Hay Festival trailer 2021

Each year there are a huge variety of speakers to get you get thinking and keep you entertained. Here’s a selection of the guest speakers for the 2021 festival:

Benjamin Zephaniah, Maggie Shipstead, rapper Guvna B, artist David Hockney Graham Norton, poet Gillian Clarke, Wales-born former Australian PM Julia Gillard, David Walliams, Ethan Hawke, Sjón, Marian Keyes, Nobel laureate Mario Vargas Llosa; Global Teacher Prize winner Andria Zafirakou; economist Daniel Kahneman; journalists Anne Applebaum and Caitlin Moran; philosopher Noam Chomsky; COP-26 president Alok Sharma; comedians Mel Giedroyc, Robert Webb, Frank Skinner and Graham Norton and actors Russell Tovey, Michael Sheen and Stephen Fry.

headshot of Benham Zephaniah by Adrian Pope
Graham Norton Headshot
headshot of Gillian Clarke

Hay Festival 2021 speakers include Benjamin Zephaniah, Graham Norton and Gillian Clarke

The main Hay Festival programme takes place from 26 May to Sunday 6 June 2021. Explore the full line-up and register for free on the Hay Festival website.

As well as launching the best new fiction and non-fiction books, topics for 2021 include, Reset: our post-Covid future, George Floyd: one year on, and PM300: democracy in crisis. There are sessions about science and wonder and daily festival lectures. Enjoy creative sessions for all and HAYDAYS and YA wonders for sessions for children and young adults.

Signed books from Festival speakers are available to order now from the Festival bookshop with new lines of merchandise, with proceeds supporting Hay Festival In Wales and around the world.

Hay Festival Programme for Schools 24 – 28 May 2021

There’s an annual Hay Festival Programme for Schools, with events for children in both primary and secondary school.

The 2021 programme for schools has been created especially for digital audiences, with an exciting range of sessions including poetry from Joseph Coelho and timely tips on How to Change the World with Rashmi Sirdeshpande for KS1 pupils. KS2 pupils will be invited to get creative in events with a number of speakers including Matt Lucas, Robert Winston and Jess French.

KS3 and 4 pupils will enjoy a number of dynamic events on a range of subjects including the environment and sustainability and inclusivity and wellbeing, as well as the importance of reading for pleasure. Guest speakers include Manjeet Maan (The Crossing), Phil Earle (Surrounded by Stories) and Lisa Williamson (First Day of My Life).

Hay Festival learning resources accompany the sessions and the festival’s events are added to the onto Hay Player after the events.

Get involved

Here’s how to get involved with the Hay Festival 2021:

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