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Break Out Culture With Ed Vaizey: Iran at the V&A, Romeo & Juliet and Andrew Marr’s new paintings

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It’s back and better than ever! Our Lockdown Culture podcast is back with a bang for a second series, and this time we’re breaking OUT. Introducing Break Out Culture, Country & Town House’s newest podcast series. Culture editor, Ed Vaizey, and associate editor, Charlotte Metcalf discuss the week’s cultural offerings with a brilliant edit of what you should be watching, reading, listening to, booking and visiting each week. Their roster of high profile guests from adds illuminating insight to the current cultural landscape. 

Listen now on Spotify or iTunes.

Break Out Culture Podcast

Break Out Culture

EPISODE 41: Iran at the V&A, Romeo & Juliet and Andrew Marr’s new paintings

Andrew Marr on painting and why the government needs to do more to support the arts, Ina Sarkihani Sandmann on redefining Iran at the V&A and Isabel Adomakoh Young on playing Juliet at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre.

We’re visiting:

  • Town & Country, New paintings by Andrew Marr, Eames Fine Art Gallery. 9 June – 4 July. eamesfineart.com
  • Epic Iran, Gallery 39 and North Court, V & A Museum, 29 May – 12 September. vam.ac.uk

We’re booking:

Romeo and Juliet, Regents Park Open Air Theatre, 17 June – 24 July. openairtheatre.com

EPISODE 40: Celebrating Hay Festival With Caroline Michel, Russell Tovey, Robert Diament and Tahmima Anam

We’re visiting:

Hay Festival till Sunday 6 June, hayfestival.com

We’re reading:

Talk Art: Everything you wanted to know about contemporary art but were afraid to ask by Russell Tovey + Robert Diament

The Startup Wife by Tahmima Anam

We’re tuning into:

Hay Festival

  • Russell Diament and Robert Diament in conversation with Olivia Laing at 1pm on the Baillie Gifford Digital Stage
  • Tahmima Anam talks to Georgina Godwin at 3pm on Baillie Gifford Digital Stage
  • ‘Your Culture Needs You!’ Neil Mendoza, Nina Plowman, Emma Rickett and Iwona Blazwick talk to Ed Vaizey at 5pm on Baillie Gifford Digital Stage

EPISODE 39: Impresario Raymond Gubbay lowers the tone and raises the roof and Parham House opens its doors with a new exhibition

We’re visiting:

Adrian Sassoon at Parham, A House of History. Online 26 May – 31 August, in-person late June – 31 August. parhaminsussex.co.uk

We’re reading:

Raymond Gubby’s autobiography, Lowering the Tone and Raising the Roof

We’re watching:

Capernaum, on All 4 and Amazon Prime

Quo Vadis, Aida?, on Amazon Prime

EPISODE 38: Saving our bees on World Bee Day, Barbara Hepworth at the Hepworth Wakefield Gallery and 25 concert to celebrate London’s Wigmore Hall’s 120th birthday

We talk to Sarah Wyndham Lewis about bees, Simon Wallis, director of the Hepworth Wakefield Gallery in West Yorkshire, and Wigmore Hall’s director John Gilhooly.

To celebrate World Bee Day, Martin Miller’s Gin is offering listeners a 10% discount on all its ranges from 12th May till 31st October. Code: Breakout. Buy from masterofmalt.com

We’re reading:

Planting for Honeybees: The Grower’s Guide to Creating a Buzz by Sarah Wyndham Lewis

We’re visiting:

Barbara Hepworth: Art & Life at The Hepworth Wakefield Gallery. 21 May 2021 – 27 February 2022

The Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Summer Concerts and the Learning Festival at London’s Wigmore Hall

EPISODE 37: Sex With Mr. Hell and When Marilyn Monroe Met Dame Edith Sitwell

Young Kim on her erotic memoir A Year on Earth with Mr. Hell and Simon Berry on his new radio play The Dame and the Showgirl with Emma Thompson. Plus sculptor Conrad Shawcross on Art in the Age of Now at Fulham Town Hall.

We’re reading:

A Year on Earth with Mr Hell by Young Kim

Limited edition of 2000 only from Ubu Gallery in New York, ubugallery.com

We’re listening to:

The Dame and the Showgirl by Simon Berry on Audible

We’re visiting:

Art in the Age of Now at Fulham Town Hall, 20 May – 6 June, fulhamtownhall.com

EPISODE 36: Shakespeare’s neighbours, the new art platform taking galleries global and opera in a circus top

We’re reading:

Living with Shakespeare: St. Helen’s Parish 1593 to 1598 by Geoffrey Marsh

We’re making sure we’re on Longborough Opera Festival’s waiting list to see:

Die Walküre (main house)

Big Top:

  • Così Fan Tutti
  • The Return of Ulysses
  • The Cunning Little Vixen

lfo.org.uk

See:

  • Andreas Gursky at The Hayward Gallery
  • Art Now by Lisa Brice at Tate Britain, thevov.art

EPISODE 35:  A year on: Psychotherapist and podcaster Julia Samuel on navigating change in a post-Covid world.

This week Break Out Culture celebrates its one year anniversary.

We’re listening to:

A Living Loss, the Art of Losing and Finding Yourself : the new podcast from Julia Samuel, available on Spotify

We’re reading:

Grief Works by Julia Samuel

This Too Shall Pass: Tales of Change, Crisis and Hopeful Beginnings by Julia Samuel

We’re learning to play the piano from scratch in a month with AyseDeniz Gockin at the Borderless Piano Academy.  Sign up for $149 – other courses available. borderlesspiano.com

We’re watching:

Bloods starring Samson Kayo and Jane Horrocks, airs on Sky1 from 5 May

EPISODE 34: Edmund de Waal on his new book ‘Letters to Camondo’ and his attempts to resolve his feelings about his tragic family history

Plus we talk to Leo Villareal about lighting up the Thames and to Thomas Del Mar about a clever plan to help fund Westminster Abbey, The Wallace Collection and Grange Festival

We’re reading:

  • Letters to Camondo by Edmund de Waal
  • The Hare with the Amber Eyes by Edmund de Waal
  • Keep an eye on the Musée Nissim de Camdondo’s website for news of the exhibition curated by Edmund de Waal opening in October, madparis.fr/em

We’re visiting:

  • Illuminated River, illuminatedriver.london
  • We’re bidding at auction, donating or consigning what we can to raise funds for Westminster Abbey, The Wallace Collection and Grange Festival via Olympic Auctions’ series of fundraising auctions, olympiaauctions.com

EPISODE 33: Kevin Macdonald on directing Jodie Foster and Tahar Rahim in The Mauritanian

We’re watching:

The Mauritanian, starring Jodie Foster and Tahar Rahim on Netflix

We’re reading:

Guantánamo Diary by Mohamedou Ould Slahi

We’re booking:

We’re visiting:

New Normal Pictures by Gilbert & George. White Cube, Mason’s Yard, whitecube.com

We’re celebrating:

The Jerwood Blue Sky Fund, which has given £1 million to The Theatre Artists Fund and Help Musicians, jerwoodarts.org/2021/03/12/jerwood-foundation-announces-blue-sky-fund/

EPISODE 32: The Messiah and Van Gogh reimagined, and how fairness could change the world

The London Handel Festival’s Easter Concert, Van Gogh Alive comes to Kensington Gardens and Ben Fenton talks about his book ‘To Be Fair’

We’re reading:

To Be Fair: The Ultimate Guid to Fairness in the 21st Century by Ben Fenton

We’re booking:

Van Gogh Alive, opens in Kensington Gardens on 4 June till 26 September

EPISODE 31: CAN THE ART MUSEUM SURVIVE?  Charles Saumarez Smith talks about the challenges ahead.

We’re reading:

The Art Museum in Modern Times by Charles Saumarez Smith

We’re following:

Charles Saumarez Smith’s blog

We’re visiting:

The virtual exhibition Electric Dreams

We’re watching:

Jack Jewers’s short films illustrating five ancient classical poems to celebrate World Poetry Day

We’re going on:

A Virtual Walking Tour of the Jewish Quarter in Budapest on 15th April, arthistoryinfocus.com

We’re visiting:

The Yorkshire Sculpture Park and seeing Alison Milner’s exhibition Decorative Minimalist

EPISODE 30: GILBERT & GEORGE define the NEW NORMAL

Gilbert & George on their new exhibition ‘The New Normal Pictures’.  Plus Desmond Cecil on being a musical diplomat

We’re booking:

We’re reading:

The Wandering Civil Servant of Stradivarius: Themes and Variations by Desmond Cecil CMG

EPISODE 29: A Grand Episode: The Duchess of Rutland on ghosts, Dan Snow at Blenheim Palace and Hugo Rittson Thomas on Wildflowers for the Queen

We’re listening to:

Duchess: the podcast by Emma, Duchess of Rutland

We’re tuning into:

The Unknown Churchill: Dan Snow talking to Blenheim Palace historian Antonia Keaney, Wednesday 17 March at 7.30 pm (free for Blenhaim Palace Annual Pass holders) virtual.blenheimpalace.com

We’re reading:

Wildflowers for the Queen: A Visual Celebration of Britain’s Coronation Meadows by Hugo Rittson Thomas

LISTENER OFFER: Listeners receive a 15% discount: go to hugorittsonphotogaphy.com and apply the code ‘Breakout’ at checkout.

EPISODE 28: Sympathy For The Devil? John Preston on Humanising Robert Maxwell‪

John Preston on Robert Maxwell and The Dig and Jan Dalley, Arts Editor of the FT, tells promises everything from super-brainy chat to cocktails and style at the FTWeekend Spring Festival

We’re reading:

  • Fall: The Mystery of Robert Maxwell by John Preston
  • A Very English Scandal: Sex, Lies and a Murder Plot at the Heart of the Establishment by John Preston
  • The Dig by John Preston

We’re watching:

  • The Dig with Ralph Fiennes, Carey Mulligan and Lily James on Netflix
  • A Very English Scandal with Hugh Grant and Ben Whishaw on BBC iPlayer

We’re tuning into:

EPISODE 26: Hugh Bonneville on playing Roald Dahl, The Master of Tango, Astor Piazzolla and What YouNever Knew About Dan Brown and Lee Chil‪d

We’re watching:

To Olivia starring Hugh Bonneville and Keeley Hawes, available on Sky Cinema

We’re browsing:

Books and supporting our local bookshop by buying books from bookshop.org

We’re tuning into:

Dan Brown’s Wild Symphony project and listening to the Wild Symphony album

We’re checking out:

Lee Child’s musical talents

EPISODE 25: Valentines Day: Sex, Movies and Design in an Age of Crisi‪s

We chat to British cinematographer Sir Roger Deakins in LA about his knighthood, his Oscars and his podcast with his wife and collaborator James. Victoria Broackes, Director of the Design Biennale, talks about Design in an Age of Crisis (and David Bowie) and author Olivia Fane pleads for a return to a less dark sexuality.

We’re tuning into:

Team Deakins Podcast

We’re marvelling at:

All the submissions to Design in an Age of Crisis (young people can still submit ideas)

We’re reading:

Why Sex Doesn’t Matter by Olivia Fane

EPISODE 24: Films of Hope: Director Paul Greengrass on Directing Tom Hanks in News of the Worl‪d

Plus we talk to Gala Gordon and Isabella Macpherson of Platform Presents on the hybrids giving a boost to the performing arts industry and meet the young film-maker celebrating Rachel Carson and Silent Spring in a new film Nevergreen.

We’re watching:

  • Paul Greengrass’s movie News of the World, starring Tom Hanks, on Netflix
  • Good Grief, written by Lorien Haynes, starring Sian Clifford and Nikesh Patel, produced by Platform Presents. Online from Monday 15th February till 15th April, buy tickets at platformpresents.com

EPISODE 23: The Big Issues

Is the BBC our greatest cultural institution? Yes, and we must fight to keep it, argues social and cultural commentator Peter York. Times columnist Sathnam Sanghera discusses his new book Empireland and says we’ll never understand our complicated multi-cultural society if we don’t learn the truth about the British Empire.

We’re reading:

  • The War Against the BBC: How an Unprecedented Combination of Hostile Forces is Destroying Britain’s Greatest Cultural Institution… And Why You Should Care by Patrick Barwise and Peter York
  • Empireland: How Imperialism Has Shaped Modern Britain by Sathnam Sanghera

We’re watching:

  • It’s a Sin on Channel Four
  • Call My Agent on Netflix
  • Finding Alice on ITV
  • Spiral on BBC4
  • Cobra Kai on Netflix

EPISODE 22: Dancing Nation – Ballet is Back with Akram Khan

Star choreographer and dancer Akram Khan tells us about dancing with Natalia Osipova for Dancing Nation, Sadler’s Wells’ all-day event and Ian Rosenblatt, founder of Rosenblatt Recitals, regales us with the ups and downs of staging a provincial arts festival.

We’re tuning into:

  • Dancing Nation from Sadler’s Wells and BBC Arts | Thursday 28 January from 12 noon | Akram Khan dances with Natalia Osipova in Mud of Sorrow | bbc.co.uk/iplayer / sadlerswells.com

We’re listening to:

We’re watching:

  • Lungs by Duncan Macmillan starring Claire Foy and Matt Smith on Old Vic: In Camera | oldvictheatre.com

We’re subscribing to:

We’re browsing:

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE 21: How a Small Theatre in Kilburn Became Theatre of the Year

Indhu Rubasingham, Artistic Director of The Kiln in Kilburn, tells us how she and her team transformed the theatre into an award-winning community hub and runner and anthropologist Michael Crawley explains how a strong sense of community is also integral to the supremacy of Ethiopia’s top runners

We’re supporting:

We’re watching:

  • Dear Future Generations, an original film written and performed by The Kiln’s 16-18 Young Company | kilntheatre.com

We’re reading:

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE 20: Your Favourite Songs Specially Arranged, Performed and Streamed into Your Living Rooms

Ed and Charlotte are back from the Christmas break and plunged into another national lockdown! Don’t worry, we won’t be changing the name of the podcast again and will firmly remain Break Out Culture! They catch up with Patricia Hammond and Matt Redman on their online music commissioning service and share their latest TV and book recommendations.

We’re commissioning:

We’re reading:

  • Out of Thin Air:  Running Wisdom and Magic from Above the Clouds in Ethiopia by Michael Crawley
  • Exercised: The Science of Physical Activity, Rest and Health  by Daniel Lieberman
  • Ctrl Alt Delete: How Politics and the Media Crashed our Democracy by Tom Baldwin
  • Shuggie Bain by Douglas Stuart:  Winner of the Booker Prize 2020
  • The Mission House by Carys Davies
  • The Overstory by Richard Powers :Winner of the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction

We’re watching:

  • Bridgerton on Netflix
  • The Serpent on BBC iPlayer

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE 19: A Song and Dance About Christmas: The Nutcracker, The Little Match Girl and the Self-Isolation Choir plus Pallant House Gallery

We’ll be back on Sunday 10th January. Happy Christmas to all our listeners.

We’re hoping to go to:

  • Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker directed by Peter Wright | Royal Opera House, Covent Garden | Till 3 January | roh.org.uk
  • Hans Christian Andersen’s The Little Match Girl directed and choreographed by Arthur Pita | Sadler’s Wells, Rosebery Avenue, London | Thursday 17 till Sunday 27 December | sadlerswells.com

We’re watching:

  • Sadler’s Wells Global Gala on You Tube till 5 January | youtube.com

We’re hoping to visit:

  • Pallant House Gallery, Chichester | Christmas Greetings by Modern British Artists | Till 6 January | pallant.org.uk
  • Degas to Picasso:  International Modern Masters | Till 18 April | pallant.org.uk
  • Richard Hamilton: Respective | Till 18 April | pallant.org.uk

We’re tuning into:

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE 18: Nicole Farhi’s Hidden Loves and Dick Whittington Comes to London

Nicole Farhi on her new show ‘Couples’, Jude Christian on adapting Dick Whittington for the National Theatre and three American artists at Gazelli Art House.

We’re visiting:

  • ‘Couples’ by Nicole Farhi at the Fine Art Society Ltd. | 25 Carnaby Street (entrance in Marlborough Court), W1 | Until 23 December | thefineartsociety.com
  • Claudia Hart:  An Imaginary Ruin till 17 January | Jann Haworth:  Mannequin Defectors till 9 January | Perle Fine: The Cool Series till 9 January | All at Gazelli Art House, Dover Street, London W1 | gazelliarthouse.com

We’re booking for:

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE 17: At Home With The Stones : Gered Mankowitz the man behind the lens

Gered Mankowitz talks about that photograph of Jimi Hendrix, photographing the Stones, and many more. Plus Love and War, a new podcast about gay love in the trenches to celebrate 100 years since Wilfred Owen’s first book of poetry was published.

We’re buying:

  • Goin’ Home with The Rolling Stones ’66, Photographs by Gered Mankowtiz | Published by Reel Art Press £19.95 | reelartpress.com

We’re listening to:

  • Love and War, a podcast by Kevin Childs with Sam Fairbrother as Wilfred Owen and more | play.acast.com

We’re watching:

  • Icon:  Music Through the Lens | 6 x one-hour programmes | Sky Arts at 10.10 pm on Fridays

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE 16: Diving Into History: Charles Spencer Goes In Search Of The White Ship

Charles Spencer on his book The White Ship, 900 years after the ship sank, three exhibitions at Hauser & Wirth Somerset and the Hay Digital Winter Weekend.

We’re reading:

  • The White Ship:  Conquest, Anarchy and the Wrecking of Henry I’s Dream by Charles Spencer, published by William Collins, £25

We’re Visiting:

  • Hauser and Wirth, Somerset – Oudolf Field, Roth Bar & Grill and Durslade Farm Shop are open to the local community. See Hauserwirth.com for details
  • Nicole Eisenman ‘Where I Was, It Shall Be’ is online at hauserwirth.com
  • Lee Lozano is online at hauserwirth.com
  • Make Gallery exhibition Gathering open online from 21st November | hauserwirth.com

We’re tuning into:

We’re watching:

  • The Crown on Netflix
  • Small Axe: Mangrove, directed by Steve McQueen on BBC i-player
  • All of Us on Amazon Prime

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE 15: Hallelulujah! And Matthew Parris’s geniuses

How to sing your way to Christmas in isolation and Matthew Parris talks about his new book on trauma and genius.

We’re joining:

The Self-Isolation Choir and their Christmas at Home Concert on 20th December |theselfisolationchoir.com

We’re reading

Fracture: Stories of How Great Lives Take Root in Traumaby Matthew Parris, published by Profile Books, £16.99

We’re going online to

  • The Stratford Literary Winter Weekend Festival | Friday 20th November to Wednesday 25th November | Matthew Parris talks about his book at 8pm Friday 20th November (available until 11pm 25th November) | stratlitfest.co.uk.

We’re watching:

  • A one-time live reading of Shakespeare’s The Tempest, directed by Jenny Hall and starring Geraldine James and Rebecca Hall | November 19th at 7.30 on Zoom | Tickets from ticketsource.co.uk

We’re buying:

  • Portraits of NHS Heroes compiled by Tom Croft, published by Bloomsbury, £25 | All royalties and £2.50 of every sale goes to NHS Charities Together |  bloomsbury.com

Books are My Bag Reader Awards Winners:

  • Reader’s Choice Book of the Year  : Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell (Tinder Press)
  • Fiction: The Devil and the Dark Water by Stuart Turton, Raven Books, Bloomsbury
  • Non-Fiction: by Dara McAnulty (Little Toller Books)
  • Poetry: Tiger, Tiger Burning Bright: An Animal Poem for Every Day of the Year by Britta Teckentrup and Fiona Waters (Nosy Crow)
  • Young Adult Fiction: Cinderella is Dead by Kalynn Bayron (Bloomsbury)
  • Children’s Fiction:  The Highland Falcon Thief by M.G. Leonard & Sam Sedgman, illustrated by Elisa Paganelli (Macmillan Children’s Books)
  • Breakthrough Author:  Jean Menzies author of Greek Myths (DK)

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE 14: Theatrical Gyles Brandreth

Gyles Brandreth cheers up lockdown by lifting the lid on all the stories and gossip since theatres began.   Art gallerist Johnny Messum tells us how Messums keeps opening new galleries and thriving during lockdown. And we lift the lid on our TV habits.

We’re revelling in:

  • The Oxford Book of Theatrical Anecdotes by Gyles Brandreth

We’re voting for our favourite books:

  • Awards Ceremony hosted by Grace Dent to be screened on Tuesday November 10th at 5.30 pm | Vote: nationalbooktokens.com

We’re watching:

  • The Undoing on Now TV
  • Roadkill on BBC i-player
  • Better Things on BBC i-player
  • The Queen’s Gambit on Netflix
  • Adult Material on More 4

We’re visiting (virtually):

  • James Dodds ‘The Work of Human Hands’ till 29 November | messumswiltshire.com
  • Jørgen Haugen Sørensen:  ‘A Dark Story in White’ | messumswiltshire.com
  • We’re tuning into the Messums Conversation with Rebecca Wragg Sykes, Author of Kindred : Neanderthal Life, Love, Death and Art, on Wednesday 18th November at 6.30 pm | messumswiltshire.com | See all other Conversations at messumswiltshire.com

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE 13: A Christmas Carol, Carnaby Street and Pioneering Women Artists

We talk to Nicholas Hytner about the The Bridge Theatre’s Christmas season and hear from art dealer and TV sleuth Philip Mould about Pioneers, his exhibition celebrating 500 years of British women in art.  Plus we chat to Kojo Marfo about a new pop-up on Carnaby Street to celebrate black business and creativity

We’re going shopping at:

  • 56B  Carnaby Street to visit 21 Youth Street, My Runway Group’s pop-up store for emerging black businesses and talent | carnaby.co.uk

We’re going to The Bridge Theatre to see:

We’re booking:

  • A Christmas Carol starring Simon Russell Beale at The Bridge Theatre | bridgetheatre.co.uk |From 21st November

We’re dropping into:

  • Pioneers: Celebrating 500 Years of Women in Art at Philip Mould & Co., 18-19 Pall Mall | philipmould.com | Runs till 27th November

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE 12: Andrew Lloyd Webber on his new Cinderella

This week Andrew Lloyd Webber talks candidly about Cinderella, what it will take to get our theatres open again and how he feels after taking the Covid-19 vaccine.

We’re booking:

  • Cinderella at the Gillian Lynne Theatre, written by Andrew Lloyd Webber with Emerald Fennell. Set to open in April or May, andrewlloydwebberscinderella.com
  • Disney’s Frozen at Theatre Royal Drury Lan. Due to open Spring 2021, lwtheatres.co.uk

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE 11: Out Of The Box

This week: Plymouth’s dazzling new art space. Plus, portraits of Britain’s black female academics and spying on Jonathan Yeo painting Jamie Oliver.

Dr. Nicola Rollock tells us about commissioning Bill Knight to photograph Britain’s 45 black female professors for an exhibition on London’s South Bank. We talk Jo Loosemore, curator at The Box, Plymouth, about a new exhibition turning myths about the Mayflower on their head and artist Jonathan Yeo welcomes everyone into his studio – via his brand new app.

We’re visiting:

We’re breaking out to:

  • Mayflower 400:  Legend & Legacy, until September 2021, The Box, Plymouth, book tickets here theboxplymouth.com

Phenomenal Women, until November 8th

We’re lobbying:

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE TEN: John Tusa’s On Board secrets, the tiny theatre making Londoners smile and Stanley Spencer’s tragic love life

Renowned TV journalist John Tusa spills the beans on what goes on behind the doors of Britain’s art institution.  Anthony Biggs, Creative Director of The Playground Theatre in Notting Hill, tells us how a small community theatre can flourish and Amanda Bradley, Curator of Love, Art, Loss, tells about the complicated love life of the great artist Stanley Spencer.

We’re visiting:

  • Love, Art, Loss:  The Wives of Stanley Spencer at the Stanley Spencer Gallery in Cookham. The show runs till Autumn 2021. stanleyspencer.org.uk

We’re reading:

  • On Board by John Tusa

We’re booking:

We’re registering to be part of:

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE NINE: How Sir Terence Conran Changed Our Homes

We talk to designer Sebastian Conran about his father’s legacy and his influence on British design.  We discover Cromwell Place in South Kensington, London’s newest venue for galleries and collectors shaking up the art world.  Plus we talk to the Dutch artist Jan Hendrix at his home in Mexico about his new exhibition, Paradise Lost, just opened at Shirley Sherwood’s Gallery of Botanical Art at Royal Botanic Gardens Kew.

We’re tracking down and rereading:

We’re visiting

  • Electronic: from Kraftwerk to The Chemical Brothers, The Design Museum, Designmuseum.org
  • Paradise Lost : an exhibition by Jan Hendrix, The Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanic Art,  Royal Botanic Gardens Kew
  • Cromwell Place in South Kensington, Visitors must register to visit beforehand at Cromwellplace.com

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE EIGHT: How Books Can Make the World a Better Place

Elif Shafak on curating the Cheltenham Literature Festival, Chris Riddell’s Poems to Save the World With and Kensington and Chelsea Art Week.

We’re booking up:

  • The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival. From Friday 2nd October until Sunday 11th.  For all details of what’s on and how to book visit cheltenhamfestivals.com.

We’re visiting:

  • Kensington and Chelsea Art Week. From Thursday 1 October until Sunday 11. See website for details and for exhibits that will be in situ for longer ckaw.co.uk.

We’re reading:

  • How to Survive in an Age of Division by Elif Shafak
  • 10 Minutes and 38 Seconds  in this Strange World by Elif Shafak

We’re loving:

  • Poems to Save the World With by Chris Riddell by Macmillan Children’s Books

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE SEVEN: ‘Saucy’ Loyd Grossman’s Roman Holiday

Loyd Grossman discusses his new book and saving our culture and the Royal Borough opens its Physic Garden and National Army Museum for its annual History Festival.

We’re reading:

  • An Elephant in Rome : Bernini, the Pope and the making of the Eternal City by Loyd Grossman, £19.99

We’re going to:

We’re visiting:

  • The National Army Museum nam.ac.uk and The Chelsea Physic Garden  chelseaphysicgarden.co.uk for numerous live events during The Chelsea History Festival – BOOKING ESSENTIAL

We’re scrabbling to get the last seats for:

  • Jesus Christ Superstar at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre – till 27th September, Openairtheatre.com
  • ENO’s Drive & Live : Puccini’s La Bohème at Alexandra Palace till 27th September, eno.org

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE SIX: Digital Theatre, free culture for all and lifting the lid on undiscovered  London

This week:  Neelay Patel on how Digital Theatre is transforming young people’s lives and revitalising the theatre world, Phil Edgar-Jones on how and why we’re all going to be watching Sky Arts for free and Hafsa Adan on exploring hidden, uncelebrated parts of London at this weekend’s Open House Festival.

  • We’re tuning into Sky Arts for free on Freeview from midday Thursday 17th September
  • We’re logging onto Digital Theatre at digitaltheatre.com, subscribe for £9.99 per month or rent productions for £7.99
  • Teachers, libraries and all educational institutions can subscribe to Digital Theatre + at digitaltheatreplus.com/education
  • We’re exploring London this weekend with the Open House Festival from Saturday 19th September. For details of what to see and now to book go to openhouselondon.open-city.org.uk
  • We’re pre-ordering Open House’s Alternative Guide to the London Boroughs, £14.99, edited by Owen Hatherley from shop.openhouselondon.org.uk

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE FIVE: Racism in the Capital and Blue Plaques

Vogue photographer Misan Harriman on combatting racism in the capital and Kate Mavor from English Heritage chooses her favourite sites and blue plaques to visit.

  • For our cultural nutrition, we’re logging onto What We Seee  whatweseee.com
  • We’re visiting sites cared for by English Heritage. To book please visit english-heritage.org.uk
  • We’re downloading the Blue Plaques of London app and watching English Heritage’s video about how it makes them youtube.com

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE FOUR: We Can Go To The Movies!

Can we go out to watch a film this summer? Ben Roberts, CEO of the British Film Institute tells us what’s happening with British cinema and Rob Adediran from London Music Masters tells us about the positive changes happening in the music industry.

We’re breaking out to:

Recently opened National Trust Properties. For all details of how to book: nationaltrust.org.uk

  • Petworth House in Sussex
  • Barrington Court in Somerset
  • Kingston Lacy in Dorset
  • Lyme in Cheshire
  • Oxburgh Hall in Norfolk
  • The Argory in Country Armagh
  • Packwood House in Warwickshire

Festivals:

  • Gisburne Park’s Pop Up – the first socially distanced festival in Lancashire: Parties in the park every Friday and Saturday from 11 July to 31 August gisburneparkpopup.com
  • Red Rooster Festival: celebrating the best of the American Deep South at Euston Hall in Suffolk, 4-6 September redrooster.org.uk

Theatres:

Cinema:

  • The BFI on the South Bank will open on 1 September bfi.org.uk
  • To find out what Odeons are open please see odeon.co.uk

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EPISODE THREE: Tony Hall on the Future of Art

Tony Hall in his new role as Chair of the National Gallery shares his vision for the gallery’s future and the Marquis of Cholmondeley talks about working with Anish Kapoor to mount his exhibition, now open to the public at Houghton Hall in Norfolk.

We’re breaking out to:

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EPISODE TWO: June Sarpong Talks Diversity and Change the Beeb

All Change: June Sarpong, TV broadcaster, panellist and author of Diversify became the BBC’s first ever Director of Creative Diversity last October. She talks to Ed and Charlotte about change at the BBC, gives a sneak preview of all the exciting programming coming up this summer and autumn, and tells us how white people can be effective allies in the fight against racism.

We’re breaking out to:

  • Masculinities: Liberation through Photography at The Barbican from 13th July
  • Jan Svoboda: Against the Light at The Photographers Gallery from 14th July
  • Radical Figures:  Painting in the New Millennium  at Whitechapel Gallery from 14th July

 We’re Reading:

  • Diversify by June Sarpong
  • The Power of Women by June Sarpong

We’re Watching:

  • I May Destroy You: BBC iPlayer
  • Noughts and Crosses: BBC iPlayer

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE ONE: Desire, Death and Dutch Masters

Breaking out from lockdown – what’s opening up from art galleries to the office? Cabaret duo Kit and McConnel on the future of cabaret and pantomime, Martin Waller of Andrew Martin on the new-look office and Spirit and Endeavour, the opening of a new art exhibition to celebrate 800 years of Salisbury Cathedral.

This week we’re breaking out and visiting:

We’re browsing:

  • Andrew Martin’s brand new store and ‘Luxe Lab’ Pop Up on 72-74 Sloane Avenue

We’re watching:

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

Lockdown Culture Series Notes

EPISODE TEN: Discover Jesus’ Secrets

Matthew Burrows explains his Artists’ Support Pledge has saved thousands of artists’ incomes during lockdown and Jesus Adorno, London’s favourite maître d shares his secrets and tells us if London’s iconic and much-loved restaurant Le Caprice has a post-lockdown future. As we start to leave lockdown, the philanthropist Sir Lloyd Dorfman encourages everyone who’s lost a loved one to Coronavirus to create a memorial for them on St. Paul’s Cathedral’s tribute site Remember Me.

Ed and Charlotte will be back next week with BREAK OUT CULTURE  

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EPISODE NINE: Beyond Lockdown With Nicholas Coleridge

An exclusive podcast interview with Sir Nicholas Coleridge, Chairman of the V&A, Condé Nast supremo and author of The Glossy Years, on life beyond lockdown. What’s going to happen to our museums, to the fashion industry and to magazines?

We’re Reading:

  • The Glossy Years by Nicholas Coleridge (published in paperback 16th July)

And we’re….

  • Getting ready to go back out again.

Next week will be our last week as Lockdown Culture – but we’ll be back with a new focus on breaking out of lockdown and going out again.

For any suggestions, recommendations and comments, email [email protected]

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE EIGHT: Covid Comedy in Edinburgh, Chineke Orchestras and Sitting in Limbo

Ready for a laugh?  As we start easing up on lockdown are we ready to laugh about it yet?  We ask comedy producer Emma Brunjes, producer of Dave’s Edinburgh Comedy Awards about comedians’ take on Coronavirus and how they’ll survive without the Edinburgh Festival.  And we talk to Founder of the Chineke Orchestras, Chi-chi Nwanoku about the Junior Orchestra’s triumph on Britain’s Got Talent, the Black Lives Matter movement and the future for classical musicians of colour.  Plus we discuss all latest exciting offerings on television  from Sitting in Limbo and Little Fires Everywhere to Filthy Rich and Steve Coogan in Greed.

We’re laughing at:

We’re listening to:

  • Deep River by Samuel Coleridge-Taylor, a tribute to George Floyd and other victims of racism performed by The Chineke Orhcestra

We’re watching:

  • Sitting in Limbo : BBC i-Player
  • Little Fires Everywhere:  Amazon Prime
  • Filthy Rich:  Amazon
  • Greed:  Amazon Prime

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE SEVEN:  Going Local

We go local:  Hastings Contemporary – the local gallery using a robot to take Sir Quentin Blake’s Guernica global, Sir Nicholas Kenyon on the Barbican’s Radio Local and Bettany Hughes seeps us off on her epic Greek Island Odyssey from the comfort of our armchairs.

We’re listening to:

  • Barbican Radio Local with Hunt and Darton: culturemile.london, till Friday between 1 and 2 every day on Resonance DAB or on Resonance DAB between 1 and 2 till Friday or at 10 am on Resonance 104.4 FM

We’re watching:

  • Everything at The Barbican
  • Secrets of Pompeii’s Greatest Treasures with Bettany Hughes on Channel5
  • Bettany Hughes’s Greek Island Odyssey, Episode One, 9 pm on Friday 12th June, Channel5
  • The Bush Theatre Monday Monologues: bushtheatre.co.uk

We’re visiting:

We’re reading our children:

  • Tad by Benji Davies, Winner of the 2020 Oscar Award

We’re wearing:

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE SIX:  I Want To Break Free

Song, movies, good news and sex to cheer us up: the national singalong  of I Want to Break Free, Gabriel Jagger and his good news channel, the first virtual global film festival We Are One and Lindsay Duncan and Hilton McRae on sex and storytelling during the Black Death.

We’re reading:

  • Kevin Child’s new translation of The Decameron
  • Good news stories on Gabriel Jagger’s positive news media channel Why Now?

We’re listening to:

  • A new podcast bringing stories from The Decameron, Passion and the Plague: play.acast.com

We’re watching:

We’re singing along to:

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE 5: BalletBoyZ, ArtUK and Lockdown LitFest

This week Lockdown Culture explores the nation’s quarter of a million hidden art treasures with Andrew Ellis of ArtUK. We meet Michael Nunn OBE, one of the duo behind the contemporary dance troupe BalletBoyZ, celebrating 20 extraordinary award-winning years and we point you in the direction of Lockdown Litfest, specially created for our screens.

We’re visiting

We’re watching

We’re Loving

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EPISODE 4: Hay-on-Wifi

This week Lockdown Culture brings you Hay-on-Wifi, as Boris Johnson has christened the Hay Festival. Founder Peter Florence tells us about the challenges of taking a literary festival digital and we talk to filmmaker and author Hannah Rothschild about her new Cornish caper The House of Trelawney and celebrate Shakespeare with poetry fanatic Allie Esiri and actor Dominic West.

This week’s recommendations

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

EPISODE 3:  Diana Quick at the Donmar, the first ever drive in opera, poetry for the soul and Cocktails with a Curator at the Frick

This week Ed and Charlotte welcome their first guests – they hear from actress Diana Quick, chat to Stuart Murphy, Chief Executive of English National Opera and talk to William Sieghart who tells them how Poetry Pharmacy is providing thousands of people – including the actress Emilia Clarke – with solace.

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

We’re Reading:

  • Poetry Pharmacy by William Sieghart

We’re Watching:

  • Midnight Your Time starring Diana Quick from Wednesday 13th May for a week youtube.com
  • Caliphate: Netflix
  • Call my Agent: Netflix

Art We’re Loving:

For more information on English National Opera’s drive in: eno.org

EPISODE 2: Normal People, The How To: Academy, the ultimate top 100 classical music hits and the virtual Great Wall of China

This week he raves about BBC’s Normal People, discovers Classic FM’s 100 top pieces of music going back 1000 years and tells us where to look out for artists’ work in response to Covid-19

Get the episode on iTunes or Spotify

We’re Reading

  • City of Girls by Elizabeth Gilbert
  • House of Glass by Hadley Freeman
  • East West Street and The Ratline by Philippe Sands
  • Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid

We’re Watching & Listening

EPISODE 1: Lockdown Culture With Ed Vaizey

In the first episode, Ed admits his devotion to Tamsin Greig in Twelfth Night, Belgravia and Friday Night Dinner, introduces us to the new documentary series on Michael Jordan, tries out Olafur Eliasson’s new Earth perspective with his kids and admits a weakness for Lee Child’s Jack Reacher novels.

Episode Notes:

We’re Reading

  • The Walker’s Guide to Outdoor Clues and Signs by Tristan Gooley
  • All the Jack Reacher novels by Lee Child

We’re Watching & Listening

Listen now on Spotify or iTunes.

Listen next: House Guest Podcast by C&TH