mon 26/09/2022

1930s

Blu-ray: Kuhle Wampe

Kuhle Wampe is a fascinating curio, a blend of documentary, social realist drama and political debate which so bothered the German authorities upon its release in 1932 that they promptly banned it. The censorship board’s justification condemned the...

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Anything Goes, Barbican review - shipboard frivolity still fizzes, mostly

This is the summer, in musical theatre terms at least, of the revival of the revival, with several recent remountings of iconic titles (South Pacific, now in London previews) getting a renewed lease on life, alongside the likes of My Fair Lady,...

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Gillam, Brodsky Quartet, Manchester Camerata, Buxton International Festival 2022 review - a freshness in classic Elgar

It’s an ill heatwave that brings nobody any good, and Buxton International Festival’s decision to move its highlight concert, by Manchester Camerata with Jess Gillam and the Brodsky Quartet as their guests, from the Buxton Octagon to St John’s...

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Hughes, Manchester Collective, Hallé St Peter’s, Manchester review - new work and stunning singing

Manchester Collective were back on home ground last night in the tour of a programme featuring the first performances of a new song cycle by Edmund Finnis, Out of the Dawn’s Mind. Soprano soloist was the amazing Ruby Hughes.It was home ground for...

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The Glass Menagerie, Duke of York's Theatre review - memories flare and fade

The stage is cluttered with objects; a pianola sits stage left; a large cabinet, soon to be revealed as a display case for tiny glass ornaments, dominates the centre. A man, gaunt, in his 40s perhaps, wanders among this stuff.He is our narrator (...

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Bonnie & Clyde, Arts Theatre review - great songs, but plot fires too many blanks

One of the more irritating memes (it’s a competitive field, I know) is the “Name a more iconic couple” appearing over a photo of Posh and Becks, or Harry and Megan, or Leo and whoever. I’ve always been tempted to close the discussion down with a...

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Hallé Choir, BBC Philharmonic, Davis, Bridgewater Hall, Manchester review - celebrating Vaughan Williams

Continuing the joint BBC Philharmonic/Hallé celebration of Vaughan Williams, Sir Andrew Davis took on the job of presenting three substantial works on Saturday.Toward the Unknown Region has given its title to the entire series, not a bad choice of...

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Munich: The Edge of War review - Jeremy Irons excels in a revisionist portrait of Neville Chamberlain

The name of Neville Chamberlain and the term “appeasement” have become indelibly linked, thanks to his efforts to accommodate Adolf Hitler’s bellicose ambitions in the run-up to what became World War Two.This film version of Robert Harris’s novel...

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Cabaret, The Kit Kat Club at the Playhouse Theatre review – polymorphous, prodigious

Has there ever been a Cabaret as dangerous as this one? Rebecca Frecknall’s disorienting take on the Kander and Ebb classic pulls you in and spits you out in a reinvention that pushes or dissolves boundaries at every twist and turn.Transforming a...

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Pioro, BBC Philharmonic, Schwarz, Bridgewater Hall, Manchester review - an eco-concerto?

Who will write the world’s first eco-concerto? Tom Coult, with his major debut piece for the BBC Philharmonic since becoming its Composer in Association, a violin concerto titled Pleasure Garden, has made his bid.Perhaps Vivaldi got there before him...

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Blu-ray: The Damned

One German writer found a neat yet teasing way to sum up the difference between Luchino Visconti’s The Damned (1969), the first film in the Italian director’s “German trilogy”, and the two films that followed it.The Damned, known in Italian as La...

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Van der Heijden, Hallé, New, Bridgewater Hall, Manchester review - rising to challenges

The youthful New Zealand-born conductor Gemma New and British cellist Laura van der Heijden between them set the Hallé quite a challenge at this concert.The music was all written in the past 75 years or so – by classical measures that’s pretty...

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