fri 12/08/2022

theartsdesk com, first with arts reviews, news and interviews

Adam Sweeting
Friday, 12 August 2022
The last couple of series of Shetland (BBC One) brought the previously much-loved series alarmingly close to shark-jumping territory, converting the remote and thinly-populated...
Nick Hasted
Friday, 12 August 2022
This is a romantic historical epic with elan, giving sensual immediacy to a fanciful secret history of the Eiffel Tower, here inspired by a forbidden, rekindled romance between...
David Kettle
Friday, 12 August 2022
Temping, Assembly George Square Studios ★★★★Sarah Jane is away in Hawaii. But don’t worry – she’s left plenty of instructions for your day temping in the actuaries’ office,...
Demetrios Matheou
Friday, 12 August 2022
Writer/director Jordan Peele’s first two features were horror films with bells on, their genuinely creepy chills accompanied by sharp, satirical social comment. Both were so good...
Veronica Lee
Friday, 12 August 2022
Afghanistan Is Not Funny, Gilded Balloon ★★★★ Henry Naylor’s Arabian Nightmares trilogy - about the West’s misadventures in Syria and Iraq and how we have learned...
Bill Knight
Thursday, 11 August 2022
Les Rencontres d’Arles 2022 is upon us and the town has given itself over to photography once again. As you walk through the sunbaked streets you can find more than 40 exhibitions...
David Kettle
Thursday, 11 August 2022
Every Word was Once an Animal, Zoo Southside ★★★★Ghent-based theatre company Ontroerend Goed have been prodding and...
Christopher Lambton
Thursday, 11 August 2022
The last-minute indisposition of your leading lady is enough to give festival directors palpitations, let alone their...
Veronica Lee
Thursday, 11 August 2022
Kiri Pritchard-McLean, Monkey Barrel ★★★★Wearing a heavily sequinned leotard - she thought this was how we’d all dress...
Joe Muggs
Thursday, 11 August 2022
The journey of Ross “Hudson Mohawke” Birchard has been truly one of the most extraordinary in modern music. From teenage...
Boyd Tonkin
Wednesday, 10 August 2022
The Ulster Orchestra’s Prom finished early to accommodate a late-night concert by the esteemed Tredegar Band – but by then,...
Aleks Sierz
Wednesday, 10 August 2022
Has the pandemic made us more angry? Although Francesca Martinez’s debut play, which is at the National Theatre, was...
Veronica Lee
Wednesday, 10 August 2022
Colin Hoult: The Death of Anna Mann, Pleasance Courtyard ★★★★★ Anna Mann – actress, singer, welder (you’ve got to...
Mark Hudson
Wednesday, 10 August 2022
In later life Gustav Metzger appeared a marginal, eccentric figure. The diminutive, white-bearded artist, was often to be...
Barney Harsent
Wednesday, 10 August 2022
The last time Danger Mouse (Brian Burton to his mum) dropped a hip hop album, it was 2005’s The Mouse & The Mask, a...
David Kettle
Tuesday, 09 August 2022
The Last Return, Traverse Theatre ★★★★★ Put a leafless tree prominently on stage – especially in an Irish play from an Irish...
Gavin Dixon
Tuesday, 09 August 2022
It is mid-way through the new Ring cycle, and we are taking lunch outside the old town hall on the high street in Bayreuth....
Veronica Lee
Tuesday, 09 August 2022
Kathy and Stella Solve a Murder!, Summerhall ★★★★★ What a pleasure to be in the audience for this terrific musical...
Boyd Tonkin
Monday, 08 August 2022
Danny Elfman – the punk rocker-turned-film composer behind Batman, Spider-Man, Edward Scissorhands and The Simpsons –...

MARK BROMLEY The CEO of National Youth Brass Band celebrates a milestone in its history

EDINBURGH FRINGE 2022: COLIN HOULT / NICK HELM / SUSIE MCCABE A sad adieu, a pandemic experience and the awfulness of hen dos


★★ THE TEMPEST, SHAKESPEARE'S GLOBE Occasional gales of laughter drown out subtlety

★★★SOUTH PACIFIC, SADLER'S WELLS Strong singing in Daniel Evans's fast-paced production

★★★ BURN, EIF 2022 Strong constituent parts in Alan Cumming's bold Burns dance show

★★★ KASABIAN - THE ALCHEMIST'S EUPHORIA Ambitious but comfortable return in new line-up

EDINBURGH FRINGE 2022: THE LAST RETURN / PSYCHODRAMA / EXODUS Three shows at the Traverse take in gritty realism and no-holds-barred farce

★★★★★, PROM 31, ALDER, ULSTER ORCHESTRA, RUSTIONI A summer night's dream

★★★★ RUSALKA, EIF 2022 Total triumph for replacement water-nymph Elin Pritchard


disc of the day

Album: Hudson Mohawke - Cry Sugar

An apocalyptic masterpiece from the Glaswegian dance pioneer


Murder in Provence, ITV review - a little light sleuthing amid fabulous French scenery

Roger Allam and Nancy Carroll make an urbane crime-solving duo

The Newsreader, BBC Two review - a drama series of welcome substance from Australia

It's 1986, and a Melbourne TV news team are battling rival stations and each other


Eiffel review - sensuous secret history

Concocted romance gives the Eiffel Tower shaky but lavishly entertaining foundations

Nope review - more a nope than a yep

Jordan Peele fails to reach his own extremely high bar, with this so-so genre mashup

Nightclubbing: The Birth of Punk Rock in NYC review - cheap thrills

Chasteningly mundane history of punk venue Max's, plus Sid Vicious' last stand

new music

Album: Hudson Mohawke - Cry Sugar

An apocalyptic masterpiece from the Glaswegian dance pioneer

Album: Danger Mouse & Black Thought - Cheat Codes

A thrilling reminder of what hip-hop can be when you go back to your roots with absolute focus

Album: Boris - Heavy Rocks

Chaos and fury born in Japan


Prom 27, Dinnerstein, National Youth Orchestra, Gourlay review - colour symphonies

A luscious musical tour with the cream of young players

First Person: Mark Bromley of the National Youth Brass Band of Great Britain celebrates a milestone in its history

This splendid institution's CEO explains its egalitarian role in the musical ecosystem


theartsdesk at the Bayreuth Festival Ring 2022 - a jumbled mess of ideas, some of them compelling

A Tarantino-style Ring cycle offers many inspired scenes, but little coherence or depth


Edinburgh Fringe 2022 reviews: Temping / Work.txt
Two performer-less shows on the theme of work set the audience to - well, work
Edinburgh Fringe 2022 reviews: Afghanistan Is Not Funny / Yippee Ki Yay / Eh Up, Me Old Flowers!
War as entertainment, Die Hard as an epic poem, and a potted biography
Edinburgh Fringe 2022 reviews: Every Word was Once an Animal / Tim Crouch: Truth’s a Dog Must to Kennel
Theatre about theatre? There's plenty of it at the Fringe: here are two fine examples


theartsdesk at the Ravenna Festival 2022 - body and soul in perfect balance

Completion of the city’s big Dante project with 'Paradiso' is only one of three wonders

The Rite of Spring, Pina Bausch/École des Sables, Sadler's Wells review - explosive and disturbing

At last, the pan-African production of Bausch's landmark choreography arrives on the London stage

The Car Man, Royal Albert Hall review - grand scale drama and decadence

An explosive restaging of the original dance drama


Edinburgh Fringe 2022 reviews: Kiri Pritchard-McLean / Lou Sanders / Snort

Exploring Welsh identity; rollerskating diaries; New Zealand improv

Edinburgh Fringe 2022 reviews: Colin Hoult / Nick Helm / Susie McCabe

A sad adieu, a pandemic experience and the awfulness of hen dos

Edinburgh Fringe 2022 reviews: Tiff Stevenson / Seann Walsh / Rosie Holt

The world's biggest and best arts festival begins


Amalie Smith: Thread Ripper review - the tangled web we weave

AI meets Penelope meets Ada Lovelace in this meditation on text, tissue and textile

Phoebe Power: Book of Days review - the clack of walking poles, the clink of scallop shell

Powerful poems of pilgrimage, loss and belonging along the Camino de Santiago

Jessie Burton: The House of Fortune review - a muted, sensitive sequel

The ghosts gather as the miniaturist returns in Burton’s latest instalment


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