Author Archives: samiraahmed

About samiraahmed

Journalist. Writer. Broadcaster.

People had come expecting The Beatles. They saw and heard something rather more akin to Slade – Oasis at the Viper Room December 1995

I was a young BBC News Correspondent and had arrived to cover for the BBC’s LA Correspondent over Christmas. I was very jetlagged after playing Mortal Kombat II nonstop for 11 hours on the flight over. But then Jeremy Cooke … Continue reading

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Art of Persia: Episode 3: Genghis Khan to 1979

The final part of Art of Persia ends where most programmes and news about Iran begin – in the Islamic Revolution of 1979. We feature the beautiful Shiraz-born poets Saadi and Hafez and their influence on Byron Goethe and the … Continue reading

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Behind the scenes of Art of Persia – episode 2

We’ve had such amazing audience praise and enthusiasm for Episode 1 so I thought I’d give some more insights and answer a question. A number of viewers asked why we described the Cyrus Cylinder -with its declaration of tolerance for … Continue reading

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The art of making Art of Persia

It was 2016 when I was first approached about the possibility of going to Iran to make a major series about the history and art of Persia. It took 3 years to get the visas and we filmed exactly a … Continue reading

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Broadcasting Press Guild award speech 2020

This is the text of the speech I gave on winning Audio Presenter of the Year at the Broadcasting Press Guild Awards 2020 at the Guildhall, London. I’d like to add my thanks to producers and editors Jon Tolansky and … Continue reading

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Why the 90s was a bloody brilliant decade to be a young woman (despite the backlash)

Wrote this 2 years ago. It inspired 3 bonus questions on University Challenge in August 2018. (A lot has happened, like #MeToo) But posting it here Marcel Proust- style after finally seeing kd lang on her Ingenue at 25 tour … Continue reading

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The story behind How I Found My Voice

The podcast is the idea of Intelligence Squared’s Matt McAllester and was developed by producer Farah Jassat – one of the brightest young talents in broadcasting – who recently joined Intelligence Squared after several years at the BBC as a … Continue reading

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How we made The Victorian Queens of Ancient Egypt

Have you ever wondered why ancient Egypt lives in so many museum collections across Britain? Not to mention Germany, France, the USA and other former colonial powers. Why it haunts our dreams and our films and since childhood our imaginations? … Continue reading

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Two Gentlemen Sharing: Swinging London’s “race” picture

The films of Swinging London have been pored over and cherished ever since the 1960s. Which made Saturday’s rare BFI Southbank screening for Two Gentlemen Sharing with a Q&A with director and the two leading ladies all the more intriguing. … Continue reading

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Duran Duran and the glamour v grit music wars of the 80s

Ahead of tonight’s BBC4 Duran Duran night.. There is one rather interesting section of my interview with John Taylor and Roger Taylor we couldn’t quite get into the final Front Row edit on Monday night.   So here’s the transcript. … Continue reading

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