mon 04/03/2024

theartsdesk com, first with arts reviews, news and interviews

David Nice
Tuesday, 05 March 2024
“All discord without this circumference,” the Duchess of Malfi tells the good man she’s just asked to be her husband, “is only to be pitied and not feared”. Perhaps the villains...
David Nice
Monday, 04 March 2024
How lucky those of us were who grew up musically with the young Simon Rattle’s highly original programming in the 1980s. He’s still doing it at a time when diminishing resources...
Thomas H Green
Monday, 04 March 2024
VINYL OF THE MONTHMito y Comadre Guajirando (ZZK)Mito y Comadre are Guillermo Lares and Shana Comadre, a Bogota-based pair of Venezuelans whose debut album is produced by...
Liz Thomson
Monday, 04 March 2024
It was one of those truly memorable evenings – a Royal Albert Hall concert by a someone with a long career (and record sales of 14 million), a woman I’d been introduced to only a...
David Nice
Sunday, 03 March 2024
Light and grace must flood the concert hall in Haydn’s The Creation, after a striking-for-its time evocation of Chaos, and periwigged creatures skip around the Genesis picture....
Nick Hasted
Sunday, 03 March 2024
Dennis Villeneuve’s Dune sequel is a sombre science-fiction spectacle that insists on the scale of cinema: erupting sandworms are Cecil B. DeMille colossal, the sound design...
Ed Vulliamy
Sunday, 03 March 2024
The LSO’s apéritif hour “Half-Six Fixes” have an informality that usually works and sometimes doesn’t. But the first of this...
Kieron Tyler
Sunday, 03 March 2024
In June 1969, The Beach Boys released “Break Away” as a single. A month earlier, they had announced they were leaving...
David Nice
Saturday, 02 March 2024
After last year’s small-scale, big-impact Messiah in the Wigmore Hall, superlatives are again in order for the IBO’s...
Helen Hawkins
Saturday, 02 March 2024
Diablo Cody’s biggest screenwriting hit was 2007’s Juno, a larky but tender story of teenage pregnancy. She’s gone back to...
Tom Greed
Saturday, 02 March 2024
For musicians, the period from early 2020 to mid-2021 was one of great reflection, with so many questions to puzzle over....
Graham Rickson
Saturday, 02 March 2024
 William Steinberg: Complete Command Classics Recordings (DG)It’s hard to find a bad word said against conductor...
Joe Muggs
Saturday, 02 March 2024
Over the years, Tom “Squarepusher” Jenkinson has covered a lot of ground over three decades, from dank cellar ambience to...
Jane Edwardes
Friday, 01 March 2024
Can there be anyone from Sheffield who has not seen Standing at the Sky’s Edge, possibly several times? This is the once...
Hugh Barnes
Friday, 01 March 2024
During the Cold War, US presidents often claimed that the West and the Soviet Union had never fought one another directly....
Rachel Halliburton
Friday, 01 March 2024
The shadow of Nosferatu hangs heavily over Tim Albery’s powerfully austere staging of Wagner’s opera of desire and damnation...
Gary Naylor
Friday, 01 March 2024
Transgression was so deliciously enticing. Back in the Eighties when I saw Les Liaisons Dangereuses in the West End on three...
Robert Beale
Friday, 01 March 2024
Sir Mark Elder conducted Bruckner’s Symphony No. 8 for his first time in last night’s Hallé series concert, a reflection of...
Ellie Roberts
Friday, 01 March 2024
Kaiser Chiefs’ appropriately named Kaiser Chiefs’ Easy Eighth Album is a collection of ten easy listening, but not...

★★★★ ANDY PARSONS, TOURING Reasons to be cheerful...

★★★ DRIVE TO SURVIVE, SEASON 6, NETFLIX Real-life dramas in the paddock were too late to make the cut

★★★★ MEMORY Jessica Chastain and Peter Sarsgaard in a complex, painful love story

★★★ RED ISLAND An undemanding study of the post-colonial French

★★★★ STANDING AT THE SKY'S EDGE, GILLIAM LYNNE THEATRE Heartwarming Sheffield musical arrives in the West End


★★★★ SHIFTERS, BUSH THEATRE Love will tear us apart again

★★★★ THE HUMAN BODY, DONMAR WAREHOUSE Keeley Hawes and Jack Davenport excel in an intriguing staging

★★★★ THE MAGIC FLUTE, ENGLISH NATIONAL OPERA Return of an enchanted evening

10 YEARS ON - PACO PENA A tribute to his friend, the late, great flamenco star Paco de Lucía



Drive to Survive, Season 6, Netflix review - F1 documentary overtaken by events

Real-life dramas in the paddock were too late to make the cut

The Way, BBC One review - steeltown blues

Michael Sheen's ode to Port Talbot stretches credulity

Kin, Series 2, BBC One review - when crime dynasties collide

Dublin becomes a war zone in Peter McKenna's addictive drama


Dune: Part 2 review - sombre space opera

A timely Sixties sci-fi classic realised with poetic spectacle and grim irony

Lisa Frankenstein review - a bitchy trawl through the high-school horror movie back catalogue

Diablo Cody delivers a comic but gory pastiche of 1980s pop culture

Red Island review - Madagascar miniatures

An undemanding study of the post-colonial French

new music

Album: Loreena McKennitt - The Road Back Home

The craic is good in Ontario

Music Reissues Weekly: Mark Eric - A Midsummer’s Day Dream

Flawless but belatedly lauded Beach Boys-style California pop from 1969


Gerstein, LSO, Rattle, Barbican review - American glitter and sinew

Giddying sonorites as ever in a new John Adams work, but Roy Harris takes the palm

The Creation, Alder, Clayton, Mofidian, LPO, Gardner, RFH review - dancing gay in green meadows

Haydn's Genesis pleasure ground gets plenty of bounce and charm


Der fliegende Holländer, Royal Opera review - compellingly lucid with an austere visual beauty

Bryn Terfel's Dutchman is a subtly vampiric figure in this otherworldly interpretation

The Magic Flute, English National Opera review - return of an enchanted evening

Simon McBurney's dark pantomime casts its spell again


The Duchess of Malfi, Sam Wanamaker Playhouse review - the good end badly, but act best
Francesca Mills' protagonist is the vivacious, truthful heart of this fascinating production
Standing at the Sky's Edge, Gillian Lynne Theatre review - heartwarming Sheffield musical arrives in the West End
Olivier Award-winning musical offers a celebration of community and a stirring exploration of a brutalist building's history
Cruel Intentions, The Other Palace review - uneasy vibes, hit tunes and sparkling staging
Jukebox musical gets toes tapping, but the thrill of transgression ain't what it used to be


First Person: Ten Years On - Flamenco guitarist Paco Peña pays tribute to his friend, the late, great Paco de Lucía

On the 10th anniversary of his death, memories of the prodigious musician who broadened the reach of flamenco into jazz and beyond

Dance for Ukraine Gala, London Palladium review - a second rich helping of international dancers

Ivan Putrov's latest gala was a satisfying mix of stars and young hopefuls


Andy Parsons, Touring review - reasons to be cheerful...

...Even if the country's falling apart

Bill Bailey: Thoughtifier, Brighton Centre review - offbeat adventures with a whirling, erudite mind

Bailey's fusion of studied musicality and off-the-wall wordplay remains one-of-a-kind


Tom Chatfield: Wise Animals review - on the changing world

A compelling account of how we use technology – and how it uses us

Sheila Heti: Alphabetical Diaries review - an A-Z of inner life

Heti goes far beyond a gimmick in this work of surprising and moving insight

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