22 August 2007

With an opening lecture from Professor Phil Redmond, the weekend will see some of the world's leading thinkers from the arts, science, politics and philosophy, including Albie Sachs, Anne Owers and Siobhan Davies. In addition, Oscar-nominated film director Mike Figgis asks: "Is there too much culture?"; Philip Collins, Tony Blair's former speechwriter, delivers a talk on political communication; and Peter Butler, the surgeon due to perform Britain's first face transplant, discusses the issues surrounding the controversial procedure. Many of the events are free and you can pick up tickets at FACT's Box Office.

Abigail Appleton, Head of Speech, Radio 3, says, "BBC Radio 3 is delighted to be back in Liverpool where passionate audience involvement was such an important part of the success of the launch of Free Thinking last year. We believe this year's festival will offer audiences at the events and listeners nationally a terrific range of imaginative and original thinking around big ideas."

Free Thinking will be held at FACT, Radio Merseyside's performance space and the recently-refurbished Small Concert Room at St George's Hall. The festival will be recorded for broadcast on Radio 3 and Radio Merseyside. An evening of programmes will be broadcast on Radio 3 on Sunday 11 November, followed by a week of special programmes every night. All the broadcasts will be available to listen again at bbc.co.uk/radio3.