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Arts & Culture Podcasts

The enquiries of a butterfly mind. Rhod Sharp, Up All Night on BBC 5 Live for 26 years, hears from creatives cut adrift by Covid in the opening numbers of a podcast aimed at putting him back in the conversation.

The enquiries of a butterfly mind. Rhod Sharp, Up All Night on BBC 5 Live for 26 years, hears from creatives cut adrift by Covid in the opening numbers of a podcast aimed at putting him back in the conversation.


United Kingdom


The enquiries of a butterfly mind. Rhod Sharp, Up All Night on BBC 5 Live for 26 years, hears from creatives cut adrift by Covid in the opening numbers of a podcast aimed at putting him back in the conversation.








RHODcast #18: Simon Winchester

At high noon, April 22.1889, a remarkable thing happened. The “Unassigned Lands” of Oklahoma which had not been “assigned” by the federal government to either of the traditional owners, the Cherokee or the Chickasaw, were thrown open to settlers from the east on a first-come basis. They came “like Zulu warriors” writes Simon Winchester at the start of one of many gripping stories in his new book, Land. Is land something to be owned, or just taken care of? What’s the answer to Tolstoy’s...


RHODcast #17: Republic of Broken Windows - John Nichols

The American ultra-right is back in the shadows, or at least keeping its powder dry. Seeing a massive show of state force with 25,000 National Guard packing Washington DC, and high alerts in state capitals, the far right is picking its fights. Nor will it have the country’s Chief Executive and his enablers minding its back. RHOD SHARP looks to the Wednesday’s Inauguration of President Biden and beyond with The Nation magazine’s National Correspondent JOHN NICHOLS.


RHODcast #16: Republic of Broken Windows - Patt Morrison

In the City of the Angels, one in three people have now been tested positive for Covid. America’s Covid epicentre - by numbers - is testing its citizens at Dodgers Stadium and vaccinating them at Disneyland. From Los Angeles, LA Times senior staff writer PATT MORRISON.


RHODcast #15: Republic of Broken Windows - Ethan Zuckerman

A president bound over to the Senate for impeachment yet who said not a word about it in his latest video. What really sent President Donald Trump ballistic in the words of a senior aide quoted by Politico was the decision by Twitter to block his output permanently. ETHAN ZUCKERMAN is associate professor of public policy and information at U Mass Amherst and he has studied social media since it was in diapers (nappies to you). What does it mean to “deplatform” a president, and where do his...


RHODcast #14: Republic of Broken Windows - Rep. Seth Moulton

RHOD SHARP reports the American Insurrection of 2021 in the countdown to the inauguration of President Biden. Representative SETH MOULTON relates his own experience of the Congressional invasion and discusses Monday’s first steps by the House of Representatives towards the second impeachment trial for President Donald Trump.


RHODcast #13: Brian O’Donovan - A Christmas Celtic Sojourn

We were walking in the woods the other week when we came across this mother and daughter decorating this random little tree. We had noticed its handsome red bow before, but it was purely by chance that we came across their stealthy celebration. BRIAN O’DONOVAN has hosted the traditional music show A Celtic Sojourn on WGBH for enough years for it to qualify for a police pension. Every Christmas since 2003 he has delighted his audience with a live Christmas version. This year it’s online and...


RHODcast #12: Jim Naughtie - A Love Letter to America (part 2)

Many thanks to those who have written to express intense feelings about hearing JIM NAUGHTIE and I on a virtual park bench discussing the state of America. With a new revised edition of Jim’s memoir On the Road in the offing, we continue with some thoughts on presidents from Reagan to Trump and Jim’s regular encounters with the best of America. Including the afternoon when most of the population of a small New Hampshire town turned out to help him rescue the keys of his hire car from the...


RHODcast #11: Jim Naughtie - A Love Letter to America (part 1)

The people have spoken, and American democracy, feeling less timid now, is almost ready to exhale. JIM NAUGHTIE started visiting the USA in 1970 when one political crisis was brewing, and his coverage of the 2020 presidential campaigns for BBC Radio 4 has depicted a people in the throes of another. Throughout it all, Jim’s dedication to reporting America’s cause aright, as Hamlet tasked Horatio, has been unstinting. As has our friendship. There’s a lot to talk about, so haul on your...


RHODcast #10: Graham Stuart

Take the most popular chat show on British television and take away the red sofa, and what’s left? Still arguably the funniest TV in or out of lockdown. The Graham Norton Show’s executive producer GRAHAM STUART talks about what Michael Sheen can get up to with a torch (flashlight) and his own adventures in a pair of muddy shoes fronting one of the longest running sports shows in the world.


RHODcast #9: Margot Livesey

When a young man is found lying unconscious and motionless in a field just outside Oxford (England, that is) it’s time for Rhod to sit down in his garden (back yard) with the author of this fiction. The Boy In The Field is Margot Livesey’s ninth novel and her first and last (we hope) to be released in Covid time.


RHODcast #8: 4 Young Voters

We can’t let it pass. As committed citizens of the world, we cannot afford to seek comfort in ignorance in the final tumultuous weeks leading up to this election for the next leader of the United States. Join me and a group of four involved and articulate young Americans as we discuss the disease which has turned their world upside down. Let’s hope they don’t miss their shot in the age that is to come. There is no doubt that the world in 2016 was a different place. For a snapshot of the...


RHODcast #7: Ian McMillan

“If there's a more engaging presence on the radio than Barnsley poet Ian McMillan and a more entertaining show than Radio 3's The Verb then I don't know it” wrote Stuart Maconie in Radio Times. So when Ian and I met - virtually - for this podcast, what wasn’t to like?


RHODcast #6: William Dalrymple

Eventually the law will catch up with even the mightiest corporations. But it might take a century or two. Nothing in our modern zero-tax rated, political influence-peddling corporate world has prepared us for the breathtaking greed and recklessness of the biggest and baddest corporation, the East India Company. Look at the grand eighteenth-century palaces that dot the English and Scottish countryside and the exotic loot that adorns their interiors and consider where the money came from....


RHODcast #5: Antoni Cimolino

Between 1603 and 1613, writes Andrew Dickson in The Guardian, the Globe and other London playhouses were shut for an astonishing total of 78 months because of plague. As if that’s of any comfort to Antoni Cimolino, the artistic director of North America’s biggest classical repertory theatre company, the Stratford Festival in beautiful Stratford, Ontario. Antoni’s conversation ranges from a historical introduction to the festival and the Falstaff-sized role played by its founder, the radical...


RHODcast #4: Larry Tye

If one should assess Senator Joseph McCarthy’s success by the number of ardent Communists revealed by his investigations in the late 1940s and early 1950s to be operating in the United States government, the only possible conclusion is that he was a pathetic failure. The harm he did to individuals, and the lives his actions forced to a premature end, are yet shamefully legion. A hundred books later, along comes Larry Tye’s biography of McCarthy, Demagogue. Tye’s reading of McCarthy’s...


RHODcast #3: David Greig

The dykes and ditches of some scrubby forest in the west Perthshire hamlet of Inchtuthill are all there is of the uncompleted Roman capital of the North. Imperial politics and a sudden reversal of fortune led to the legionaries clearing out almost overnight in the late first century AD. It’s a mystery that captivated the Scottish playwright David Greig. Join us as we discuss the essence of his new play “Adventures with the Painted People”, its rapid evolution for radio, and the next steps...


RHODcast #2: Les Dennis & Tony Staveacre on “Jigsy”

The Beatles came from a very special place. The humor of Liverpool - hard-edged and seriously funny - was explored by a generation of comedians in its working mens’ (that is what they were) clubs. “Jigsy” began life as a play, the fruit of years of observation by the writer and BBC arts producer Tony Staveacre (who, fair’s fair, is also my brother-in-law). Modeled closely on Jackie Hamilton, who never really broke into television, Jigsy was brought to life by the Liverpool actor who started...


RHODcast #1: Keith Lockhart

Keith Lockhart, conductor of the Boston Pops Orchestra, talks with Rhod about the famous July 4 Pops concert in a time of coronavirus and the challenges of rehearsing an orchestra together apart. Then watch the Pops’ viral performance of John Williams’ opening anthem for the 1996 Summer Olympics, Summon The Heroes. And why not look in on the Boston Pops At Home.


Full Fathom Five | Rhod Sharp

Part of the 'Poems I almost remember' series. Produced by Right Angles.