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Hay > Christmas


Three weeks since term ended and I’ve found my favourite form of procrastination yet: planning my first trip to the Hay Festival! Once described (by Bill Clinton, no less) as “the Woodstock of the mind,” it’s a booky festival in a booky town for booky people, with a bit of music-y, film-y, politics-y stuff thrown in. Woohoo!

The programme is brilliantly eclectic. We’ll only be there for the final weekend so planning to cram lots in. Particularly looking forward to:

Nocturne: A Journey in Search of Moonlight: Moonlight and its meanings, from the kitsch to the sublime – in the modern world, the ancient world, in art, books, music and in science.

Two Jews…: Simon Schama and Simon Sebag Montefiore – two historians from very different backgrounds – reflect on their identities and their experiences of being Jewish.

Ralph Fiennes talks to Francine Stock: The actor and director discusses and previews clips from his modern war-zone film of Shakespeare’s play, Coriolanus.

Ballet Rambert: The scientific advisor to the ballet company and its artistic director discuss the cross-currents between choreography and cognition.

Screening of Life in a Day: Kevin MacDonald introduces his astounding documentary film about a single day on earth, edited from the thousands of videos uploaded to YouTube on 24 July 2010.

Amexia: The harrowing story of the extraordinary terror unfolding along the US-Mexico border – this is the secret war of drugs, gangs and guns that is destroying thousands of lives.

Jerusalem: The biography of the universal city, the capital of two peoples, the shrine of three faiths; it is the prize of empires, the site of Judgment Day and the battlefield of today’s clash of civilizations.

People Power in the Middle East: Exiled writers from Yemen, Iran and Iraq discuss their work and the upheavals in the Middle East with the director of the Writers’ Centre Norwich Shahrazad project.

Fingers crossed for sunshine 😀

Photo credit: Finn Beales

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