I’m a regular contributor to radio programmes and made my debut as a presenter of Radio 3’s Free Thinking in May 2017. I was an AHRC/BBC New Generation Thinker in 2015.
Recent TV includes:
- Channel 5’s World’s Greatest Paintings, delayed due to Covid-19 but coming soon!
- Channel 5’s Henry VIII: Rise of a Tyrant, broadcast October 2020.
- BBC2’s A Fresh Guide to Florence with Fab 5 Freddy, broadcast July 2019.
Catch me on BBC Sounds You’re Dead To Me, talking about the Borgias.
In spring 2020 I talked about The Beauty and the Terror on Start the Week for Radio 4, Free Thinking for Radio 3, and on the History Extra podcast.
Other broadcasts for BBC Radio 3 include:
- A Free Thinking discussion on writing about art with Simon Schama and Siri Hustvedt, recorded at the Hay Festival in May 2019. Listen here.
- A Free Thinking discussion on ‘Women Finding a Voice’ with Deborah Frances-Smith, Michèle Roberts, Natalie Haynes and Jeannie O’Hare, September 2018. Listen here.
- A Free Thinking discussion on the body past and present with Chantal Joffe, Penny Pepper, Sarah Goldsmith and Heather Widdows, June 2018. Listen here.
- A Free Thinking discussion, ‘All About Eve: Stories of the Fall, Pregnancy and Aphrodisiacs’, with Stephen Greenblatt, Islam Issa, Jennifer Evans and Sara Read, December 2017. Listen here.
- A Free Thinking discussion on ‘Writing Love’ with Jonathan Dollimore, Rohit Dasgupta, Peggy Reynolds and Pritpal Singh, July 2017. Listen here.
- A Free Thinking discussion on Women’s Voices in the Classical World with Colm Tóibín, Bettany Hughes and Paul Cartledge, recorded at the Hay Festival and broadcast May 2017. Listen here.
- A Sunday Feature on Monteverdi’s Women for Radio 3’s Monteverdi 450 season, May 2017. Listen here.
- An Essay on my family history in 1940s Dhaka and Kolkata, recorded at the Free Thinking Festival in Gateshead, March 2017. Listen here.
- An episode of Free Thinking on Machiavelli’s The Prince, March 2017. Listen here.
- An Essay on Renaissance gun culture, January 2017. Listen here.
Watch my BBC Arts film, The Renaissance Prince, showing some of the objects discussed in my biography of Alessandro de’ Medici.
My radio essay The Moor of Florence: A Medici Mystery was recorded at the BBC Radio 3 Free Thinking Festival and broadcast on Monday 9 November 2015. It previewed the research behind the Alessandro book.
I also talked about this research on Radio 4’s Start the Week in a discussion of poetry, race, history and implicit bias with Claudia Rankine, Amir Darwish and Jules Holroyd recorded at the Free Thinking Festival (November 2015).
I was a historical adviser on the 2015 TV show Wolf Hall (BBC2/Company Pictures). Read more here.
At the Hay Festival 2015 I talked about Cardinal Wolsey and the papal court, to mark the 500th anniversary of his promotion to the cardinalate, for a special edition of Radio 3’s Free Thinking.
Here are some of my other radio contributions:
- BBC Radio 3: Free Thinking, a review of the Artes Mundi prize show (October 2016)
- BBC Radio 3: Free Thinking, reviewing the Botticelli Reimagined show at the V&A (March 2016)
- BBC Radio 4: Making History, a mini essay on history and social media (February 2016)
- BBC Radio 4: In Our Time on the Medici (2013)
- BBC Radio 4: The Invention of Italy (2013)
- BBC Radio 4: In Our Time on the Borgias (2012)
- BBC Radio 4: Open Book, talking about my book Our Man in Rome (2012)
- BBC Radio 3: Night Waves, talking about my book Our Man in Rome (2012).
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