Thursday, November 8, 2018

Super Tuscans

From The Times Diary: 'The BBC’s arts supremo has taken to arriving at dinner parties bearing gifts from vineyards owned by celebrity friends. “Here’s a little something from Sting and Trudie’s place in Tuscany” is his latest brag.'

Sting and Al go way back: Al stood up in court in 2015, saying the Mirror had hacked his mobile in 2002, when he was on holiday in Tuscany. The Yentobs and Lord and Lady Rogers rented adjacent properties. "The Rogers were not the only family with whom we spent the summer. We were also joined by other friends such as Charles Saatchi, Nigella Lawson and Alan Rusbridger, editor of the Guardian. The musician Sting and his wife Trudie Styler owned a house nearby, at which we would stay as guests."

The writers of docu-drama W1A must have spotted a connection earlier, with one episode in 2014 featuring the immortal voice-over from David Tennant:  "Sting has phoned up Alan Yentob personally and called him an actual prick."

Broadcast connections: In 1985, Alan produced an episode of Arena given over to a musical. 'Ligmalion', starring Sting, Tim Curry, Alexei Sayle and Gary Glitter. Alan drove the 1988 Concert for Nelson Mandela's 70th Birthday, which featured Sting; and the 1991 broadcast for Kurdish Refugees, also featuring Sting. Alan hosted "Sting's Winter Songbook" on BBC1 in 2009. Trudie Styler was billed as an Executive Producer of a 2009 edition of Imagine, about great orators.

Charity connections: Trudie Styler was a major donor to Kid's Company, chaired by Alan.

Sting's wine is both organic and bio-dynamic. A case of Message In A Bottle 2015 runs at £175 for UK delivery.  Sister Moon 2014 is £216.

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