thu 29/09/2022

poetry

Treason The Musical In Concert, Theatre Royal Drury Lane review - plenty of musical gunpowder but not enough plot

A semi-staged concert performance of a musical is a little like a third trimester ultrasound scan. You should see the anatomy in development, the shape of what is to come and, most importantly, discern a heart beating at its centre. But you can’t...

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Amalie Smith: Thread Ripper review - the tangled web we weave

Sitting in the park on a hot summer’s day, life began to imitate art. I had been soaking up the sun’s now overpowering rays for over an hour and was beginning to feel its radiating effects.Golden green filaments of grass moved back, the trees swayed...

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Quo vadis, Three Choirs Festival review - a hundred minutes of smug serenity and flowing piety

Once upon a time the Three Choirs Festival conjured up a single image, that of the English Oratorio – the grand choral solemnification of everything that was most profound in Anglican thought (though ironically its greatest exemplar, Elgar’s Dream...

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Phoebe Power: Book of Days review - the clack of walking poles, the clink of scallop shell

The word “shrine” somersaults me back to the path of the Camino de Santiago. I have lost count of the faces that smiled up from photos positioned in the hollow of trees, some with little plastic figurines for company, others set in stone next to a...

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Album: Kathryn Williams - Night Drives

Kathryn Williams’ creativity leaves most singers standing. She’s always up to something and it’s usually interesting. As well as multiple albums over two decades, including one themed around Sylvia Plath and another created with the poet Carol Anne...

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Alejandro Zambra: Chilean Poet review - from here to paternity

Time-honoured advice warns actors never to work with children or animals. Perhaps the literary equivalent should tell novelists not to invent other writers in their books. Especially poets. Unless you can command a wholly convincing poetic idiom of...

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Album: Peter Doherty & Frédéric Lo - The Fantasy Life Of Poetry & Crime

Pete Doherty became a hunted man as he was falling apart, lent tabloid notoriety by his dissolute romance with Kate Moss. The Libertines were based on more solid ground at first - rickety ideals of old England and intimate rock’n’roll community with...

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Anselm Kiefer Pour Paul Celan, Grand Palais Éphémère, Paris review - an installation of rare profundity

The exhibitions of the German artist Anselm Kiefer have always been spectacular: large works with a numinous presence, often breath-taking and always mysterious. His new installation in Paris’s Grand Palais Ephémère, the temporary structure at the...

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The Holiness of Sex: Leonard Cohen's Biblical Theology

On hearing that I had recently written a book about Leonard Cohen, someone asked me why I thought Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature rather than Cohen. Not being a Nobel prize adjudicator I couldn’t answer the question but I did...

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The Dante Project, Royal Ballet review - a towering achievement

Unless you happen to be a student of Italian language or culture, the significance of the 14th-century poet Dante Alighieri’s insights into the human condition may have passed you by, albeit that this year marks 700 years since his death. Where...

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Metamorphoses, Sam Wanamaker Playhouse review - punchy, cleverly reworked classic

Ovid was exiled – or to put it in twenty-first century terms, "no-platformed" – by an indignant Emperor Augustus for the scandal caused by his three-book elegy on love, Ars Amatoria. Most scholars believe the intrigue behind his banishment to be...

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Patti Smith, Royal Albert Hall review - a wild ride from a musical legend

Patti Smith has been making rabble rousing punk rock for half a century. She’s spent a lifetime on the road with rock stars and poets, surfing the charts, bringing music and wisdom to the people in myriad ways from beatnik to mainstream and now here...

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