tue 30/06/2015

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

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 conductor who ignores many of the notes written by a master...

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, R&B, hip hop and related genres. He has won two...

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 all about bringing improvised music out of the shadows...

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 inexplicable, bone-snapping terror, it lets us live...

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 Kramer’s The Normal Heart (1985) and Tony Kushner’s...

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 1973 masterpiece of love, grief and death foretold. Anyone...

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...

Sacred Imaginations, Kings Place

Peter Culshaw

This was one of the most crazily ambitious music projects of the year so far. Co-curators Sam Mills and Susheela Raman, with...

theartsdesk in Orkney: St Magnus Festival

David Kettle

Ebb of Winter felt about right. It’s one of Peter Maxwell Davies’s most recent works, a yearning for the brightness and...

CD: Satoshi Tomiie - New Day

Joe Muggs

Here's a funny one: used as an adjective, “lifestyle” has lately become a popular pejorative term for music (see, most...

The Trial, Young Vic

David Nice

Kafka and Jones, the names above this little shop of horrors, would be a marriage made in off-kilter theatreland had the...

The Saboteurs, More4

Barney Harsent

The 1965 film The Heroes of Telemark, documenting the Allies' mission to stop the Nazis from going nuclear, is to historical...

Classical CDs Weekly: Yotam Haber, Janáček, Mahler

Graham Rickson

 Yotam Haber: Torus – Chamber Music 2007-2014 (Roven Records)Yotam Haber's We Were All is a vibrant setting of a short...

CD: Robert Glasper – Covered

Matthew Wright

Robert Glasper has recently been making a name, and winning Grammys with his electronic fusion outfit, the Robert Glasper...

Richard Dadd: The Art of Bedlam, Watts Gallery

Mark Sheerin

The Watts Gallery in rural Surrey is a very genteel setting for a show by a figure who for most of his life was denied...

She's Funny That Way

Matt Wolf

If Peter Bogdanovich – remember him? – weren't there in the credits, Woody Allen would seem the unmistakable director of She...

Batman: Arkham Knight

Simon Munk

You crouch atop a gothic skyscraper, barely distinguishable from the gargoyles you're surrounded by. A rainy sheen dimly...

DVD: Force Majeure

Kieron Tyler

Pinpointing exactly what makes Force Majeure so disquieting is difficult, and a second viewing on DVD confirms this. Overall...

 

POSITIVE: INTRODUCING A COMEDY ABOUT HIV/AIDS Playwright Shaun Kitchener and director Harry Burton discuss their new production at the Park Theatre

PAPPANO'S CLASSICAL VOICES, BBC FOUR Series about great opera singing begins with the queens of the high Cs

THE ARTS DESK AT THE EDINBURGH INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL - PART 2 Boundary-pushing documentaries were among strong offerings in the festival's closing days

CD: TREMBLING BELLS - THE SOVEREIGN SELF Scottish folk rockers revisit the time when hippies were casting off Paisley Pattern in favour of brown corduroy

ARENA: NICOLAS ROEG - IT'S ABOUT TIME, BBC FOUR Absorbing portrait of one of British cinema's most influential directors

disc of the day

DVD: It Follows

Teen horror with a kind but chilling heart

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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

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

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

Pappano's Classical Voices, BBC Four

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

The Saboteurs, More4

Jaw-jaw not war-war makes for an involving and tense drama

film

DVD: It Follows

Teen horror with a kind but chilling heart

theartsdesk at the Edinburgh International Film Festival - part 2

Boundary-pushing documentaries were among strong offerings in the festival's closing days

She's Funny That Way

Woody Allen haunts Peter Bogdanovich's putative comeback

new music

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

Genre-straddling pianist on his covers project, and how the hip hop home studio denudes music

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

The final day of this inaugural free jazz festival proves British improv is in rude health

CD: Trembling Bells – The Sovereign Self

Scottish folk rockers revisit the time when hippies were casting off Paisley Pattern in favour of brown corduroy

classical

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

Max Raabe, Wigmore Hall

The German crooner plays all too predictably to audience expectations

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

Positive: Introducing a comedy about HIV/AIDS

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

The Trial, Young Vic

Richard Jones, Nick Gill and Rory Kinnear turn the dramatic screw on Kafka's nightmare story

Keeping up with the Joneses

The epic story of Welsh Patagonia finds Wales's two national theatres collaborating

visual arts

Gallery: Philip Jones Griffiths' Vietnam

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

Richard Dadd: The Art of Bedlam, Watts Gallery

The Victorian artist who created an unforgettable world of fairies

Barbara Hepworth, Tate Britain

Long-awaited retrospective liberates the sculptor from Henry Moore association

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

You seem to be picking a quarrel when I'm really...

My point is not about Richard Jones. He and his...

As Callas said: "listen". What Tooley in fact...

Well.................I was on my feet at the end...

The amateur/community actors didn't have speaking...

So months, maybe years of preparation takes place...

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