sat 13/02/2016

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Classical CDs Weekly: Beethoven, Martinů, Mompou

Graham Rickson

Beethoven: Symphonies 4 & 5 Concentus Musicus Wien/Nikolaus Harnoncourt (Sony)Nikolaus Harnoncourt announced his retirement in December, so this live recording from May 2015...

The Odyssey, Mark Bruce Company, Circomedia, Bristol

Mark Kidel

Mark Bruce did very well with his last dance theatre production Dracula, but this time around he has reached a little too far. The Odyssey is a great text, but with the twists and...

CD: Jack Garratt - Phase

Thomas H Green

The burden of expectation on Jack Garratt is somewhat unfair. Among the accolades he’s picked up over the past year are Critics Choice Brit Award 2015 and top slot in the BBC...

Nell Gwynn, Apollo Theatre

Aleks Sierz

As a subject for drama, theatre history is always popular in the West End. Between Mr Foote’s Other Leg, which has recently closed at the Theatre Royal Haymarket, and Mrs...

The Easybeats to AC/DC: The Sound of Aussie Rock, BBC Four

Barney Harsent

Australia has long been a country shaped by its arrivals and, as this BBC4 documentary set out to show, so it was with rock music. Using the twin journeys of the Albert family...

A Bigger Splash

Adam Sweeting

A "guests-from-hell" saga on a panoramic scale, Luca Guadagnino's A Bigger Splash is a reworking of Jacques Deray's 1969 sex-and-jealousy movie La Piscine. The action has been...

"...como el musguito...", Pina Bausch, Sadler's Wells

Hanna Weibye

Sitting near the front at a Pina Bausch piece always provokes anxiety. As my neighbour in the fourth row remarked, "at best...

The End of Longing, Playhouse Theatre

Marianka Swain

Jack is an alcoholic. Stephanie is a whore. Joseph is stupid. Stevie is a broody neurotic. These identifiers are proudly...

Mahler 3, Fink, Philharmonia, Hrůša, RFH

Peter Quantrill

"It’s all very well, but you can’t call it a symphony". So said William Walton of Mahler’s Third, all six movements and a...

Toast, Rose Theatre, Kingston

Ismene Brown

If one says, accurately, that Richard Bean’s Toast is a comedy about Hull’s lost bread industry, trade unions and the poor...

DVD: Fidelio: Alice's Journey

Kieron Tyler

Fidelio: Alice's Journey can literally be described as relating a journey of self-discovery. A mechanic on the Marseille-...

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

Jasper Rees

“It is a truth universally acknowledged that a zombie in possession of brains must be in want of more brains.” Miss Bennet...

Callow, Hough, LPO, Vänskä, RFH

David Nice

2015, Sibelius anniversary year, yielded no London performances of the composer's last masterpiece, the Prospero's farewell...

CD: Rokia Traoré, Né So

Mark Kidel

The Malian music scene has always been dominated by the griot caste, the jalis who serve as historians, praise-singers and...

Happy Valley, Series 2, BBC One

Jasper Rees

“It’s routine, it’s procedure.” “It’s wank, it’s toss.” As you can tell, Happy Valley is back. If Sally Wainwright made...

The Survivalist

Adam Sweeting

This is the first feature by writer-director Stephen Fingleton, and has earned him a BAFTA nomination for Outstanding Debut...

Zavalloni, Saeijs, Britten Sinfonia, Rundell, Barbican

Gavin Dixon

The music of Louis Andriessen is instantly recognisable but frustratingly difficult to define. The American Minimalists are...

Horace and Pete

Barney Harsent

“Warning: this show is not a ‘comedy,’” wrote comedian Louis CK in an email alerting fans to the impending arrival of the...

Rock History Revisited in HBO's Vinyl

Adam Sweeting

It was 20 years ago that Mick Jagger suggested to Martin Scorsese that they should make a film "that spanned four decades of...

CD: The Jezabels - Synthia

Lisa-Marie Ferla

It would be easy to write off The Jezabels’ third album as style over substance. The gaudy, synth-heavy gloom-pop of Synthia...

Generation Painting 1955-65, Heong Gallery, Cambridge

Marina Vaizey

The individual colleges of the University of Cambridge can call, when needed, on an astonishing international network of...

The Mighty Handful, ROH Orchestra, Pappano, Royal Opera House

David Nice

What fun it must have been to attend any of the St Petersburg Free Music School concerts during the second half of the 19th...

The X-Files, Channel 5

Lisa-Marie Ferla

It’s 2016, and The X-Files is the most popular TV show in the world. The very idea that over 20 million people in the US...

CD: Barry Adamson - Know Where To Run

Guy Oddy

If these decisions were made on the back of quality and creativity rather than marketing muscle, Barry Adamson wouldn’t just...

 

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE AND ZOMBIES Lily James reincarnates Elizabeth Bennet as a slayer of the undead

HORACE AND PETE Louis CK defies expectations with his brand new 'not a comedy' show

SIX OF THE BEST: THEATRE 'The mother of the blues' leads theartsdesk's stage tips

THE SURVIVALIST The end of the world as we know it

GENERATION PAINTING 1955-65, HEONG GALLERY, CAMBRIDGE New Downing space opens with the mid-century collection of former Tate director Alan Bowness

disc of the day

CD: Jack Garratt - Phase

2016's big pop hope is sonically adventurous but vocally tiresome

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We Made It

We Made It: Stuntwoman Tracy Caudle

Forget Evel Knievel: a well-crafted stunt is more about precision than daring

We Made It: 'The Revenant' Production Designer Jack Fisk

How he stunningly recreated the authentic American frontier of 1823

We Made It: Double Bass Maker Laurence Dixon

Love at first sight, a six-day week and the satisfaction of a job well done

tv

The Easybeats to AC/DC: The Sound of Aussie Rock, BBC Four

The story of AC/DC's long way to the top was engaging, but too short

Happy Valley, Series 2, BBC One

Sally Wainwright and Sarah Lancashire return to police work in Yorkshire laden with BAFTAs

Horace and Pete

Louis CK defies expectations with his brand new 'not a comedy' show

film

A Bigger Splash

Last tango in Pantelleria

DVD: Fidelio: Alice's Journey

Despite smatterings of the ludicrous, a spiced-up sea voyage brings self-discovery

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

Lily James reincarnates Elizabeth Bennet as a slayer of the undead

new music

CD: Jack Garratt - Phase

2016's big pop hope is sonically adventurous but vocally tiresome

CD: Rokia Traoré, Né So

A Malian singer with a touch of vulnerability

CD: The Jezabels - Synthia

Aussie four-piece throw out the rulebook on immersive third album

classical

Classical CDs Weekly: Beethoven, Martinů, Mompou

A great conductor bids farewell, luminous Czech orchestral music and deep thoughts from a quiet Catalan

Mahler 3, Fink, Philharmonia, Hrůša, RFH

The biggest symphony is wholehearted but missing the bigger picture

Callow, Hough, LPO, Vänskä, RFH

Rainbow colours in Sibelius's masterly incidental music for 'The Tempest'

opera

The Magic Flute, English National Opera

Mozart's opera rediscovers its magic in this revelatory revival

The Devil Inside, Peacock Theatre

Compelling new Faustian-pact opera is small in scale but big on ideas

L'Étoile, Royal Opera

Chabrier's pretty music for an absurdist comedy needs more sparkle

theatre

Nell Gwynn, Apollo Theatre

Rising star Gemma Arterton shines in West End outing for jolly Restoration romp

The End of Longing, Playhouse Theatre

The one where love conquers all in Matthew Perry's fatally artificial debut

Toast, Rose Theatre, Kingston

Richard Bean's ribald bakery comedy is proof of a gap year well spent

visual arts

Generation Painting 1955-65, Heong Gallery, Cambridge

New Downing College space opens with the mid-century collection of former Tate director Alan Bowness

Bruegel in Black and White: Three Grisailles Reunited, Courtauld Gallery

Virtuoso works by the Netherlandish master dazzle and beguile

Painting the Modern Garden, Royal Academy

Monet triumphs in a celebration of nature tamed

dance

The Odyssey, Mark Bruce Company, Circomedia, Bristol

21st century Homer fizzes with energy but reaches too high

"...como el musguito...", Pina Bausch, Sadler's Wells

Tanztheater Wuppertal in choreographer's gentle last work

The Return, Circa, Barbican

Exile-themed circus show is rather too serious

comedy

Reeves & Mortimer, Leicester De Montfort Hall

The gloriously daft duo return

Dave Gorman, Touring

Likeable comic points out life's inanities

Eddie Izzard, Palace Theatre

Surreal comic kicks off his West End run

gaming

The Room 3

A tactile puzzle of ingenious construction

Life Is Strange Limited Edition

Acclaimed graphic adventure episodes finally gets the boxset treatment

Best of 2015: Games

Action replay! We select the top titles from a vintage year in games

Listed

Listed: Forget the Force
Star Wars wasn't the only groundbreaking film of 1977. We identify some others
The 11 Best Gigs on Film (after Stop Making Sense)
As Talking Heads' masterpiece is restored on disc, we hail the great screen concerts
Listed: The 100 Funniest Things about Downton Abbey
Julian Fellowes' juggernaut has gone from the sublime to the ridiculous in six series. Here's how he did it

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