Radio-Lists Home Now on BBC 4

RADIO-LISTS: BBC FOUR
Unofficial Weekly Listings for BBC 4 — supported by bbc.co.uk/programmes/



SATURDAY 22 NOVEMBER 2014

SAT 19:00 Natural World (b01d8nbk)
2011-2012

Grizzlies of Alaska

A mother grizzly bear brings up her two cubs in the wilds of Alaska. She must keep them safe from prowling males, teach them to hunt and prepare them to survive the savage winter. Alaska has the highest density of grizzlies in the world, so fights and face-offs are common. Biologist Chris Morgan spends the summer in this land of bears, often getting far too close for comfort.


SAT 20:00 The Riviera: A History in Pictures (b01pwtvf)
The Golden Era

Richard E Grant explores how modern art and the Riviera grew up together when France's Cote D'Azur became the hedonistic playground and experimental studio for the great masters of 20th-century painting. With Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso resident on the coast, other artists from Jean Cocteau to Henri Lartigue, Raoul Dufy to Fernand Leger and Francis Picabia to Sergei Diaghilev were drawn to the area.

As transatlantic liners brought America's super-rich to the region, art and celebrity became integrally intertwined as cultural gurus and multimillionaires all partied on the beach. In an era of sunshine and bathing, of cinema and fast cars, of the Ballet Russes and Monte Carlo casinos, Grant discovers the extraordinary output of what became briefly the world's creative hub.


SAT 21:00 Inspector Montalbano (b01mqtv2)
The Patience of the Spider

Inspector Montalbano is puzzled by the kidnapping of Susanna Mistretta, a young woman whose once-wealthy family has fallen on hard times. When the kidnappers contact the family to demand a ransom, the responsibility of coming up with the money falls on an estranged relative. But something in the case just doesn't add up.

In Italian with English subtitles.


SAT 22:45 The Joy of the Guitar Riff (b049mtxw)
The guitar riff is the DNA of rock 'n' roll, a double helix of repetitive simplicity and fiendish complexity on which its history has been built. From Chuck Berry through to The White Stripes, this documentary traces the ebb and flow of the guitar riff over the last 60 years of popular music. With riffs and stories from an all-star cast including Brian May, Dave Davies, Hank Marvin, Joan Jett, Nile Rodgers, Tony Iommi, Robert Fripp, Johnny Marr, Nancy Wilson, Kevin Shields, Ryan Jarman, Tom Morello and many more. Narrated by Lauren Laverne.


SAT 23:45 Great Guitar Riffs at the BBC (b049mtxy)
Compilation of BBC performances featuring some of the best axe men and women in rock 'n' roll, from Hendrix to The Kinks, Cream to AC/DC, The Smiths to Rage Against the Machine and Radiohead to Foo Fighters. Whether it is The Shadows playing FBI on Crackerjack, Jeff Beck with The Yardbirds, The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Cream's Sunshine of Your Love from their final gig, Pixies on the Late Show, AC/DC on Top of the Pops or Fools Gold from The Stone Roses, this compilation is a celebration of rock 'n' roll guitar complete with riffs, fingerstylin', wah-wah pedals and Marshall amps.


SAT 00:45 Top of the Pops (b04pvhmr)
David Jensen presents another edition of the weekly pop chart with performances by the Jam, Cliff Richard, the Moody Blues, Kool and the Gang, Secret Affair, Ramblers, Showaddywaddy and Dr Hook and dance sequences by Legs & Co.


SAT 01:30 Sounds of the 70s 2 (b01glwkz)
Arthouse Glam - Get in the Swing

Performances from The Kinks, Roxy Music, Elton John, New York Dolls, Queen, Sparks, Rod Stewart and the rediscovered David Bowie performance of The Jean Genie from January 1973.

Welcome to gender-bending, boys getting in the swing and girls who would be boys and boys who would be girls in this mixed-up, shook-up 70s world.


SAT 02:00 Natural World (b01d8nbk)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]


SAT 03:00 The Riviera: A History in Pictures (b01pwtvf)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]



SUNDAY 23 NOVEMBER 2014

SUN 19:00 The Great War (b0074nyx)
Our Hats We Doff to General Joffre

The fourth part tells how the British Army fought its first battle at Mons. Despite initial success, the entrenched British infantry were forced into retreat after two weeks. Yet as the Germans pressed forward to Paris, apparently invincible, the French commander-in-chief General Joffre began to slowly build a new and surer edifice of resistance - leading ultimately to Allied victory.


SUN 19:40 Wild (b0078z3l)
2005-06 Shorts

New Forest Adders

The New Forest is one of the few places in Britain where you can find all six of the UK's reptile species living together - but the leader of the pack has to be the infamous adder.

This film offers a rare insight into the life of the adder, following them and the other reptiles through a typical season. The male adders emerge early in the year in this stunning setting. They soon shed their dull winter coat, reveal their bright spring colours, and then they are ready to find a mate through one of the most amazing and rarely seen wildlife spectacles...the adders' dance.


SUN 19:50 Wild (b0078z72)
2005-06 Shorts

The Owls and the Orchard

Short documentary taking a look at a devoted pair of little owls who set up home in an old orchard in rural Herefordshire. From spring blossom to autumn apples, it follows a year in the life of the parent birds, their baby owls and the old fruit trees.


SUN 20:00 The Day of the Triffids (b0074t1j)
Episode 1

A six-part adaptation of John Wyndham's classic sci-fi tale of invasion by man-eating plants which blind their human prey. Bill Masen removes his eye bandages in hospital and gets a nasty shock.


SUN 20:30 The Day of the Triffids (b0074t2k)
Episode 2

A six-part adaptation of John Wyndham's classic sci-fi tale of invasion by man-eating plants which blind their human prey. Bill Masen leaves hospital to find the streets of London eerily deserted.


SUN 21:00 Hunt vs Lauda: F1's Greatest Racing Rivals (b0377tb1)
The victory duel for the 1976 Formula 1 Championship has become the stuff of legend. The spectacular battle for supremacy that raged all season between Austrian Niki Lauda and 'True Brit' James Hunt has never been equalled. Could swashbuckling Hunt catch the scientific Lauda? Could Niki overcome an appalling crash to come back from the dead and fight James all the way to the last race of the season?

This powerful story captures the heart of the 1970s - told through unseen footage and exclusive interviews with the people who were really there - the team managers, families, journalists and friends who were in the front row of the season that changed Formula 1 forever.


SUN 22:00 Jim Clark: The Quiet Champion (b00jw9cw)
A comprehensive, entertaining and moving portrait of Jim Clark, one of the most talented and intriguing characters of the 1960s. From unlikely beginnings on a farm in Scotland, the introverted and media-shy Clark emerged to become the most successful racing driver of his time, and forged a reputation as one of the all-time great heroes of motor sport.

Using previously unseen archive footage, testimonials from friends, family and former colleagues, the film tells the extraordinary but tragic story of an enigmatic racing legend.


SUN 23:00 Glastonbury (b04d8xv8)
2014

Dolly Parton

From the Glastonbury Festival, the complete set by the undisputed queen of country music Dolly Parton from the Pyramid Stage in the now-traditional legends spot on Sunday afternoon. As the Somerset sunshine shone, and in front of one of the biggest and most enthusiastic crowds that the Pyramid Stage has ever seen, Dolly performed a rousing and crowd-pleasing set including self-penned classics such as Jolene, Coat of Many Colours, 9 to 5, Islands in the Stream and I Will Always Love You. A legendary moment that the Glastonbury crowd and hopefully Dolly Parton will never forget.


SUN 00:10 Kenny Rogers: Cards on the Table (b04pl3kw)
Examining the life and career of the artist who 'knows when to hold 'em and knows when to fold 'em', this documentary chronicles Kenny Rogers's remarkable rise to the top of his game and the golden era of country music he ushered in.

With an exclusive, candid interview from Rogers himself and performance footage gathered on his recent Through the Years tour, this honest and eye-opening film provides a backstage pass to a remarkable 50-year career of performing and recording.

Associates and luminaries provide personal insight into how the poor, music-obsessed boy from Houston, Texas went on to become a superstar with over 120 million albums sold worldwide. Singer, songwriter and producer Kim Carnes recalls how the New Christy Minstrels folk group - of which she and Kenny were members in the late 1960s - was like a 'school on the road' that provided them both with a springboard from which to explore other musical ambitions. Actor and musician Mickey Jones recounts his time with Kenny in the band The First Edition, whose hit single Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In) made Kenny an unlikely poster boy for the psychedelic generation. Longtime friend Lionel Richie reveals how a trip to the bathroom played a crucial role in the recording session for Lady, one of Kenny's biggest hits.

Away from music, the programme reveals how Kenny's drive and ambition - what he describes as his 'impulsive-obsessive' nature - led to success in other fields: according to the renowned photographer John Sexton, the country music legend was determined to master the art of photography (Kenny was recently awarded an honorary Master of Photography degree by the Professional Photographers Association).

For over half a century, Kenny has kept us entertained with some of the best-known and best-loved music ever recorded. With a career spanning everything from jazz to folk, 60s psychedelia to R&B, perhaps his real legacy lies in the fact that he introduced a trailblazing pop sensibility to country music.


SUN 01:10 Country Kings at the BBC (p028vxj4)
Classic male country singers from the BBC vaults, journeying from The Everly Brothers and Jerry Lee Lewis to Garth Brooks and Willie Nelson, and featuring classic songs and performances by Glen Campbell, Charley Pride, George Hamilton IV, Kenny Rogers, Clint Black, Johnny Cash, Eric Church and more. This 50 years-plus compilation is a chronological look at country kings as featured on BBC studio shows as varied as In Concert, Wogan, The Late Show and Later with Jools Holland, plus early variety shows presented by the likes of Lulu, Harry Secombe and Shirley Abicair.


SUN 02:10 Sounds of the 70s 2 (b01gymg9)
Reggae - Stir it Up

By the start of the 70s, the Windrush generation of immigrants who came to the UK from the Caribbean and West Indies were an established part of the British population and their influence and culture permeated UK society.

This second programme rejoices and revels in the reggae music exported from Jamaica and the home-grown reggae-influenced sounds that sprouted from the cities of England. Reggae's dominance of the UK charts is celebrated with performances from Ken Boothe, Dave and Ansel Collins, Steel Pulse, Althea and Donna, Bob Marley and the Wailers, Janet Kay, Susan Cadogan and The Specials.


SUN 02:40 Glen Campbell: The Rhinestone Cowboy (b01pwxs8)
In 2011, Glen Campbell announced he had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease and that he would be bowing out with a final album and farewell tour across Britain and America. This documentary tells Campbell's remarkable life story, from impoverished childhood in Arkansas to huge success, first as a guitarist and then as a singer, with great records like Wichita Lineman and Rhinestone Cowboy. With comments from friends and colleagues, including songwriter Jimmy Webb and Mickey Dolenz of The Monkees, it is a moving story of success, disgrace and redemption as rich as any of the storylines in Campbell's most famous songs.

The peak of Glen Campbell's career was in 1975, when he topped the charts around the world with Rhinestone Cowboy, but his musical journey to that point is fascinating. A self-taught teenage prodigy on the guitar, by his mid-twenties Campbell was one of the top session guitarists in LA, a key member of the band of session players now known as The Wrecking Crew. He played on hundreds of tracks while working for producers like Phil Spector and Brian Wilson of The Beach Boys, including Daydream Believer by The Monkees, You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling by The Righteous Brothers, Strangers in the Night by Frank Sinatra and Viva Las Vegas by Elvis Presley.

But Campbell always wanted to make it under his own name. A string of records failed to chart until, in 1967, he finally found his distinctive country pop sound with hits like Gentle on My Mind and By the Time I Get to Phoenix. The latter was written by Jimmy Webb, and together the two created a string of great records like Wichita Lineman and Galveston. Campbell pioneered country crossover and opened the way for artists like Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers.

By the end of the 1960s, Campbell was the fastest rising star in American pop with his own television show and a starring role in the original version of True Grit. Over the following ten years, he had more success with Rhinestone Cowboy and Southern Nights, but his private life was in turmoil. Divorce, drink and drugs saw this clean-cut all-American hero fall from grace and a tempestuous relationship with country star Tanya Tucker was front-page news.

Despite a relapse in 2003, when he was arrested for drunk driving and his police mug shot was shown around the world, the last two decades have been more settled. He remarried, started a new family and renewed his Christian faith, and was musically rediscovered by a new generation. Like his friend Johnny Cash, he released acclaimed new albums with young musicians, covering songs by contemporary artists like U2 and The Foo Fighters. Therefore the diagnosis with Alzheimer's was all the more poignant, but his dignified farewell has made him the public face of the disease in the USA.

The film includes contributions by many of Campbell's friends and colleagues, including his family in Arkansas, fellow session musicians Carol Kaye and Leon Russell, long-time friend and collaborator Jimmy Webb, former Monkee Mickey Dolenz, broadcaster Bob Harris, lyricist Don Black and country music writer Robert Oermann.



MONDAY 24 NOVEMBER 2014

MON 19:00 World News Today (b04s4zbz)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


MON 19:30 Great British Railway Journeys (b00xxr3w)
Series 2

York to Saltaire

Michael Portillo takes to the tracks with a copy of George Bradshaw's Victorian Railway Guidebook. He travels the length and breadth of the country to see how the railways changed us, and what of Bradshaw's Britain remains, as his journey follows some of the earliest railways in the country from Newcastle to Melton Mowbray.

Michael takes a Turkish bath in the famous spa town of Harrogate, explores the exemplary Victorian village of Saltaire, and rubs noses with some friendly alpacas, whose fleeces made fortunes in Bradshaw's day.


MON 20:00 Lost Cities of the Ancients (b00792v2)
The Cursed Valley of the Pyramids

In the Lambeyeque valley in northern Peru lies a strange lost world - the forgotten ruins of 250 mysterious pyramids, including some of the biggest on the planet, colossal structures made out of mud bricks. Long ago, the Lambeyeque people were haunted by a terrible fear and believed that building pyramids was essential to their survival. Their obsession reached its height at a city called Tucume, an eerie place of 26 pyramids standing side by side, the last pyramids this civilisation created before they vanished forever.

What was the fear that drove these people to build so many pyramids, what were they for and why did the whole civilisation suddenly vanish? This film captures the moments when archaeologists at the site uncovered a mass of bodies of human sacrifice victims, following a trail of clues into the dark story of Tucume. It recreates the strange rituals of the people of the valley, revealing a civilisation whose obsession to build pyramids eventually turned to horror, until Tucume finally vanished in a bloody frenzy of human sacrifice.


MON 21:00 Dancing Cheek to Cheek: An Intimate History of Dance (b04smrrc)
Revolution on the Dance Floor

Len Goodman and Lucy Worsley reveal how Britain's dance floors were revolutionised in the 19th century, as the slow and stately dances of an earlier era were replaced with new dances that were faster, freer and a lot more fun.

The Industrial Revolution changed the way ordinary people danced, and at Queen Street Mill in Burnley, Len uncovers the fascinating story of how factory workers developed clog dancing to imitate the sounds and rhythms of the machinery they used. Lucy discovers how upper-class dancing tastes were transformed by the introduction of the waltz at the beginning of the 19th century, which allowed couples to dance scandalously close.

In the 19th century, a greater proportion of the population than ever before lived in cities, and Len visits one of London's most beautiful Victorian gin palaces to find out about the drinking and the dancing that went on at a typical working-class knees-up. Whilst the working classes were letting their hair down, the middle classes were enjoying the latest dance music in the comfort of their own homes thanks to the invention of the upright piano. Lucy tries her hand at the 19th century's favourite tune - the Blue Danube waltz - on the piano once played by the Brontë sisters.

At the Czech and Slovak Club in London, Len discovers the rustic roots of the 19th century's biggest dance craze - the polka. Together Len and Lucy take a series of polka classes with Darren Royston, historical dance teacher at RADA, as they prepare to dance it at a grand finale ball dressed in their full Victorian finery.


MON 22:00 Play For Today (b0074n6r)
Series 8

Abigail's Party

Comedy of manners focusing on the bourgeois affectation and sexual frustration of a young married couple. Abigail's mother Sue is invited to take refuge from her teenage daughter's party with a neighbouring couple, Beverly and Laurence. They have also invited Angela and Tony, new arrivals in the street. Beverly plies her guests with alcohol as Sue becomes increasingly withdrawn and embarrassed by the pretentious goings-on. Slowly, marital tensions emerge and the evening is breaking up in disarray when Laurence collapses with a heart attack.


MON 23:45 Timeshift (b012zmy7)
Series 11

All the Fun of the Fair

Timeshift explores rarely seen images from the University of Sheffield's National Fairground Archive to ride back to the origins of the fairground. From the sideshows, the freak shows and early hand-powered rides to the arrival of steam and electricity, the story of fairs is the tale of one of our first forms of popular entertainment.

The film shows how fairgrounds often provided the only entertainment to rapidly expanding industrial towns. It looks at how, from the 50s, the fairground was the site of youth rebellion, and why we are still entranced by these travelling carnivals that arrive overnight and then vanish just as mysteriously.


MON 00:45 Puppy Love (b04pl2mq)
Episode 2

Nana V and superintendent Gerry Hooper plan to run a Canine Responsibility Awareness Community Day, in which Nana V will lead a special hazards class for new puppies. Naomi's labrador puppy Charlie causes anxiety for her new neighbour Heaven Jones when her cat Gerald goes missing. Certain that Charlie is to blame, Heaven goes to extreme lengths to get to the bottom of the mystery, roping in jobsworth bylaw enforcement officer Phil Evans. Eron and Jasmine are forced to move into Nana V's caravan when their roof collapses during a downpour. Naturally, Naomi sees this as a good opportunity to get her daughter back home where she belongs.


MON 01:15 Sounds of the 70s 2 (b01h7pzm)
Troubadours – Peaceful Easy Feeling

In the early 70s as the UK got to grips with the new coinage and decimalisation and braced itself for strike after strike, a group of young troubadours were hanging out in Laurel Canyon and the environs of California USA having a ball and creating music that would define a generation. It's time to kick back and relax and enjoy performances from Crosby and Nash, Neil Young, America, Joni Mitchell, James Taylor, Carole King, The Eagles, and Seals and Crofts.


MON 01:45 Dancing in the Blitz: How World War II Made British Ballet (p01s4z2h)
David Bintley, director of the Birmingham Royal Ballet, explores how the Second World War was the making of British ballet and how fundamental the years of hardship and adversity were in getting the British public to embrace ballet. Bintley shows how the then Sadler's Wells Ballet Company, led by Ninette de Valois and featuring a star-studded generation of British dancers and choreographers including Margot Fonteyn and Frederick Ashton, was forged during the Second World War.

It's the story of how de Valois and her small company of dancers took what was essentially a foreign art form and made it British despite the falling bombs, the rationing and the call-up. Plus it is the story of how Britain, as a nation, fell in love with ballet.

Using rare and previously unseen footage and interviews with dance icons such as Dame Gillian Lynne and Dame Beryl Grey, Bintley shows how the Sadler's Wells Ballet company survived an encounter with Nazi forces in Holland, dancing whilst the bombs were falling in the Blitz, rationing and a punishing touring schedule to bring ballet to the British people as an antidote to the austerity the country faced to emerge, postwar, as the Royal Ballet.


MON 02:45 Dancing Cheek to Cheek: An Intimate History of Dance (b04smrrc)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



TUESDAY 25 NOVEMBER 2014

TUE 19:00 World News Today (b04s4zv7)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


TUE 19:30 Great British Railway Journeys (b00xxr4n)
Series 2

Batley to Sheffield

Michael Portillo takes to the tracks with a copy of George Bradshaw's Victorian Railway Guidebook. He travels the length and breadth of the country to see how the railways changed us, and what of Bradshaw's Britain remains, as his journey follows some of the earliest railways in the country from Newcastle to Melton Mowbray.

Michael finds out about shoddy, a successful 19th-century recycling industry in the textile town of Batley, discovers how the railways boosted Yorkshire's forced rhubarb trade and meets the great-great-granddaughter of George Bradshaw himself.


TUE 20:00 Great British Railway Journeys (b00xy9vl)
Series 2

Langley Mill to Melton Mowbray

Michael Portillo takes to the tracks with a copy of George Bradshaw's Victorian Railway Guidebook. He travels the length and breadth of the country to see how the railways changed us, and what of Bradshaw's Britain remains, as his journey follows some of the earliest railways in the country from Newcastle to Melton Mowbray.

Michael learns the secrets of stilton cheese, finds out how trains transformed the traditional British sport of fox hunting and attempts to make an authentic Melton Mowbray pork pie.


TUE 20:30 National Treasures of Wales (b04q1h03)
Series 1

Tredegar House

Griff Rhys Jones visits one of the grandest Restoration houses in Britain to find out why they have taken on what was once known as 'the most expensive council house in Britain'.

Just off the M4 motorway in south Wales lies the jewel in the crown of Newport - Tredegar House - home to generations of the glittering Morgan dynasty and now a feather in the cap of National Trust Wales. But alongside the benefits of running this stunning visitor attraction comes the responsibility of maintenance - as well as a remit to work with the local community who live cheek by jowl with the big house.

Griff investigates how the Trust manages this while also carrying on the painstaking work of unearthing the hidden history of the house and its beautiful gardens.


TUE 21:00 The Real Tom Thumb: History's Smallest Superstar (b04sms8d)
Michael Grade reveals the extraordinary and utterly unique story of General Tom Thumb, the world's first global show business celebrity. Just 31 inches tall, he went from humble beginnings in America to international superstardom, eventually performing on stage before over 50 million people, including President Lincoln and a devoted Queen Victoria. Yet Tom Thumb didn't choose his own career and his selling point was his disability. Is this story one of success or exploitation? And why do we remain just as fascinated by performers with unusual bodies?

As an impresario and lifelong entertainment devotee, Michael sets out to follow the remarkable life of Tom Thumb (real name Charles Stratton) from his discovery aged four by the legendary showman PT Barnum to his setting out on the first ever show business world tour. The journey takes him to New York and across snowy New England, then back to the UK to discover how adored Stratton was by the British public. It features exquisite handmade suits, tiny bespoke carriages and the first ever visit by a film crew to Stratton's specially designed home, complete with miniature staircase.

Looking to our own times, Michael meets contemporary entertainers to find out what it's like to be a little person or disabled actor today, and asks whether it's ever right for us to be entertained by people with unusual bodies. Expecting a tale of exploitation, in Stratton Michael eventually discovers the story of man who made the very most of his situation and had a truly unforgettable life. And in the process, there is a discovery that rewrites the history of Charles Stratton, suggesting he may have had a long-forgotten baby.


TUE 22:30 Timeshift (b0135kkp)
Series 11

When the Circus Comes to Town

Roll up! Roll up! Join Timeshift under the big top for unique access to the University of Sheffield's National Fairground Archive which tells the story of the circus. From Billy Smart to Gerry Cottle and Archaos to Cirque du Soleil, the documentary captures the appeal of this enduring mass entertainment. Find out what a josser is, discover why clowns are one of the few acts to achieve lasting celebrity and marvel at the sheer spectacle of some of the biggest circuses of all time.

In an age when almost every form of popular entertainment owes something to the circus, this is a nostalgic journey into the origins of one of the ultimate expressions of human athleticism and showmanship.


TUE 23:30 Neil Diamond: Solitary Man (b00vzzst)
A 60-minute documentary including an interview and exclusive location filming with Neil Diamond in New York and Los Angeles. Robbie Robertson, Jeff Barry, Mickey Dolenz and other contributors track Neil from his childhood in Brooklyn to his early days in the Brill Building, his nascent solo career and superstardom in the early 70s, the lean years of the 80s, his career reboot via Rick Rubin in the noughties and his Glastonbury success.


TUE 00:30 The Riviera: A History in Pictures (b01pwtvf)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 on Saturday]


TUE 01:30 Sounds of the 70s 2 (b01hz75h)
Guilty Pleasures - Love Will Keep Us Together

An unashamed celebration of the instantly recognisable classics from the decade of love. A half hour of 'Our Tune' anthems and the soundtrack to many a love affair and wedding party, including performances from The Carpenters, Bread, Charles Aznavour, John Denver, 10cc, Bellamy Brothers, Exile, Captain and Tennille, and Dr Hook.


TUE 02:00 National Treasures of Wales (b04q1h03)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:30 today]


TUE 02:30 The Real Tom Thumb: History's Smallest Superstar (b04sms8d)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



WEDNESDAY 26 NOVEMBER 2014

WED 19:00 World News Today (b04s50tv)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


WED 19:30 Great British Railway Journeys (b00y47bj)
Series 2

London Bridge to Chatham

Michael Portillo takes to the tracks with a copy of George Bradshaw's Victorian Railway Guidebook. Portillo travels the length and breadth of the country to see how the railways changed us, and what of Bradshaw's Britain remains, as his journey goes through Kent, from London Bridge around the scenic south coast to Hastings.

Michael visits the Royal Observatory at Greenwich to see how the railways standardised time, takes a walk through the world's first underwater tunnel at Rotherhithe and explores the historic dockyards at Chatham.


WED 20:00 The Final Frontier? A Horizon Guide to the Universe (p00yjn1x)
Dallas Campbell looks back through almost 50 years of the Horizon archives to chart the scientific breakthroughs that have transformed our understanding of the universe. From Einstein's concept of spacetime to alien planets and extra dimensions, science has revealed a cosmos that is more bizarre and more spectacular than could have ever been imagined. But with every breakthrough, even more intriguing mysteries that lie beyond are found. This great journey of discovery is only just beginning.


WED 21:00 The Killing Fields (b00zf9tw)
Oscar-winning drama based on the New York Times' Sydney Schanberg's own account of his friendship with Cambodian interpreter Dith Pran.

Schanberg is one of the western journalists chronicling the fall of Cambodia to the Khmer Rouge, with the help of Cambodian journalist Dith Pran as his interpreter. When Phnom Penh itself falls, it is too dangerous for the westerners and they are, finally, evacuated. But for the Cambodian citizens who have been helping them there is no such escape route and Pran is forced to endure the brutalities of the Khmer Rouge regime, deny his past and rely on his own wits to survive and escape.


WED 23:15 The Heart of Country: How Nashville Became Music City USA (b04ndxlr)
This historical biography of the city that is the glittering hub of country music reveals the dynamic relationship between commerce and art, music and the market, that has defined Nashville since 1925. It explores the conflicts and demons that have confronted Nashville's artists and music industry down the years, such as the creative pressures of the 'Nashville Sound', the devastating impact of Elvis and then Bob Dylan, the rise and fall of the urban cowboys and the struggle of several Nashville legends to confront their inner demons.

The story unfolds through the testimony of musicians, producers, broadcasters and rare archive of the country legends. These include Dolly Parton, Charley Pride, Willie Nelson, Ricky Skaggs, Steve Earle, Kris Kristofferson and several hit-making contemporary stars - Kasey Musgraves, Brad Paisley and Jason Aldean. This cast reveal the unique power of country music to hold up a mirror to its fans and create a music that has - for decades - touched the hearts of the south and of working people. Kristofferson calls it the 'white man's soul music'.

Also featured are extensive musical performances by Nashville's greatest, from Johnny Cash to Loretta Lynn and George Jones to Garth Brooks. Several of Nashville's younger stars describe their ongoing journey from their hometowns in the south to the streets of this city, from the first studio demos and the sawdust of the Broadway bars to the stadiums and promo videos that now define country stardom.


WED 00:45 Country Queens at the BBC (p028vwnv)
Classic female country stars in action on a variety of BBC studio shows and featuring Bobbie Gentry, Anne Murray, Emmylou Harris, Tammy Wynette, Billie Jo Spears, Crystal Gayle, Taylor Swift, Lucinda Williams with Mary Chapin Carpenter and more. A chronological celebration of country queens at the BBC whether on Top of the Pops, OGWT, Later with Jools Holland, Parkinson or their own entertainment specials.


WED 01:45 Queen Victoria's Letters: A Monarch Unveiled (b04pl2mn)
Episode 2

AN Wilson discovers the real story behind the woman who supposedly spent the last half of her life in hiding, mourning the loss of her beloved Prince Albert. Alongside this well-known image of Victoria as the weeping widow, Wilson reveals that the years after Albert's death were actually a process of liberation and her most productive and exciting.

By examining her closest relationships in the four decades after Albert's death, Wilson tells the story of the Queen's gradual freedom from a life spent under the shadow of domineering men. Victoria's marriage had been a source of constraint as well as love, as Albert had used her pregnancies as a way to gain power and punished her for resenting it. But in her widowhood Queen Victoria, although bereft and deranged, was free to move in the world of politics and make deep friendships without concern.

From the controversial friendship with her highland servant John Brown to her most unconventional behaviour with her young Indian servant Abdul Karim, Wilson uncovers Victoria as a woman who was anything but 'Victorian'. Far from being prim and proper, she loved life in all its richness - she was blind to class and colour and, contrary to what we think, had a great sense of humour.

Queen Victoria's journals and letters are read by Anna Chancellor throughout.


WED 02:45 Legends (b00xln7l)
Thin Lizzy: Bad Reputation

Affectionate but honest portrait of Thin Lizzy, arguably the best hard rock band to come out of Ireland.

Starting with the remix of the classic album Jailbreak by Scott Gorham and Brian Downey, the film takes us through the rollercoaster ride that is the story of Thin Lizzy. From early footage of singer Phil Lynott in Ireland in his pre-Lizzy bands the Black Eagles and Orphanage, it follows his progress as he, guitarist Eric Bell and drummer Brian Downey form the basic three-piece that was to become Thin Lizzy - a name taken from the Beano.

Using original interviews with Bell, Downey, the man who signed them and their first manager, it traces the early years leading to the recruitment of guitarists Brian 'Robbo' Robertson and Scott Gorham - the classic line-up. The film uses a number of stills, some seen on TV for the first time, archive from contemporary TV shows and a range of tracks both well known and not so famous.

There are hilarious self-deprecating anecdotes, from the stories behind the making of the Boys are Back in Town to the hiring of Midge Ure. We hear about the 'revolving door' as guitarist after guitarist was fired and hired, and the recording of Bad Reputation and Live and Dangerous - where producer Tony Visconti pulls no punches in talking about how he recorded the latter - putting the controversy to bed for the final time. Except that Downey and Robertson still disagree with him.

Finally, we hear how drugs and alcohol impacted on the band and how the music suffered, how one member later substituted golf for heroin and how addiction and the related lifestyle led to the death of Phil Lynott.

Contributors include Brian Downey, Scott Gorham, Eric Bell, Brian Robertson, Midge Ure, Bob Geldof, Tony Visconti, Joe Elliot and many others.



THURSDAY 27 NOVEMBER 2014

THU 19:00 World News Today (b04s51k5)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


THU 19:30 Top of the Pops (b04smtrr)
Peter Powell presents another edition of the weekly pop chart including performances from the Gibson Brothers, the Police, the Tourists, Pink Floyd, Blondie, Thin Lizzy, Rose Royce, the Skids, Status Quo and Dr Hook and dance sequences by Legs & Co.


THU 20:00 Chivalry and Betrayal: The Hundred Years War (b01qyvbm)
Agents of God

Henry V has claimed the crown of France for his heirs, but to secure it the English must conquer all of France. Potent French resistance comes in the most unlikely form - an illiterate young peasant girl, Joan of Arc. Dr Janina Ramirez explores the longest and bloodiest divorce in history.


THU 21:00 Nigel Slater's Icing on the Cake (b04pl14k)
Nigel Slater takes us on a nostalgic, funny and heartwarming journey back in time exploring the earliest origins of cake in Britain, charting the ways in which Neolithic man used to munch on flat compacted handfuls of grain, through to the ways in which Elizabethan cooks discovered the magical raising agent that is the egg white and the impact of developments in kitchen technology on our cake consumption.

Cake has come a long way from its earliest manifestations and Nigel brings this tastiest of culinary histories to life. He finds out about the ancient rituals surrounding the baking and eating of cake and the ways in which buns were once considered too risque for us common folk and so were banned.

He goes back to school to learn about the science behind a successful bake, explores whether our desire to eat cake really is just a question of mind over matter, examines the rise and popularity of the cupcake and comes face to face with some grisly cakes created by bakers hoping to revolutionise what we mean when we refer to a cake.

Reflecting on the cakes of his youth and childhood, Nigel examines the mass appeal of a culinary creation that can be defined by that most appropriate of phrases 'naughty but nice'. Whether it be homemade cakes courtesy of Auntie Marjorie or a battenberg bought from the corner shop, for Nigel a cake is all about sharing and so here he shares the story of British cake.


THU 22:00 Puppy Love (b04smtrw)
Episode 3

Naomi is keen to impress the commodore of the local yachting club, Dave Wilson, and so steps in to join his team, competing in the West Kirby Sailing Club's Wilson Trophy. Sadly, things don't go entirely to plan for her when she invites Dave, and her friends, to an elaborate dinner party that is a complete disaster. She is horrified when Nana V gatecrashes it, revealing her past dalliance with Dave.

Nana V asks Jasmine and Eron to look after her daycare dogs, including Dave's dog Charlie, but the pair go missing and are later found stranded on an island with the tide coming in. Naturally, it's up to Dave and the RNLI to come to the rescue.


THU 22:30 Dancing Cheek to Cheek: An Intimate History of Dance (b04smrrc)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Monday]


THU 23:30 The Real Tom Thumb: History's Smallest Superstar (b04sms8d)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Tuesday]


THU 01:00 Top of the Pops (b04smtrr)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today]


THU 01:35 Classic Albums (b00x7chg)
Tom Petty: Damn the Torpedoes

The third album by Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, released in 1979, has long been regarded as a classic and demonstrates the musical and songwriting virtuosity of a great frontman and his amazing backing band. A mix of rootsy American rock 'n' roll and the best of the British invasion, of jangling Byrds guitars and Stones-like rhythms, Damn the Torpedoes was the album that took Petty into the major league and redefined American rock.

This programme tells the story behind the conception and recording of the album and how it transformed the band's career. Using interviews, musical demonstration, acoustic performance, archive footage and a return to the multi-tracks with the main protagonists, it shows how Petty, Mike Campbell, Benmont Tench, Ron Blair and Stan Lynch created their songs and sounds with the help of co-producer Jimmy Iovine and engineer Shelly Yakus. Additional comments from journalists and other producers and musicians help tell the story and put the album into its rightful place in rock history.

Recorded in secrecy at a time when the band was fighting for creative independence amidst a legal wrangle with their record company, the album is imbued with an anger and a gutsy attitude the situation had created. Many songs from the album are still played live and form an important part of Petty's body of work, including Refugee, Here Comes My Girl, Even the Losers, Shadow of a Doubt, Louisiana Rain, Century City and top ten hit Don't Do Me Like That.

Damn the Torpedoes hit number two in the US for seven weeks, initially selling over 2.5 million copies, and launched Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers onto the world stage and into superstar territory, standing as one of the great records of the late 70s and early 80s.


THU 02:30 Puppy Love (b04smtrw)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 today]


THU 03:00 Nigel Slater's Icing on the Cake (b04pl14k)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



FRIDAY 28 NOVEMBER 2014

FRI 19:00 World News Today (b04s52c1)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


FRI 19:30 Placido Domingo's Gala Concert from the Royal Opera House (b01pdt87)
From the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Katie Derham introduces a gala concert in celebration of Plácido Domingo, one of the greatest figures in the world of music. On stage with the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House conducted by Antonio Pappano are some of the finest singers of today performing selected gems of the operatic repertory. Opera stars Nina Stemme, Joyce DiDonato, Joseph Calleja, Rolando Villazón perform alongside voices new to Covent Garden - Stefan Pop, Julia Novikova and Sonya Yoncheva.


FRI 21:00 A Pink Floyd Miscellany 1967-2005 (b014grts)
A compilation of rarely screened Pink Floyd videos and performances, beginning with the Arnold Layne promo from 1967 and culminating with the reunited band's performance at Live 8 in 2005. Also including a newly restored Another Brick in the Wall (Part 2) and performances of Grantchester Meadows, Cymbeline and others.


FRI 22:00 Play it Loud: The Story of the Marshall Amp (b04c3l7j)
One iconic black box has probably more than anything else come to define the sound of rock - the Marshall amplifier. It has been, quite literally, behind some of the greatest names in modern music.

It all started in 1962 when drum shop owner Jim Marshall discovered the distinctive growl that gave the electric guitar an exciting new voice. Music got a whole lot louder as young musicians like Clapton, Townshend and Hendrix adopted the revolutionary 'Marshall Sound'. The electric guitar now spoke for a new generation and the genre of rock was born.

Soon Marshall stacks and walls were an essential backdrop of rock 'n' roll. The excesses of rock machismo were gloriously lampooned in the 1984 movie This is Spinal Tap. In an extraordinary piece of reverse irony, it was this comic exposure that rescued the company from financial meltdown.

With contributions from rock legends like Pete Townshend, Lemmy and Slash, plus an interview with the 'Father of Loud' Jim Marshall, this documentary cruises down the rock ages with all the dials set to 'eleven'.


FRI 23:00 Pink Floyd: Wish You Were Here (b01j0yyv)
John Edginton's documentary explores the making of Pink Floyd's ninth studio album, Wish You Were Here, which was released in September 1975 and went on to top the album charts both in the UK and the US.

Featuring new interviews with band members Roger Waters, David Gilmour and Nick Mason alongside contributions from the likes of sleeve designer Storm Thorgerson and photographer Jill Furmanovsky, the film is a forensic study of the making of the follow-up to 1973's Dark Side of the Moon, which was another conceptual piece driven by Roger Waters.

The album wrestles with the legacy of the band's first leader, Syd Barrett, who had dropped out of the band in 1968 and is eulogised in the album's centrepiece, Shine On You Crazy Diamond. Pink Floyd had become one of the biggest bands in the world, but the 60s were over and the band were struggling both to find their purpose and the old camaraderie.


FRI 00:00 Great Guitar Riffs at the BBC (b049mtxy)
[Repeat of broadcast at 23:45 on Saturday]


FRI 01:00 A Pink Floyd Miscellany 1967-2005 (b014grts)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]


FRI 02:00 Play it Loud: The Story of the Marshall Amp (b04c3l7j)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 today]


FRI 03:00 Pink Floyd: Wish You Were Here (b01j0yyv)
[Repeat of broadcast at 23:00 today]




LIST OF THIS WEEK'S PROGRAMMES
(Note: the times link back to the details; the pids link to the BBC page, including iPlayer)

A Pink Floyd Miscellany 1967-2005 21:00 FRI (b014grts)

A Pink Floyd Miscellany 1967-2005 01:00 FRI (b014grts)

Chivalry and Betrayal: The Hundred Years War 20:00 THU (b01qyvbm)

Classic Albums 01:35 THU (b00x7chg)

Country Kings at the BBC 01:10 SUN (p028vxj4)

Country Queens at the BBC 00:45 WED (p028vwnv)

Dancing Cheek to Cheek: An Intimate History of Dance 21:00 MON (b04smrrc)

Dancing Cheek to Cheek: An Intimate History of Dance 02:45 MON (b04smrrc)

Dancing Cheek to Cheek: An Intimate History of Dance 22:30 THU (b04smrrc)

Dancing in the Blitz: How World War II Made British Ballet 01:45 MON (p01s4z2h)

Glastonbury 23:00 SUN (b04d8xv8)

Glen Campbell: The Rhinestone Cowboy 02:40 SUN (b01pwxs8)

Great British Railway Journeys 19:30 MON (b00xxr3w)

Great British Railway Journeys 19:30 TUE (b00xxr4n)

Great British Railway Journeys 20:00 TUE (b00xy9vl)

Great British Railway Journeys 19:30 WED (b00y47bj)

Great Guitar Riffs at the BBC 23:45 SAT (b049mtxy)

Great Guitar Riffs at the BBC 00:00 FRI (b049mtxy)

Hunt vs Lauda: F1's Greatest Racing Rivals 21:00 SUN (b0377tb1)

Inspector Montalbano 21:00 SAT (b01mqtv2)

Jim Clark: The Quiet Champion 22:00 SUN (b00jw9cw)

Kenny Rogers: Cards on the Table 00:10 SUN (b04pl3kw)

Legends 02:45 WED (b00xln7l)

Lost Cities of the Ancients 20:00 MON (b00792v2)

National Treasures of Wales 20:30 TUE (b04q1h03)

National Treasures of Wales 02:00 TUE (b04q1h03)

Natural World 19:00 SAT (b01d8nbk)

Natural World 02:00 SAT (b01d8nbk)

Neil Diamond: Solitary Man 23:30 TUE (b00vzzst)

Nigel Slater's Icing on the Cake 21:00 THU (b04pl14k)

Nigel Slater's Icing on the Cake 03:00 THU (b04pl14k)

Pink Floyd: Wish You Were Here 23:00 FRI (b01j0yyv)

Pink Floyd: Wish You Were Here 03:00 FRI (b01j0yyv)

Placido Domingo's Gala Concert from the Royal Opera House 19:30 FRI (b01pdt87)

Play For Today 22:00 MON (b0074n6r)

Play it Loud: The Story of the Marshall Amp 22:00 FRI (b04c3l7j)

Play it Loud: The Story of the Marshall Amp 02:00 FRI (b04c3l7j)

Puppy Love 00:45 MON (b04pl2mq)

Puppy Love 22:00 THU (b04smtrw)

Puppy Love 02:30 THU (b04smtrw)

Queen Victoria's Letters: A Monarch Unveiled 01:45 WED (b04pl2mn)

Sounds of the 70s 2 01:30 SAT (b01glwkz)

Sounds of the 70s 2 02:10 SUN (b01gymg9)

Sounds of the 70s 2 01:15 MON (b01h7pzm)

Sounds of the 70s 2 01:30 TUE (b01hz75h)

The Day of the Triffids 20:00 SUN (b0074t1j)

The Day of the Triffids 20:30 SUN (b0074t2k)

The Final Frontier? A Horizon Guide to the Universe 20:00 WED (p00yjn1x)

The Great War 19:00 SUN (b0074nyx)

The Heart of Country: How Nashville Became Music City USA 23:15 WED (b04ndxlr)

The Joy of the Guitar Riff 22:45 SAT (b049mtxw)

The Killing Fields 21:00 WED (b00zf9tw)

The Real Tom Thumb: History's Smallest Superstar 21:00 TUE (b04sms8d)

The Real Tom Thumb: History's Smallest Superstar 02:30 TUE (b04sms8d)

The Real Tom Thumb: History's Smallest Superstar 23:30 THU (b04sms8d)

The Riviera: A History in Pictures 20:00 SAT (b01pwtvf)

The Riviera: A History in Pictures 03:00 SAT (b01pwtvf)

The Riviera: A History in Pictures 00:30 TUE (b01pwtvf)

Timeshift 23:45 MON (b012zmy7)

Timeshift 22:30 TUE (b0135kkp)

Top of the Pops 00:45 SAT (b04pvhmr)

Top of the Pops 19:30 THU (b04smtrr)

Top of the Pops 01:00 THU (b04smtrr)

Wild 19:40 SUN (b0078z3l)

Wild 19:50 SUN (b0078z72)

World News Today 19:00 MON (b04s4zbz)

World News Today 19:00 TUE (b04s4zv7)

World News Today 19:00 WED (b04s50tv)

World News Today 19:00 THU (b04s51k5)

World News Today 19:00 FRI (b04s52c1)