Every morning what I’m guessing is the best strand of this year’s Hay Festival (Glastonbury for books) can come to you and your wee nipper through the hollow wires of your computer. The children’s bit looks well worth your smarties. But here’s some choices for the old and wizened.
There’s nothing that challenges a well honed shoulder chip like a literary festival. Ask Darren Garvey, owner of a beauty, forged in the schemes of mid Scotland and the general chat of the creative Scottish mafia who see themselves as a counter-weight to the fancy Pims drinking English middle class hordes, who flood the digital flatlands of the Hay Festival, very well represented by Richard Coles, an actual professional vicar with a radio voice straight from 1970s TV murder mystery central casting. You can listen to him stretching his vowels and his showbiz career, chatting with a psychotherapist, which sounds a bit upskirt to me. Hope he’s got clean undies on.
Deaf kids have enough to contend with without forcing them to watch Elizabethan soap opera in the form of signed Shakespeare. I’m biased – The Merchant of Venice scarred me at 14 years old, an age when to be told some ancient piece of writing is important is guaranteed to have the opposite desired effect. Never got Shakespeare after that and I truly believe some things can safely be left to rot by the side of this scepter’d isle’s potholed historical path. The democratic nature of the project can nevertheless be applauded as an equal opportunities infliction, at least, and if you think your child deserves this kind of treatment it looks like a very worthy operation.
Tomorrow... Let’s speed this up a bit.
Main Image: Big H-A-Y letters by Sam Harding
The Hay Festival website with many streamed events