Radio-Lists Home Now on BBC 4

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



SATURDAY 11 AUGUST 2018

SAT 19:00 Wild Ireland: The Edge of the World (b08jgr5r)
Series 1

Episode 1

Colin Stafford-Johnson begins his Atlantic journey exploring the ancient ruins and wildlife of the Skellig Rocks - stormbound ocean pinnacles off the south western corner of Ireland, where early Christian monks built a monastery on the summit almost 1,500 years ago.

His next stop is the deserted Blasket Islands, home to vast numbers of seals coming ashore in winter to fight, mate and moult, before he heads inland through Ireland's highest mountain range in search of the island's last surviving herd of red deer from prehistoric times.

Back on the coast, he goes on the trail of humpback whales, which are making their mark in Irish waters and returning year after year in increasing numbers, before heading north along the coast to meet Ireland's only toads and lizards, and a dolphin who has set up residence off Ireland's limestone desert region - the Burren.

His journey ends in Clew Bay, an iconic inlet halfway up Ireland's west coast and the place Colin chose to make his home.


SAT 20:00 Wonders of the Monsoon (p026gm1z)
People of the Monsoon

Our story begins as the relationship began - humans entered the region as hunter-gatherers. On the Philippine island of Palawan, near Borneo, for part of the year people still hunt in the forest and live in caves. As with their ancient forebears, their lives are underpinned by a closeness to and a spiritual respect for nature.

Around 10,000 years ago, rice - the perfect monsoon crop - changed everything. In the paddies of Assam, India, farmers battle a herd of hungry elephants over the rice crop. Conflicts like this have played out for thousands of years. But this tension in the relationship with nature has been softened by another phenomenon - organised religion. Both Hinduism and Buddhism have deeply influenced the relationship, teaching a deep respect for nature.

We meet a group of the Bishnoi sect, who believe that all life is sacred and have been known to lay down their lives for nature, even to protect trees. As a consequence of this philosophy, their marginal farmland supports a higher density of people than any other desert in the world. Across India, thousands of sacred groves are reserved for the worship of nature. For thousands of years, wildlife that lives in these areas has been protected, helping to keep the subcontinent the bio-diverse place that it still is.

But the relationship now faces a challenge from worldwide demand for the monsoon's bounty, especially the clearance of forests for cash crops. The most visible casualties are iconic species such as siamese crocodiles, bengal tigers and orangutans, whose habitat is stripped away, but there is hope. Local people are figuring out how to harvest both the natural timber and crops that the world wants, in a more sustainable way.

Whatever the future holds for the lands of the monsoon, all of us are now connected and surely have a part to play.


SAT 21:00 Cardinal (b0bfnw78)
Series 2

Terri

Cardinal and Delorme uncover Red's identity and her connection to Algonquin Bay, as the person who shot her looks to finish the job.


SAT 21:40 Cardinal (b0bfnw8v)
Series 2

Toof

Cardinal and Delorme work with Terri to piece together the events leading up to her shooting. Delorme gets a major break in the case, but it comes at great personal cost.


SAT 22:25 Top of the Pops (b0bf989z)
Janice Long and Mike Read present the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 20 February 1986. Featuring Paul Hardcastle, Diana Ross, Depeche Mode, Survivor, Public Image Limited, Billy Ocean and The Damned.


SAT 22:55 Dusty Springfield at the BBC (b01qyvw7)
A selection of Dusty Springfield's performances at the BBC from 1961 to 1995. Dusty was one of Britain's great pop divas, guaranteed to give us a big melody in songs soaring with drama and yearning.

The clips show Dusty's versatility as an artist and performer and include songs from her folk beginnings with The Springfields; the melodrama of You Don't Have to Say You Love Me; Dusty's homage to Motown with Heatwave and Nowhere to Run; the Jacques Brel song If You Go Away; the Bacharach and David tune The Look of Love; and Dusty's collaboration with Pet Shop Boys in the late 1980s.

There are also some great duets from Dusty's career with Tom Jones and Mel Torme.


SAT 23:55 You've Got a Friend: The Carole King Story (b0461chb)
Documentary telling, in her own words, the story of Carole King's upbringing in Brooklyn and the subsequent success that she had as half of husband-and-wife songwriting team Goffin and King for Aldon Music on Broadway.

It was during this era in the early 1960s that they created a string of pop hits such as Take Good Care of My Baby for Bobby Vee, The Locomotion for Little Eva and Will You Love Me Tomorrow for the Shirelles, which became the first number one hit by a black American girl group. They also wrote the era-defining Up on the Roof for the Drifters and the magnificent Natural Woman for Aretha Franklin.

By 1970 Carole was divorced from songwriting partner Gerry Goffin and had moved to Los Angeles. It was here that she created her classic solo album Tapestry, packed with delightful tunes but also, for the first time, her own lyrics, very much sung from the heart. The album included It's Too Late, I Feel the Earth Move and You've Got a Friend and held the record for the most weeks at number one by a solo female artist for nearly 20 years. It became a trusted part of everyone's record collection and has sold over 25 million copies to date.

The film features some wonderful unseen material and home movies, and narrates her life as an acclaimed singer-songwriter. To date, more than 400 of her compositions have been recorded by over 1,000 artists, resulting in 100 hit singles.

More recently, in 2013, Carole was the first woman to be awarded the prestigious Gershwin Prize for Popular Song by the Library of Congress for her songwriting, whilst in 2014 Broadway production Beautiful, which tells her life story during the Goffin and King era, has received rave reviews.

Nowadays Carole King would see herself as an environmental activist as much as a songwriter, and she is to be found constantly lobbying congress in defence of the wildlife and ecosystems of her beloved Idaho.


SAT 00:55 Easy Listening Hits at the BBC (b011g943)
Compilation of easy listening tracks that offers the perfect soundtrack for your cocktail party. There's music to please every lounge lizard, with unique performances from the greatest easy listening artists of the 60s and 70s, including Burt Bacharach, Andy Williams, Sergio Mendes & Brasil '66, The Carpenters and many more.


SAT 01:55 Wild Ireland: The Edge of the World (b08jgr5r)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]


SAT 02:55 Wonders of the Monsoon (p026gm1z)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]



SUNDAY 12 AUGUST 2018

SUN 19:00 BBC Proms (b0bfpdhb)
2018

National Youth Orchestra

The awe-inspiring orchestra of teenagers returns to the Royal Albert Hall with a packed bill of popular masterpieces, including Mussorgsky's A Night on the Bare Mountain and Debussy's La Mer. Renowned British composer George Benjamin conducts the concert, which also features his own colourful Dance Figures and Gyorgy Ligeti's Lontano, which recently found new fans as part of a Martin Scorsese soundtrack. Pianist Tamara Stefanovich performs Ravel's dazzling Piano Concerto for the Left Hand, which was written for a WWI veteran.


SUN 20:45 BBC Proms (b07rkvp4)
2016

Barenboim and the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra

Katie Derham introduces another chance to see one of the most memorable Proms from the BBC archive. This week, she is joined by special guest Stephen Fry for one of his favourite concerts of all time, from the 2016 season.

Daniel Barenboim conducts the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra in Liszt’s First Piano Concerto, performed by his childhood friend, legendary pianist Martha Argerich, along with epic orchestral extracts from three different operas by Richard Wagner.


SUN 21:00 The Stolen Maharajah: Britain's Indian Royal (b0bfnldw)
Documentary about the last Maharajah of the Punjab, Duleep Singh, who was wrenched from his mother's arms as a child in the 1840s and put into the care of an official of the British Empire. Growing up in a colonial enclave in India, the boy king abandoned his Sikh religion and signed away his ancient kingdom to the British - decisions he would come to bitterly regret. He moved as a teenager to Britain, where Queen Victoria became his godmother. The Maharajah Duleep Singh lived most of his adult life here as a supremely wealthy English country gentleman, part of the British social elite. But, in time, his relationship with Britain turned sour.

This documentary retraces the journeys of Duleep Singh and his family: from the royal palaces of the Punjab to royal palaces in Britain, to his own English country estate, Elveden in Suffolk, to bohemian Paris. The programme uses recently rediscovered letters by Singh, letters and diaries written by those whose knew him, extraordinary photographs and surviving artefacts. We interview historians to get at the motives and inner life of the Maharajah Duleep Singh as he set out to recover his Sikh heritage and turn his back on his colonial past. This is a story from the age of Empire about someone whose life was defined by those historic forces.


SUN 22:00 The Sky at Night (b0bfp9bg)
Death Star

One evening in early September 1859, a spectacular blood-red aurora borealis appeared across America. Earlier that same day, in a leafy garden in the UK, a gentleman astronomer had noted a 'white light flare' on the sun's surface.

The two events were linked; it's now known that the flare caused the aurora. The flare was a particularly violent eruption from the sun's surface known as a CME, a coronal mass ejection. Back then, it was considered an astronomical curiosity. But when it happens again, it will be a different story. For the modern, technological world such a violent solar phenomenon could be devastating. This episode examines just how damaging a CME could be and how astronomers, using two new satellites that will travel closer to the sun than ever before, can better prepare us for its impact.


SUN 22:30 Horizon (b01llnb2)
2012-2013

Mission to Mars

Horizon goes behind the scenes at Nasa as they count down to the landing of a 2.5 billion-dollar rover on the surface of Mars. The nuclear-powered vehicle, the size of a car, will be winched down onto the surface of the red planet from a rocket-powered crane. That's if things go according to plan; Mars has become known as the Bermuda Triangle of space because so many missions there have ended in failure. The Curiosity mission is the most audacious, and expensive, attempt to answer the question of whether there is life on Mars.


SUN 23:30 The Comet's Tale (b008d2x7)
Ancient civilisations thought comets were gods. They believed them to be bringers of life or harbingers of doom - strange, magical, mysterious things that moved through the sky, fiery streaks of light that tore across the heavens.

Isaac Newton was the first to make sense of comets and to him they were the key to unlocking the secrets of gravity - nothing to do with an apple. Hundreds of years later, a new breed of space missions are visiting comets, travelling millions of miles to touch down on these tiny balls of rock flying through space at 20,000 mph. The spectacular images we now have are showing us what comets are really made of, where they come from, and their often surprising influence on events on Earth.

What they reveal is that our ancestors may have been right all along and that comets and meteors really are like gods, or at least they can exert tremendous influence over our world. They have brought terrible destruction to the Earth and may one day do so again. But they also may have brought life itself to the planet.


SUN 00:30 Timeshift (b08dwxhn)
Series 16

Flights of Fancy: Pigeons and the British

Timeshift ventures inside places of sporting achievement, scientific endeavour and male obsession - the lofts of pigeon fanciers - to tell the story of a remarkable bird. As racer, messenger and even beauty pageant contestant, the humble pigeon has been a steadfast part of British life for centuries.

Pigeons have served in two world wars, flown over oceans and crossed barriers of age, class and race to take their place as man's best feathered friend. Meanwhile, pigeon fanciers have contrived to make them faster and more eye-catching, using backyard genetics to breed the perfect bird.

Popular affection for pigeons has nosedived in recent decades due to a growing distaste at what they leave behind, and legislation has seen them chased out of public spaces. But as this programme shows, dedicated British pigeon fanciers are determined to keep their pastime alive. So what does the future hold for the 21st-century pigeon?


SUN 01:30 Arena (b08s3fcd)
American Epic

Blood and Soil

This episode takes a look at the stories of those early music pioneers whose names have largely been forgotten.

In the small South Carolina town of Cheraw, Elder Burch held lively church gatherings which inspired young musicians - including jazz giant Dizzy Gillespie. Gillespie's autobiography cites Burch and his sons as direct inspirations; it is no exaggeration to say that modern music would not look the same without Burch's early influence.

The programme takes a look at the gritty songs and musicians that came from the coal mines of Logan County, West Virginia - The Williamson Brothers, Dick Justice and Frank Hutchinson. The hellish conditions of the coal mines inspired them to find a way out, through their music.

Finally we head to the home of the blues - the Mississippi Delta, where Charley Patton captured the sounds and struggles of life in the cotton fields. Patton's significance cannot be understated; he is widely considered the most influential musician in the birth of blues, teaching some of the best blues artists that followed including Howlin' Wolf, Robert Johnson and Honeyboy Edwards.


SUN 02:30 The Stolen Maharajah: Britain's Indian Royal (b0bfnldw)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]



MONDAY 13 AUGUST 2018

MON 19:00 World News Today (b0bflkxn)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


MON 19:30 What Do Artists Do All Day? (b0bg1b9b)
Raqib Shaw

Part of the Big British Asian Summer season, this profile of Raqib Shaw is the first of three new episodes of What Do Artists Do All Day?

Coveted by the world's biggest collectors, Raqib Shaw is an enigmatic art superstar. His baroque paintings, fusing pop kitsch and images from his Kashmiri homeland, have sold for millions.

A flamboyant personality, he works in an extravagant studio squeezed into an old sausage factory in Peckham, south London. He creates his art in an amazing fantasy world resembling a 21st-century version of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, with thousands of plants, waterfalls, bonsai trees and beehives. The film opens in the dramatic aftermath of a fire in the studio, and with remarkable access, offers a portrait of the art and life of Raqib Shaw.


MON 20:00 Italy's Invisible Cities (b08cbkvr)
Series 1

Florence

Using the latest 3D scanning technology, Alexander Armstrong and Dr Michael Scott explore the romantic city of Florence.

They reveal how its wonderful facades and artworks mask a hidden story of intrigue and secrecy, and one powerful dynasty was behind it all - the Medicis, godfathers of the Renaissance. Finally, the scanning team build a virtual reality 3D model to reveal how the city's secret corridors of power were the foundation of its Renaissance glory.


MON 21:00 Mark Gatiss on John Minton: The Lost Man of British Art (b0bfnlj2)
John Minton was for a time one of the most popular 20th-century British artists, more famous than his contemporaries Francis Bacon and Lucian Freud. He has also been something of an obsession for actor and writer Mark Gatiss since he first saw one of his paintings as a teenager at the National Portrait Gallery. Mark Gatiss plunges back into Minton's world to celebrate his remarkable life and work, but also to find out why he remains all but forgotten.

As well as being a central figure in the postwar British neo-romantic movement, alongside the likes of Graham Sutherland and John Piper, John Minton was also one of the leading lights of Soho during the 1940s and 50s - a bohemian enclave where he felt at ease with fellow artists and models. In the only known footage of Minton, he is caught fleetingly, dancing wildly in a club, like a crazed marionette. It is a captivating, poignant glimpse of a man who was once at the very centre of this world.

He was a prolific painter of both landscapes and portraits, and as a gay man, Mark has always been particularly drawn to his sensitive depictions of striking young men. Minton too was gay but struggled with his sexuality during a highly repressive era when homosexuality was still illegal. However, as Mark discovers, it wasn't just his sexuality that plagued Minton, but his very standing as an artist and his desire to be considered first and foremost a painter rather than an illustrator, which is how he really found fame. On a balcony overlooking the same glorious view, Mark explains how Minton's vibrant jacket design for Elizabeth David's A Book of Mediterranean Food in 1950 was really what attracted people to buy it, as the author herself declared. But it was the 1948 publication of Time Was Away: A Notebook in Corsica that really established Minton, and it became something of a cult book for a new generation of illustrators. Following in his footsteps, Mark travels to Corsica and visits some of the original locations captured so vividly by Minton.

As well as discovering unseen photographs of the artist and previously unknown works by him, the film also gives Mark the chance to hear Minton's voice for the first time in a rare broadcast he made for the BBC Third Programme in 1947. The connections deepen further as Mark meets some of those who knew him well - former models such as actor Norman Bowler recall posing for Minton, and fellow artist David Tindle discusses the rivalries between Minton and his contemporaries, particularly Francis Bacon.

Drawing on all these remarkable first-hand reminiscences, Mark explores the reasons behind Minton's fall from grace and the tragic circumstances of his death at the age of just 39.


MON 22:00 Story of Ireland (b00z2m1g)
The Age of Conquest

Fergal Keane examines how the huge upheavals of Europe in the Middle Ages altered the story of Ireland irrevocably. Beginning with the Anglo-Norman invasion of Ireland in 1169, he investigates how the Normans changed Irish life and why Gaelic kings initially welcomed an English ruler. But it is also the story of an incomplete conquest. The English crown only finally moves to impose its will in Ireland after the Protestant Reformation places Ireland at the forefront of religious war.


MON 23:00 Britain and the Sea (b03lbv22)
Trade and Romance

This third episode traces the crucial importance of the sea to Britain's trade and to individual livelihoods of coastal communities. Joined on this leg of his epic sail by his son Fred, David follows the trade routes of the west coast of Scotland along the monumental channels that cut through the romantic Highlands and brought wealth and prosperity to the heart of Scotland. The journey starts at Craobh Haven and takes David along the Crinan Canal, around the Isle of Bute and up the River Clyde towards Glasgow.


MON 00:00 Fossil Wonderlands: Nature's Hidden Treasures (b03yfqj8)
Feathered Dinosaurs

Professor Richard Fortey travels to north eastern China to see a fossil site known as the 'Dinosaur Pompeii' - a place that has yielded spectacular remains of feathered dinosaurs and rewritten the story of the origins of birds. Among the amazing finds he investigates are the feathered cousin of T-rex, a feathered dinosaur with strong parallels to living pandas, and some of the most remarkable flying animals that have ever lived.


MON 01:00 Natural World (b01qsfk7)
2012-2013

Giant Otters of the Amazon

Diablo the giant otter lives in a lake in the jungles of Peru, with his unruly family of six cubs. Even at the tender age of six months, they need to learn how to survive in this dangerous paradise. Their dad teaches them to swim and eventually to catch piranha for themselves, but they must also learn to stay away from the neighbours from hell - the giant caiman. These large members of the crocodile family are a real threat to the giant otter family and Diablo must go to extraordinary lengths to try to protect his cubs.

Renowned cameraman and otter specialist Charlie Hamilton-James returns to the place he first filmed Diablo 13 years ago. Following the family over several months, sometimes in very difficult conditions, he discovers how perilous a home this is for the cubs and watches them develop under the careful guidance of their father. He also films remarkable scenes of the giant otters fighting caimans.


MON 02:00 Medieval Lives: Birth, Marriage, Death (b03cv0lm)
A Good Birth

For a medieval woman approaching the moment of labour and birth, there were no antiseptics to ward off infection or anaesthetics to deal with pain. Historian Helen Castor reveals how this was one of the most dangerous moments a medieval woman would ever encounter, with some aristocratic and royal women giving birth as young as 13. Birth took place in an all-female environment and the male world of medicine was little help to a woman in confinement. It was believed that the pains of labour were the penalty for the original sin of humankind - so, to get through them, a pregnant woman needed the help of the saints and the blessing of God himself.



TUESDAY 14 AUGUST 2018

TUE 19:00 World News Today (b0bflky1)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


TUE 19:30 What Do Artists Do All Day? (b0bg10pw)
Anoushka Shankar

As part of the Big British Asian Summer season, What Do Artists Do All Day? celebrates prominent Asian artists and performers.

In 2017, internationally renowned sitar player Anoushka Shankar was commissioned by the BFI to score Shiraz, a 1920s silent film about the Taj Mahal. This film follows Anoushka at work on the composition, revealing the subtle traditions of Indian film music, and discusses the influence of her father, Ravi Shankar, who created some of his greatest work scoring Indian films. The documentary also explores the remarkable story behind Shiraz and its restoration, ending with Anoushka and her musicians performing the new soundtrack at the premiere of the film.


TUE 20:00 Andrew Marr's History of the World (p00xnrlz)
Original Series

Into the Light

In the fourth episode of this landmark series charting the story of human civilisation, Andrew Marr reaches the Middle Ages.

After the collapse of the Roman Empire, Europe was little more than a muddy backwater. Vikings explored and pillaged from Northern Europe to North America. But they also laid the foundations of powerful new trading states, including Russia.

This was also the Golden Age of Islam, and the knowledge of ancient civilisations from India, Persia and Greece was built upon by Islamic scholars in Baghdad's House of Wisdom.

By exploring the conquests of Genghis Khan, the adventures of Marco Polo and the extraordinary story of an African king - the wealthiest who ever lived - Marr finds out how Europe emerged from the so-called 'Dark Ages' and used influences from around the world to rise again with the Renaissance.


TUE 21:00 Mark Kermode's Secrets of Cinema (b0bfp4h7)
Series 1

Horror

Mark Kermode continues his fresh and very personal look at the art of cinema by examining the techniques and conventions behind classic film genres, uncovering the ingredients that keep audiences coming back for more.

Mark turns to horror and shows how film-makers have devilishly deployed a range of cinematic tricks to exploit our deepest, darkest and most elemental fears. He explores the recurring elements of horror, including the journey, the jump scare, the scary place, the monster and the chase. He reveals how they have been refined and reinvented in films as diverse as the silent classic The Phantom of the Opera, low-budget cult shockers The Texas Chain Saw Massacre and The Evil Dead, and Oscar-winners The Silence of the Lambs and Get Out. Mark analyses the importance of archetypal figures such as the clown, the savant and the 'final girl'. And of course, he celebrates his beloved Exorcist films by examining two unforgettable but very different shock moments in The Exorcist and The Exorcist III.

Ultimately, Mark argues, horror is the most cinematic of genres, because no other kind of film deploys images and sound to such powerful and primal effect.


TUE 22:00 Night of the Living Dead (b0078pw1)
Low-budget horror classic in which radiation from a space probe reanimates the dead, who become ravenous for the flesh of the living. A small band of survivors barricade themselves inside an isolated farmhouse as zombies gather outside. One of the most influential horror films ever made, director George A Romero's low-budget masterpiece spawned two sequels, a 1990 remake and numerous imitators.


TUE 23:35 Hitchcock's Shower Scene: 78/52 (b09w3w9v)
Alfred Hitchcock's shocking murder scene in Psycho changed the course of world cinema. It took a week to film, one quarter of the film's entire production schedule, and the scene required 78 set-ups and 52 cuts to achieve.

Director Alexandre O Philippe's gripping documentary takes an unprecedented look at Hitchcock's infamous and iconic shower scene and its enduring legacy.


TUE 01:00 Italy's Invisible Cities (b08cbkvr)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 on Monday]


TUE 02:00 Mark Kermode's Secrets of Cinema (b0bfp4h7)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]


TUE 03:00 What Do Artists Do All Day? (b0bg10pw)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today]



WEDNESDAY 15 AUGUST 2018

WED 19:00 World News Today (b0bflkyh)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


WED 19:30 What Do Artists Do All Day? (b0bg2nsb)
Mahtab Hussain

As part of the Big British Asian Summer season, What Do Artists Do All Day? celebrates prominent Asian artists and performers.

Mahtab Hussain is a photographer whose work chronicles the complex experiences of the British Muslim community. His portraits of young, working-class Muslim men were the basis of an acclaimed exhibition and book You Get Me?, exploring questions of masculinity and self-esteem in a series of striking images.

Recently, his work has also focused on the changing identity of British Muslim women. This film follows Mahtab at work on his latest photographic project and hears from some of his subjects.


WED 20:00 Sacred Wonders of Britain (b03npt4m)
Episode 1

In the first of a three part series, Neil Oliver sets off on in search of the Sacred Wonders of Britain. What was it about Britain's rich and varied landscape that inspired our ancestors to express their beliefs by reshaping the world around them? What did they see in our countryside that led them to deem some places more sacred than others and why are we still drawn back to those places today?

From the heart of our cities to the furthest reaches of our islands, it's a journey to reveal the sacred face of Britain - an ancient landscape of belief and ritual that still lies hidden just below the surface of our modern world.

Neil goes in search of the very first stirrings of religion in Britain. In Nottinghamshire he discovers clues to a world of magic and ritual etched into the rock of Creswell Crags by Ice Age hunters. In the south of England and on the Scottish borders, great tombs are evidence of ancestor worship among the first farmers of the Neolithic era and an extraordinary discovery in Herefordshire reveals what really lies beneath their burial mounds.

In the flint mines of Grimes Graves in Norfolk, he discovers how Stone Age miners carried their religion deep underground. Finally, in the great stone circle and henge of Avebury and the extraordinary monuments of Orkney, he discovers how a new age of belief swept away the old religions and changed Britain for ever.


WED 21:00 Britain's Lost Masterpieces (b0bg5t91)
Series 3

Devon

In Knightshayes Court Devon the team are examining a work that is a copy of a Rembrandt. But, might it be the real thing, a genuine self-portrait?

Bendor discovers a small portrait of Rembrandt in the collection of a National Trust house, Knightshayes Court in Tiverton, Devon. The painting is thought to be a later copy of a self-portrait by Rembrandt now in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, but Bendor believes it is in fact a study for the finished picture by Rembrandt himself. There is a third version in a collection in Germany that was always thought to be the original until the Amsterdam version was found in a Glasgow attic in 1959.

The picture is sent to be restored and have a later background overpaint removed while Bendor sets out to see all three versions and in the process visits the world-expert on Rembrandt, Ernst van de Wettering, in Amsterdam. But Ernst is not persuaded by the painting. Bendor decides to try and use scientific investigation to prove the portrait is not a later copy.

Emma explores the history of the house and its eccentric opium smoking Victorian Gothic architect, William Burges. She investigates the history of the lace factory in the town of Tiverton on which the family fortune was based, and tries her hand at golf, as the last family member in the house was British Ladies Golf Champion five times in the 1920s.


WED 22:00 Timeshift (b053pxdr)
Series 14

The Nation's Railway: The Golden Age of British Rail

Timeshift revisits Britain's railways during the era of public ownership. For all its bad reputation today, the old British Rail boldly transformed a decayed, war-torn Victorian transport network into a system fit for the 20th century. With an eye firmly on the future, steam made way for diesel and electric, new modern stations like Euston were built, and Britain's first high-speed trains introduced.

Made with unique access to the British Transport Films archive, this is a warm corrective to the myth of the bad old days of rail, but even it can't hide from the horror that was a British Rail sandwich.


WED 23:00 The Last Journey of the Magna Carta King (b052hrdd)
Ben Robinson retraces the dramatic last days of King John, England's most disastrous monarch, and uncovers the legend of his lost treasure.

John is famous for accepting Magna Carta, which inspired our modern democracy. But ten days him from ruler of an empire to sudden death and left the kingdom in ruins.

Ben follows in the footsteps of the king's epic last journey, from the treacherous marshes of East Anglia, through Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire, to his final resting place in Worcester. He is joined by medieval historian professor Stephen Church.

Together they examine the truth behind the legend that has lived on for 800 years. Did the crown jewels really end up in the mud of the Wash? Was the king poisoned? Does he deserve his reputation as our most disastrous monarch?

Thanks to unique documents, we can tell this epic tale in the king's own words. Not only can we get into the mind of the Magna Carta king, we can reveal in fantastic detail how and where he travelled.

Ben reveals what happened when treasure seekers attempted to find the king's lost jewels with the help of a diviner. And using the latest technology reveals how we can actually see back in time to reveal the landscape as it would have looked when King John made his last journey 800 years ago.


WED 00:00 Treasures of the Indus (p02qvb6j)
Pakistan Unveiled

This is the story of the Indian subcontinent told through the treasures of three very different people, places and dynasties that have shaped the modern Indian world.

All too often, Pakistan is portrayed as a country of bombs, beards and burkhas. The view of it as a monolithic Muslim state is even embodied in the name of the country, 'the Islamic Republic of Pakistan'.

Yet, as Sona Datta shows, it used to be the meeting point for many different faiths from around the world and has an intriguing multicultural past - a past about which it is to some extent in denial. It also produced some extraordinary and little-known works of art which Sona, from her work as a curator at the British Museum, explores and explains.


WED 01:00 Genius of the Ancient World (b064jf28)
Buddha

Historian Bettany Hughes embarks on an expedition to India, Greece and China on the trail of three giants of ancient philosophy: Buddha, Socrates and Confucius. All three physically travelled great distances philosophising as they went and drawing conclusions from their journeys. With Bettany as our guide, she gets under the skin of these three great minds and shines a light on the overlooked significance of the 5th century BC in shaping modern thought across the world. In this first episode, Bettany investigates the revolutionary ideas of the Buddha.


WED 02:00 Sacred Wonders of Britain (b03npt4m)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


WED 03:00 What Do Artists Do All Day? (b0bg2nsb)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today]



THURSDAY 16 AUGUST 2018

THU 19:00 World News Today (b0bflkz1)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


THU 19:30 The Sky at Night (b0bfp9bg)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 on Sunday]


THU 20:00 Shock and Awe: The Story of Electricity (p00kjq6h)
Spark

Professor Jim Al-Khalili tells the electrifying story of our quest to master nature's most mysterious force - electricity. Until fairly recently, electricity was seen as a magical power, but it is now the lifeblood of the modern world and underpins every aspect of our technological advancements.

Without electricity, we would be lost. This series tells of dazzling leaps of imagination and extraordinary experiments - a story of maverick geniuses who used electricity to light our cities, to communicate across the seas and through the air, to create modern industry and to give us the digital revolution.

Episode one tells the story of the very first 'natural philosophers' who started to unlock the mysteries of electricity. They studied its curious link to life, built strange and powerful instruments to create it and even tamed lightning itself. It was these men who truly laid the foundations of the modern world. Electricity was without doubt a fantastical wonder. This is the story about what happened when the first real concerted effort was made to understand electricity - how we learned to create and store it, before finally creating something that enabled us to make it at will - the battery.


THU 21:00 Super Senses: The Secret Power of Animals (p024g1qs)
Scent

Our human senses are pretty incredible - but we only see, hear and smell a tiny fraction of what's out there. There is a hidden world that animals across the globe can experience. In this episode we explore the powerful world of scent and the animals that have pushed their sense of smell far beyond human abilities. In the Bahamas, Helen dives into shark-infested waters with only a small pouch of liquid as her defence. Patrick controls the behaviour of a swarm of bees using tiny traces of scent, and he gets uncomfortably close to one of the smelliest animals in the world - a skunk!


THU 22:00 Impact! A Horizon Guide to Plane Crashes (b03d690n)
It's a macabre paradox, but almost every advance in aviation safety has been driven by a crash. After every crash, investigators determine its cause and scientists make every effort to ensure the same mistakes never happen again. Dallas Campbell delves into the Horizon archives to chart the deadly disasters that have helped make air travel today the safest it has ever been.


THU 23:00 A Timewatch Guide (b052775d)
Series 1

Cleopatra

Using the BBC film archives, historian Vanessa Collinridge explores how our view of Cleopatra has changed and evolved over the years - from Roman propaganda, through Shakespeare's role in casting her as a doomed romantic heroine, to her portrayal in the golden age of Hollywood.

Along the way Vanessa investigates Cleopatra's relationships with Julius Caesar and Mark Anthony, her role as a politician, whether she should be seen as a murderer, and her tragic end. Drawing on the views of academic experts, BBC documentaries and drama, Vanessa charts how, throughout history, Cleopatra's image has been subject to myth, cliche and propaganda.


THU 00:00 Mark Gatiss on John Minton: The Lost Man of British Art (b0bfnlj2)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Monday]


THU 01:00 Timeshift (b06l0v9d)
Series 15

Looking for Mr Bond: 007 at the BBC

After more than 60 years tracking James Bond in print and on screen, the BBC opens up its vaults to reveal the forgotten files on the world's most famous secret agent. Featuring rare and candid interviews with all six actors to play 007, and exclusive behind-the-scenes footage, this is James Bond unguarded, unrestricted and unseen.


THU 02:00 Britain's Lost Masterpieces (b0bg5t91)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Wednesday]


THU 03:00 Shock and Awe: The Story of Electricity (p00kjq6h)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]



FRIDAY 17 AUGUST 2018

FRI 19:00 World News Today (b0bflkzh)
The latest national and international news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.


FRI 19:30 BBC Proms (b0bfphyr)
2018

Grieg Piano Concerto

Nordic composing giants Grieg and Sibelius anchor this Proms debut performance by the Estonian Festival Orchestra, conducted by Paavo Jarvi. Pianist and former BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artist Khatia Buniatishvili takes on Grieg's much-loved Piano Concerto and Sibelius's soaring Fifth Symphony closes the concert. The curtain-raiser is Estonian national composer Arvo Part's Third Symphony. Tom Service presents.


FRI 21:30 Top of the Pops (b0bg9f8g)
Paul Jordan and Steve Wright present the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 27 February 1986. Featuring Sigue Sigue Sputnik, Talking Heads, Audrey Hall, Alexander O'Neal, Kate Bush, The Bangles, Billy Ocean and Colonel Abrams.


FRI 22:00 There's Only One Madonna (b00748kl)
Documentary charting Britain's relationship with Madonna, examining the influence Madonna has had on British music and fashion, and how she provoked a debate over sexual and gender politics - inspiring a generation of women, whilst remaining a huge gay icon. The film follows a group of fans on their journey to Barcelona for the first night of Madonna's Drowned World Tour and finds out what Madonna means to them. Contributors include backing singer Donna DeLory, Jean-Paul Gaultier, Rosanna Arquette, Mel C, Britney Spears, Kylie Minogue, Hear'Say and Janet Street-Porter.


FRI 22:55 Madonna Rebel Heart Tour (b0952xgk)
Shot around the world and featuring a collection of live and behind-the-scenes footage, Madonna Rebel Heart Tour is packed with visual theatrics, stunning costumes and intricate choreography, featuring new hits and beloved classic songs spanning all decades of Madonna's illustrious career, including Living for Love, Bitch I'm Madonna, Material Girl, Holiday and an acoustic version of Like a Prayer.


FRI 00:55 Top of the Pops (b0bg9f8g)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:30 today]


FRI 01:25 Disco at the BBC (b01cqt74)
A foot-stomping return to the BBC vaults of Top of the Pops, The Old Grey Whistle Test and Later with Jools as the programme spins itself to a time when disco ruled the floor, the airwaves and our minds. The visual floorfillers include classics from luminaries such as Chic, Labelle and Rose Royce to glitter ball surprises by The Village People.


FRI 02:25 Totally 60s Psychedelic Rock at the BBC (b06jp24d)
A compilation from the depths of the BBC archive of the creme de la creme of 1960s British psychedelic rock from programmes such as Colour Me Pop, How It Is, Top of the Pops and Once More with Felix.

Featuring pre-rocker era Status Quo, a rustic-looking Incredible String Band, a youthful Donovan, a suitably eccentric performance from The Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band, a trippy routine from Julie Driscoll, Brian Auger & The Trinity, a groovy tune from The Moody Blues, a raucous rendition by Joe Cocker of his version of With a Little Help From My Friends and some pre-Wizzard Roy Wood with The Move.

Plus classic performances from the likes of Procol Harum, Cream, Jimi Hendrix and The Who.




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

A Timewatch Guide 23:00 THU (b052775d)

Andrew Marr's History of the World 20:00 TUE (p00xnrlz)

Arena 01:30 SUN (b08s3fcd)

BBC Proms 19:00 SUN (b0bfpdhb)

BBC Proms 20:45 SUN (b07rkvp4)

BBC Proms 19:30 FRI (b0bfphyr)

Britain and the Sea 23:00 MON (b03lbv22)

Britain's Lost Masterpieces 21:00 WED (b0bg5t91)

Britain's Lost Masterpieces 02:00 THU (b0bg5t91)

Cardinal 21:00 SAT (b0bfnw78)

Cardinal 21:40 SAT (b0bfnw8v)

Disco at the BBC 01:25 FRI (b01cqt74)

Dusty Springfield at the BBC 22:55 SAT (b01qyvw7)

Easy Listening Hits at the BBC 00:55 SAT (b011g943)

Fossil Wonderlands: Nature's Hidden Treasures 00:00 MON (b03yfqj8)

Genius of the Ancient World 01:00 WED (b064jf28)

Hitchcock's Shower Scene: 78/52 23:35 TUE (b09w3w9v)

Horizon 22:30 SUN (b01llnb2)

Impact! A Horizon Guide to Plane Crashes 22:00 THU (b03d690n)

Italy's Invisible Cities 20:00 MON (b08cbkvr)

Italy's Invisible Cities 01:00 TUE (b08cbkvr)

Madonna Rebel Heart Tour 22:55 FRI (b0952xgk)

Mark Gatiss on John Minton: The Lost Man of British Art 21:00 MON (b0bfnlj2)

Mark Gatiss on John Minton: The Lost Man of British Art 00:00 THU (b0bfnlj2)

Mark Kermode's Secrets of Cinema 21:00 TUE (b0bfp4h7)

Mark Kermode's Secrets of Cinema 02:00 TUE (b0bfp4h7)

Medieval Lives: Birth, Marriage, Death 02:00 MON (b03cv0lm)

Natural World 01:00 MON (b01qsfk7)

Night of the Living Dead 22:00 TUE (b0078pw1)

Sacred Wonders of Britain 20:00 WED (b03npt4m)

Sacred Wonders of Britain 02:00 WED (b03npt4m)

Shock and Awe: The Story of Electricity 20:00 THU (p00kjq6h)

Shock and Awe: The Story of Electricity 03:00 THU (p00kjq6h)

Story of Ireland 22:00 MON (b00z2m1g)

Super Senses: The Secret Power of Animals 21:00 THU (p024g1qs)

The Comet's Tale 23:30 SUN (b008d2x7)

The Last Journey of the Magna Carta King 23:00 WED (b052hrdd)

The Sky at Night 22:00 SUN (b0bfp9bg)

The Sky at Night 19:30 THU (b0bfp9bg)

The Stolen Maharajah: Britain's Indian Royal 21:00 SUN (b0bfnldw)

The Stolen Maharajah: Britain's Indian Royal 02:30 SUN (b0bfnldw)

There's Only One Madonna 22:00 FRI (b00748kl)

Timeshift 00:30 SUN (b08dwxhn)

Timeshift 22:00 WED (b053pxdr)

Timeshift 01:00 THU (b06l0v9d)

Top of the Pops 22:25 SAT (b0bf989z)

Top of the Pops 21:30 FRI (b0bg9f8g)

Top of the Pops 00:55 FRI (b0bg9f8g)

Totally 60s Psychedelic Rock at the BBC 02:25 FRI (b06jp24d)

Treasures of the Indus 00:00 WED (p02qvb6j)

What Do Artists Do All Day? 19:30 MON (b0bg1b9b)

What Do Artists Do All Day? 19:30 TUE (b0bg10pw)

What Do Artists Do All Day? 03:00 TUE (b0bg10pw)

What Do Artists Do All Day? 19:30 WED (b0bg2nsb)

What Do Artists Do All Day? 03:00 WED (b0bg2nsb)

Wild Ireland: The Edge of the World 19:00 SAT (b08jgr5r)

Wild Ireland: The Edge of the World 01:55 SAT (b08jgr5r)

Wonders of the Monsoon 20:00 SAT (p026gm1z)

Wonders of the Monsoon 02:55 SAT (p026gm1z)

World News Today 19:00 MON (b0bflkxn)

World News Today 19:00 TUE (b0bflky1)

World News Today 19:00 WED (b0bflkyh)

World News Today 19:00 THU (b0bflkz1)

World News Today 19:00 FRI (b0bflkzh)

You've Got a Friend: The Carole King Story 23:55 SAT (b0461chb)