The BBC has announced that it has a sustainable plan for the future of the BBC Singers, in association with The VOCES8 Foundation.
The threat to reduce the staff of the three English orchestras by 20% has not been lifted, but it is being reconsidered.
See the BBC press release here.

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Unofficial Weekly Listings for BBC 4 — supported by


SAT 19:00 A History of Ancient Britain (b00z0k23)
Series 1

Age of Cosmology

Neil Oliver continues his journey through the world of Ancient Britain as he encounters an age of cosmological priests and some of the greatest monuments of the Stone Age, including Stonehenge itself. This is a time of elite travellers, who were inventing the very idea of Heaven itself.

SAT 20:00 Natural World (b01fllvr)

The Real Jungle Book Bear

The Jungle Book's Baloo the bear character is based on the secretive sloth bear who lives in India's wildest places. The real Baloo does chase fancy ants, but his life is a lot tougher than that of his fictional friend.

Narrated by David Attenborough, this is the first film ever made on these shy creatures and it follows a young male called Baloo as he grows up in the harsh Karnataka landscape, fending off foes and finding food. Baloo's mother is also nearby with two new cubs on her back, trying to keep them safe from prowling leopards.

SAT 21:00 Hinterland (b079c6y0)
Series 2 (BBC Four)

Episode 2

Tha fear air a lorg ann an achadh le peilear na cheann. Astar beag air falbh is a-mach air an dùthaich tha bus air fhàgail ann an sràid bheag iomallach. Tha rannsachadh Mhathias ga thoirt a-steach gu saoghal reic dhrugaichean is iomchar.

Mathias is under pressure. Meg Mathias, his wife, has turned up in Aberystwyth, and he's under investigation by the IPCC following the death of Mari Davies. When a bus driver's body is found shot on an isolated mountainside, the investigation provides a welcome escape for DCI Mathias.

SAT 22:30 Dancing Cheek to Cheek: An Intimate History of Dance (b04pw783)
The Devil's Work?

Len Goodman and Lucy Worsley explore how dancing went from being frowned upon as dangerous and debauched in the 17th century to being celebrated as an essential social skill in the 18th century. The pair begin by joining a group of performing arts students on Ickwell village green to learn the cushion dance, a 17th-century favourite with a rather raunchy reputation.

Len uncovers the long history of English country dancing at Middle Temple Hall, where he meets a group of young barristers trying their hand at a dance that might have been performed there by their 17th-century equivalents. Lucy reveals how the dance-mad French King Louis XIV set the fashions followed on this side of the channel as she learns a Baroque court dance designed to express her deepest emotions.

By the 18th century dancing had lost its dubious reputation and Lucy visits the York Assembly Rooms to find out how this new Georgian institution opened up the dance floor to more people than ever before. Business was now booming for dancing masters and Len studies a rare dance manual at the Bodleian Library in Oxford to discover what they taught their pupils.

The minuet was the 18th century's answer to Strictly Come Dancing as couples performed before a crowd of critical onlookers, and Len and Lucy learn this fiendishly difficult dance for a grand finale at their own Georgian ball at Syon Park. The pair dress to dance in full period costume as Lucy discovers that her 18th-century dress is ingeniously engineered to enforce the perfect posture demanded by the minuet and Len masters the art of dancing in heels and a wig.

SAT 23:30 Synth Britannia at the BBC (b00n93c6)
A journey through the BBC's synthpop archives from Roxy Music and Tubeway Army to New Order and Sparks. Turn your Moogs up to 11 as we take a trip back into the 70s and 80s!

SAT 00:30 Synth Britannia (b00n93c4)
Documentary following a generation of post-punk musicians who took the synthesiser from the experimental fringes to the centre of the pop stage.

In the late 1970s, small pockets of electronic artists including The Human League, Daniel Miller and Cabaret Voltaire were inspired by Kraftwerk and JG Ballard, and they dreamt of the sound of the future against the backdrop of bleak, high-rise Britain.

The crossover moment came in 1979 when Gary Numan's appearance on Top of the Pops with Tubeway Army's Are 'Friends' Electric? heralded the arrival of synthpop. Four lads from Basildon known as Depeche Mode would come to own the new sound, whilst post-punk bands like Ultravox, Soft Cell, OMD and Yazoo took the synth out of the pages of NME and onto the front page of Smash Hits.

By 1983, acts like Pet Shop Boys and New Order were showing that the future of electronic music would lie in dance music.

Contributors include Philip Oakey, Vince Clarke, Martin Gore, Bernard Sumner, Gary Numan and Neil Tennant.

SAT 02:00 Joy Division (b0543ytw)
On June 4 1976, four young men from ruined, post-industrial Manchester went to see a Sex Pistols show at the Manchester Lesser Free Trade Hall. Inspired by the gig that is now credited with igniting the Manchester music scene, they formed what was to become one of the world's most influential bands, Joy Division.

Over 30 years later, despite a tragedy that was to cut them off in their prime, they are enjoying a larger audience and more influence than ever before, with a profound legacy that resonates fiercely in today's heavily manufactured pop culture.

Featuring the unprecedented participation of all the surviving band members, this film examines the band's story through never-before-seen live performance footage, personal photos, period films and newly discovered audiotapes.

A fresh visual account of a unique time and place, this is the untold story of how four men transcended economic and cultural barriers to produce an enduring musical legacy, at a time of great social and political change.

SUNDAY 01 MAY 2016

SUN 19:00 The Good Old Days (b075f6zf)
Leonard Sachs presents a 1972 edition of the old-time music hall programme from the stage of the City Varieties Theatre, Leeds. With guests Eartha Kitt and Arthur Askey.

SUN 20:00 The Man who Discovered Egypt (b01f13f4)
Documentary about English Egyptologist Flinders Petrie, the pioneer of systematic methodology in archaeology. Ancient Egypt was vandalised by tomb raiders and treasure hunters until this Victorian adventurer took them on. Most people have never heard of him, but this maverick undertook a scientific survey of the pyramids, discovered the oldest portraits in the world, unearthed Egypt's prehistoric roots - and in the process invented modern field archaeology, giving meaning to a whole civilisation.

SUN 21:00 The Silk Road (p03qb1gq)
Episode 1

In the first episode of his series tracing the story of the most famous trade route in history, Dr Sam Willis starts in Venice and explores how its Renaissance architecture and art has been shaped by the east and by thousands of exchanges along the Silk Road.

From Venice Sam travels to China's ancient capital, Xian. Here, Sam's story takes him back in time to reveal the tale of an emperor who was so desperate for horses to help protect his borders that he struck one of the most significant trade deals in human history - he wanted war horses, he gave the most precious material in the world, silk. From this single deal, a network of trading paths were carved out across thousands of miles by merchants, traders, envoys, pilgrims and travellers. It is known to us today as the Silk Road.

SUN 22:00 Redefining Juliet (b079rzqc)
Think you know who can play Juliet? Well, think again. Redefining Juliet is a unique retelling of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet using a group of diverse actors - all with disabilities or differences. Tall, small, large, deaf, limbless or wheelchair using, but each owning the iconic Shakespearean character of Juliet for themselves.

SUN 22:45 Hamlet (b03b7x2r)
Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, learns of his father's murder by his uncle and plots revenge.

A masterful adaptation of Shakespeare's play with a memorable score by Dmitri Shostakovich.

In Russian with English subtitles.

SUN 01:10 The Sun (b0074s96)
A revealing portrait of our closest star - the sun. Responsible for all life on Earth, the sun has always been worshipped. In the Stone Age, monuments were built to its constancy and predictability. New ways of observing the sun are revealing another side to it - a dark and violent side of turbulent storms and huge explosions. As scientists learn to understand the forces that drive it, they are also trying to control its power. If we could harness the sun's power output for a single second it would supply the world's demands for the next million years.

SUN 02:10 Horizon (b0094cym)

Are We Alone in the Universe?

For 50 years, the Search for Extra Terrestrial Intelligence (SETA) has been scanning the galaxy for a message from an alien civilisation. So far to no avail, but a recent breakthrough suggests they may one day succeed. Horizon joins the planet hunters who have discovered a new world called Gliese 581c, which may have habitats capable of supporting life.

NASA hopes to find 50 more Earth-like planets by the end of the decade, all of which dramatically increases the chance that alien life has begun elsewhere in the galaxy.

SUN 03:00 The Silk Road (p03qb1gq)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]

MONDAY 02 MAY 2016

MON 19:00 World News Today (b0798stc)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.

MON 19:30 The Wonder of Bees with Martha Kearney (p01t6p94)
Episode 2

Martha discovers a bee with deformed wing virus in one of the hives she has set up on a Suffolk wildflower meadow. With the help of a master beekeeper, she treats the hive for verroa mite. Britain's leading bee scientist explains the role of verroa in the decline of bees throughout the country.

As spring arrives, Martha witnesses the growth of the colony and watches as bee larvae hatch out. She investigates the science behind the decline of the honey bee and examines evidence that pesticides may be to blame. Back at her cottage, she tackles a colony of angry bees by replacing their queen with a more mild-mannered individual ordered online and delivered through the post, and she meets the Archbishop of Canterbury to talk about his family's love of beekeeping and why he told the bees about his girlfriends.

MON 20:00 Lucy Worsley's Reins of Power: The Art of Horse Dancing (b06ccpzz)
Strictly Come Prancing: Lucy Worsley learns to ride - in fact, she learns how to dance on horseback before putting on a show for the paying public!

Now, if this sounds mad, horse ballet or manege was once the noblest of pursuits practised by everyone from courtier to king in the first half of the 17th century. Having become fascinated by this horsey hobby whilst writing her PhD, Lucy is on a quest to find out why this peculiar skill was once so de rigeur - learning the lost art from its modern masters, visiting the Spanish Riding School in Vienna to witness spectacular equestrian shows, exploring its military origins through donning Henry VIII-style jousting armour, and discovering horse ballet's legacies in competitive dressage and, more surprisingly, in the performances of the Royal Horse Artillery, the King's Troop today.

MON 21:00 A History of Ancient Britain (b00z597g)
Series 1

Age of Bronze

Neil Oliver continues his epic tour of Britain's most distant past with the arrival of metals and the social revolution that ushered in a new age of social mobility, international trade, and village life.

MON 22:00 The Dark Ages: An Age of Light (p00zbtmr)
The Clash of the Gods

The Dark Ages have been misunderstood. History has identified the period following the fall of the Roman Empire with a descent into barbarism - a terrible time when civilisation stopped.

Waldemar Januszczak disagrees. In this four-part series he argues that the Dark Ages were a time of great artistic achievement, with new ideas and religions provoking new artistic adventures. He embarks on a fascinating trip across Europe, Africa and Asia, visits the world's most famous collections and discovers hidden artistic gems, all to prove that the Dark Ages were actually an 'Age of Light'.

In the first episode he looks at how Christianity emerged into the Roman Empire as an artistic force in the 3rd and 4th centuries. But with no description of Jesus in the Bible, how were Christians to represent their God? Waldemar explores how Christian artists drew on images of ancient gods for inspiration and developed new forms of architecture to contain their art.

MON 23:00 Natural World (b01fllvr)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 on Saturday]

MON 00:00 Everything and Nothing (b00yb59m)

Two-part documentary which deals with two of the deepest questions there are - what is everything, and what is nothing?

In two epic, surreal and mind-expanding films, Professor Jim Al-Khalili searches for an answer to these questions as he explores the true size and shape of the universe and delves into the amazing science behind apparent nothingness.

The first part, Everything, sees Professor Al-Khalili set out to discover what the universe might actually look like. The journey takes him from the distant past to the boundaries of the known universe. Along the way he charts the remarkable stories of the men and women who discovered the truth about the cosmos and investigates how our understanding of space has been shaped by both mathematics and astronomy.

MON 01:00 Krakatoa Revealed (b00791fm)
In 1883, the volcanic island of Krakatoa erupted without warning. Within a day the island had virtually disappeared in the loudest explosion ever recorded. The eruption generated a succession of massive tsunamis that wiped out the Indonesian coastline and killed over 30,000 people. These waves were three times higher than those seen on Boxing Day in 2004. And over 30 miles from the volcano, across open ocean, thousands more were killed by hot ash.

For over a century geologists have been unable to explain how so many people died. But today, through field studies, experiments and analysis of historical records, they think they have finally found the answers. And these answers are hugely important because the volcano is back.

Since 1927, the volcano Anak Krakatoa, the child of Krakatoa, has been growing. It is now over half the size of the original volcano. And geologists are certain that it will erupt again. The only questions that remain are how and when.

MON 01:50 The Man who Discovered Egypt (b01f13f4)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 on Sunday]

MON 02:50 Jerusalem: The Making of a Holy City (b018jlj0)
Judgement Day

Jerusalem is one of the oldest cities in the world. For the Jewish faith, it is the site of the western wall, the last remnant of the second Jewish temple. For Christians, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre is the site of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. For Muslims, the Al-Aqsa mosque is the third holiest sanctuary of Islam.

In the final part of his series, Simon explores how this unique city rose from a crumbling ruin after the crusades to be rebuilt as a world centre of Islamic pilgrimage. He explains how Jerusalem became the object of rivalry between the Christian nations of Europe, the focus of the longing of Jews from all over the world and, ultimately, the site of one of the world's most intractable conflicts.

Starting in the Middle Ages, Simon goes on a chronological journey to trace the revival of the city under the Mamluks and its conquest by the biggest of all the Islamic empires - the Ottomans. He examines how the distinctive national identity of the Arab population evolved under centuries of Turkish Ottoman rule and how the city came to be prized by the great powers of 19th-century Europe. The programme explores the emergence of Zionism and the growing Jewish population of the city and traces the origins of today's nationalist struggle.


TUE 19:00 World News Today (b0798stj)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.

TUE 19:30 The Wonder of Bees with Martha Kearney (p01t6pgg)
Episode 3

Spring has well and truly sprung and the hives are going from strength to strength, but that brings with it a problem of its own - the swarm. As the colonies become overcrowded, the bees become likely to depart in a swarm with the queen, leaving just a few behind to rear a new queen. It's a natural process, but for the beekeeper it can be a disaster, leaving the hive all but empty with little prospect of a harvest of honey.

Martha discovers methods to control the swarms, including clipping the wings of the queen, but she also meets a natural beekeeper for whom wing clipping is horrifying. When one of her hives swarms, Martha's neighbours leap to the rescue and she harvests the first honey of the year.

TUE 20:00 Caravans: A British Love Affair (b00hw3s0)
Documentary about the love affair between the British and their caravans, which saw the country establish the world's largest caravan manufacturer and transformed the holiday habits of generations of families.

In telling the intriguing story of caravanning in Britain from the 1950s through to the present day, the film reveals how caravans were once the plaything of a privileged minority, but after World War II became a firm favourite with almost a quarter of British holidaymakers.

It explores how changes in caravanning across the years reflect wider changes in British society, in particular the increased availability of cars during the 1950s and 60s, but also the improved roads network and changing attitudes towards holidaymaking and leisure time.

Enthusiasts and contributors include Dorrie van Lachterop from the West Midlands and Christine Fagg from Hertfordshire, remarkable and adventurous women who started touring alone in their caravans during the 1950s.

TUE 21:00 Forest, Field & Sky: Art out of Nature (b079ckkf)
Dr James Fox takes a journey through six different landscapes across Britain, meeting artists whose work explores our relationship to the natural world. From Andy Goldsworthy's beautiful stone sculptures to James Turrell's extraordinary sky spaces, this is a film about art made out of nature itself. Featuring spectacular images of landscape and art, James travels from the furthest reaches of the Scottish coast and the farmlands of Cumbria to woods of north Wales. In each location he marvels at how artists' interactions with the landscape have created a very different kind of modern art - and make us look again at the world around us.

TUE 22:00 Oak Tree: Nature's Greatest Survivor (b06fq03t)
George McGavin investigates the highly varied and dramatic life of oak tree. Part science documentary, part historical investigation, this film is a celebration of one of the most iconic trees in the British countryside. It aims to give viewers a sense of what an extraordinary species the oak is and provide an insight into how this venerable tree experiences life.

Filmed over a year, George uncovers the extraordinary transformations the oak goes through to meet the challenges of four very different seasons.

In autumn, George goes underground, digging below an oak tree to see how its roots extract precious resources from the soil. And he sees why the oak's superstrong wood made it the perfect material for building some the most famous ships in naval history, including Nelson's flagship The Victory.

In winter, George discovers the sophisticated strategies the tree uses to survive gales and bitter frosts. He finds out about the oak's vital role in architecture, showing how some very familiar sights, such as the tower of Salisbury Cathedral, are in fact giant oak structures.

In spring, George investigates how the oak procreates, spreading its pollen through the countryside. He discovers the incredibly sophisticated strategies it uses to withstand savage onslaughts from predators hellbent on eating it alive.

In summer, George uses a high-powered microscope to see the hundreds of species that regard the oak as their home. Humans too rely on the oak for their own form of 'sustenance'. Whisky gets its unique flavours from the oak wood barrels in which it's matured.

TUE 23:30 A History of Ancient Britain (b00z597g)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Monday]

TUE 00:30 The Dark Ages: An Age of Light (p00zbtmr)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 on Monday]

TUE 01:30 Caravans: A British Love Affair (b00hw3s0)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]

TUE 02:30 Forest, Field & Sky: Art out of Nature (b079ckkf)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]


WED 19:00 World News Today (b0798stp)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.

WED 19:30 Handmade on the Silk Road (b079cgml)
The Weaver

The Uyghur community in north west China have been making atlas silk for thousands of years. Mattursun Islam and his family are continuing the tradition, using a combination of handmade techniques and mechanised looms. From designing the patterns to colouring, dyeing and weaving the thread, this film follows each stage in absorbing detail. We also get an engaging glimpse into how their family and working life are closely connected. With rival companies often copying his designs, Mattursan is proud of his reputation. But he and his wife also enjoy a good-natured rivalry over who really runs things.

WED 20:00 The Silk Road (p03qb1gq)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Sunday]

WED 21:00 Timeshift (b01q9vhy)
Series 12

The Joy of (Train) Sets

The Model Railway Story: From Hornby to Triang and beyond, this documentary explores how the British have been in love with model railways for more than a century. What began as an adult obsession with building fully engineered replicas became the iconic toy of 50s and 60s childhood. With unique archive and contributions from modellers such as Pete Waterman, this is a celebration of the joys of miniaturisation. Just don't call them toy trains!

WED 22:00 Balmoral (b00mqg2c)
Documentary telling the story of Balmoral, the royal family's most private residence. For over 150 years this Scottish castle has been home to royal traditions of picnics, stag hunting and kilts. From prime ministers to Princess Diana, life at this tartan-bound holiday home has not appealed to everyone.

But there is another story of Balmoral, of how the royal family has played a role in shaping modern Scotland and how Scotland has shaped the royal family. Queen Victoria's adoption of Highland symbols, from tartan to bagpipes, helped create a new image for Scotland. Her values, too, helped strengthen the union between Scotland and England. Ever since, Balmoral has been a place that reflects the very essence of the royal family.

WED 23:00 Timeshift (b01rjr2y)
Series 12

How To Be A Lady: An Elegant History

Journalist Rachel Johnson goes in search of what seems an almost vanished social type - the lady. With a handful of vintage etiquette books to guide her and a generous helping of film archive, she wants to find out how the idea of the lady changed over time - and what it might mean to be one now. Along the way she tries out etiquette classes and side-saddle lessons, as well as discovering that debutante balls have been revived for export.

WED 00:00 Dancing Cheek to Cheek: An Intimate History of Dance (b04pw783)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:30 on Saturday]

WED 01:00 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.

WED 02:00 Timeshift (b01q9vhy)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]

WED 03:00 Balmoral (b00mqg2c)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 today]


THU 19:00 World News Today (b0798stx)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.

THU 19:30 Top of the Pops (b079ckkc)
Steve Wright introduces the pop programme, featuring performances from Gidea Park, Beggar & Co, Sheena Easton, Godley and Creme, The Pointer Sisters, Bucks Fizz and Adam & The Ants, and a dance performance from Legs & Co.

THU 20:00 Balmoral (b00mqg2c)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 on Wednesday]

THU 21:00 Timeshift (b06b36q3)
Series 15

A Very British Map: The Ordnance Survey Story

For over 200 years, Ordnance Survey has mapped every square mile of the British Isles, capturing not just the contours and geography of our nation, but of our lives. Originally intended for military use, OS maps were used during wartime to help locate enemy positions. In peacetime, they helped people discover and explore the countryside.

Today, the large fold-out paper maps, used by generations of ramblers, scouts and weekend adventurers, represent just a small part of the OS output. As Ordnance Survey adjusts to the digital age, Timeshift looks back to tell the story of a quintessentially British institution.

THU 22:00 Jim Clark: The Quiet Champion (b00jw9cw)
[Repeat of broadcast at 01:00 on Wednesday]

THU 23:00 True North (b0755gm1)
Series 6

Crossmaglen: Field of Dreams

During the Troubles, Crossmaglen was seen by many as a place apart. At the heart of what became known as 'bandit country', and despite the pressures, a group of children managed to form one of the most formidable football teams in GAA club history. With unique access to the Crossmaglen GAA club over two seasons, this documentary follows new managers Oisin McConville and John McEntee, both former All-Ireland winners with the club, as they attempt to guide the next generation to victory. This is the story of a remarkable group of people at the heart of a remarkable town.

THU 00:00 Top of the Pops (b079ckkc)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today]

THU 00:40 Sex: A Horizon Guide (b039vj9x)
Sex is a simple word for a very complex set of desires. It cuts to the core of our passions, our wants, our emotions. But when it goes wrong, it can be the most painful thing of all. Professor Alice Roberts looks through 45 years of Horizon archive to see how science came to understand sex, strived to solve our problems with it and even helped us to do it better. Can science save the day when sex goes wrong?

THU 01:40 Sex, Lies and Love Bites: The Agony Aunt Story (b0555vjj)
Psychotherapist and agony aunt Philippa Perry presents a witty and revealing look at the problem page's enduring appeal. In the documentary Philippa picks her way through three centuries of advice on broken hearts, cheating partners and adolescent angst to uncover a fascinating portrait of our social history.

She talks to fellow agony aunts and uncles like the Telegraph's Graham Norton and the Sun's Deidre Sanders about their experiences, as well as exploring the work of advice columnists past, like the 17th-century inventor of the problem page, John Dunton. The advice may change, but she discovers that, when it comes to subjects like love and courtship, the same old problems keep on cropping up.

Through the work of generations of advice columnists Philippa charts the developing battle of the sexes, the rise of the middle classes and a revolution in social attitudes. For much of the 20th century, agony aunts avoided any mention of trouble in the bedroom. Philippa explores the pioneering work of agony aunts like Claire Rayner, who began to offer frank sex advice in the 1960s. Today, sex takes pride of place on the problem page, as Philippa discovers for herself when she takes a starring role in the Sun's photo casebook, which is famous for its real-life problems illustrated with pictures of semi-clad ladies.

At a time when advice is more easily available than ever before, Philippa reflects on why agony aunts are often still our first port of call, and on what makes reading about other people's problems so irresistible.

THU 02:40 Everything and Nothing (b00yb59m)
[Repeat of broadcast at 00:00 on Monday]

FRIDAY 06 MAY 2016

FRI 19:00 World News Today (b0798sv3)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.

FRI 19:30 BBC Young Musician (b079cm49)

Strings Final

Four places in the BBC Young Musician 2016 semi-final have been claimed, with the winners of the keyboard, woodwind, percussion and brass categories having already earned their spot. Who will join them there from the strings final? In a hotly contested round, five talented young string players give their all, performing music ranging from Bach to Faure, Rachmaninov to Saint-Saens. Expect musical fireworks and technical brilliance.

The finalists are 17-year-old violinist Charlie Lovell-Jones from Cardiff; 16-year-old cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason from Nottingham; violinist Louisa Staples who is 16 and from London; also 16, cellist Joe Pritchard from Somerset; and completing the line-up is 16-year-old violinist Stephanie Childress from London.

Clemency Burton-Hill and Alison Balsom - herself a finalist in 1998 - present extended highlights of all the performances and find out more about the competitors with profile pieces and backstage access. Who will win that last remaining place in the semi-final and take one step further towards the coveted title BBC Young Musician 2016?

FRI 21:00 Elton John at the BBC (b00vs5c0)
Elton John's career tracked in archive from performances, interviews and news clips.

FRI 22:00 When Pop Went Epic: The Crazy World of the Concept Album (b079s0n0)
It's possibly one of the most denigrated inventions in the history of music, the greatest signifier of rock star pomposity. Indeed, in some quarters, the very mention of it is likely to provoke sniggering derision, conjuring up images of quadruple-gatefold album sleeves, songs that go on for weeks and straggly-haired rockers prattling on about mystical lands, unicorns, goblins and dystopian futures. But - back when people actually took the time to sit down and listen to records from beginning to end - for many, nothing delivered a more rewarding experience than the concept album. And for some, it's still a format that provides rock music with its high watermark moments.

This documentary explores the history of a musical format - usually based around a structured narrative, though sometimes tied together by a loose theme - that developed to become the equivalent of rock 'n' roll theatre, often on an operatic scale. The legendary cape-wearing keyboardmeister Rick Wakeman - himself the creator of several of history's most, ahem, 'elaborate' long players - presents this insightful and playful exploration of the greatest examples of the art form.

From social commentary to collected songs of loneliness, heartache and introspection, from tales of intergalactic rock stars to anthems of isolated youth, the film takes us on a journey - examining the roots of the concept album in its various forms, unpacking some of the most ambitious - and ridiculous - projects of the past fifty years, from Woody Guthrie's Dustbowl Ballads to Tales from Topographic Oceans by Yes; the Beach Boys' Pet Sounds to George Clinton's Mothership Connection; The Wall by Pink Floyd to The Flaming Lips' Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots.

Some of the mavericks who made the maddest and most memorable big ideas happen are here to provide their own perspectives, including Ian Anderson (Jethro Tull); Laura Marling; George Clinton; Wayne Coyne (Flaming Lips); J Willgoose Esq (Public Service Broadcasting); Fish (Marillion); Tony Asher (co-writer of lyrics on Pet Sounds); graphic artists such as Roger Dean (designer of Yes album sleeves) and Aubrey Powell of design partnership Hipgnosis (Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon and Animals, and Genesis's The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway).

FRI 23:00 Mike Oldfield: Tubular Bells (b00g8h9q)
A live studio performance from 1974 of Mike Oldfield's composition Tubular Bells, which had been acclaimed in the press as a unique achievement in popular music.

FRI 23:25 The Genius of David Bowie (b01k0y0q)
A selection of some of David Bowie's best performances from the BBC archives, which also features artists who Bowie helped along the way, such as Mott the Hoople, Lulu, Iggy Pop and Lou Reed.

FRI 00:25 When Pop Went Epic: The Crazy World of the Concept Album (b079s0n0)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 today]

FRI 01:25 Mike Oldfield: Tubular Bells (b00g8h9q)
[Repeat of broadcast at 23:00 today]

FRI 01:50 Tubular Bells: The Mike Oldfield Story (b03cw8g0)
In 1973, an album was released that against all odds and expectations went to the top of the UK charts. The fact the album launched a record label that became one of the most recognisable brand names in the world (Virgin), formed the soundtrack to one of the biggest movies of the decade (The Exorcist), became the biggest selling instrumental album of all time, would eventually go on to sell over 16 million copies and was performed almost single-handedly by a 19-year-old makes the story all the more incredible. That album was Tubular Bells, and the young and painfully shy musician was Mike Oldfield.

This documentary features contributions from Sir Richard Branson, Danny Boyle, Mike's family and the original engineers of the Tubular Bells album among others. The spine of the film is an extended interview with Mike himself, where he takes us through the events that led to him writing Tubular Bells - growing up with a mother with severe mental health problems; the refuge he sought in music as a child, with talent that led to him playing in folk clubs aged 12 and signing with his sister's folk group at only 15; his frightening experience of taking LSD at 16; and finally arriving at the Manor Recording Studios as a young session musician where he gave a demo tape to a recording engineer who passed it along to young entrepreneur Richard Branson.

After the album's huge success, Mike retreated to a Hereford hilltop, shunned public life and became a recluse until he took part in a controversial therapy which changed his life.

In 2012 Mike captured the public's imagination once again when he was asked to perform at the London Olympic Opening Ceremony, where Tubular Bells was the soundtrack to 20 minutes of the one-hour ceremony.

Filmed on location at his home recording studio in Nassau, Mike also plays the multiple instruments of Tubular Bells and shows how the groundbreaking piece of music was put together.

FRI 02:55 Elton John at the BBC (b00vs5c0)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]

(Note: the times link back to the details; the pids link to the BBC page, including iPlayer)

A History of Ancient Britain 19:00 SAT (b00z0k23)

A History of Ancient Britain 21:00 MON (b00z597g)

A History of Ancient Britain 23:30 TUE (b00z597g)

BBC Young Musician 19:30 FRI (b079cm49)

Balmoral 22:00 WED (b00mqg2c)

Balmoral 03:00 WED (b00mqg2c)

Balmoral 20:00 THU (b00mqg2c)

Caravans: A British Love Affair 20:00 TUE (b00hw3s0)

Caravans: A British Love Affair 01:30 TUE (b00hw3s0)

Dancing Cheek to Cheek: An Intimate History of Dance 22:30 SAT (b04pw783)

Dancing Cheek to Cheek: An Intimate History of Dance 00:00 WED (b04pw783)

Elton John at the BBC 21:00 FRI (b00vs5c0)

Elton John at the BBC 02:55 FRI (b00vs5c0)

Everything and Nothing 00:00 MON (b00yb59m)

Everything and Nothing 02:40 THU (b00yb59m)

Forest, Field & Sky: Art out of Nature 21:00 TUE (b079ckkf)

Forest, Field & Sky: Art out of Nature 02:30 TUE (b079ckkf)

Hamlet 22:45 SUN (b03b7x2r)

Handmade on the Silk Road 19:30 WED (b079cgml)

Hinterland 21:00 SAT (b079c6y0)

Horizon 02:10 SUN (b0094cym)

Jerusalem: The Making of a Holy City 02:50 MON (b018jlj0)

Jim Clark: The Quiet Champion 01:00 WED (b00jw9cw)

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

Joy Division 02:00 SAT (b0543ytw)

Krakatoa Revealed 01:00 MON (b00791fm)

Lucy Worsley's Reins of Power: The Art of Horse Dancing 20:00 MON (b06ccpzz)

Mike Oldfield: Tubular Bells 23:00 FRI (b00g8h9q)

Mike Oldfield: Tubular Bells 01:25 FRI (b00g8h9q)

Natural World 20:00 SAT (b01fllvr)

Natural World 23:00 MON (b01fllvr)

Oak Tree: Nature's Greatest Survivor 22:00 TUE (b06fq03t)

Redefining Juliet 22:00 SUN (b079rzqc)

Sex, Lies and Love Bites: The Agony Aunt Story 01:40 THU (b0555vjj)

Sex: A Horizon Guide 00:40 THU (b039vj9x)

Synth Britannia at the BBC 23:30 SAT (b00n93c6)

Synth Britannia 00:30 SAT (b00n93c4)

The Dark Ages: An Age of Light 22:00 MON (p00zbtmr)

The Dark Ages: An Age of Light 00:30 TUE (p00zbtmr)

The Genius of David Bowie 23:25 FRI (b01k0y0q)

The Good Old Days 19:00 SUN (b075f6zf)

The Man who Discovered Egypt 20:00 SUN (b01f13f4)

The Man who Discovered Egypt 01:50 MON (b01f13f4)

The Silk Road 21:00 SUN (p03qb1gq)

The Silk Road 03:00 SUN (p03qb1gq)

The Silk Road 20:00 WED (p03qb1gq)

The Sun 01:10 SUN (b0074s96)

The Wonder of Bees with Martha Kearney 19:30 MON (p01t6p94)

The Wonder of Bees with Martha Kearney 19:30 TUE (p01t6pgg)

Timeshift 21:00 WED (b01q9vhy)

Timeshift 23:00 WED (b01rjr2y)

Timeshift 02:00 WED (b01q9vhy)

Timeshift 21:00 THU (b06b36q3)

Top of the Pops 19:30 THU (b079ckkc)

Top of the Pops 00:00 THU (b079ckkc)

True North 23:00 THU (b0755gm1)

Tubular Bells: The Mike Oldfield Story 01:50 FRI (b03cw8g0)

When Pop Went Epic: The Crazy World of the Concept Album 22:00 FRI (b079s0n0)

When Pop Went Epic: The Crazy World of the Concept Album 00:25 FRI (b079s0n0)

World News Today 19:00 MON (b0798stc)

World News Today 19:00 TUE (b0798stj)

World News Today 19:00 WED (b0798stp)

World News Today 19:00 THU (b0798stx)

World News Today 19:00 FRI (b0798sv3)