wed 02/09/2015

Features & Interviews

Listed: Essential Operas 2015-16


September is upon us and it’s nearly time for the new season. English National Opera’s Artistic Director John Berry may have left the building but his enterprising legacy lives on in a 2015-16 season that looks on paper as good as any in the past 20 years; what happens after that is anyone's guess. Still, there shouldn’t be too much grief that ENO Music Director Edward Gardner has moved on, since his successor Mark Wigglesworth already has a fine track record with the company.Over at the Royal...

theartsdesk at Green Man 2015

Barney Harsent

Sunday. Brecon Beacons. Very early in the morning. I am woken, as I have been every 20 minutes or so since falling asleep, by water dripping on my head. So far, I’ve been able to ignore it, the pain of sitting upright outweighing the inconvenience of a wet head by a factor I can’t begin to fathom. Now, however, the hangover has lifted slightly and the need to piss is so painful I can no longer ignore it.After a walk to the toilets that sees my clothes absorb more water than I subsequently eject...

DVD: Around the World with Orson Welles

Graham Rickson

Orson Welles was commissioned by ITV in 1955 to make a 26-part series of travelogues. Always in search of money to fund his independent projects, he...

theartsdesk in New York: Folk City

Markie Robson-Scott

If you liked the Coen Brothers' Inside Llewyn Davis, with its Dave Van Ronk-esque hero in Greenwich Village in 1961, you'll enjoy the new exhibition...

An Open Book: Bruce McCall

Marianka Swain

Polo played in surplus First World War tanks; zeppelin-shooting as a gentlemanly leisure pursuit; the mighty vessel RMS Tyrannic, proud host of the...

Hot August Night: The Beatles at Shea Stadium

James Woodall

Fifty years ago today, The Beatles played their largest-ever concert

theartsdesk at Wilderness Festival 2015

Matthew Wright

The Waitrose of festivals offers the best of most things, just this side of self-parody

An Open Book: Conrad Shawcross

Florence Hallett

The sculptor talks about his fascination with Charles Babbage and Ada Lovelace and about the big ideas that inform his work

theartsdesk at the New Horizons Film Festival

Demetrios Matheou

A fledgling film festival in western Poland has quickly emerged as one of the most popular in Europe

Cilla Black, 1943-2015

Adam Sweeting

From cloakroom attendant at The Cavern club to national treasure

theartsdesk in Tuscany: Musical landscapes

Alexandra Coghlan

Encounters of the classical kind in Tuscany's loveliest garden

An Open Book: Quentin Blake

Fisun Güner

From a biography of Rimbaud to Annie Proulx's collage-like prose, we delve into the celebrated illustrator's literary tastes and habits

Bolshoi Ballet acid attack leader loses his job

Ismene Brown

Sergei Filin's contract will not be renewed, and his post abolished

First Person: Dear Lupin

Michael Simkins

How to turn an epistolary humour book into a West End play starring James and Jack Fox

theartsdesk in Pärnu: Top players, great Estonians

David Nice

Utopian music-making led by the Järvi family in Estonia's magical summer town

theartsdesk at the Buxton Festival: Bloody Lucia, saintly Joan and sweet Louise

Richard Bratby

High operatic standards for Donizetti, Verdi and Charpentier in the Peak District

Extract: The Time Traveller’s Guide to British Theatre

Aleks Sierz and Lia Ghilardi

Take a ride through 400 years of British theatre with our fictional guides

theartsdesk in Oslo: From heritage to art now

Fisun Güner

A dynamic art scene in Norway's capital is giving London and Berlin a run for their money

First Person: Poems to Messiaen

Michael Symmons Roberts

Michael Symmons Roberts introduces a project to respond to Messiaen through poetry and painting; we also publish one of his poems

10 Questions for Pianist Leif Ove Andsnes

Adam Sweeting

Norway's premier pianist on Beethoven, elevator music, conducting from the piano and being big in Korea

Remembering Jon Vickers (1926-2015)


Recollections of a unique tenor from soprano Linda Esther Gray and writer Jonathon Brown

theartsdesk at Førdefestivalen: Music and the midnight sun

Tim Cumming

Gathering of world and folk musicians in Norway's fjord country. Plus sketches by the writer

Q&A Special: Pianist Lucas Debargue

Ismene Brown

First interview with 'self-taught' Lucas Debargue who captivated the Tchaikovsky piano competition

theartsdesk at the Lichfield Festival

Richard Bratby

A slimline Magic Flute in the Cathedral and David Matthews as featured composer

theartsdesk in Aix: Dreaming on

Jasper Rees

From Provence to China: Robert Carsen's great Britten puts a girdle round the earth

theartsdesk at Love Supreme: Van Morrison & Dianne Reeves

Matthew Wright

The programme stays in the middle of the road, but UK's only outdoor jazz festival still grooves nicely

theartsdesk in Aix-en-Provence: Let's make a Euro-opera

David Nice

Bright young team gathers for a unique project connecting Europeans

theartsdesk in Moscow: Free thought vs cultural politics

Tom Birchenough

How heavy is the official hand bearing down on Russian culture today?

Orson Welles: The Great Disruptor

Demetrios Matheou

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


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Listed: Essential Operas 2015-16

Our classical/opera writers choose 12 highlights of the coming season

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