sat 23/09/2017

theartsdesk com, first with arts reviews, news and interviews

Marina Vaizey
Saturday, 23 September 2017
The Royal Academy has a winning line in spectacular exhibitions that have become essentials in London, theatrically and dramatically revelatory presentations in themselves. Here...
David Nice
Saturday, 23 September 2017
Now look here, Giles Coren: immersion in a great play well acted can send you out of the theatre feeling very different from when you entered it – and I don’t mean stressed-out....
Gavin Dixon
Saturday, 23 September 2017
Peter Phillips and the Tallis Scholars have nothing to prove when it comes to Renaissance choral music – few ensembles can match them for clarity, balance and purity of tone. They...
Graham Rickson
Saturday, 23 September 2017
Antheil: A Jazz Symphony, Piano Concerto No. 1, Capital of the Word, Archipelago “Rhumba” Frank Dupree (piano), Deutsche Staatsphilharmonie Rheinland-Pfalz/Karl-Heinz Steffens (...
Aleks Sierz
Saturday, 23 September 2017
Location, location, location. Jim thinks he lives in the “shittiest” small town in Scotland. It’s Mallaig, on the west coast, and he’s a deeply troubled 32-year-old, working for a...
David Nice
Saturday, 23 September 2017
Three “little greats,” as Opera North might put it, proved just the thing to cleanse the palate in a quiet place the afternoon after the LSO/Rattle Stravinsky trilogy. Composed...
Russ Coffey
Saturday, 23 September 2017
The last song on The Killers' new record is called "Have All the Songs Been Written?". The words refer to Brandon Flowers'...
David Nice
Friday, 22 September 2017
“Next he’ll be walking on water,” allegedly quipped a distinguished figure at the official opening of Simon Rattle’s new era...
Sarah Kent
Friday, 22 September 2017
Beautiful, shy, charming and talented, Jean-Michel Basquiat was a shining star who streaked across the New York skyline for...
Tom Birchenough
Friday, 22 September 2017
Truth is pursued in different ways in Alice Childress’s groundbreaking 1955 Trouble in Mind, and its play-within-a-play...
Saskia Baron
Thursday, 21 September 2017
Oh dear. I thought that this was going to be one of those exciting fantasy films that livened up TV on weekend afternoons in...
Jenny Gilbert
Thursday, 21 September 2017
Of the many good reasons for seeing Akram Khan’s 2016 remake of Giselle – his work is often a headline event, for one – the...
Matt Wolf
Thursday, 21 September 2017
A spate of tennis-themed films gets off to a vivid if incomplete start with Borg/McEnroe, which recreates the run-up to the...
Jasper Rees
Thursday, 21 September 2017
That the countryside is a dump where all good things come to a dead end is hardly a new punchline. There are plenty of...
Javi Fedrick
Thursday, 21 September 2017
The Horrors have always had a penchant for churning out pop-tinged gems, and on V, with help from Adele/Coldplay/Florence...
Liz Thomson
Wednesday, 20 September 2017
As pretty much everything but a plague of locusts is visited upon this grim old world, an evening in the company of Neil...
David Nice
Wednesday, 20 September 2017
Has Hackney ever seen or heard such a spectacle – a full Hungarian orchestra taking up most of the Empire stalls to complete...
Dylan Moore
Wednesday, 20 September 2017
Port Talbot (population 38,000) is a town on the south Wales coast famous for two things: steel and actors. The birthplace...
Adam Sweeting
Wednesday, 20 September 2017
Take one off-the-wall spoof spy thriller that becomes an unexpected hit. Add a bunch of gratuitous guest stars (mostly...
Tom Birchenough
Wednesday, 20 September 2017
A decade after his masterpiece, The Tree of Wooden Clogs, won the 1978 Palme d’Or at Cannes, Italian director Ermanno Olmi...
 

★★★★ BASQUIAT: BOOM FOR REAL, BARBICAN Appraising the graffiti artist whose paintings fetch over $100 million at auction

★★★ BAD MOVE, ITV Grumpy country comedy is long on sitcom DNA, short on originality

★★★★ DVD/BLU-RAY: THE LEGEND OF THE HOLY DRINKER In vino veritas: Rutger Hauer surprises in Ermanno Olmi's adaptation of Joseph Roth's final fable

★★★★★ AKRAM KHAN'S GISELLE, SADLER'S WELLS English National Ballet gives us the wilis, and then some

★★★★★ STRAVINSKY BALLETS, LSO, RATTLE, BARBICAN Perfect teamwork in miracles of song, rhythm and colour

★★★★ TROUBLE IN MIND, THE PRINT ROOM Alice Childress’s groundbreaking 1955 drama played with panache

WE'RE STILL HERE Rachel Trezise on her NTW play about Port Talbot steelworkers

disc of the day

CD: The Killers - Wonderful, Wonderful

The Vegas quartet's fifth album - is it destined to be their last?

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tv

Bad Move, ITV review - Jack Dee resettles in the middle of the road

Grumpy country comedy is long on sitcom DNA, short on originality

Cinema Through the Eye of Magnum, BBC Four review - moving pictures

French documentary about the agency's film work sheds light on James Dean and Marilyn Monroe

Black Lake, BBC Four review – Nordic blanc falls flat

Swedish ski resort thriller urgently needs some hotting up

film

DVD/Blu-ray: Journey to the Centre of the Earth

More like journey to the dull heart of feeble '50s special effects

Borg/McEnroe review - Wimbledon face-off is entertaining if incomplete

Shia LaBeouf is ideally cast in first of several tennis films to come

Kingsman: The Golden Circle review - too much of everything

The curse of the sequel strikes again

new music

CD: The Killers - Wonderful, Wonderful

The Vegas quartet's fifth album - is it destined to be their last?

CD: The Horrors - V

Giving their darkness an extra production polish proves a good thing for Southend's finest

Neil Sedaka, Royal Albert Hall review - sparkly veteran defies the decades

A joyful evening of vintage pop classics with an old master

classical

Classical CDs Weekly: Antheil, Barsanti, Handel, Laks

Fun sounds from a self-confessed bad boy, a snapshot of musical life in 18th century Scotland, and beguiling chamber works from an Auschwitz survivor

Reger Cello Suites, Richard Harwood, Malling Abbey review - Bach with a dash of acid

A revelation of solo-cello masterpieces resounds in a fascinating convent church

opera

Senza Sangue/Bluebeard's Castle, Hackney Empire - uneven French-Hungarian mix

Odd casting undermines the power of Péter Eötvös's answer to Bartók's masterpiece

La Damnation de Faust, LSO, Rattle, Barbican review - infernal dynamite

Adrenaline levels still running high for the second instalment of #ThisisRattle

Pagliacci/L’enfant et les sortilèges, Opera North review - off and on with the motley

Masterpieces by Leoncavallo and Ravel launch a season of one-acters in style

theatre

Wings, Young Vic review - Juliet Stevenson goes high and low
Arthur Kopit's poetic drama about post-stroke aphasia and facing up to death astounds
Ramona Tells Jim, Bush Theatre, review – kooky, teenage heartbreak
Heartwarming new play about young love is good fun, if a bit slender
Trouble in Mind, The Print Room review - Tanya Moodie is a treat to watch
Alice Childress’s groundbreaking 1955 drama played with panache

dance

Akram Khan's Giselle, Sadler's Wells review - the migrant crisis in a ballet thriller

English National Ballet gives us the wilis, and then some

La Bayadère, Mariinsky Ballet review - a parade of delights

Russians save the best till last in lavish display of showmanship and art

Contrasts, Mariinsky Ballet review - company shows off range of its powers

Ekaterina Kondaurova the star as Russians display heritage and contemporary works at Royal Opera House

comedy

Mae Martin, Soho Theatre review - life is a drug

Dry storytelling about an obsessional life

Edinburgh Festival and Fringe 2017 reviews round-up

theartsdesk recommends the shows to catch this August

Edinburgh Fringe 2017 reviews: Ingrid Oliver / Darren Harriott / Jayde Adams

An excellent mimic, a strong debut, and a dynamic entertainer

gaming

Destiny 2 review - a worthy follow-up to the biggest game of a generation

Bigger means better for this online sci-fi shooter

Uncharted: The Lost Legacy review - absolutely beautiful and still great fun to play

When the old dog looks this good, you don’t need new tricks

Agents of Mayhem review - digital déjà vu

Crazy action wrapped up in a repetitive formula

visual arts

Jasper Johns, Royal Academy review - a master of 50 shades

'Something resembling truth': the master mark-maker transforms the familiar into the exotic

Basquiat: Boom for Real, Barbican review - the myth explored

Appraising the graffiti artist whose paintings fetch over $100 million at auction

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