, where others see only rubble and rocks.
Join the writer-illustrator in the worlds she has created, populated entirely by animals. Explore her two new picture-books: hop along to meet The New Neighbours and find out how a hopeful young Diplodocus becomes Dinoville’s hero in Dinosaur Firefighters. Stories and drawing in this interactive session for families.
Come to this family and children's nature adventure session run by Rooted Forest School in the Hay Festival Wild Garden. Join in a range of outdoor, Forest School-inspired activities including nature games, natural crafts and making, fire skills, foraging and cooking.
(parents must attend but do not require a ticket)
Roll up, roll up...run away with the circus at Hay Festival. Join two fantastic performers from Splatch, a community-driven company from Cardiff. They will be teaching hula hoop, juggling, tightwire and acrobatics. Get physical and have fun at this workshop.
(parents must attend but do not require a ticket)
Join the illustrators in a printmaking workshop and have a go at creating characters through rubber and foam stamping techniques.
(parents may attend but do not require a ticket)
We are in the midst of a global refugee crisis. Sixty-five million people are fleeing for their lives. The choices are urgent, not just for them but for all of us. What can we possibly do to help? With compassion and clarity, Miliband shows why we should care and how we can make a difference. He takes us from war zones in the Middle East to the heart of Europe to explain the crisis and to show what can be done, not just by governments with the power to change policy but by citizens with the urge to change lives. Miliband is President of the International Rescue Committee.
A conversation between two of the world’s great novelists about the elemental and eternal human crises they have explored in their engagement with classic Greek tragedies in their latest stories. House of Names is Tóibín’s version of the terrible fates visited upon the House of Atreus: Agamemnon, Clytemnestra and their children Iphigenia, Electra and Orestes. A contemporary reimagining of Sophocles' Antigone, Shamsie’s Home Fire is an urgent, fiercely compelling story of loyalties torn apart when love and politics collide.
Every week seems to throw up a new discovery, shaking the foundations of what we know. But are there questions we will never be able to answer - mysteries that lie beyond the predictive powers of science? Marcus du Sautoy invites us to consider the problems in cosmology, quantum physics, mathematics, and neuroscience that continue to bedevil scientists and creative thinkers who are at the forefront of their fields. He challenges us to consider big questions - about the nature of consciousness, what came before the big bang, and what lies beyond our horizons - while taking us on a virtuoso tour of the great breakthroughs of the past. He celebrates the men and women who dared to tackle the seemingly impossible and had the imagination to come up with new ways of seeing the world. The mathematician holds the University of Oxford's prestigious Simonyi Chair for the Public Understanding of Science.
Is monolingualism harming us, both as individuals and as a society? We look at the value of languages for health and well-being, social cohesion, diplomacy and conflict resolution, defence and national security. Wendy Ayres-Bennett is Professor of French Philology and Linguistics.
Indian writer and publisher Anuradha Roy talks about her novel An Atlas of Impossible Longing (2008), which has been widely translated and was named one of the 60 most essential books on modern India by World Literature Today. Her third book, Sleeping on Jupiter (2015), about the constant human search for another version of existence, was nominated for the Man Booker Prize. Her new book All the Lives We Never Lived is the story of Gayatri, a rebellious artist who abandons her family to follow her primal desire for freedom.
Join Waterstones' Children’s Laureate as she introduces a storytelling event and talks about the inspiration for her latest picture-book. Learn about dogs of all shapes, sizes and colours in this interactive event, full of games and storytelling, led by Devon Black. Lauren will read from the book and answer questions.
Join the author of The First Book of Nature and The First Book of Animals as she introduces a collection of poems about the oceans of the world and their shores. Feel what it is like to swim with dolphins and flying fish, pore over rock-pools and sail from pole to pole and back, learning about everything from phosphorescence and plankton to manta rays and puffins. With exquisite watercolour illustrations from Emily Sutton, the book captures the excitement of a child's first glimpse of the sea, the majesty of ancient trading ships and the wonder of the humpback whale.