Fusing biography, art and the history of fashion, Amber Butchart explores the lives of historical figures through their clothes. A rare portrait of a working man.
Documentary series featuring dramatic reconstruction in which Lucy Worsley revisits key events in the lives of Henry VIII's six wives, revealing how each attempted to exert influence on the king and the Tudor court. Lucy delves into records of private moments and personal feelings in the women's lives that ended up shaping the course of history.
This episode follows the emotional and physical struggles of Catherine of Aragon as she strove to give Henry the male heir he so desired. As Henry's eye wandered over the women at court, Anne Boleyn, not wishing to be cast aside as her sister Mary had been, repeatedly rejected the king's advances and insisted on marriage.
Henry set about trying to arrange an annulment, but Catherine was defiant and passionately defended her position.
In the Bodleian Library in Oxford, Dr Bendor Grosvenor identifies a portrait of a fellow of Merton College from the 1750s, George Oakley Aldrich. It is not known who painted the picture, but Bendor believes it is by the most famous painter of British grand tourists that ever lived, Italian artist Pompeo Batoni.
Batoni arrived in Rome at the age of 19 and quickly made a name for himself as one of the most talented painters of both religious, and mythical history, subjects. He found himself in huge demand to paint altarpieces for churches and chapels throughout the city, but after a monumental work for an altar in St Peter’s was rejected by a committee of priests, a furious Batoni turned to portrait painting and was adopted by the British aristocracy.
With sumptuous palaces, exquisite artworks and stunning architecture, every great city offers a dizzying multitude of artistic highlights. In this series, art historians Dr Janina Ramirez and Alastair Sooke take viewers on three cultural city breaks, hunting for off-the-beaten-track artistic treats and finding new ways of enjoying some very famous sights.
In this opening episode, they head to Amsterdam, a city that pioneered so much of modern life, from multinational trade to the way we design our homes. To find out how, Alastair and Janina take us on a fast-paced tour of the city's cultural hotspots. Picking their way through the crowds queuing to see Rembrandt at the Rijksmuseum, they also introduce us to the paintings of Jan Steen, a Dutch legend whose paintings capture the city's freewheeling lifestyle.
They take us on an entertaining tour of the canals that helped build Amsterdam and explore the city's reputation for tolerance in the oldest surviving Jewish library in the world. Along the way, Alastair and Janina discover how art and culture reflect the liberal attitudes, appetite for global trade and love of home comforts that helped shape the character of this trailblazing city.
Examining the first half of Queen Victoria's life, biographer AN Wilson goes in search of a monarch too often misunderstood as the solid black-clad matron and reveals a woman who was passionately romantic and who spent her years as a child and young queen fighting the control of domineering men.
Queen Victoria was one of the 19th century's most prolific diarists, sometimes writing up to 2,500 words a day. From state affairs to family gossip, she poured out her emotions onto paper. Those close to her were afraid her more alarming opinions might escape in written form, causing havoc. In fact much of her writing was destroyed after her death and her personal journals edited by her daughter. But what survives frequently reveals a woman quite different to the one we think we know. AN Wilson reads her personal journals and unpublished letters and discovers the factors that shaped the queen's personality. From the tortured relationship with her mother, to the dominant men she clung to in search of a father figure and the powerful struggle that made her marriage to Prince Albert a battleground, Queen Victoria was always a woman in search of intimate relationships. As a daughter, a wife, a mother and the queen of a growing empire, as friends and family came and went, her pen remained her constant companion and friend.
Queen Victoria's journals and letters are read by Anna Chancellor throughout.
Final episode of a documentary series telling the story of Venice, presented by Francesco da Mosto.
Venice may be sinking, it may even be in peril, but da Mosto is in no mood to throw in the towel. The fate of Venice still hangs in the balance, and he puts at least some of the blame at the door of the British. From the moment that Byron put Venice on the tourist map, the city has been caught up in a trail of events that has made life harder and harder for the Venetians.
But this episode is also Francesco's personal story, and he has pledged his belief in the future of Venice by continuing to live and bring up his children there, even though his life has been affected by the dangers the city faces. In the great flood of 1966 that threatened to wash the city away, he was a terrified child of five who watched the waters invade his home and wondered if life could ever continue. Francesco's father, Count da Mosto, reminisces about the 1966 floods with chilling immediacy, and Francesco swims the Grand Canal.
It has not just been the tourists or the rising waters of the lagoon that have threatened the city. Outrageous ideas to bring the city into the modern age have included bridges linking the city with mainland Italy, flattening old churches and even converting the Grand Canal into an eight-lane motorway.
Waldemar Januszczak challenges the traditional notion of the Renaissance having fixed origins in Italy and showcases the ingenuity in both technique and ideas behind great artists such as Van Eyck, Memling, Van der Weyden, Cranach, Riemenschneider and Durer.
THURSDAY 31 OCTOBER 2019
THU 19:00 Beyond 100 Days (m0009tpl)
The latest news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.
THU 19:30 Top of the Pops (m0009tpn)
Mike Read and Andy Crane present the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 8 September 1988 and featuring Mark Almond, Gloria Estefan & Miami Sound Machine, Spagna, Anthrax, Bill Medley, The Proclaimers, Michael Jackson, Yello, Phil Collins and Jane Wiedlin.
THU 20:00 Forces of Nature with Brian Cox (b07m57mz)
The Pale Blue Dot
In this final episode Professor Brian Cox travels to Iceland, where the delicate splendour of a moonbow reveals the colours that paint our world, and he visits a volcano to explain why the sun shines. By exploring how sunlight transforms the plains of the Serengeti, drives the annual migration of humpback whales to the Caribbean and paints the moon red during a lunar eclipse, Brian reveals the colour signature of our life-supporting planet.
Finally, at an observatory high in the Swiss Alps, he shows how these colours aren't simply beautiful, but that understanding how they're created is allowing us to search for other Earths far out in the cosmos.
THU 21:00 The Secrets of Quantum Physics (b04v85cj)
Let There Be Life
Physicist Jim Al-Khalili routinely deals with the strangest subject in all of science - quantum physics, the astonishing and perplexing theory of sub-atomic particles. But now he's turning his attention to the world of nature. Can quantum mechanics explain the greatest mysteries in biology?
His first encounter is with the robin. This familiar little bird turns out to navigate using one of the most bizarre effects in physics - quantum entanglement, a process which seems to defy common sense. Even Albert Einstein himself could not believe it.
Jim finds that even the most personal of human experiences - our sense of smell - is touched by ethereal quantum vibrations. According to the latest experiments, it seems that our quantum noses are listening to smells. Jim then discovers that the most famous law of quantum physics - the uncertainty principle - is obeyed by plants and trees as they capture sunlight during the vital process of photosynthesis.
Finally, Jim asks if quantum physics might play a role in evolution. Could the strange laws of the sub-atomic world, which allow objects to tunnel through impassable barriers in defiance of common sense, effect the mechanism by which living species evolve?
THU 22:00 The Dead Room (m0001qqr)
Mark Gatiss brings the Christmas ghost story tradition back to life with The Dead Room, the tale of a long-running radio horror series of the same name. Simon Callow (Victoria & Abdul, Shakespeare in Love, Four Weddings and a Funeral) plays Aubrey Judd, the veteran presenter of the series and national treasure, who finds that he must adapt to changing times and tastes. But whatever happened to the classic ghost stories? The good old days?
THU 22:30 Mark Kermode's Secrets of Cinema (b0bfp4h7)
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.
THU 23:30 Pain, Pus and Poison: The Search for Modern Medicines (p01f53b9)
Dr Michael Mosley ends the series with a look at poisons, exploring the turning points when scientists went from finding antidotes to poisons to applying poisons as cures, and celebrating the eccentrics and mavericks whose breakthroughs were to pave the way for some of the most striking treatments of modern medicine. Of the medicines explored in this series, those that are derived from poisons are perhaps the most extraordinary. The story of turning poisons into medicines encompasses the planet's most deadly substances, in which we turned killers into cures.
THU 00:30 Top of the Pops (m0009tpn)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today
THU 01:00 Africa's Great Civilisations (b0b5b4w8)
The award-winning film-maker and academic Henry Louis Gates Jr travels the length and breadth of Africa to explore the continent's epic history. In this first episode, Gates focuses on the origins of human existence and looks at the anthropological and scientific discoveries that point to Africa as the genetic home of all currently living humanity. He then traces the roots of agriculture, writing, artistic expression and iron working to their birthplaces on the African continent.
THU 01:55 Africa's Great Civilisations (b0b64h37)
The Cross and the Crescent
The award-winning film-maker and academic Henry Louis Gates Jr travels the length and breadth of Africa to examine the continent's epic history. This episode charts the emergence of Christianity and Islam and examines how the two religions reshaped Africa between the first and the 12th centuries AD, as well as for centuries thereafter.
Gates also recounts the strategic importance of the Horn of Africa - a meeting place between the Red and Arabian seas that has served as a vital trade corridor between Africa, the Middle East and Europe for millennia.
THU 02:45 Great Barrier Reef (b019851n)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 on Monday
FRIDAY 01 NOVEMBER 2019
FRI 19:00 World News Today (m0009tq7)
LIST OF THIS WEEK'S PROGRAMMES
The latest news, exploring the day's events from a global perspective.
FRI 19:30 Top of the Pops (m0009tqc)
Simon Mayo and Peter Powell present the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 15 September 1988 and featuring Bros, The Commodores, The Proclaimers, The Pasadenas, Coldcut ft Junior Reid, Salt-N-Pepa, Jason Donovan, The Hollies, Phil Collins and Inner City.
FRI 20:00 Exotic Pop at the BBC (b013g87m)
Compilation of international hits from the BBC archives that paint exotic musical portraits of far away countries or instantly conjure up memories of holidays abroad. This smorgasbord of foreign pop delights includes performances by Demis Roussos, Vanessa Paradis, Gheorghe Zamfir and Sylvia, amongst many others.
FRI 21:00 Top of the Pops (m0009tqf)
Nicky Campbell and Andy Crane present the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 22 September 1988 and featuring Pet Shop Boys, Womack & Womack, Bill Withers, Transvision Vamp, Whitney Houston, Bon Jovi, Rick Astley, The Hollies and The Pasadenas.
FRI 21:30 Get Rich or Try Dying: Music's Mega Legacies (m0009tqh)
Both Bob Dylan and Nick Cave have testified in song that death is not the end. But, not all stories from the musical afterlife are created equal. Death may have its obvious downside. However, in the world of pop, shuffling off your mortal coil could be a unique business opportunity.
In this documentary, Scissor Sisters star Ana Matronic goes on a journey into the afterlife of pop. Think of her as music’s pearly gatekeeper of making it big in the ever after. But here’s the rub: this isn’t about the music; no, this is about the many other ways dead pop stars earn a living when they’re gone. So join her as she books in with the agents, publicists, producers and families to discover the dos and don’ts of keeping the dream alive.
Using a combination of interview, archive and investigation, Get Rich or Try Dying peels back the complicated mechanics of the pop music industry, showing how it really works and who ultimately profits from it. Once the mansions, yachts, luxury cars, private jets and entourages are dispensed with, death ushers in a new cast of characters, not all of whom were party to creating the wealth in the first place, but all of them are interested in profiting from it.
The documentary reveals how Elvis was the architect of the entire legacy industry and how his lawyers, working on behalf of his family, changed American law to permit the surviving family members to benefit from his rights of publicity. It shows Prince’s story to be a cautionary tale for those without a will, and ponders how Bob Marley has retained his dignity despite attaching his name to everything from bath salts to electric goods and Californian marijuana. Linda Ramone professes her love of ‘merch’ and explains how her dead husband’s influential but niche NY punk act, The Ramones, continues to stand for something way beyond their music. Finally, Frank Zappa’s son delves into the morality of hologram tours, as illustrated by his father’s, before the immaculate planning of David Bowie sets out how to go about it the right way.
Last year, the top five estates of the most cherished ‘deceased’ popstars earned an incredible US$0.5bn - this documentary shows you how they did it.
FRI 22:30 TOTP2 (b00874gg)
To get you in the mood for Halloween, Steve Wright pops out from behind the cellar door to introduce an hour of the spookiest Top of the Pops clips ever. Enjoy the Automatic, the Crazy World of Arthur Brown, Ray Parker Jr and Bobby 'Boris' Pickett. Hide behind the sofa as we bring you witches, monsters and Michael Jackson.
FRI 23:30 Rod Stewart at the BBC (b03m81n5)
Compilation of Rod Stewart's finest performances at the BBC. We revisit the early 70s with The Faces performing Stay with Me and Three Button Hand Me Down on Sounds for Saturday. The BBC charted Rod's solo success over the years and there are classic performances and interviews that will make you dance, sing and pull on your heartstrings. Songs include Sailing, You're in My Heart, I Don't Want to Talk about It and Do Ya Think I'm Sexy?
We also have Rod's performance from Glastonbury 2002 of the classic Handbags and Gladrags, and we dip into the Great American Songbook with his version of the Dorothy Fields classic I'm in the Mood for Love. Finally, rounding off over five decades in music is a performance from Rod's Radio 2 concert from May 2013.
FRI 00:30 Top of the Pops (m0009tqc)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:30 today
FRI 01:00 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.
FRI 02:00 Exotic Pop at the BBC (b013g87m)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today
FRI 03:00 Tones, Drones and Arpeggios: The Magic of Minimalism (b09twd7y)
In this episode Charles Hazlewood meets the genre's superstars Philip Glass and Steve Reich.
Across the 1960s these New Yorkers added new orchestral dimensions to compositions based on repetition, transcendence and new technology, and broke into the mainstream in the following decade. Charles explores how breakthrough techniques Reich first explored on tape were transposed for orchestral performance. Glass's experiments with repetitive structures, along with his innovative work in opera - Einstein on the Beach - revealed new possibilities for classical music.
The episode includes excerpts from minimalist pieces, including Reich's Variations for Winds, Strings and Keyboards performed by the Army of Generals orchestra. Charles Hazlewood's All Stars Collective performs part of Mike Oldfield's minimalist-inspired Tubular Bells.
The key attributes of minimalism, its reliance on repetition, its mesmerizing transcendent qualities and innovative use of technology are also discussed with broadcaster and writer Tom Service; director of music at the Southbank Centre, Gillian Moore; composers Laurie Spiegel, Nico Muhly, Julia Wolfe, Max Richter and Bryce Dessner; and musicians Jarvis Cocker and Adrian Utley.
(Note: the times link back to the details; the pids link to the BBC page, including iPlayer)
A Stitch in Time 19:30 MON (b09l2rfv)
A Stitch in Time 19:30 TUE (b09ll1fx)
A Stitch in Time 01:30 TUE (b09ll1fx)
A Stitch in Time 19:30 WED (b09mbb41)
Africa's Great Civilisations 01:00 THU (b0b5b4w8)
Africa's Great Civilisations 01:55 THU (b0b64h37)
All Aboard! The Canal Trip 01:00 MON (b05t7kc1)
American Football 19:00 SUN (m0009tq2)
An Art Lovers' Guide 22:00 WED (b08nz05n)
BBC News Special 19:00 TUE (m000b95n)
Beyond 100 Days 19:00 MON (m0009tpv)
Beyond 100 Days 19:00 WED (m0009trh)
Beyond 100 Days 19:00 THU (m0009tpl)
Border Country: When Ireland Was Divided 00:10 SUN (m0003n65)
Britain's Lost Masterpieces 21:00 WED (m0009trk)
Britain's Lost Masterpieces 03:00 WED (m0009trk)
Detectorists 22:55 SAT (b09gvm77)
Detectorists 23:25 SAT (b09hgdx2)
Detectorists 23:55 SAT (b09j0qcs)
England's Reformation: Three Books That Changed a Nation 02:50 SUN (b0992jdt)
Exotic Pop at the BBC 20:00 FRI (b013g87m)
Exotic Pop at the BBC 02:00 FRI (b013g87m)
Forces of Nature with Brian Cox 20:00 THU (b07m57mz)
Francesco's Venice 00:00 WED (b0078sx5)
Genius of the Modern World 00:00 MON (b07gpdbx)
Get Rich or Try Dying: Music's Mega Legacies 21:30 FRI (m0009tqh)
Great Barrier Reef 20:00 MON (b019851n)
Great Barrier Reef 02:45 THU (b019851n)
Hidden History: The Lost Portraits of Bradford 21:00 MON (m0009h27)
Hidden History: The Lost Portraits of Bradford 03:00 MON (m0009h27)
Korea: the Never Ending War 02:00 TUE (m0009m7x)
Mark Kermode's Secrets of Cinema 22:30 THU (b0bfp4h7)
Metamorphosis: The Science of Change 22:30 TUE (p00zv0wk)
Murder in Soho: Who Killed Freddie Mills? 21:00 TUE (b0bcy56k)
Nature's Wonderlands: Islands of Evolution 19:00 SAT (b06yjm68)
Nature's Wonderlands: Islands of Evolution 01:25 SAT (b06yjm68)
Pain, Pus and Poison: The Search for Modern Medicines 23:30 THU (p01f53b9)
Pappano's Classical Voices 01:50 SUN (b06154q3)
Queen Victoria's Letters: A Monarch Unveiled 23:00 WED (b04p1vx1)
Rod Stewart at the BBC 23:30 FRI (b03m81n5)
Six Wives with Lucy Worsley 20:00 WED (b0853mvq)
Six Wives with Lucy Worsley 02:00 WED (b0853mvq)
Spiral 21:00 SAT (m0009tpq)
Spiral 22:00 SAT (m0009tps)
Storyville 22:00 MON (m0009tpx)
Storyville 23:30 TUE (m0004vyd)
Storyville 00:30 TUE (m0004vzb)
TOTP2 22:30 FRI (b00874gg)
The Bermuda Triangle: Beneath the Waves 20:00 TUE (b007c68n)
The Dead Room 22:00 THU (m0001qqr)
The Renaissance Unchained 01:00 WED (b070sq9t)
The Secrets of Quantum Physics 21:00 THU (b04v85cj)
The Sinner 01:10 SUN (m0001ktg)
The Spy Gone North 22:00 SUN (m0009tq8)
The Story of China 23:00 MON (b071c2kf)
The Women's Football Show 20:30 SUN (m0009tq4)
Timeshift 21:00 SUN (b00nnm7k)
Tones, Drones and Arpeggios: The Magic of Minimalism 03:00 FRI (b09twd7y)
Top of the Pops 00:25 SAT (m0009m83)
Top of the Pops 00:55 SAT (m0009m8d)
Top of the Pops 19:30 THU (m0009tpn)
Top of the Pops 00:30 THU (m0009tpn)
Top of the Pops 19:30 FRI (m0009tqc)
Top of the Pops 21:00 FRI (m0009tqf)
Top of the Pops 00:30 FRI (m0009tqc)
Totally 60s Psychedelic Rock at the BBC 01:00 FRI (b06jp24d)
Wild China 20:00 SAT (b00bz1cf)
Wild China 01:25 SAT (b00bz1cf)
Wild 20:20 SUN (b0078zwm)
World News Today 19:00 FRI (m0009tq7)