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



SATURDAY 25 SEPTEMBER 2021

SAT 19:00 Vienna: Empire, Dynasty and Dream (b0851kfd)
Episode 2

Simon Sebag Montefiore tells the story of Vienna, triumphant after the Ottoman threat receded at the end of the 17th century. No longer an outpost defending the west from Islamic invaders, the imperial capital was to become the most glittering in the world. The Habsburg emperors transformed the city from a fortress into a great cultural capital. Vienna became a city that would define the arts; a magnet for musicians, including Mozart, Haydn and Beethoven.


SAT 20:00 Brazil with Michael Palin (b01nv9ch)
The Road to Rio

In the third part of his Brazilian odyssey, Michael Palin visits the source of Brazil's great mineral wealth and then travels to one of the world's greatest cities to see how this new-found wealth is being spent, changing the lives of millions of its inhabitants.

Michael starts this leg of the journey in the mineral-rich state of Minas Gerais - General Mines. He visits an old gold mine once owned by the British, before going to see a vast opencast iron ore mine that is such a feature of the Minas landscape. Iron ore deposits are fuelling Brazil's economic miracle but there is always an environmental price to pay, and Michael meets some ordinary Brazilians who are dedicated to preserving the natural beauty of the state.

After Minas, it's down to Rio de Janeiro, host to the 2016 Olympics and 2014 World Cup. Rio has always had a reputation as a party town but also has suffered from terrible violence, with heavily armed drug gangs controlling the notorious shanty towns, or favelas, that make up a large part of the city. Now, the authorities have decided to spend some of Brazil's new money on healing the rift between the favelas and the rest of the city. The policy of 'pacification' aims to drive the drug gangs out and fund new infrastructure and social programmes to make the favelas truly part of the city. Michael visits what used to be some of the most violent places on earth to see how lives have been transformed by pacification.

Michael's time in Rio isn't all about what is happening in the favelas. He also finds time to visit some of Rio's best-known locations, learns how to celebrate a goal like a Brazilian radio commentator, and books a room in one of the city's infamous 'love hotels'!


SAT 21:00 The King's Choice (m00095lv)
On 9 April 1940, the German war machine arrives in the city of Oslo. The Norwegian king faces a choice that will change his country forever - whether to submit to the German invasion and install a puppet government answering to Hitler or to enter into a hopeless war of resistance that will cost many lives, as well as Norway's staunchly defended neutrality.

In Norwegian with English subtitles.


SAT 23:05 Storyville (b0btc456)
Hurt Locker Hero

The heart-stopping story of 'Crazy Fakhir', a Kurdish colonel in the Iraqi army and legendary bomb disposal expert who single-handedly disarmed thousands of landmines across the country with just a pocket knife and a pair of wire clippers.

Between the fall of Saddam Hussein in 2003 and the chaos and destruction wreaked by IS ten years later, Fahkir's unwavering bravery saved thousands of lives throughout Iraq. 'Hurt Locker Hero' tells Fakhir's story through the raw and visceral amateur footage captured by his soldiers on a camcorder intended for filming family occasions. Instead, it records Fakhir endlessly snipping wires, searching family homes and digging out roadside IEDs, insisting it's too dangerous to wait hours for the highly trained American bomb disposal teams to arrive.

Whilst their father and husband becomes a hero, Fahkir's wife and eight children struggle to make ends meet and worry endlessly about his safety. Fakhir will be remembered as the man who risked his life to save others -'If I fail, only I die, but if I succeed, I can save hundreds of people.'.


SAT 00:30 Motherland (p07mvr9b)
Series 2

Soft Opening

Having resigned from her job in PR, Julia tries to adapt to life as a freelancer and reluctantly agrees to help Amanda launch her new shop even though she believes it is nothing but a vanity project. The soft opening is a success but a careless online post threatens to destroy her good work.

Meanwhile, Liz rails against the gentrification of the area and the loss of her beloved kebab shop and Kevin reveals he has written an unusual children’s book, which he wants Amanda to sell in her shop.


SAT 01:00 Motherland (p07mvrqr)
Series 2

Mother's Load

Julia finds that working from home is impossible due to all the tasks she has to do for her family. Meg tells her this is her 'mother’s load' - all the things that no-one else will do but that need to be done to keep the home running. Julia removes herself to the cafe to work but even there finds that it is not that easy to get her work done. A possible solution presents itself when she shares a table with a fellow freelancer, but is Julia taking advantage of him?


SAT 01:30 Motherland (p07mvsgm)
Series 2

The Purge

Kevin reluctantly agrees to host a last-minute Halloween party despite the fact that he’s had no time to prepare. Meanwhile at the school gates the mums are all talking about a celebrity who has moved into the neighbourhood - Lee Mead from Holby.

As this is Julia’s favourite programme she is determined to meet him and decides to take all the kids trick or treating hoping that they will find his house. Liz tags along as she has been stood up by a date and Anne is in attendance trying to make sure that the kids are safe. However by the time they reach Kevin’s one of the kids is missing - Amanda’s little boy Manus. Despite the fact that the happy teatime trick or treat atmosphere has now turned violent and terrifying Liz, Kevin and Julia must venture back out into the streets to search for him through terrifying hordes of teenage zombies and mutant nuns.


SAT 02:00 Motherland (p07mvszc)
Series 2

Le Weekend

The gang are delighted when Kevin books a cottage for them to spend half term holidays in the countryside with all their kids. But it is not as nice as the pictures online, and Kevin seems to have miscalculated the number of bedrooms.

When it transpires that Julia has failed to bring any booze, the atmosphere takes a turn for the worse. All hopes rest on Kevin’s plan to cook an event meal by roasting a whole pig in a pit he has dug in the garden. As the long night wears on, tempers begin to fray. Meanwhile, Liz catches the eye of a handsome shepherd.


SAT 02:30 Motherland (p07mvtbr)
Series 2

Good Job

Julia struggles to abide by the rules and clashes with Mrs Lamb as she attends her first ever school sports day. Apparently it's no longer acceptable to cheer for individual kids, and you can only offer generic support like 'good job'. Over at the Kidiverse soft play centre, Kevin is devastated that an important work presentation means he will miss the dads' race. Liz worries that her new boyfriend is blanking her. And Anne discovers something that leads to a nasty surprise for Amanda.


SAT 03:00 Motherland (p09gv90z)
Series 3

Episode 4

It’s time for the Year 6 school trip, and Julia, Liz and Meg find themselves on the coach journey from hell with humourless school secretary Mrs Lamb and clueless teaching assistant Ms Vaughn.

It all kicks off when a boy banned for bad behaviour is allowed on the coach along with his mother Ashley, and Liz decides to play the hero.

Meanwhile, Kevin takes his driving test, and Amanda pivots her lifestyle brand Hygge Tygge online. She manages to persuade Kevin to help pack up the shop - with unimaginable consequences.



SUNDAY 26 SEPTEMBER 2021

SUN 19:00 Classic Quartets at the BBC (b08jq8ll)
Clemency Burton-Hill celebrates the rich and ravishing world of the string quartet in a journey through 50 years of BBC archive. Some of the world's greatest ensembles including the Amadeus, Chilingirian, Borodin and Kronos quartets perform in myriad styles and settings, from stately homes to helicopters. Music ranges from Mozart, Beethoven and Schubert to Steve Reich, Elvis Costello and Pete Townshend, in a tradition which stretches back to Haydn in the 18th century.


SUN 20:00 Dame Fanny Waterman: A Lifetime in Music (b01nlms7)
As a renowned teacher and founder and chair of the Leeds International Piano Competition, Dame Fanny Waterman is one of the most influential figures in British music. At the tender age of 92, she remains as energetic as ever, teaching children as young as six and in demand all over the world as a mentor and jury member.

In this candid conversation with Petroc Trelawney, Waterman sheds light on her humble beginnings in Leeds as the daughter of a Russian emigre jeweller. Her life was transformed when she heard Rachmaninov perform at Leeds Town Hall in the 1920s - and her love affair with the piano has lasted eight decades. As a concert pianist, highlights included a Proms performance during the Second World War with Sir Henry Wood at the Royal Albert Hall, before returning to her home city of Leeds with husband Geoffrey de Kaiser to become a piano teacher. However, being known as the 'local piano teacher' was never enough and with the help of her lifelong friend, local aristocrat Marion Harewood, they set up the first Leeds International Piano Competition in 1963.

Fifty years on Dame Fanny remains the mastermind behind 'The Leeds', a competition regarded as the most coveted prize in the piano world and having first showcased such talents as Radu Lupu, Murray Perahia, Andras Schiff and Noriko Ogawa. Outspoken, passionate and still full of vitality, Waterman shares her views on teaching, the great pianists of the past and present, music and love. When asked if she would ever retire from her hectic schedule this remarkable nonagenarian simply replies 'No, never!'.


SUN 20:30 Leeds International Piano Competition (m00103dz)
2021

Petroc Trelawny presents highlights from the finals of the 2021 Leeds International Piano Competition. Five outstanding young pianists, from around the globe, must each perform a concerto to win 'The Leeds' gold medal, one of the world’s most coveted music prizes.


SUN 22:00 How to Build... (b00syt1w)
Series 1

A Nuclear Submarine

Fourteen years in the making and costing over a billion pounds, the Astute nuclear submarine is one of the most technologically advanced machines in the world, and for over a year the BBC filmed its construction inside one of the most secure and secret places in the country.

An amazing piece of British engineering or a controversial waste of tax payers' money? This documentary allows viewers to make up their own minds.

Among many of the workers, the film features Erin Browne, a 19-year-old apprentice electrician who wires up the boat; Commander Paul Knight, responsible for the safety of the nuclear reactor; and Derek Parker, whose job involves moving massive pieces of the submarine that weigh hundreds of tons into position before the welding team join them together.

Amazing computer graphics take us inside the construction of the submarine itself, giving a blueprint of the design, the life support systems and the weaponry, and help illustrate the areas that national security precluded filming in.

The story also takes a dramatic turn when an unforeseen event means the submarine has to sail into the open sea - for the first time - during one of the wettest and windiest weekends of the year.


SUN 23:00 Seven Ages of Starlight (p00yb434)
This is the epic story of the stars, and how discovering their tale has transformed our own understanding of the universe.

Once we thought the sun and stars were gods and giants. Now we know, in a way, our instincts were right. The stars do all have their own characters, histories and role in the cosmos. Not least, they played a vital part in creating us.

There are old, bloated red giants, capable of gobbling up planets in their orbit, explosive deaths - supernovae - that forge the building blocks of life and black holes, the most mysterious stellar tombstones. And, of course, stars in their prime, like our own sun.

Leading astronomers reveal how the grandest drama on tonight is the one playing above our heads.


SUN 00:30 Vienna: Empire, Dynasty and Dream (b0851kfd)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 on Saturday]


SUN 01:30 Classic Quartets at the BBC (b08jq8ll)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]


SUN 02:30 How to Build... (b00syt1w)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 today]



MONDAY 27 SEPTEMBER 2021

MON 19:00 Great British Railway Journeys (b09p34wr)
Series 9

York to Frizinghall

Armed with his Edwardian Bradshaw's guide, Michael Portillo conducts important research in an historic tea room, built by an Edwardian immigrant to the city of York. Research of a more sombre kind leads Michael to the roots of our modern welfare state in the work of an early 20th-century Quaker investigator, whose family manufactured chocolate.

Next stop is Leeds, where Michael discovers the city's textile heritage, which relied in Edwardian times on a group of skilled Jewish immigrants to take it forward. Michael learns how some of the big names built their empires in Leeds and measures up to a footballing legend. At Bradford Grammar School, Michael hears the story of a talented Edwardian student who became a famous composer and enjoys one of his works, sung by a music pupil of today.


MON 19:30 The Joy of Painting (m00103d9)
Series 4

Autumn Palette

Venture down a well-travelled pathway with Bob Ross into a gorgeous autumn landscape of glorious colours, a weather-worn fence and trees.


MON 20:00 Secrets of the Museum (m000frqp)
Series 1

Episode 4

Inside every museum is a hidden world, and now, for the first time, cameras have been allowed behind the scenes at the world-famous Victoria and Albert Museum in London.

Only a small part of the two million wonders in the collection are on display to the public. But in this new series we go behind closed doors to explore all the treasures of art, design and performance the museum has to offer.

This week, we meet curators and conservators trying to preserve some of the finest examples of craftsmanship in the world.

Deep in the museum stores, curator Keith is trying to breathe life into an object of extraordinary craftmanship – an original Stormtrooper costume from the Star Wars sequel The Empire Strikes Back, from 1980. He’s hoping to exhibit the costume in a refresh of the V&A’s Theatre and Performance Display. But when he and conservator Susana unpack the moulded-plastic body parts, a key piece is missing – the Stormtrooper’s helmet.

Unable to display the costume without the helmet, Keith contacts a group of prop-makers who specialise in making replicas of movie costumes. The prop-makers agree to make a replica of the original helmet, using the exact techniques pioneered by the Star Wars costume department in the 1970s. But the challenge for Keith’s prop-makers is to turn this box-fresh helmet into an authentic match with the original decades-old costume.

Meanwhile, two of the largest galleries in the museum, the Cast Courts, are undergoing a renovation. These galleries are home to one of the world’s largest collections of 19th century hand-made casts - replicas of some of Europe’s finest sculptures. As few people then could afford the luxury of travel, art works could be brought to them with these painstaking replicas. Now it’s the job of senior sculpture conservator Victor to give these precious casts a facelift.

The final part of the epic renovation is cleaning a piece representing the Assumption of the Virgin, made in 1890. This plaster cast depicts the Virgin Mary ascending to heaven surrounded by angels. It’s a perfect plaster copy of one of a number of 14th-century sculptured panels made for the exterior of the Notre Dame cathedral in Paris. Now the plaster cast will be given its first deep clean since it was made 130 years ago.

The importance of these fragile replicas is brought into sharp focus with news of a terrible fire at Notre Dame. Although many artefacts are destroyed there is relief that the original cast of the Assumption of Virgin has been spared.

The news highlights the importance of preserving the V&A’s delicate cast. But Victor and fellow conservator Adriana discover a crack in its structure, that could prove fatal. Over hours of careful conservation, the team work on supporting the fracture - but the real test will be when they try to hang it back on the gallery wall.

In the Rock and Pop archive, curator Vicky is examining a photograph donated after the V&A’s David Bowie Exhibition. It’s a rare print, known as ‘David Bowie is watching you’, taken in 1973 as part of a series of photos by photographer Brian Duffy to become the album cover for Aladdin Sane.
The photograph was donated by the photographer’s son Chris. Vicky wants to know more about the print and invites Chris to the museum. Chris remembers visiting the photoshoot when he was a teenager, and meeting David Bowie.

In paper conservation, senior preservations conservator Simon is dealing with a very different kind of photograph – a 65-metre-long Victorian photograph of the medieval Bayeux Tapestry. This unique photograph was commissioned by the British Government in 1871 and was one of the V&A’s first interactive exhibits, displayed on a moving roller so audiences could spool through the panorama of the battle.

The last time it was on display was over 100 years ago. But years of manhandling have taken their toll. Now, the rolled-up photograph has been summoned to be part a new V&A exhibition, filled with new images by legendary fashion photographer Tim Walker, inspired by objects from the museum’s collection. But first conservator Simon needs to assess if the fragile piece is robust enough to be displayed again.

In the Rapid Response Department, curators Corinna and Johanna feel there is one important everyday object missing from their 20th-century collection.

They have been offered a very British piece of graphic design – a road sign, made in 1961 by graphic designer Margaret Calvert. Before collecting the sign, they visit Margaret at her home, filled with familiar road signs…

We also follow fashion curator Oriole, who alongside fellow curator Susan, is on a mission to acquire a piece representing the best of contemporary British craft. They visit fashion designers Justin Thornton and Thea Bregazzi, known as Preen, at their workshop. Oriole and Susan have the difficult task of choosing one single piece to represent the designers.


MON 21:00 Inside America's Treasure House: The Met (m00103dc)
Series 1

Episode 3

Autumn, 2020. The Met is open, but in a safe and very limited way. Visitor income helps keep the museum running, so times are hard. Since it was founded, like so many US arts institutions, the Metropolitan has largely been funded by benefactors. We visit Clyde B Jones III, the executive matching modern donors to exhibitions and events as the economy tanks.

Jones explains how hard it is to keep up the social links that the system depends on. He has, nonetheless, found it possible to drum up millions of dollars for the imminent remodelling of the Arts of Africa, Oceania and the Americas galleries. Currently, the need to shade the massive south-facing glass wall that illuminates the rooms means artefacts are not shown to their best advantage. Now he must find the funds to replace those walls.

Some give money, but others donate items from their own collections. We meet curator Jaysen Dobney of the musical instruments department as a rock musician and long-term patron asks for help with his problem, a collection of 403 guitars. Dobney is only too happy to have a promised gift of a 60s Gibson Les Paul TV Special.

Every department is currently calling on its supporters. In Textile Conservation, Head Curator Janina Poskrobko makes breakfast for a visiting professor. We've been with her since dawn, at home in Staten island, saying her prayers. She must find the money for an unfunded project - the rescue of an Ottoman robe. We observe as she subtly raises the issue while showing him a Renaissance cape. The professor is a textile expert and passionate supporter. Might he dig deep?

The Costume Institute is normally funded by stars who pay to attend the famous Met Gala fashion event, but this year they're economising. The 2020 Ball is cancelled, so 2019's proceeds must be used carefully. We follow the building of About Time as the set undergoes construction and the garments are installed.

Meanwhile, fashionable friends are stepping up. In Detroit, America's most flamboyant private collector of couture, Sandy Shrier, opens her home, and her heart, to explain why the Met is so important to her - and why last year she donated 160 garments amassed over seven decades of collecting.

In London, we are with top-end cobbler Georgina Goodman, who has just taken a call from the Met, asking for help bolstering their huge accessories archive. In the mid-2000s, Goodman attracted the attention of couturier Alexander McQueen. Packing up her sketches, the designer reveals how she was charged with interpreting Lee McQueen's footwear visions, including the iconic armadillo shoe. The Met has a pair, but is keen to acquire Goodman's original sketches.

As Covid keeps visitor numbers low, every ticket purchased helps keep the lights on and the building open. With no tourist trade, the Met is back to where it began in 1870, catering for locals. Citizens are not obliged to pay for entry into the museum, but Naqiya Hussein has bought two tickets. She's joining the many young people, newly unlocked but making only tentative outings, on a Met Date. Her scientist beau Cyril and she enjoy the tranquillity of solitude in her favourite galleries, though the camera is ever present. A date here is a litmus test of love. If the million objects on display can't spark a conversation, it's never going to work.

Perhaps the greatest donation is a lifetime of work at the Met - or the possibility at least. We are with Vietnamese-American student Kevin Pham as he visits the medieval department at the Met Cloisters in northern Manhattan. He's one of 120 postgraduate interns, paid through a new $5M donation to study with a view to a possible career in the museum. The Met wants to build a new and diverse staff, and must succeed if it is to remain relevant. As Kevin says, the museum can't be the preserve of bearded old white men.

At Halloween, About Time opens. The annual Costume Institute show is always a blockbuster that draws in the crowds, and now the stakes are high. The newly reopened Met must show that it is still the place for fashion as art. This anniversary year, a mirrored gallery, packed with black garments from across 150 years, points to objects that are timeless in an industry now driven by constant change. We're with fashionistas as they thrill to the show, noting that even on a budget, Curator Andrew Bolton has managed to make a splash.

Philanthropy has always kept the Met alive and vibrant, and as the nights draw in, there's disquiet about the upcoming US election and its effect on giving. A change of administration, or the return of President Trump, might warp the delicate web of tax breaks and write-offs that underpin the whole arts world. With the fall-out of Covid and the tumult of Black Lives Matter in mind, CEO Dan Weiss gives a dark assessment of America's contribution to history. And on the night of the election itself, Head of Communications Ken Weine worries about money, staff and the fate of culture itself.


MON 22:00 Storyville (b05nyyd9)
Masterspy of Moscow: George Blake

He said he was doing God's work on earth, but betrayed his colleagues to the KGB. Sentenced to 42 years in jail, George Blake escaped from Wormwood Scrubs five years later and fled to the Soviet Union. George Carey's film follows the strange life of this enigmatic traitor, tracking down people who knew him, and ending with an unexpected encounter in the woods outside Moscow.


MON 23:30 Secret Agent Selection: WW2 (b09zg6f4)
Series 1

Episode 1

The students face SOE's demanding selection process. Known as the Student Assessment Board, this intense four-day course puts the students through a series of physical and mental tests, all with the aim of finding out who has the raw talent required to progress to full training. The programme charts the beginning of SOE, which started with a handful of agents, in an organisation determined to find a way back into Nazi-controlled Europe.


MON 00:30 Art of America (b017sryq)
What Lies Beneath

In the final part of his United States odyssey, Andrew Graham-Dixon feels the pulse of contemporary America. Beginning in Levittown - the first mass-produced suburb - Andrew uncovers the dark side of post-war consumerism and the role artists have played in challenging the status quo.

He visits New York's Metropolitan Museum to see the most subversive artwork of 1950s America, Jasper Johns's White Flag. Pop art defined the 1960s and Andy Warhol was its greatest artist. Andrew examines Warhol's soup can paintings, meets his former lover Billy Name and interviews one of the last great surviving pop artists, James Rosenquist.

He travels west down the open road, exploring its art, arriving in Los Angeles, an artificial dream world that has inspired the graphic style of Ed Ruscha and the city's own unique contribution to 20th century design - Googie architecture.

Back east, Andrew visits the home of one of his favourite 20th century artists, the late Philip Guston, and gets a private view of his work. He drops into the studio of Jeff Koons to learn how the enfant terrible of contemporary art continues to challenge the boundaries of American taste. Finally, he explores the impact 9/11 has had on America and how a new generation of artists, such as Matthew Day Jackson, have made sense of this tragic event.


MON 01:30 Great British Railway Journeys (b09p34wr)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]


MON 02:00 Inside America's Treasure House: The Met (m00103dc)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 today]


MON 03:00 Secrets of the Museum (m000frqp)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]



TUESDAY 28 SEPTEMBER 2021

TUE 19:00 Great British Railway Journeys (b09p35h9)
Series 9

Sheffield to Nantwich

With his Edwardian railway guidebook tucked under his arm, Michael Portillo is in the steel city of Sheffield, where he discovers an enormous and beautifully preserved early 20th-century steam engine. At 400 tonnes and packing 12,000 horsepower, it produced armour plate for the most feared warship of the Royal Navy.

Heading south into Nottinghamshire, Michael reaches what was once the most successful coalfield in Europe. He follows his Bradshaw's guide to the former pit village of Eastwood, where he finds the birthplace of a man then called Bert, better known today as DH Lawrence. The author of Women in Love and Lady Chatterley's Lover opened the eyes of Edwardian society to the life of the working class and challenged their attitudes towards sexuality.

Michael changes gear at Langley Mill, where at the turn of the 20th century a forward-thinking entrepreneur founded a bicycle company which is still at the cutting edge of cycling today. Michael finishes with a dip in the briny at Nantwich.


TUE 19:30 The Joy of Painting (m00103f5)
Series 4

Cypress Swamp

Bob Ross shares a rare glimpse of beauty, hidden far from the highways of the south, of lovely wetlands teaming with moss-clad trees and birds.


TUE 20:00 The Good Life (p02qydvr)
Series 3

The Early Birds

After the Leadbetters reach the end of their tether with the Goods' crack-of-dawn activities, Tom and Barbara search for new ways to design their schedule.


TUE 20:30 Porridge (b00787tv)
Series 3

Pardon Me

The betting stakes are high when the parole board sits and old Blanco is the odds-on favourite to be freed. But when freedom is offered to him Blanco, who has been in prison for 17 years for a crime he always claimed he didn't commit, refuses. Fletcher, seeing how adamant his old friend is, decides to help out.


TUE 21:00 Kim Philby - His Most Intimate Betrayal (b0406w88)
Episode 1

In programme one of this two-part special, best-selling author Ben Macintyre explores the truth behind the most famous double agent in modern history - Harold Kim Philby.

He argues that Philby has become a caricature of the gentleman spy, obscuring the fact that Philby was a ruthless killer, who betrayed everyone around him.

The key to Philby's success and his survival, Macintyre explains, lay in his friendship with a man that history has largely forgotten - Nicholas Elliott. Elliott was Philby's colleague in MI6 who befriended him, defended him, and unwittingly supplied him with secrets until he discovered the truth.

This is the remarkable tale of two friends and two spies, each working on opposite sides in the Cold War.


TUE 22:00 Kim Philby - His Most Intimate Betrayal (b0406y95)
Episode 2

In the second episode of this two-part special, the net begins to close on Philby.

Summoned back to London from Washington, he faces interrogation, as suspicion grows that he is a Soviet agent, working within MI6. His old friend and colleague in MI6, Nicholas Elliott, defends his friend's reputation, insisting that he is innocent.

For the next 12 years Philby, with Elliott's unwitting help, manages to charm and bluff his way out of every accusation. Then, in January 1963, Philby's luck runs out as the two friends meet for the final time and Elliott demands the truth.

This is the remarkable tale of two friends and two spies, each working on opposite sides in the Cold War.


TUE 23:00 Timewatch (b00791l6)
2006-2007

The Princess Spy

In 1943 Noor Inayat Khan became the first woman wireless operator to be sent into war torn France. It was the most dangerous job in SOE (Churchill's secret army) and she was not expected to survive more than 6 weeks. The daughter of an Indian mystic and a writer of children's stories in pre-war Paris, she was a curious choice for a secret agent. But London was desperate. They had a traitor in their midst and that summer Noor would become their vital link with Nazi-occupied Paris. Betrayed, captured and tortured, Noor revealed nothing of SOE before she was executed. Awarded the George Cross for her bravery, Timewatch tells the story of the Princess Spy.


TUE 23:50 Secret Agent Selection: WW2 (b0b060kj)
Series 1

Episode 2

In episode two, training proper begins as the students are schooled in guns, explosives and silent killing techniques - skills which came together and helped SOE to pull off one of the most audacious assassinations of World War Two. The students need to show a calm head and a killer instinct when handling real weapons, but not everyone makes the grade.


TUE 00:50 Secret Agent Selection: WW2 (b0b110v4)
Series 1

Episode 3

The students are dropped in the middle of the remote Scottish Highlands, where they learn survival skills required for life in the field. Training in the same mountains as 1940s agents, they are schooled in the same techniques which prepared a group of agents tasked with putting a stop to Hitler's atomic ambitions in Norway. In a freezing Scottish lake and on a sheer rock face, some of the students are forced to find previously-untapped reserves of mental and physical strength, but not everyone makes it to the Special Operation Executive's famous 'finishing school'.


TUE 01:50 Great British Railway Journeys (b09p35h9)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]


TUE 02:20 Inside America's Treasure House: The Met (m00103dc)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Monday]



WEDNESDAY 29 SEPTEMBER 2021

WED 19:00 Women's FA Cup (m00103fp)
2020/21

Arsenal v Tottenham

Reshmin Chowdhury presents the Women’s FA Cup quarter-final match between 14-time FA Cup winners Arsenal and their north London rivals Tottenham Hotspur, live from Boreham Wood.


WED 21:30 Tornado - the 100mph Steam Engine (b08rb16k)
The new A1 class steam engine Tornado tries to achieve 100mph on the main line. The secret speed attempt will be made in the dead of night. If it tops the ton it will be the first time in 50 years that steam has gone this fast. Tornado was built over two decades and financed by enthusiasts who want to show steam has a viable future on Britain's railways.


WED 22:00 The Blob: A Genius without a Brain (m00103fr)
Not an animal, nor a plant, nor fungi, the blob is one giant single cell whose amazing capacities are leading pioneer scientists to a very new world – that of brainless intelligence.

More commonly known as slime mould, this extraordinary one-billion-year-old organism challenges our understanding of what constitutes intelligent life.

Blending science fiction, the beauty of nature and cutting-edge science, this fascinating documentary follows top experts from Europe, Japan and the US on a scientific investigation into this most surprising organism to explore the very roots of cognition.


WED 22:50 Premium Bond with Mark Gatiss and Matthew Sweet (p02sx893)
In impeccable evening dress, Mark Gatiss and Matthew Sweet ponder the Bonds we've seen on screen since Dr No in 1962 and ask - which 007 is the best? To date, six actors have portrayed British Secret Service agent James Bond. Was Sean Connery impossible to surpass? Was George Lazenby really that bad? Was Live and Let Die really a blaxploitation movie in disguise? Gatiss and Sweet consider these and many other questions, and raise a martini in honour of their premium Bond.


WED 23:45 Secret Agent Selection: WW2 (b0b1z88n)
Series 1

Episode 4

In episode four, the students are transported to a British Stately home - this is SOE Finishing School - a 1940s spy school which prepared agents for a life living undercover in enemy territory. They learn to pick locks, send coded messages and see some real SOE gadgets, before facing an intense mock interrogation designed to prepare agents for the eventuality of capture, torture and possible execution.


WED 00:45 Arcadia (m00038l1)
A provocative and poetic exploration of Britain’s relationship with the land, crafted from quirky, surprising, beautiful and revealing archive from the last hundred years.

Set to a score from Adrian Utley from Portishead and Will Gregory from Goldfrapp.


WED 02:05 Tornado - the 100mph Steam Engine (b08rb16k)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:30 today]


WED 02:35 Kim Philby - His Most Intimate Betrayal (b0406w88)
[Repeat of broadcast at 21:00 on Tuesday]



THURSDAY 30 SEPTEMBER 2021

THU 19:00 Great British Railway Journeys (b09p37mp)
Series 9

Liverpool to Dolgarrog

Michael Portillo's Edwardian railway guide takes him to the city of Liverpool, where King Edward VII had recently laid the foundation stone for a grand Anglican cathedral at the top of St James's Mount. The young winner of a competition to design the building was a Roman Catholic from a family of architects. His name was Giles Gilbert Scott. Michael takes a trip down his own memory lane in Maghull on the outskirts of Liverpool, where he discovers a childhood favourite - a miniature tank engine with three carriages in dark red - made by Frank Hornby.

Heading west to Wales, Michael skirts the coast to reach Abergele, where he visits the romantic ruined Gwrych Castle. He learns the story of its fervently Welsh countess, the last of the Lloyds of Gwyrch, and admires the dedication to her legacy of a young man devoted to restoring the estate. In Dolgarrog, in the mountains of Snowdonia, Michael rides the waves with a Welsh national surfing champion in a former aluminium smelting works founded in the early 20th century.


THU 19:30 The Joy of Painting (m00103fk)
Series 4

Downstream View

Join Bob Ross for a very distant view of a lovely snow-covered mountain, seen from a quiet spot by a smooth-stoned river.


THU 20:00 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 21:00 Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy (m000m7yz)
Film adaptation of John Le Carre's Cold War novel about a retired MI6 agent who must track down a Soviet mole within the British intelligence service's ranks.


THU 23:00 Mark Kermode's Secrets of Cinema (m000gwzj)
Series 2

Spies

Mark Kermode explores one of the most distinctive and popular genres of all. The spy movie plays on our paranoia and feeds our fears as well as fulfilling our fantasies of secret missions and special skills. It has also given us perhaps the most famous hero in all of cinema – James Bond.

Spy movies capture a world not of black and white but shades of grey. But if the morality is often ambiguous, the genre is full of tried and tested conventions. Mark opens up the cinematic agent’s essential toolkit, from the spy boss to the mysterious McGuffin, surveillance techniques to a striking set of opening titles, and he traces the development of the genre from its earliest days.

Whether you’re a blockbuster superspy or a compromised cold warrior, Mark reveals all you need to survive in the murky yet thrilling world of big screen espionage.


THU 00:00 Secret Agent Selection: WW2 (b0b2s8pq)
Series 1

Episode 5

By episode five, eight of the original 14 students have fallen by the wayside, leaving just six survivors to undertake SOE's final scheme - a 24-hour practice mission bringing together all the skills they have learned during training.


THU 01:00 Motherland (p09gvb8k)
Series 3

Episode 5

Amanda’s PTA charity FUNraiser is doubling up as her birthday celebration, meaning everyone is dragged into a big event.

Mixing sponsored cycling with Anne’s lethal cocktails results in a night of high drama and big revelations. Julia is ready to call time on her marriage to Paul and run off with builder Garry; Liz is thrown by the arrival of an unexpected visitor; and Meg rides high on her cancer all clear.

Meanwhile, Kevin’s attempts to clear the air with Amanda just make everything worse, and a put-upon Anne finally loses her rag.


THU 01:30 Great British Railway Journeys (b09p37mp)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]


THU 02:00 Timeshift (b06l0v9d)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


THU 03:00 Kim Philby - His Most Intimate Betrayal (b0406y95)
[Repeat of broadcast at 22:00 on Tuesday]



FRIDAY 01 OCTOBER 2021

FRI 19:00 ... Sings Bond (b01p97hr)
The BBC archive uncovers performances of some of the finest Bond theme tunes from its top secret vaults and pays a TV tribute to a classic British icon.

Prepare to be shaken and stirred by Tina Turner and her GoldenEye, Dame Shirley Bassey with her Diamonds, Tom Jones rampaging with Thunderball, Matt Monro romancing in Russia, The Fun Lovin' Criminals taking all the time in the world, Adele's sky-high contribution to 007 and much more from Sheena Easton, Garbage, a-ha and others, from all manner of BBC shows.

Sit back and marvel at our selection of the greatest Bond songs in history - a tuxedo and a dry vodka martini is optional.


FRI 20:00 Top of the Pops (m00103fv)
Jakki Brambles present the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 6 September 1991 and featuring The Prodigy, Salt-N-Pepa, Martika and Utah Saints.


FRI 20:30 Top of the Pops (m00103fx)
Simon Mayo present the pop chart programme, first broadcast on 12 September 1991 and featuring Bizarre Inc, Marc Bolan & T. Rex, Roxette, The Stone Roses, Crystal Waters and Cliff Richard.


FRI 21:00 Shirley Bassey at the BBC (b01psct4)
Forever sequinned, stylish and sassy, Dame Shirley Bassey, one of Britain's all-time great voices, turned 76 in January 2013.

She began her rise to fame as a 16-year-old singer in 1953 and 60 years on she is still going as strong as ever. Join us as we celebrate Dame Shirley's birthday and her remarkable career, taking a trip down memory lane to uncover some of her finest performances from the vaults of the BBC.

From early BBC appearances on Show of the Week, The Shirley Bassey Show, via the Royal Albert Hall, Glastonbury 2007 and right up to her recent jaw dropping show at the Electric Proms. This is a compilation of some of Dame Shirley's classic performances, taking in iconic songs such as The Performance of My Life, Goldfinger, Big Spender and Diamonds Are Forever.

Producer: Sam Bridger


FRI 22:00 Diamonds are Forever: The Don Black Songbook (b03mppht)
Don Black, the lyricist behind a huge collection of popular hit songs including Diamonds are Forever, Born Free, Ben and Love Changes Everything, shares some fascinating insights into his life's work with Michael Grade, in between live performances of his songs by Brian May, Eliza Doolittle, Frances Ruffelle, Gary Wilmot, Gregory Porter, Katie Melua, Kerry Ellis, Laura Wright, Marc Almond, Maria Friedman, Marti Webb, Michael Ball, Only Men Aloud and Richard Stilgoe. Recorded at the Royal Festival Hall in London.


FRI 23:30 The Old Grey Whistle Test (m00103fz)
Billy Joel in Concert

From 1978, Billy Joel performs songs from his album The Stranger, including, Movin' Out (Anthony's Song), Just the Way You Are and Only the Good Die Young.


FRI 00:15 Classic Albums (b08pg5tq)
Carly Simon: No Secrets

Carly Simon is one of the most influential singer-songwriters of her generation. The classic album that made her a global star was No Secrets, which included the enigmatic song You're So Vain. The album spent five weeks at number one in the US chart.

In this new interview Carly ties together her life and work on No Secrets - she is at her most honest, sometimes defiant, but with a wit and wisdom that comes from her rich and turbulent life. She tells of how the second single from the album, Right Thing to Do, was a refreshingly realistic love song, choosing to ignore her lover's problems. That lover was James Taylor; Carly wrote the lyrics on a plane after looking over at James and thinking 'there's nothing you can do to turn me away.'

The album's title track, We Have No Secrets, struck a chord with a generation trying to reconcile honesty in relationships with the emotional consequences that followed. Carly had a number of highly public affairs in the early 70s and her experience fed into the album's most famous song, the global hit You're So Vain. She performs the missing fourth verse on the piano, the first time she has ever sung it along with the melody.

Carly tells of how her producer made her do the vocal track on 'Vain' over and over, and how Mick Jagger ended up on backing vocals. The film has access to the master tapes and we hear Jagger's vocal track. Her producer reveals Carly was 'so turned on' after singing with Jagger that she recorded the whole vocal again - and that is the one on the album.

Finally, the film includes footage of Taylor Swift and Carly Simon performing You're So Vain together, and extracts from an interview where Swift herself talks about her love for the song.


FRI 01:15 Top of the Pops (m00103fv)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:00 today]


FRI 01:45 Top of the Pops (m00103fx)
[Repeat of broadcast at 20:30 today]


FRI 02:15 ... Sings Bond (b01p97hr)
[Repeat of broadcast at 19:00 today]




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

... Sings Bond 19:00 FRI (b01p97hr)

... Sings Bond 02:15 FRI (b01p97hr)

Arcadia 00:45 WED (m00038l1)

Art of America 00:30 MON (b017sryq)

Brazil with Michael Palin 20:00 SAT (b01nv9ch)

Classic Albums 00:15 FRI (b08pg5tq)

Classic Quartets at the BBC 19:00 SUN (b08jq8ll)

Classic Quartets at the BBC 01:30 SUN (b08jq8ll)

Dame Fanny Waterman: A Lifetime in Music 20:00 SUN (b01nlms7)

Diamonds are Forever: The Don Black Songbook 22:00 FRI (b03mppht)

Great British Railway Journeys 19:00 MON (b09p34wr)

Great British Railway Journeys 01:30 MON (b09p34wr)

Great British Railway Journeys 19:00 TUE (b09p35h9)

Great British Railway Journeys 01:50 TUE (b09p35h9)

Great British Railway Journeys 19:00 THU (b09p37mp)

Great British Railway Journeys 01:30 THU (b09p37mp)

How to Build... 22:00 SUN (b00syt1w)

How to Build... 02:30 SUN (b00syt1w)

Inside America's Treasure House: The Met 21:00 MON (m00103dc)

Inside America's Treasure House: The Met 02:00 MON (m00103dc)

Inside America's Treasure House: The Met 02:20 TUE (m00103dc)

Kim Philby - His Most Intimate Betrayal 21:00 TUE (b0406w88)

Kim Philby - His Most Intimate Betrayal 22:00 TUE (b0406y95)

Kim Philby - His Most Intimate Betrayal 02:35 WED (b0406w88)

Kim Philby - His Most Intimate Betrayal 03:00 THU (b0406y95)

Leeds International Piano Competition 20:30 SUN (m00103dz)

Mark Kermode's Secrets of Cinema 23:00 THU (m000gwzj)

Motherland 00:30 SAT (p07mvr9b)

Motherland 01:00 SAT (p07mvrqr)

Motherland 01:30 SAT (p07mvsgm)

Motherland 02:00 SAT (p07mvszc)

Motherland 02:30 SAT (p07mvtbr)

Motherland 03:00 SAT (p09gv90z)

Motherland 01:00 THU (p09gvb8k)

Porridge 20:30 TUE (b00787tv)

Premium Bond with Mark Gatiss and Matthew Sweet 22:50 WED (p02sx893)

Secret Agent Selection: WW2 23:30 MON (b09zg6f4)

Secret Agent Selection: WW2 23:50 TUE (b0b060kj)

Secret Agent Selection: WW2 00:50 TUE (b0b110v4)

Secret Agent Selection: WW2 23:45 WED (b0b1z88n)

Secret Agent Selection: WW2 00:00 THU (b0b2s8pq)

Secrets of the Museum 20:00 MON (m000frqp)

Secrets of the Museum 03:00 MON (m000frqp)

Seven Ages of Starlight 23:00 SUN (p00yb434)

Shirley Bassey at the BBC 21:00 FRI (b01psct4)

Storyville 23:05 SAT (b0btc456)

Storyville 22:00 MON (b05nyyd9)

The Blob: A Genius without a Brain 22:00 WED (m00103fr)

The Good Life 20:00 TUE (p02qydvr)

The Joy of Painting 19:30 MON (m00103d9)

The Joy of Painting 19:30 TUE (m00103f5)

The Joy of Painting 19:30 THU (m00103fk)

The King's Choice 21:00 SAT (m00095lv)

The Old Grey Whistle Test 23:30 FRI (m00103fz)

Timeshift 20:00 THU (b06l0v9d)

Timeshift 02:00 THU (b06l0v9d)

Timewatch 23:00 TUE (b00791l6)

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy 21:00 THU (m000m7yz)

Top of the Pops 20:00 FRI (m00103fv)

Top of the Pops 20:30 FRI (m00103fx)

Top of the Pops 01:15 FRI (m00103fv)

Top of the Pops 01:45 FRI (m00103fx)

Tornado - the 100mph Steam Engine 21:30 WED (b08rb16k)

Tornado - the 100mph Steam Engine 02:05 WED (b08rb16k)

Vienna: Empire, Dynasty and Dream 19:00 SAT (b0851kfd)

Vienna: Empire, Dynasty and Dream 00:30 SUN (b0851kfd)

Women's FA Cup 19:00 WED (m00103fp)