wed 22/05/2024

theartsdesk com, first with arts reviews, news and interviews

Helen Hawkins
Wednesday, 22 May 2024
From New York’s Public Theater, the venue that nurtured Hamilton, comes another estimable pocket musical, Passing Strange. It was first staged in 2008, to Tony-nominated acclaim,...
Adam Sweeting
Wednesday, 22 May 2024
He’s not the kind of actor who has paparazzi following him around Beverly Hills or staking out his yacht in St Barts, but Eddie Marsan, born into a working class family in Stepney...
Kieron Tyler
Wednesday, 22 May 2024
The final track of Samana’s third album is titled “The Preselis,” after the west Welsh mountain range – the place antiquarians suggested as the source of Stonehenge’s blue stones...
Caspar Gomez
Tuesday, 21 May 2024
If the weather’s good TGE Beach is a grand start to a day. As it sounds, it’s a purpose-built seafront space to the east of central Brighton, containing three stages as well as...
Veronica Lee
Tuesday, 21 May 2024
The most striking things about the 1976 documentary (restored and re-released by the BFI) is just how polite Billy Connolly comes across as. Not that he's impolite now, but the...
Adam Sweeting
Monday, 20 May 2024
The previous incarnation of Ian Rankin’s Scottish detective on ITV starred, in their contrasting styles, John Hannah and Ken Stott. For this Rebus redux, arriving nearly 25 years...
Boyd Tonkin
Monday, 20 May 2024
Better (much better, indeed) late than never. The Orchestre Révolutionnaire et Romantique should have given their cycle of...
Rachel Halliburton
Monday, 20 May 2024
Five years after it first clattered onto the Glyndebourne stage, André Barbe and Renaud Doucet’s visually exuberant Die...
Robert Beale
Monday, 20 May 2024
It’s probably a bit early to be getting misty-eyed about the approaching end of Sir Mark Elder’s time as music director of...
Veronica Lee
Monday, 20 May 2024
Clinton Baptiste – clairvoyant, medium and psychic – first appeared briefly as a character in Peter Kay’s Phoenix Nights on...
Kieron Tyler
Sunday, 19 May 2024
Original pressings of Love And Poetry sell for up to £2,800. Copies of the August 1969 debut album by Andwellas Dream can...
Robert Beale
Saturday, 18 May 2024
There’s a sense of cheerful abandon about Manchester Camerata’s Mozart concerts with Jean-Efflam Bavouzet and Gábor Takács-...
Guy Oddy
Saturday, 18 May 2024
Always looking dapper and always sounding cool, Barry Adamson is a man who nevertheless seems to be perpetually of another...
David Nice
Friday, 17 May 2024
It’s what you dream of in opera but don’t often get: singers feeling free and liberated to give their best after weeks of...
Thomas H Green
Friday, 17 May 2024
Before reviewing The Great Escape, we must first deal with the elephant in the room. Or, in this case, the room that’s...
Adam Sweeting
Friday, 17 May 2024
There are many definitions of bravery, and taking on the challenge of embodying John Cleese as Basil Fawlty in Cleese’s own...
Sebastian Scotney
Friday, 17 May 2024
In many ways, Laufey’s emotionally charged, sold-out Royal Albert Hall debut was a masterclass. The Chinese-Icelandic...
Adam Sweeting
Friday, 17 May 2024
What with the likes of Sexy Beast, Layer Cake, The Hatton Garden Job and the oeuvre of Guy Ritchie, the British gangster...
Tim Cumming
Friday, 17 May 2024
So Billie Eilish’s new album has had its worldwide midnight release, dropping at midnight wherever you are kiddos, and taken...

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★★ DIE ZAUBERFLOTE, GLYNDEBOURNE Visual inventiveness eclipses everything else

★★★★ CARMEN, GLYNDEBOURNE The lead and the conductor electrify

★★★ CLINTON BAPTISTE, TOURING Spoof clairvoyant on great form

★★★★ BILLIE EILISH - HIT ME HARD AND SOFT Desire and longing in riveting third album

★★★★ HOUGH, HALLE, ELDER, BRIDGEWATER HALL Affection and adventure

★★★★★ FAWLTY TOWERS: THE PLAY, APOLLO THEATRE Lightning strikes twice

disc of the day

Album: Samana - Samana

Hypnotic psychedelic folk from the Welsh valleys

Subscribe to theartsdesk.com

Thank you for continuing to read our work on theartsdesk.com. For unlimited access to every article in its entirety, including our archive of more than 15,000 pieces, we're asking for £5 per month or £40 per year. We feel it's a very good deal, and hope you do too.

To take a subscription now simply click here.

And if you're looking for that extra gift for a friend or family member, why not treat them to a theartsdesk.com gift subscription?

tv

theartsdesk Q&A: Eddie Marsan and the American Revolution, posh boys and East End gangsters

Versatile actor on playing John Adams opposite Michael Douglas in Apple TV+’s ‘Franklin'

Rebus, BBC One review - revival of Ian Rankin's Scottish 'tec hits the jackpot

Richard Rankin makes a compelling debut as the unorthodox Edinburgh cop

film

theartsdesk Q&A: Eddie Marsan and the American Revolution, posh boys and East End gangsters

Versatile actor on playing John Adams opposite Michael Douglas in Apple TV+’s ‘Franklin'

DVD/Blu-ray: Billy Connolly - Big Banana Feet

The comic caught on the cusp of his fame as he tours Ireland in 1975

Bermondsey Tales: Fall of the Roman Empire review - dirty deeds done dirt cheap

Michael Head's gangland drama is a bit of a dog's breakfast

new music

Album: Samana - Samana

Hypnotic psychedelic folk from the Welsh valleys

The Great Escape Festival 2024, Brighton review - 12 hours on the musical frontline of Day Three

Checking out gigs by Being Dead, Kneecap, Pip Blom, Looking Glass Alice and more

Music Reissues Weekly: Andwella - To Dream

How a cult psychedelic band laid the ground for a massive Demis Roussos hit

opera

Die Zauberflöte, Glyndebourne review - cornucopia of visual inventiveness eclipses everything else

An operatic feast for the eyes doesn't translate into conceptual satisfaction

Carmen, Glyndebourne review - total musical fusion

Production tells the story, mostly, but it’s the lead and the conductor who electrify

L'Olimpiade, Irish National Opera review - Vivaldi's long-distance run sustained by perfect teamwork

Sporting confusions and star-crossed lovers clarified by vivacious singing and playing

theatre

Passing Strange, Young Vic review - exuberant pocket musical with a thoughtful core
Giles Terera excels leading a livewire cast in an irreverent look at Black identity
Fawlty Towers: The Play, Apollo Theatre review - lightning strikes twice
John Cleese's sitcom masterpiece makes seamless transition to the stage
People, Places and Things, Trafalgar Theatre review - a scintillating shot in the arm
Duncan MacMillan’s riotous reflection on addiction and recovery returns

dance

The Winter's Tale, Royal Ballet review - what a story, and what a way to tell it!

A compelling case for ROH's ballet-friendly rebrand

All You Need Is Death review - a future folk horror classic

Irish folkies seek a cursed ancient song in Paul Duane's impressive fiction debut

MacMillan Celebrated, Royal Ballet review - out of mothballs, three vintage works to marvel at

Less-known pieces spanning the career of a great choreographer underline his greatness

comedy

DVD/Blu-ray: Billy Connolly - Big Banana Feet

The comic caught on the cusp of his fame as he tours Ireland in 1975

Clinton Baptiste, Touring review - spoof clairvoyant on great form

Character has life beyond 'Phoenix Nights'

Jack Docherty, Soho Theatre review - warm and witty childhood memoir

Former chat show host on his David Bowie obsession

Books

Extract: Pariah Genius by Iain Sinclair

A form-defying writer explores the troubled mindscape of a Soho photographer

Jonn Elledge: A History of the World in 47 Borders review - a view from the boundaries

Enjoyable journey through the byways of how lines on maps have shaped the modern world

Lisa Kaltenegger: Alien Earths review - a whole new world

Kaltenegger's traverses space in her thoughtful exploration of the search for life among the stars

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