sun 18/02/2018

Germany

Emil Nolde: Colour Is Life, National Gallery of Ireland review - boats, dancers, flowers

Colours had meanings for Emil Nolde. “Yellow can depict happiness and also pain. Red can mean fire, blood or roses; blue can mean silver, the sky or a storm.” As the son of a German-Frisian father and a Schleswig-Dane mother, Nolde was raised in a...

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Andreas Gursky, Hayward Gallery review - staggering scale, personal perspective

“Let the light in” has been the fundraising slogan for the two-year project to revamp and modernise the Southbank Centre’s Hayward Gallery, and adjacent Queen Elizabeth Hall and Purcell Room. And that is just what has happened, with two triumphs at...

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Das Rheingold, LPO, Jurowski, RFH review - orchestral revelations, but cursing Alberich trumps wooden Wotan

Vladmir Jurowski and the London Philharmonic Orchestra have been to the bottom of the Rhine before, but in 2015 only did a whistlestop tour of the rest of Rheingold's terrain with an extensive array of excerpts. Having worked with the players on...

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DVD/Blu-ray: Alice in the Cities

“With that film I became a filmmaker,” Wim Wenders remembers in one of the extras accompanying this new release of his 1974 Alice in the Cities. More importantly, it’s the one that convinced him that he wanted to be one. His third film after...

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theartsdesk Q&A: Composer, chansonnier and conductor HK Gruber at 75

You haven't lived until you've witnessed Viennese maverick H(einz) K(arl) Gruber – 75 today (3 January, publication day) – speech-singing, conducting and kazooing his way through his self-styled "pandemonium" Frankenstein!!. Composed for chansonnier...

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Bach Cantatas - not just for Christmas

Faced with yet another new work premiered by the Borodin Quartet, Shostakovich asked a daunting question: "but have you played all of Haydn's quartets yet?". Of course they hadn't, and felt justly rebuked. As a listener and sometime performer, I...

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The Nutcracker, Royal Ballet review - superb start to the festive dance season

For some people, the festive season starts with The Nutcracker. And as it happens, this year the opening night of Sir Peter Wright’s production for the Royal Ballet was also the performance beamed live to hundreds of cinemas around the UK and...

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Singcircle, Barbican review - veteran ensemble bids farewell with Stockhausen

STIMMUNG is always an event. Stockhausen’s score calls for a ritual as much as a performance, with six singers sitting around a spherical light on a low table, the audience voyeurs at some intimate but unexplained rite. Singcircle has been...

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DVD/Blu-ray: Lubitsch in Berlin

The German director Ernst Lubitsch (1892-1947) is best known for the insouciant screwball comedies he made in Hollywood. Many who haven’t seen his films will have heard of “the Lubitsch Touch” – at its most basic, his winking way of signifying...

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DVD: Centre of My World

Director Jakob M Erwa's Centre of My World may be a coming-of-age story, but it’s definitely not a “coming out” one. Youthful hero Phil (Louis Hofmann) has barely reached the third sentence of his voiceover narration before he tells us he’s gay, and...

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Reger Cello Suites, Richard Harwood, Malling Abbey review - Bach with a dash of acid

Three “little greats,” as Opera North might put it, proved just the thing to cleanse the palate in a quiet place the afternoon after the LSO/Rattle Stravinsky trilogy. Composed following a breakdown in 1914, the year after the premiere of The Rite...

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Robert Harris: Munich review - reselling Hitler

Robert Harris’s first book about Hitler told the story of the hoax diaries which seduced Rupert Murdoch and Hugh Trevor-Roper. After Selling Hitler (1986) came Fatherland (1992), another fake story about the Führer. In that alternative history the...

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