thu 02/07/2015

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

AMY

Kieron Tyler

“I don’t think I could handle it, I think I’d go mad.” It’s the sort of answer given by anyone asked how they’d react to fame. With the possibility looming of recognition beyond...

Orson Welles: The Great Disruptor

Demetrios Matheou

No-one could joke about the tragic aspect of Orson Welles’s career, the fact that his inestimable promise had only been partially realised, better than Welles himself. Once, when...

Linneaus Tripe, Victoria & Albert Museum

Marina Vaizey

Linnaeus Tripe? Shades of a minor character in Dickens or Trollope, but in fact the resoundingly named Tripe (1822-1902) was an army officer and photographer, the sixth son and...

theartsdesk at Glastonbury Festival 2015

Caspar Gomez

Caspar Gomez stays offline at Glastonbury. This report arrived at theartsdesk two days later handwritten by fax with an accompanying preamble which said only, “This scribble has...

The Importance of Being Earnest, Vaudeville Theatre

Alexandra Coghlan

Geoffrey Rush has done it, Gyles Brandreth has done it, Stephen Fry came close to doing it, and now David Suchet is giving it a go – donning drag and a perpetually disgusted...

DVD: The Man with the Golden Arm

Kieron Tyler

When The Man with the Golden Arm was released in British cinemas in January 1956, it was given an “X” certificate by the then British Board of Film Censors (BBFC), which excluded...

Imagine... Jeff Koons: Diary of a Seducer, BBC One

Fisun Güner

Feelings. Whoa whoa whoa feeeelings. Just like that Morris Albert hit of the Seventies for star-crossed lovers everywhere, I...

{150}, National Theatre Wales/Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru

Dylan Moore

The brackets around {150} are ambiguous, almost apologetic. The 150th anniversary of Y Wladfa (The Colony), the semi-...

The Man Who Sold the World, O2 Shepherd's Bush Empire

Barney Harsent

Normally, if an album as good as The Man Who Sold the World had itself sold the sum total of sod all on release, it would...

Dan Cruickshank's Civilisation Under Attack, BBC Four

Marina Vaizey

This was one of the most disturbing, terrifying and informative programmes imaginable, made more so by Dan Cruickshank’s...

CD: Meg Baird - Don't Weigh Down the Light

Barney Harsent

The first thing that hits you is the voice. Simultaneously full and fragile; assured, but with a distinctive, backnote graze...

Guillaume Tell, Royal Opera

David Nice

There are two operatic types who should leave Rossini’s epic swansong for the stage well alone. One would usually be a...

Robert Glasper: 'When hip hop took over the world'

Matthew Wright

Pianist and producer Robert Glasper is one of the most versatile and innovative musicians on the scene, working within jazz...

Freedom: The Art of Improvisation Festival, The Vortex, Dalston

Thomas Rees

Freedom Festival, a new event curated by vibes player and electronicist Orphy Robinson and vocalist Cleveland Watkiss, is...

DVD: It Follows

Nick Hasted

This is an unusually humane horror film, made more chilling by its warmth towards its characters. After a brief prologue of...

Positive: Introducing a comedy about HIV/AIDS

theartsdesk

Of all the art forms, theatre has been most attentive to the story of HIV/AIDS. Leading the way in America there was Larry...

Arena: Nicolas Roeg – It's About Time, BBC Four

Adam Sweeting

Rumour has it that there's a proposal floating around Hollywood to remake Nicolas Roeg's Don't Look Now, his enthralling...

Pappano's Classical Voices, BBC Four

Marina Vaizey

Antonio Pappano, artistic director and chief conductor of the Royal Opera House, is a polymath, for he is also a brilliant...

CD: Trembling Bells – The Sovereign Self

Guy Oddy

Trembling Bells appear to be resolutely stuck in 1969 – a time when hippiedom’s tastes turned from groovy Paisley Pattern to...

Taylor Swift, Hyde Park

Lisa-Marie Ferla

While most contemporary entertainers rely on a little of the old smoke and mirrors, no pop culture phenomenon requires the...

theartsdesk at the Edinburgh International Film Festival - part 2

David Kettle

It has felt like a strong year for the Edinburgh International Film Festival, even with new artistic director Mark Adams...

The Flying Dutchman, Opera North

Graham Rickson

We’ve been spoilt over the past few summers in Leeds; Opera North’s semi-staged Ring has been a triumph, and the whole cycle...

Gallery: Philip Jones Griffiths' Vietnam

theartsdesk

The most celebrated reportage to come out the Vietnam War was Michael Herr’s Dispatches, rightly acclaimed as the most...

Reissue CDs Weekly: Dust on the Nettles

Kieron Tyler

Various Artists: Dust on the Nettles – A Journey Through the British Underground Folk Scene 1967–72It’s one of the most...

 

IMAGINE... JEFF KOONS: DIARY OF A SEDUCER, BBC ONE Just what is it that makes the kitsch-meister American artist so different, so appealing?

{150}, NATIONAL THEATRE WALES/THEATR GENEDLAETHOL CYMRU Bold and technically dazzling, the energy of Marc Rees’ Patagonian tale flags too often

CD: MEG BAIRD - DON'T WEIGH DOWN THE LIGHT Loss, leaving and new beginnings dominate a beautiful album from the former Espers singer

DAN CRUICKSHANK'S CIVILISATION UNDER ATTACK, BBC FOUR After destroying the historic artefacts, Islamic State will destroy the people. Are we planning to stop them?

GUILLAUME TELL, ROYAL OPERA Strong musical values versus a production incongruent with the aims of a masterpiece

THE MAN WHO SOLD THE WORLD, O2 SHEPHERD'S BUSH EMPIRE Tony Visconti, Woody Woodmansey and friends play the David Bowie classic

disc of the day

DVD: The Man with the Golden Arm

Frank Sinatra is tantalised by heroin in the film which changed American cinema

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We Made It

We Made It: Hauser & Wirth Somerset

Gallery director Alice Workman on housing contemporary art in the threshing barn

We Made It: Jonathan Thomas, Maker

The designer maker on the future of furniture and working with Thomas Heatherwick

We Made It: Rebecca Salter RA

The British artist talks about a life inspired by traditional Japanese crafts

tv

Imagine... Jeff Koons: Diary of a Seducer, BBC One

Just what is it that makes the kitsch-meister American artist so different, so appealing?

Dan Cruickshank's Civilisation Under Attack, BBC Four

After destroying the historic artefacts, Islamic State will destroy the people. Are we planning to stop them?

Arena: Nicolas Roeg – It's About Time, BBC Four

Absorbing portrait of one of British cinema's most influential directors

film

AMY

Profoundly depressing scrutiny of the ascent and decline of Amy Winehouse

Orson Welles: The Great Disruptor

A major BFI retrospective marks the centenary of the director's birth

DVD: It Follows

Teen horror with a kind but chilling heart

new music

AMY

Profoundly depressing scrutiny of the ascent and decline of Amy Winehouse

theartsdesk at Glastonbury Festival 2015

Later and greater than the rest - Glastonbury, the full adventure

The Man Who Sold the World, O2 Shepherd's Bush Empire

Tony Visconti, Woody Woodmansey and friends play the David Bowie classic

classical

DVD: The Man with the Golden Arm

Frank Sinatra is tantalised by heroin in the film which changed American cinema

theartsdesk in Orkney: St Magnus Festival

Wintry weather didn't dampen spirits at midsummer celebration of music and the arts

Classical CDs Weekly: Yotam Haber, Janáček, Mahler

Eclectic chamber scores, vivid Czech orchestral music and an epic among symphonies

opera

Guillaume Tell, Royal Opera

Strong musical values versus a production incongruent with the aims of a masterpiece

Pappano's Classical Voices, BBC Four

Series about great opera singing begins with the queens of the high Cs

The Flying Dutchman, Opera North

Uncluttered, semi-staged Wagner, full of musical thrills

theatre

The Importance of Being Earnest, Vaudeville Theatre

This affectionate production of a classic does what it says on the tin

{150}, National Theatre Wales/Theatr Genedlaethol Cymru

Bold and technically dazzling, the energy of Marc Rees’ Patagonian tale flags too often

Positive: Introducing a comedy about HIV/AIDS

Playwright Shaun Kitchener and director Harry Burton discuss their new production at the Park Theatre

visual arts

Linneaus Tripe, Victoria & Albert Museum

The pioneering photographer who had an empathetic understanding of the Indian subcontinent

Imagine... Jeff Koons: Diary of a Seducer, BBC One

Just what is it that makes the kitsch-meister American artist so different, so appealing?

Gallery: Philip Jones Griffiths' Vietnam

The reportage of the Welsh photojournalist is being celebrated in a new exhibition

dance

Flamencura, Paco Peña Company, Sadler's Wells

Top-quality showcase from some of the best in the business

Alston at Home, The Place

New work outshines old in company showcase

Robbins/MacMillan Triple Bill, Royal Ballet

Company strong, principals less so in tame season finale

comedy

Rob Delaney, QEH

Filthy but funny hour from the US comic

Tommy Tiernan, Soho Theatre

Delightful devilment from the Irishman

Nina Conti, Theatre Royal, Brighton

Wonderfully funny evening with a comedian-ventriloquist at the top of her game

gaming

Batman: Arkham Knight

The finale of this action-adventure trilogy throws the kitchen sink in

Kholat/Neon Struct

Terrifying orienteering and synth-box sneaking await you in these two polished pebbles...

You Must Build A Boat

A match-3 puzzle with real depth

Listed

Listed: Essential BBC Proms
Our classical writers choose 12 of the best
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

latest comments

Setting all the arguments above aside, this play...

7th century Islam was never about destroying...

Nah...it's a boring dirge and it makes me cringe...

Not good enough. Your 'educated' argument was...

Just reread and think about it. Every other...

Even though the story was a translation I could...

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