Sky Arts to resurrect The South Bank Show in 2012

Melvyn Bragg will reprise his role as presenter in the new series of the culture programme

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The South Bank Show is to make a comeback on Sky Arts next year, following its cancellation by ITV in 2009.

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The series, hosted by Melvyn Bragg, explored the work of the greatest living artists, musicians, writers and performers, running for 33 years before getting the axe two years ago.

Sky Arts has ordered a six-part series of hour-long shows with Bragg once again presenting.

The channel televised the South Bank Awards in January, followed by a series of documentaries about the winners. The awards will return to Sky Arts next year along with the new run of The South Bank Show.

Sky Art’s channel director, James Hunt, said: “The South Bank Show is synonymous with top quality, engaging and entertaining arts programming.”

Melvyn Bragg said: “I worked with Sky Arts earlier in the year for the South Bank Sky Arts Awards and the winners’ films, and it was a very enjoyable partnership.”

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Sky Arts is to triple its annual budget next year and will move into the entertainment category on the EPG of Sky users’ set-top boxes.