mon 20/01/2020

London

Scrounger, Finborough Theatre review - uncomfortable play tackles disability discrimination

Scrounger is no comfortable evening in the theatre, for reasons both intentional and inadvertent. Athena Stevens’ new play recounts her 2016 battle with British Airways and London City Airport, who subjected her to the humiliation of being...

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The Tyler Sisters, Hampstead Theatre Downstairs review – raucous celebration of sisterhood

The Tyler sisters start as they mean to go on: bickering. Middle sister Gail (Bryony Hannah) has come home from uni to find that youngest Katrina (Angela Griffin) has stolen her room. “What about Maddy’s? Why didn’t you take that?” Gail snaps. “She...

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The Gentlemen review - it ain't woke but don't fix it

Guy Ritchie enjoyed his greatest commercial success with 2019’s live-action fantasy Aladdin, the most atypical project of his career, but The Gentlemen finds him back on his best-known turf as a purveyor of mouthy, ultra-violent geezerism. It’s 21...

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Rod Stewart, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, O2 review - Tonight's the Night

I can’t look at Rod Stewart without thinking of Barbara, one of the naughtier girls in my third-form class at East Barnet Senior High School. She was tiny, and obsessed with him, her hair cut like his. “Maggie May” was number one, playing from tinny...

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Cats review - feline freakiness

Tom Hooper’s freakily phantasmagoric visualisation of an already strange West End smash is a high-wire act risking the sniggers which greeted its trailer. And yet it never falls, sustaining a subtly hallucinatory, wholly theatrical reality. Doubling...

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Albums of the Year 2019: Terror Danjah - Invasion

This is a bittersweet recommendation to make. On the one hand, it is simply one of the mightiest electronic albums of the year, an exemplar of how grime continues to be a vital part of the British sound palette long after it was pushed aside as the...

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Steeleye Span, Barbican review - party like it's 1969

The Barbican, a week before Christmas, and it’s British folk-rock legends Steeleye Span’s last gig of the year, a year in which its vigorous seven-strong line-up – featuring a new recruit in the shape of former Bellowheader Benji Kirkpatrick –...

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Hewitt, Clein, Aurora Orchestra, Ward, Kings Place review – rise and shine

Why does music suddenly disappear? It is all the more heartening when a work as excellent and enjoyable as Louise Farrenc’s Symphony No 3 takes wing once more, but you do have to wonder how in the world such a terrific orchestral piece was...

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Choirs of St Catharine's College, Cambridge, Wickham, Kings Place review - fresh take on 'lessons and carols'

At this time of year the musical world – and particularly the choral world – is full of festive concerts, and the challenge can be to find programmes venturing off the well-worn path of traditional favourites. But at Kings Place on Saturday I found...

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Rufus and Martha Wainwright, A Not So Silent Night, RFH review - Christmas, family-style

It’s 10 years this month since Kate McGarrigle gave her last concert, the annual Christmas concert that meant so much to her, at the Royal Albert Hall. Next month, 18 January, marks the first decade since her passing at the tragically early age of...

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Giri/Haji, Series Finale, BBC Two review - a thriller, but much more besides

Happily, Joe Barton’s tinglingly original thriller (BBC Two) finished as smartly as it began, not by any humdrum tying-up of loose ends but by giving free rein to the story’s ambiguities and impossible choices. If indeed they really were choices....

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Behzod Abduraimov, Queen Elizabeth Hall review - enchanting engagement and breathtaking virtuosity

Given the number of audience members playing air-piano along with parts of Pictures at an Exhibition, Behzod Abduraimov should perhaps be described as a pianist’s pianist. He is nevertheless a great deal more than that. Ten years ago this young...

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