thu 22/08/2019

politics

Mark Thomas, BAC review - impassioned polemic about the NHS

Mark Thomas issues a health warning for Check-Up: Our NHS at 70  at Battersea Arts Centre  – “This show contains swearing, a video of an operation on a stomach and a description of being in A&E when a patient dies.” Indeed it...

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Loro review – hedonism must have an end

"Them" - the "loro" of the title (with a further play on “l’oro”, gold) - denotes the mostly sleazy opportunists willing to use and be used by "him" ("lui"), "Presidente" Silvio Berlusconi in his septuagenarian bid for an extended sexual and...

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10 Questions for Brighton Festival CEO Andrew Comben

The Brighton Festival begins in May. Since 2014 theartsdesk has had a media partnership with this lively, multi-faceted event which takes place over three weeks. This year the Guest Director is the Malian musician Rokia Traoré, who inhabits a...

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Road to Brexit, BBC Two review - a rotten historian for a rotten parliament

Let me be clear. The agonising process of the UK’s departure, or not, from the EU will be an infinite field of academic study over the decades to come. Road to Brexit (BBC Two) will not be a valuable source of research material, because it was a...

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CD: UB40 - For the Many

Birmingham’s reggae veterans UB40 are a band who have often worn their politics on their sleeves, and the title of their new album is taken from Jeremy Corbyn’s Labour Party mantra. The parallels between the two have already been noted, of course....

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Sam Bourne: To Kill the Truth review - taut thriller of big ideas

Great libraries burning, historians murdered: someone somewhere is removing the past by obliterating the ways the world remembers. Erasing the histories of slavery and the Holocaust, of blacks and Jews, is just the beginning. The premise of Sam...

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Sleeping with Extremists: The Far Right, Channel 4 review - insightful but flawed documentary

It’s always interesting to see how presenters make their presence known in documentaries. Louis Theroux hovers on the sidelines like an ethereal presence, Stacey Dooley connects immediately on an emotional level, and one-time host Keith Allen...

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Shipwreck, Almeida Theatre review - Trump-inflected fantasia mixes the polemical and the poetic

Just when you think you may have heard (and seen) enough of Donald J Trump to last a lifetime, along comes Anne Washburn's ceaselessly smart and tantalising Shipwreck to focus renewed attention on the psychic fallout left by 45. How did we get here...

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Yes is More: Charlotte Church’s Late Night Pop Dungeon, Tramshed - utterly convincing

Compared to Scotland, Welsh independence has yet to hit the mainstream. The idea has been mostly supported by the Welsh-speaking population, with opinion polls hovering around 19 per cent. It’s fallen to Super Furry Animals keyboardist Cian Ciaran...

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Richard J Evans: Eric Hobsbawm - A Life in History review - mesmerisingly readable

This is an astonishing book: in its breadth, depth and detail and also in its almost palpable, and sometimes unpalatable, admiration of its subject, the controversial, long-lived Marxist historian Eric Hobsbawm (1917-2012). But if you want to...

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CD: Leyla McCalla - The Capitalist Blues

Who doesn’t like the rolling swagger of a bunch of seasoned Louisiana musicians? And that’s what New Yorker McCalla has assembled here to create a wider sound pallet for her third album. But we don’t just get a dozen generic New Orleans jazz tunes...

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Counting Sheep, The Vaults review - visceral recreation of an uprising

Is there a connection between revolution and theatre? The answer has to be yes – a visceral one. The supremacy of symbols, the collective strength of a crowd, a sense that some kind of pressure valve is being released to challenge the dominant...

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