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27 November 2014
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Simon Schama's Power Of Art

BBC TWO Autumn 2006

Programmes S-W

Simon Schama's Power Of Art


Historian Simon Schama recounts the remarkable story of eight moments of high drama in the making of eight masterpieces:


Caravaggio's David With The Head Of Goliath; Bernini's Ecstasy Of St Theresa; Rembrandt's Conspiracy Of Claudius Civilis; Jacques-Louis David's Marat; Turner's Slave Ships With Slavers Throwing The Dead And Dying Overboard; Van Gogh's Wheatfield With Crows; Picasso's Guernica; and Mark Rothko's suite of paintings for the Seagram Building restaurant, the Four Seasons in New York.


In Power Of Art, Schama returns to the intense moment of the work's original creation. In each case the artist is backed into a corner, facing a crisis and given a chance to confound his rivals, enemies and critics one more time.


However, this is more than a story about art and artists. As Schama goes back to the birthplace of these masterpieces – to Baroque Rome, revolutionary Paris, Provence and Civil War Spain – a very modern history of the Western world unfolds.




Stephen Fry – The Secret Life Of The Manic Depressive


Stephen Fry investigates the reality of living with bipolar affective disorder – the condition more commonly known as manic depression.


Stephen, himself a manic depressive, speaks to celebrities and others not in the public eye who live with the condition.


The programmes show how the condition can affect anyone – accountants, Hollywood actors, famous comedians, a journalist, a former naval commander, a superstar singer, single mums and a sportsman.


They all speak frankly about how manic depression has affected them in their day-to-day lives. The documentary reveals just how debilitating the condition can be and looks at the devastating consequences it can have for sufferers, their friends and their families.






It is 50 years since one of the most controversial, mythologised and pivotal episodes of the 20th century – the Suez Crisis.


When the Suez Canal Company was nationalised it culminated in Anglo-French and Israeli military action in the autumn of 1956 and the downfall of British Prime Minister Sir Anthony Eden.


Suez takes a comprehensive look at one of the key turning points of modern history.


The series reveals the dramatic personal stories unfolding against the backdrop of the Cold War, the end of the British Empire and the making of the modern Middle East.


With access to those involved in the political manoeuvring and military campaigns, Suez sheds fresh light on one of the most compelling narratives of recent times.







That Mitchell & Webb Look


That Mitchell & Webb Look


Bafta-nominated comedians Robert Webb and David Mitchell (Peep Show) invite viewers into their lop-sided world of sketch comedy.


The series is peopled with strange characters, including the old-school waiter ("How dare you ask to see the wine list, you aren't even wearing a tie!"); the alcoholic snooker commentators ("A difficult pot this, let's hope he's not distracted by the thought of a beautiful pint of cooling lager"); and the anxious Nazis ("Erich, do you think we're the baddies?").


Based on the hugely successful Sony Silver Award-winning BBC Radio 4 show That Mitchell And Webb Sound, the series features a strong supporting cast including Olivia Colman (Green Wing, Look Around You), James Bachman (Hyperdrive) and Paterson Joseph (Peep Show).


It is written by Mitchell and Webb and award-winning writers John Finnemore (Dead Ringers), Sam Bain (Peep Show) and Jesse Armstrong (The Thick Of It).







Time Trumpet with Armando Iannucci


Time Trumpet With Armando Iannucci


Sick of clip shows in which Z-list celebrities try and remember The Fifty Funniest Things You Use Your Hand To Throw? No? Good.


Because Armando Iannucci brings you Time Trumpet, a clip show from the future looking back at the key events, celebrities, television shows and people of the next few years.


Imagine Question Time presented by a donkey puppet called David Dimbledonkey. Imagine a meal made of cloned bits of talking Jamie Oliver flesh that tells you how to cook it.


Comedians, including Richard Ayoade and Stewart Lee, explain the future's past to Armando Iannucci.


Throughout the series Armando is joined by much, much older versions of Anne Robinson, Charlotte Church, David Cameron, Ant and Dec, David Beckham and many more wrinkled but still familiar faces who contribute their views on past events.







Tsunami - The Aftermath


Tsunami – The Aftermath


Tim Roth, Toni Collette, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Sophie Okonedo, Hugh Bonneville, Gina McKee, Kate Ashfield, Samrit MacHielsen and Grirggiat Punpiputt star in Tsunami – The Aftermath, a fictional landmark drama of loss, survival and hope.


Based on extensive research and interviews, the drama focuses on the aftermath of the tsunami in Thailand, as seen through the eyes of a group of fictitious characters whose lives are irrevocably transformed by the disaster.


Tsunami – The Aftermath powerfully and affectingly explores the cultural and personal fault lines that can be ruptured when catastrophe strikes and how, in the face of this extraordinary tragedy, people came together from all over the world to try to help one another rebuild their lives.


It examines the lessons for humanity raised by the events, and forces us to ask how the response can be improved next time.


Filmed on location in Thailand, Tsunami – The Aftermath, is written by award-winning Abi Morgan (Bafta winner for Sex Traffic and Murder).




Why Are We Waiting?


Sir Gerry Robinson, the ruthless turnaround king of big business (and star of BBC TWO's I'll Show Them Who's Boss), is spending six months in the NHS to slash waiting times and to find a formula that really works.


At present, patients can wait up to three months to see an NHS consultant; Sir Gerry's challenge in a Yorkshire hospital is to cut that to two weeks.


Patients can also find themselves waiting up to six months for an operation and Sir Gerry is determined to reduce that figure to only four weeks.


Sir Gerry brings his management experience to bear on four areas – orthopaedics, ophthalmology, child health and endoscopy – to see if it is possible to make a real difference.





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