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The BBC announces significant new TV commissions as we reshape our Arts and Music content teams to drive bigger reach and impact across the UK.

BBC Two will increase its resources for arts and music, whilst BBC Four becomes the home of arts and music performance and will bring together collections of the most distinctive content from the BBC’s rich archive. The BBC will also open up its entire BBC Local Radio network to local arts organisations.

The BBC will double investment in arts and music on BBC Two over the next two years and commit to up to eight major arts and music boxset series for BBC iPlayer each year - this will be an important element of our soon to be published annual plan.

At the core of these changes is the desire to back British creativity by supporting the wider arts and music sectors, and to showcase the best of UK talent. We want the BBC to be the UK’s creative partner.

Highlights of the new commissions include:

  • Landmark documentary series tells the history of British creativity through iconic artworks and artefacts, featuring leading UK artists; Mary Beard returns with a documentary exploration of the forbidden in art, for BBC Two

  • Impactful singles exploring the most vital works of arts and challenging cultural issues, including David Harewood on blackface minstrelsy for BBC Two

  • New opera productions for TV announced for BBC Four as BBC Lights Up - one of the biggest performance seasons in recent years involving partnerships with theatres across the UK - gets underway, signalling a new way forward with the arts and music sector as they face unprecedented challenges

  • Extraordinary profiles and biographies including Daniel Barenboim, Sir Quentin Blake, Brian Catling, Jackie Collins, Delia Derbyshire, Sir Kazuo Ishiguro, Kae Tempest and Andy Warhol and new commissions to mark key anniversaries for T.S. Eliot and James Joyce, for BBC Two

  • And at the beginning of April the BBC will hand over its entire Local Radio network to local arts organisations to showcase their content and performances

Chief Content Officer Charlotte Moore says: “The BBC has always prided itself on having a world-class arts and music offer. The BBC wants to build on that to expand the reach of Arts and Music programming and deliver even more unique, high-impact content for the public. Alongside that, we want to be Britain’s creative partner and platform for talent. I am excited about the content we have commissioned and how our new approach will help that reach more people.”


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