mon 18/02/2019

theartsdesk com, first with arts reviews, news and interviews

David Nice
Monday, 18 February 2019
British concert audiences now know and love a great Lithuanian, one of the most communicative and individual conductors in the world today (note I don't even need to prefix "...
Katherine Waters
Monday, 18 February 2019
Ellida (Pia Tjelta, pictured top left) has a choice to make. The outcome of this choice will bind her future to her past or her present, each represented by a man. On the one hand...
Guy Oddy
Monday, 18 February 2019
Beth Jeans Horton’s world seems to have been characterised by an over-supply of half-empty, small glasses of late – especially when it comes to romantic relationships with men....
Adam Sweeting
Sunday, 17 February 2019
It’s 1945 and World War Two is nearly over. Somewhere in England, Fiona Symonds (“Feef” to her friends) is training to be a spy and be dropped behind enemy lines. Her training...
Saskia Baron
Sunday, 17 February 2019
Is there an algorithm for writing this review? There seems to have been one used to create Baptiste, a spin-off from The Missing, and even the staunchest fans...
Marina Vaizey
Sunday, 17 February 2019
This is an astonishing book: in its breadth, depth and detail and also in its almost palpable, and sometimes unpalatable, admiration of its subject, the controversial, long-lived...
Graham Rickson
Sunday, 17 February 2019
Stravinsky acknowledged that his orchestra for The Rite of Spring was a large one because Diaghilev had promised him extra...
Markie Robson-Scott
Sunday, 17 February 2019
A Tana French crime novel is never just a thriller. Probably more acclaimed in the USA than the UK (she gets rave reviews in...
Kieron Tyler
Sunday, 17 February 2019
Full marks for shoehorning-in the names of city’s two major football teams into the title of Manchester - A City United In...
Jasper Rees
Saturday, 16 February 2019
There is nothing quite like the Iffland-Ring in this country. The property of the Austrian state, for two centuries it has...
Matt Wolf
Saturday, 16 February 2019
The Sunday Times war correspondent Marie Colvin lived such a fearless life that it's a shame this celluloid biopic isn't...
Bernard Hughes
Saturday, 16 February 2019
The Venezuelan pianist and composer Gabriela Montero is an outspoken advocate for political change in her country, using her...
Mark Kidel
Saturday, 16 February 2019
Abdellatif Kechiche, the Tunisian-French director, is perhaps best known for the lengthy and explicit sex scenes in La vie d...
Stephen Walsh
Saturday, 16 February 2019
I last saw this Magic Flute, directed by Dominic Cooke, when it was new, some 14 years ago, and I remember it mainly, I’m...
Graham Rickson
Saturday, 16 February 2019
 Mahler: Symphony No 6 Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra/Sir Simon Rattle (Berliner Philharmoniker Recordings)This lavish...
Katie Colombus
Saturday, 16 February 2019
Avril Lavigne was the original Punk Pop Queen. Fearless, feisty and perfectly fitting for the early noughties as the...
Heather Neill
Friday, 15 February 2019
Remembering meeting Harley Granville Barker when casting him as Marchbanks in Candida, Shaw described the twenty-three-year-...
Rachel Halliburton
Friday, 15 February 2019
Two men called "Massimo" face the audience, one very tall, one very, well, minimo. The tall Massimo (Tom Espiner, pictured...
Nick Hasted
Friday, 15 February 2019
The Arthurian legend’s tight fit as a Brexit allegory perhaps proves how timeless it is as, buried and bound in the earth by...
 

★★★ THE AMERICAN CLOCK, OLD VIC Arthur Miller's musical history lesson drags

BRIGHTON FESTIVAL LAUNCHES WITH GUEST DIRECTOR ROKIA TRAORÉ South-coast's arts extravaganza reveals its 2019 line-up

★★★★ THE KID WHO WOULD BE KING Joe Cornish's yearning Arthurian parable

★★★ MONTERO, SCOTTISH ENSEMBLE, KINGS PLACE New music with a political edge

★★★★★ JOHN RUSKIN: THE POWER OF SEEING Inside the mind of a visionary

disc of the day

CD: Du Blonde - Lung Bread for Daddy

Beth Jeans Horton gets some rotten relationships out of her system

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tv

Traitors, Channel 4 review - Cold War thriller fails to reach room temperature

Battling Stalin's secret infiltration of Whitehall

Catastrophe, Channel 4, series 4 finale review - sitcom saves the best till last

Sharon Horgan and Rob Delaney go out on a grief-stricken, hope-filled cliffhanger

film

Q&A Special: Actor Bruno Ganz on playing Hitler

The Swiss actor, who has died aged 77, was the first to play the Führer in a lead role in German

A Private War review - Rosamund Pike burns with passion in well-meaning biopic

A risk-loving journalist is remembered via a safe-seeming film

new music

CD: Du Blonde - Lung Bread for Daddy

Beth Jeans Horton gets some rotten relationships out of her system

Reissue CDs Weekly: Manchester - A City United In Music

Thought-provoking compendium dedicated to the northern musical powerhouse

CD: Avril Lavigne - Head Above Water

One strong song, but elsewhere the sound doesn't seem to have evolved

classical

Ek, CBSO, Gražinytė-Tyla, Symphony Hall, Birmingham review - epics of sea and land

Mirga pairs a Lithuanian late-romantic tone poem and familiar Grieg in an unusual context

Montero, Scottish Ensemble, Kings Place review - new music with a political edge

Imaginative programming but the message sometimes overwhelmed the music

opera

The Rite of Spring/Gianni Schicchi, Opera North review - unlikely but musically satisfying pairing

Odd-couple double bill of Stravinsky and Puccini with plenty to delight ear and eye

The Magic Flute, Welsh National Opera review - charming to hear, charmless to look at

Mozart's pantomime about Nature and Reason stuck in a box

Brighton Festival 2019 launches with Guest Director Rokia Traoré

The south-coast's arts extravaganza reveals its 2019 line-up

theatre

The Lady from the Sea, Coronet Print Room review - freedom to choose?
Engrossing English and Norwegian language production has some strong performances
Agnes Colander: An Attempt at Life, Jermyn Street Theatre review - Naomi Frederick shines in 'new' Granville Barker
A rediscovered early work by one of the giants of Twentieth Century theatre focuses on a woman's struggle for independence
Berberian Sound Studio, Donmar Warehouse review – improves the original
This dark comedy raises disturbing questions about sound and intimacy

dance

The Rite of Spring/Gianni Schicchi, Opera North review - unlikely but musically satisfying pairing

Odd-couple double bill of Stravinsky and Puccini with plenty to delight ear and eye

Brighton Festival 2019 launches with Guest Director Rokia Traoré

The south-coast's arts extravaganza reveals its 2019 line-up

Swan Lake, English National Ballet, London Coliseum review - a solid, go-to production

Traditional stagings don't come much more satisfying than Derek Deane's for ENB

comedy

Brighton Festival 2019 launches with Guest Director Rokia Traoré

The south-coast's arts extravaganza reveals its 2019 line-up

Adam Riches Is The Guy Who..., Drink, Shop & Do review - super-suave Lothario on the prowl

Immersive show examines male-female engagement in the #MeToo era

gaming

Battlefield V review - WWII on an epic scale

The veteran series returns for another ambitious tour of duty

Red Dead Redemption 2 review - the cowboy drama makes a triumphant return

An ambitious Wild West odyssey that matches epic scale with benchmark skill

visual arts

Don McCullin, Tate Britain review - beastliness made beautiful

The darkest, most compelling exhibition you are ever likely to see

Pierre Bonnard: The Colour of Memory review, Tate Modern - plenty but empty

A major retrospective of the French post-impressionist is huge, but unilluminating

latest comments

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