sun 25/01/2015

theartsdesk.com, first with arts reviews, news and interviews

Rubens and His Legacy, Royal Academy

Florence Hallett

What does it mean to be a great artist? Is it enough for your work to be admired, studied, emulated and quoted by contemporaries and subsequent generations, or is the value of art...

Holocaust: Night Will Fall, Channel 4

Tom Birchenough

 More than once in André Singer’s documentary Holocaust: Night Will Fall – marking in advance the 70th anniversary, on 27th January, of the liberation of Auschwitz,...

Reissue CDs Weekly: Tyrannosaurus Rex

Kieron Tyler

 Tyrannosaurus Rex: My People Were Fair and had Sky in Their Hair, Prophets, Seers & Sages: Angels of the Ages, Unicorn“I was just reflecting and talking about things...

Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, October Gallery

Tim Cumming

There have been Throbbing Gristle reunions at Tate Modern, and Psychic TV last played in London at the now-demolished Astoria in 2008 – the band in nurse’s uniforms, playing psych...

Beyond Clueless

Ellin Stein

Charlie Lyne’s Beyond Clueless, a Kickstarter-funded film essay about the deeper meaning of post-1990 coming-of-age movies, aspires to be one of those Arena programs that takes a...

Classical CDs Weekly: Henry Mancini, Georg Breinschmid, Beethoven

Graham Rickson

 Henry Mancini: The Classic Soundtrack Collection (Sony)You get a good sense of any composer's strengths and limitations when you consume their music in box set-sized...

PJ Harvey: Recording in Progress, Artangel at Somerset House

Mark Kidel

Artangel continues to instigate extraordinary events in extraordinary places. Over the past two decades and more, directors...

Ex Machina

Nick Hasted

Alex Garland’s directorial debut is spare, clever s.f. Ever since he began his now abandoned novelist’s career with The...

Bear Winter

Stuart Houghton

As a genre, the "Match 3" puzzle game seems like a sort of evolutionary dead end. You can gussy it up with dramatic sound...

Surviving the Holocaust - Freddie Knoller's War, BBC Two

Tom Birchenough

First-hand testimonial is surely the building block of history. Whether it’s in the form of written diaries or the...

Cucumber, Channel 4

Matthew Wright

It doesn’t take many cucumbers smacked into cupped male palms to realise this isn’t, surprisingly, a show about salad....

Wolf Hall, BBC Two

Jasper Rees

For weeks and weeks, the BBC has been borrowing Anne Boleyn’s tactic of seduction. Henry VIII was vouchsafed occasional...

Leiferkus, LPO, Jurowski, RFH

Matthew Wright

To pair Rachmaninov’s brooding and little-performed The Miserly Knight with Wagner's brooding but much-performed Das...

James Dillon's Stabat Mater, London Sinfonietta, Volkov, QEH

Gavin Dixon

James Dillon calls this major work, premered at the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival last November, a “Cubist Stabat...

10 Questions for Pianist Benjamin Grosvenor

Jessica Duchen

At all of 22, the British pianist Benjamin Grosvenor has already become one of the best-loved solo pianists in the UK, with...

Andrea Chénier, Royal Opera

Alexandra Coghlan

What kind of regime, asks Gérard, talks of justice while killing poets? It’s a question the answer to which suggests itself...

Quick! Win tickets for the London Art Fair

Fisun Güner

Whether you’re interested in buying, just looking or attending one of the many talks and events, the London Art Fair is the...

A Most Violent Year

Matt Wolf

JC Chandor is rapidly turning into one of the most fascinating (and gifted) filmmakers out there, as A Most Violent Year...

The Changeling, Sam Wanamaker Playhouse

David Nice

Ever been stuck in a claustrophobic space with a group of really unpleasant people? Add mayhem, murder and the kind of razor...

Latvian Radio Choir, Kļava, St John's Smith Square

Gavin Dixon

Latvia likes to be different. At least that’s the message they sent out with the cultural programme marking the start of the...

New Atlantis, The Crystal

Aleks Sierz

The future is a bad place. Most of our predictions about climate change and the world’s resources seem to come from a...

The Eichmann Show, BBC Two

Adam Sweeting

Part of a series of programmes marking the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, The Eichmann Show was a 90-...

JACK Quartet, Wigmore Hall

Geoff Brown

The mixed grilled school of programme-making is not for the JACK Quartet. Contemporary, contemporary, and contemporary: that...

La Maison de la Radio

Kieron Tyler

Beyond being a portrait of a day in the life of French national broadcaster Radio France, it is hard to work out what La...

 

LEIFERKUS, LPO, JUROWSKI, RFH Jurowski’s high-concept operatic pairing flickers brilliantly

EX MACHINA Human nature is tested to destruction in Alex Garland's Artificial Intelligence thriller

CLASSICAL CDS WEEKLY: HENRY MANCINI, GEORG BREINSCHMID, BEETHOVEN A giant among film composers, virtuoso bass playing and rousing romantic overtures

PJ HARVEY: RECORDING IN PROGRESS, ARTANGEL AT SOMERSET HOUSE The musician in full creative swing: a voyeur’s delight

SURVIVING THE HOLOCAUST – FREDDIE KNOLLER'S WAR, BBC TWO Testament of character and endurance told with disarming modesty

disc of the day

CD: Renegades of Jazz – Paradise Lost

Curious, ambitious blend of breakbeats and distorted brass proves compelling

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Listed

Listed: The Very Best of 2015
theartsdesk's writers recommend the one thing above all to look forward to in each art form
Listed: The Facts about Factual TV in 2014
This year's documentaries climbed high and swung low on Britain's social ladder
Listed: Science Fiction in Videogames
Nearly all videogames are fantastical, but few are interestingly fantastical

We Made It

We Made It: Factum Arte

Recreating a facsimile of Tutankhamun’s tomb and a painting by Veronese is all part of revolutionising our experience of art

We Made It: Publisher and Curator Amelia Gregory

Gold leaf and alchemical processes feed into a unique view of publishing

We Made It: Bex Burch, Dagaare Xylophone-Maker

Percussionist explains how the unique craft and culture of a north-Ghanaian people shapes her music

film

Holocaust: Night Will Fall, Channel 4

Memories of the Holocaust, and Alfred Hitchcock's attempts to sum up its visual testimony

Beyond Clueless

Charlie Lyne's enjoyable documentary celebrates the teen movie but lacks rigour

Ex Machina

Human nature is tested to destruction in Alex Garland's Artificial Intelligence thriller

tv

Surviving the Holocaust - Freddie Knoller's War, BBC Two

Testament of character and endurance told with disarming modesty

Cucumber, Channel 4

Russell T Davies' new series turns observational comedy into melodrama

Wolf Hall, BBC Two

Mark Rylance works rare marvels as Hilary Mantel's scheming Tudor fixer

new music

CD: Renegades of Jazz – Paradise Lost

Curious, ambitious blend of breakbeats and distorted brass proves compelling

Reissue CDs Weekly: Tyrannosaurus Rex

Marc Bolan’s confident advance to superstardom is tracked over his first three albums

Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, October Gallery

From Throbbing Gristle to pandrogyny: Genesis Breyer P-Orridge reflects

classical

Classical CDs Weekly: Henry Mancini, Georg Breinschmid, Beethoven

A giant among film composers, virtuoso bass playing and rousing romantic overtures

James Dillon's Stabat Mater, London Sinfonietta, Volkov, QEH

Grand scale, fresh approach to a familiar Latin hymn

10 Questions for Pianist Benjamin Grosvenor

The young British pianist talks about rare repertoire and his suspicion of major competitions

opera

Leiferkus, LPO, Jurowski, RFH

Jurowski’s high-concept operatic pairing flickers brilliantly

Andrea Chénier, Royal Opera

An exceptional cast make this revolutionary romance a must-see

Orfeo, Royal Opera, Roundhouse

Austerely beautiful retelling of mythic Orpheus's grief and trials, with sounds to match

theatre

The Changeling, Sam Wanamaker Playhouse

Ill met by candlelight: Hattie Morahan shines in nasty Jacobean tragicomedy

New Atlantis, The Crystal

Immersive and futuristic piece about water shortages and global warming is a treat for boffins

Islands, Bush Theatre

New show about offshore tax havens is luridly absurdist, but the end result is deeply tedious

visual arts

Rubens and His Legacy, Royal Academy

Study of the Old Master's reputation visits a neglected corner of artistic practice

PJ Harvey: Recording in Progress, Artangel at Somerset House

The musician in full creative swing: a voyeur’s delight

Quick! Win tickets for the London Art Fair

For great British art under one roof

dance

Young Men, BalletBoyz, Sadler's Wells

Fine dancers in well-designed, interesting war piece

Royal Danish Ballet Soloists and Principals, Peacock Theatre, London

The Scandinavian stylists give a tantalising glimpse of their Royal jewels

Swan Lake, English National Ballet, London Coliseum

Great Cojocaru and Vasiliev provide the cherry on top of a wonderful company production

comedy

Best of 2014: Comedy

A reunion, reliability and star quality were the highlights

Dara Ó Bríain, Touring

Irish comic is on cracking form on home turf

Noel Fielding, Eventim Apollo

Surreal fun from a delightfully playful comic

gaming

Bear Winter

If you go down to the woods today... tomorrow... and the day after

Lumino City

Mechanical conundrums and clambering feats in this witty gem from State of Play games

Videogames: Best of 2015

theartsdesk's videogames writers pick the most exciting games coming this year

latest comments

Genesis also spent some time in the gallery bar...

Marco, you are incorrect. Brian played drums on...

I had forgotten how third rate this opera was...

Thanks! I'm sure Julie Naalers will be relieved!...

Some of the shaky camera work took the edge off...

It seems that The Miserly Knight at Glyndebourne...

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