fri 22/11/2019

theartsdesk com, first with arts reviews, news and interviews

Mark Kidel
Friday, 22 November 2019
Israel isn’t generally kind to the Jews who have come from somewhere other than Eastern Europe and Russia. Music has provided one of the avenues through which this despised and...
Sam Marlowe
Thursday, 21 November 2019
It’s bright, it’s brash, it’s a gazillion times camper than Christmas: but is it such stuff as theatrical hits are made on? If that misquotation is already making you cringe, then...
Jenny Gilbert
Thursday, 21 November 2019
Second album, second novel, second tour programme – the follow-up is always tricky. But the timing couldn’t be better for Acosta Danza, the Havana-based dance company which made...
Bernard Hughes
Thursday, 21 November 2019
There aren’t many musicians who could appear as composer, singer and violist on a single programme but that was Caroline Shaw’s lot last night. As part of Kings Place’s Venus...
Demetrios Matheou
Thursday, 21 November 2019
Frozen is possibly the most beloved Disney movie since the studio rediscovered its mojo in the 1990s. While picking up a couple of Oscars and laying waste to box office...
Negar Esfandiary
Thursday, 21 November 2019
Permission tells the story of Afrooz, the captain of Iran's National Futsal Team, who is stopped from joining her team at the Asia Cup Final because of the last minute...
Veronica Lee
Thursday, 21 November 2019
Ivo Graham's latest show The Game of Life follows on from his previous hour, in which he talked about passing a milestone in...
Joe Muggs
Thursday, 21 November 2019
For all they've inspired swathes of the most crushingly mundane music of the modern age from Sheeran on down, Coldplay have...
Wednesday, 20 November 2019
 Aladdin, Prince Edward Theatre ★★★ Disney's latest blockbuster film-turned-stage show remains airborne – justCome...
Wednesday, 20 November 2019
London is the theatre capital of the world, with more than 50 playhouses offering theatrical entertainment. From the mighty...
Adam Sweeting
Wednesday, 20 November 2019
Thanks to a powerful cast and crisp direction from Brian Kirk (Game of Thrones, Luther), 21 Bridges drives home its story of...
Marianka Swain
Wednesday, 20 November 2019
Steven Levenson, Benj Pasek and Justin Paul’s Tony and Grammy Award-winning musical Dear Evan Hansen is an...
Adam Sweeting
Wednesday, 20 November 2019
This year marks the 50th anniversary of Ken Loach’s film Kes, and the 51st of A Kestrel for a Knave, the Barry Hines novel...
Gavin Dixon
Wednesday, 20 November 2019
The new "eufonie" festival is dedicated to the music of Poland and its neighbouring countries. This is its second year, and...
Nick Hasted
Wednesday, 20 November 2019
That voice’s husky confiding wasn’t quite silenced. Working helped Leonard Cohen live a little longer, and old friends and...
Veronica Lee
Tuesday, 19 November 2019
Stewart Lee is back on the road after three years, and he comes back wonderfully refreshed and on marvellous form with this...
David Nice
Tuesday, 19 November 2019
The megastars are here at the Barbican, for an intensive three days in the case of the LA Phil and Gustavo Dudamel,...
Markie Robson-Scott
Tuesday, 19 November 2019
“Talking cures and exploring the darkness of men’s souls – are you sure this is a career for a gentleman?” This is Vienna,...
Katherine Waters
Tuesday, 19 November 2019
Because he dramatised power, Shakespeare never really goes out of fashion. Treatments of his plays do though, and the RSC’s...

★★★★★ THE CROWN, SERIES 3, NETFLIX If you want binge TV, there's none finer

THEARTSDESK IN WARSAW Musical perspectives on culture beyond communism

★★★★ GREG DAVIES: LOOKING FOR KES, BBC FOUR Touching insights into the story of Barnsley boy Billy Casper

★★★★ LEONARD COHEN - THANKS FOR THE DANCE His gracious last waltz

★★★★ DEAR EVAN HANSEN, NOËL COWARD THEATRE This social outcast will still your heart

★★★★ 21 BRIDGES Police corruption thriller sets a cracking pace

disc of the day

CD: El Khat - Saadia Jefferson

Inventive Yemeni mashup from Tel Aviv

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Vienna Blood, BBC Two review - psychoanalysis and murder in turn-of-the-century Vienna

Set in a thrilling era, Steve Thompson's adaptation of Frank Tallis's Liebermann novels fails to excite

The Crown, Series 3, Netflix review - if you want binge TV, there's none finer

Peter Morgan's royal saga has a new cast as the Windsors negotiate the turbulent 1960s


Frozen II review - the allure cools off

Disney returns to one of its biggest successes, with middling results

Permission review - suspenseful melodrama of a true-life event

A chilling and poignant 88 minutes in the boots of futsal player Afrooz

21 Bridges review - police corruption thriller sets a cracking pace

Chadwick Boseman heads strong cast as he leads a manhunt in Manhattan

new music

CD: El Khat - Saadia Jefferson

Inventive Yemeni mashup from Tel Aviv

CD: Coldplay - Everyday Life

Despite grandiose pretensions, Coldplay's eighth album rarely takes flight


Shaw, Attacca Quartet, Kings Place review - composer portrait shows strengths and limitations

American composer and singer is impressively multi-talented but the music a bit unvaried

theartsdesk in Warsaw: musical perspectives on culture beyond communism

Troubled history beneath the surface in festival of music from Poland and its neighbours

Wang, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Dudamel, Barbican review - much more than glitz and glamour

Players and conductor on top form, John Adams in his latest major work slightly less so


Orphée, English National Opera review – through a screen darkly

Matters of life and death reflected in Glass and Cocteau's myth

Mrs Peachum's Guide to Love and Marriage, Mid Wales Opera review - scaled down seediness, with a swing

Toxic femininity takes centre stage in the outrageous essence of The Beggar's Opera

Der Freischütz, Barbican review - Gothic chills rooted in flesh and earth

Two outstanding leads make for a memorable concert-staging


& Juliet, Shaftesbury Theatre review - the Bard with dancefloor bangers
The heroine seizes the mic in this Shakespeare-inspired jukebox musical
The Best Plays in London
What to see where and until when: theartsdesk's stage tips
The Best Musicals in London
We recommend the top shows in musical theatre


Acosta Danza, Sadler's Wells review - a dose of Cuban sun

Carlos Acosta's Cuban troupe are looking fine on their second time out

Concerto/Enigma Variations/Raymonda Act III, Royal Ballet review - time to cheer the corps de ballet

Three revivals from the mid-Sixties allow the rank and file to shine


Rage 2 review – garish but great post-apocalyptic shooter

Challenge The Authority in this 'Mad Max on mushrooms' renegade romp

Win a Luxury Weekend for Two to Celebrate Brighton Festival!

An eclectic line-up spanning music, theatre, dance, visual art, film, comedy, literature and spoken word could be yours with boutique hotel and exquisite meals included

World War Z review - bloodthirsty fun with the zombie apocalypse

Chainsawing the brain-eaters as you battle against the tide of the undead

visual arts

Charlotte Salomon: Life? or Theatre?, Jewish Museum London review - rallying against death

Set aside time to absorb the stunning work of this modernist painter murdered at Auschwitz

Tutankhamun: Treasures of the Golden Pharaoh, Saatchi Gallery review - worth its weight?

Blockbuster artefacts in show that cares more about visitor numbers than visitor experience

The Best Exhibitions in London

The capital's best exhibitions now


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