sun 24/05/2020

theartsdesk com, first with arts reviews, news and interviews

Marina Vaizey
Sunday, 24 May 2020
John Grisham is a brand, in the sense that the reader relies on some sense of what the product is going to be. He is well up in the millions of sales, along with other writers...
Kieron Tyler
Sunday, 24 May 2020
“Collector of the Light” is based around what sounds like a treated bass guitar. As the neck is moved up and down, multiple notes are plucked at once. The instrument’s sound is...
Daniel Baksi
Sunday, 24 May 2020
Over the years, the legend of The Apu Trilogy has been much-repeated. Now widely considered India’s greatest filmmaker, Satyajit Ray was little more than a small-time commercial...
Adam Sweeting
Saturday, 23 May 2020
Since it debuted in November last year, Apple TV+ has barely made a dent in a market largely shaped by Netflix, but this eight-part adaptation of William Landay’s bestselling...
Joseph Moog
Saturday, 23 May 2020
It can be found in any contract. Both artists, as well as promoters, are aware of it, but it used to be an exception so rare that only a few have ever experienced it: the clause...
Owen Richards
Saturday, 23 May 2020
Don’t do drugs, kids. For the past 50 years, that’s been the consistent message. But how much of what we know about psychedelics is just fearmongering? Do you really want to jump...
Graham Rickson
Saturday, 23 May 2020
 Bizet: Carmen Suite No. 1, Symphony No. 1 in C, Gounod: Petite Symphonie Scottish Chamber Orchestra/François Leleux (...
Guy Oddy
Saturday, 23 May 2020
Word has been out for a while that EDM megastar Diplo has decided to throw a curve ball with his musical career, don a...
David Nice
Friday, 22 May 2020
What would have been the festival season starts around now. Some organisations are offering mementos of past glories; others...
Aleks Sierz
Friday, 22 May 2020
The National Theatre’s triumphant march through its archive of NT Live recordings continues this week with a glorious blaze...
Jill Chuah Masters
Friday, 22 May 2020
The second half of Mark Cousins’ documentary on films by women filmmakers starts with religion; it ends with song and dance...
Veronica Lee
Friday, 22 May 2020
A running gag in David Nicholls' novel The Understudy is that its main character is called Steve McQueen. Not that Steve...
Nick Hasted
Friday, 22 May 2020
The 1975’s career is about navigating ambition, and finding ways to be an interesting, worthwhile big band after the music...
Adam Sweeting
Thursday, 21 May 2020
In the late Eighties and Nineties, Tony Slattery became one of the most ubiquitous faces on television, appearing regularly...
Matt Wolf
Thursday, 21 May 2020
Can we really be entering a third month in lockdown? Indeed we can, and culture, thank heavens, shows no signs whatsoever of...
Joseph Walsh
Thursday, 21 May 2020
Equally ambitious in scope as his 900min ode to cinema The Story of Film: An Odyssey, Mark Cousins’ ...
David Nice
Thursday, 21 May 2020
How do you render pure goodness interesting? Unorthodox director Dmitri Tcherniakov and radiant young soprano Svetlana...
Joseph Walsh
Thursday, 21 May 2020
Like Rams before it, the ice-glazed hillsides and stark ochre grasslands of northern Iceland are the backdrop for Grímur...
Joe Muggs
Thursday, 21 May 2020
Footsie might not have the profile of a Skepta or Wiley, or even his Newham Generals partner and recent IKEA advert...
 

★★★★ FOOTSIE - NO FAVOURS The grime mainstay's first album is here

★★★★★ A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE, NT AT HOME World on fire

★★★ WOMEN MAKE FILM: PART 2 Two steps forward, one step back

WHAT'S THE MATTER WITH TONY SLATTERY? BBC TWO How mental illness cut short a brilliant showbusiness career

CLASSICAL MUSIC / OPERA DIRECT TO HOME 12 Festivals cope with live online events

THE COUNTY Grímur Hákonarson’s latest feature cuts to the quick of local politics

★★★ THE UNDERSTUDY Entertaining online adaptation of David Nicholls' novel

disc of the day

Blu-ray: The Apu Trilogy

An enduring Bengali epic from India's greatest filmmaker

tv

Defending Jacob, Apple TV+ review - does murder run in the family?

Chris Evans and Michelle Dockery impress in adaptation of hit novel

film

Blu-ray: The Apu Trilogy

An enduring Bengali epic from India's greatest filmmaker

Have a Good Trip, Netflix review - a breezy journey into the mind

Netflix doc focuses on the lighter side of psychedelics

Women Make Film: Part Two review - two steps forward, one step back

Mark Cousins gives women the screen - but does he give them a voice?

new music

Reissue CDs Weekly: Keith Relf - All the Falling Angels

Confirmation that the face of The Yardbirds was a creative force in his own right

Album: Diplo Presents Thomas Wesley - Chapter 1: Snake Oil

EDM megastar teases a change of direction but doesn’t deliver

Album: The 1975 - Notes On A Conditional Form

Lockdown blues as a permanent condition, answered with a helpless shrug

classical

'Artists' online rivalry feels stronger': pianist Joseph Moog on the difficulties of performing in lockdown

Fascinating interpreter of Liszt and others on where musicians find themselves now

Classical CDs Weekly: Bizet, Gounod, Liszt, Heinz Winbeck

French elegance, an epic piano sonata and a contemporary symphonic cycle

'In a country of marvellous communicators': violinist Katherine Hunka on life with the Irish Chamber Orchestra

The ICO's leader/sometime music director for 18 years shares the wonder of life in Ireland

opera

Classical Music/Opera direct to home 12 - partying at a distance

Festivals cope with live online events and past fare

The Legend of the Invisible City of Kitezh, Dutch National Opera, OperaVision review - fairy-tale good and evil made real

Rimsky-Korsakov's myth resonates in the highest musical and production standards

Avoiding meltdown from lockdown: Michael Chance on The Grange Festival's strategy for survival

The countertenor and mastermind of a major summer opera event weighs up the future

theatre

A Streetcar Named Desire, National Theatre at Home review - world on fire
NT Live recording of this classic Young Vic production is genuinely unmissable
Theatre Lockdown Special 6: A prolific playwright, a timeless play, and speeches galore
A popular American star vehicle and 'Alice in Wonderland' minute-by-minute figure among the cultural bounty during the week ahead

dance

The Thread, Sadler's Wells Digital Stage review - Greek folk and contemporary unite

Russell Maliphant breathes fresh life into Hellenic tradition

Palermo, Palermo review - free to view Pina

The Pina Bausch Foundation releases the first in a projected series of digital recordings

Rumpelstiltskin, Sadler's Wells Digital Stage review - spins an engaging yarn for young audiences

balletLORENT provides a sunnier take on the the Brothers Grimm

comedy

Lockdown Comedy 2: where to get your laughs this week

Live stand-up recordings and podcasts

Jerry Seinfeld, Netflix review - not bad for a swansong

US comic says this may be his last stand-up show

Lockdown Comedy 1: where to get your laughs this week

Live stand-up, podcasts and not the Eurovision Song Contest

gaming

Rage 2 review – garish but great post-apocalyptic shooter

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

World War Z review - bloodthirsty fun with the zombie apocalypse

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

The Lego Movie 2 Videogame review - everything is not awesome

Few fresh ideas means this movie adaptation treads the same old ground

visual arts

Unto the Last: Two Hundred Years of John Ruskin, Watts Gallery–Artists' Village, review - a breath of fresh air

The former home of Victorian artists GF and Mary Watts is a restorative treat, even online

XXI presented by ARTCELS, HOFA Gallery review - art as investment

Jeff Koons, Damien Hirst, Banksy and more come together in a depressing investment portfolio

latest comments

Born and bred in the Deep South, I can honestly...

Tarrant never mentioned this, though - https://...

It's Appletree Boulevard...

Extremely dissapointing an 8yr child could have...

Why on earth the English translation would talk...

Loved the high production values, incorporating...

newsletter

Get a weekly digest of our critical highlights in your inbox each Thursday!

Simply enter your email address in the box below

View previous newsletters