sun 18/08/2019

theartsdesk com, first with arts reviews, news and interviews

David Nice
Saturday, 17 August 2019
There it gleamed, the pearl in the massive oyster of Albert's colosseum: the gilded, decorated piano supplied to his Queen by Érard in 1856. Pearly in sound it was not, though...
Guy Oddy
Saturday, 17 August 2019
While Pram could hardly be described as representative of the UK psychedelic scene, it would be hard to imagine South Birmingham’s favourites being birthed by any other sub-...
Saskia Baron
Saturday, 17 August 2019
If you’re looking for escapism from anxieties about Brexit, the worldwide refugee crisis and rising authoritarianism, Christian Petzold’s Transit is not going to provide comfort....
Miranda Heggie
Saturday, 17 August 2019
Performing as part of Edinburgh International Festival’s Queen’s Hall series, American tenor Lawrence Brownlee, with Scottish pianist Iain Burnside, performed collections of songs...
Veronica Lee
Saturday, 17 August 2019
The Red Pleasance Dome ★★★★Comic Marcus Brigstocke has spoken in the past about his addictions and now he has written this two-hander, which he directs, that goes some way to...
Graham Rickson
Saturday, 17 August 2019
 Gounod: Symphonies 1 and 2 Iceland Symphony Orchestra/Yan Pascal Tortelier (Chandos)Roger Nichols’ lucid sleeve note underlines the point that Berlioz's Symphonie...
Thomas H Green
Saturday, 17 August 2019
South-coast four piece Grenades’ debut album is that most unlikely of musical outings, an ecological grunge-punk concept...
Demetrios Matheou
Friday, 16 August 2019
Quentin Tarantino’s made a big deal of this being his ninth film, while heralding his retirement after number 10 with...
Jessica Duchen
Friday, 16 August 2019
A clever programme, a vivid premiere, a Proms debut for an exciting young conductor and the first appearance there by...
Veronica Lee
Friday, 16 August 2019
Alun Cochrane Pleasance Courtyard ★★★★Alun Cochrane is going to treat us like adults, he says by way of introduction,...
Tim Cumming
Friday, 16 August 2019
It’s been a period of upheaval and change for singer-songwriter, and compelling interpreter of traditional ballads, Josienne...
David Kettle
Friday, 16 August 2019
Urgent, fast-paced, seemingly never pausing for breath, How Not to Drown is a real-life boy’s own adventure, an appeal for...
Russ Coffey
Friday, 16 August 2019
It's been two years since Ride came back from a 20-year break with their reunion LP, Weather Diaries. Fans...
David Kettle
Thursday, 15 August 2019
If nothing else, Arabella Weir quips, she can thank her mother for providing the material for her first Fringe show. For...
David Nice
Thursday, 15 August 2019
Berlioz's most intimate oratorio certainly isn't just for Christmas – but, given its scale, is it right for the Proms?...
Marianka Swain
Thursday, 15 August 2019
As British summer really kicks in (umbrellas at the ready), our thoughts might turn fondly to the sunny Caribbean. Good...
Lisa-Marie Ferla
Thursday, 15 August 2019
At recent live shows, Hold Steady frontman Craig Finn has taken to describing the band’s current lineup as the best it’s...
Owen Richards
Wednesday, 14 August 2019
What’s the next level above national treasure? We’ll need a name for it by the end of All Woman, Kathy Burke’s new Channel 4...
David Nice
Wednesday, 14 August 2019
Little has changed about Pärnu, with its concentric rings of eight-mile sandy beach and dunes, wooded gardens and wooden old...

★★★★★ JOSIENNE CLARKE, GREEN NOTE World-class melancholia hits its mark

★★★★ ONCE UPON A TIME... IN HOLLYWOOD Tarantino’s mellowest film yet

★★★★ PROM 39: MORISON, BBCNOW, CHAN A night of inspiring firsts

★★★★ HOW NOT TO DROWN Autobiographical refugee story feels like a boy's own adventure


disc of the day

CD: Grenades - Primate

Debut from UK punk outfit shows black wit and sonic imagination

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Kathy Burke's All Woman, Channel 4 review - warts and all

Comedy legend asks what is beauty, and why is there so much pressure to achieve it?

Keeping Faith, Episode 4 Series 2, BBC One review - murders aplenty

Husband Evan leaves prison, just as Faith risks going in

This Way Up, Channel 4 review - hilarity with a dark undercurrent

Funny or die: Aisling Bea stars in her self-penned comedy series


Transit review - existential nightmares for a German refugee

Christian Petzold eschews the conventions of Holocaust drama to create an edgy, unnerving thriller

Once Upon A Time… in Hollywood review – Tarantino’s mellowest film yet

Leo and Brad are an engaging double act as actor and stuntman facing the end of an era

JT Leroy review - pseudonym, avatar, literary hoax

Revisiting the scandal of 2006: Kristen Stewart shines as Savannah Knoop/JT LeRoy

new music

Pram, Hare & Hounds, Birmingham review - a fine hometown return for the psychedelic oddballs

A Theremin-powered weird-out from South Birmingham’s resident psychedelicists

CD: Grenades - Primate

Debut from UK punk outfit shows black wit and sonic imagination

Josienne Clarke, Green Note review - world-class melancholia hits its mark

Stripped to the bone: the BBC Radio 2 Folk Award winner returns


Prom 40: Hough, OAE, Fischer review - pretty royal things

Queen Victoria's piano and Prince Albert's amateur songs give variable pleasure

Edinburgh International Festival 2019: Lawrence Brownlee, Iain Burnside - enthralling song duo

A multitude of musical moods from tender Schumann to racy Ginastera

Classical CDs Weekly: Gounod, James MacMillan, Johannes Pramsohler

Frothy French symphonies, Scottish choral music and trio sonatas from London and Paris


Rinaldo, Glyndebourne Festival review - teenage dreams

Stale stereotypes abound in a production that’s a bit past its sell by date

theartsdesk Q&A: composer Alastair White on his new opera ROBE

Emerging Scottish talent describes creating layers of reality in his latest work


Edinburgh Fringe 2019 reviews: The Red/ Gone Full Havisham
More from the world's biggest and best arts festival
Edinburgh Fringe 2019 review: How Not to Drown
Autobiographical refugee story feels like a boy's own adventure
Once on This Island, Southwark Playhouse review - folkloric Caribbean musical charms
Class, calypso and warring gods feature in this enthusiastic revival


Matthew Bourne's Romeo and Juliet, Sadler's Wells review - heart-stopping drama

The plot isn't perfect, but this bad romance still packs a punch

The Bright Stream, Bolshoi Ballet review - a gem of a comedy

Ratmansky and Shostakovich offer up old-fashioned fun with an undercurrent of sweetness

Spartacus, Bolshoi Ballet, Royal Opera House review - no other company could pull this off

Visiting Russians transform wooden material into muscular spectacle


Edinburgh Fringe 2019 review: Arabella Weir - Does My Mum Loom Big In This?

Fringe debut on her overbearing mother feels too polite to confront its own darkness


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

Edinburgh Festival 2019 reviews: Below the Blanket / Samson Young: Real Music

Two Edinburgh shows meld music, sound and visual art to beguiling effect

Black Sabbath: 50 years, Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery review – not heavy going

Half a century of metal is celebrated in Sabbath's home city

Helen Schjerfbeck, Royal Academy review - watchful absences and disappearing people

Retrospective of Finnish artist turns on mortality and absence

latest comments

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