SINGERS and scientists feature in an impressive line-up of speakers announced for the 2014 Blenheim Literary Festival.
The American Grammy award-winning contemporary opera singer Jessye Norman will be talking about her life at the Woodstock festival, which runs from September 25 to 28.
The 68-year-old is expected to talk about her life growing up in Georgia, singing at presidential inaugurations and setting up a tuition-free performing arts after-school program for economically disadvantaged students.
Celebrated director, actor, author, television presenter and humorist, Jonathan Miller, above, will be the speaker at the festival’s dinner.
The world of rock will be represented by Steve Hogarth, of the British band Marillion, who will be performing and talking about his diaries.
The festival brings hundreds of visitors to Woodstock every September, with few book festivals able to rival the setting of the palace.
Our sister paper, The Oxford Times, is again acting as media partner.
The Oxford scientist, Richard Dawkins, often dubbed the world’s best known atheist, will be talking about his early life, featured in his memoir An Appetite For Wonder: The Making of a Scientist.
The celebrated evolutionary biologist will also choose some of his favourite music, to be played by the Orchestra of St John.
The television scientist Alice Roberts, presenter of the BBC science series The Incredible Human Journey and Origins of Us, will be speaking about her book The Incredible Unlikeliness of Being.
The great political issue of the day will also figure prominently this year.
The former Tory Cabinet Minister Liam Fox will discuss Putin and Russia, while the former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey will speak on moral dilemmas, including the issue that recently put him in the headlines, assisted death.
Festival director Sally Dunsmore, above, said: “Our aim is to offer festival-goers just that little bit more than the average festival. So, we have the poet Jeremy Robson talking about his poems with readings by Maureen Lipman and song by Jacqui Dankworth.
“We have some innovative performances of Shakespeare, and people will even be able to buy jewellery from the Alex Monroe collection.’’ Tickets can be purchased online at blenheimpalaceliteraryfestival.com or from the box office at The Feathers hotel, Woodstock.
Our top stories:
UPDATED: Fifty homes affected as burst water main causes significant flooding in Normandy Crescent in Oxford
7:37am Tuesday 23rd September 2014
A WATER main has burst in an Oxford street causing significant flooding this morning.
1:20pm Tuesday 23rd September 2014
A MAN has appeared in court charged with raping a woman in Headington over the weekend.
Police force will not lose 400 officers says chief constable despite police and crime commissioner claim
12:32pm Tuesday 23rd September 2014
THE Chief Constable of Thames Valley Police has said the force is not set to lost 400 officers despite claims made by Police and Crime Commissioner Anthony Stansfeld at the weekend.
UPDATE: Delays on rail services between Oxford and London after two killed by train in "suspicious incident"
9:55am Tuesday 23rd September 2014
There are delays on rail services to London after a two people were killed when they were hit by a train in Slough.
11:10am Tuesday 23rd September 2014
A MAN has been charged after a woman was raped in a flat in Headington on Saturday and another woman attacked in South Park on Sunday.
8:40am Tuesday 23rd September 2014
A ROAD shut after a car was engulfed in flames has now fully reopened.