fri 24/10/2014

Reviews

Lady Gaga, O2 Arena, London

Thomas H Green

Gaga’s relationship with her fanbase, her “Little Monsters”, is quite a thing. I’ve not seen the O2 so permanently on its feet. Large swathes of her capacity crowd are up and dancing right from the opening number. They adore her and are dressed to show it, from middle-aged ladies to gay men to teenage girls to many multitudes of humanity in between.They couldn’t care less that her third album, Artpop, was lackustre compared to its predecessors and her set, which includes most of it, certainly...

John Cooper Clarke, Town Hall, Birmingham

Guy Oddy

John Cooper Clarke has assumed many roles since he came motoring out of Salford in the mid ‘70s, spitting out poetry from a distinctly untraditional view point. There were tales of how you’d never see a nipple in the Daily Express (“This paper’s boring mindless mean, full of pornography, the kind that’s clean”) and marrying a monster from outer space (“We walked out tentacle in hand. You could sense that the Earthlings would not understand”) and then there was hair, sun glasses and tight suit,...

Wozzeck, BBCSSO, Runnicles, City Halls, Glasgow

Christopher Lambton

It takes a brave man to programme a single performance of Berg’s Wozzeck on a damp Thursday evening in Glasgow. But Donald Runnicles is such a man....

Gerhard Richter, Marian Goodman Gallery

Marina Vaizey

Another October and another Frieze week just passed. This means the biggest of big hitters have been turning up in London. The economic quantifiers...

Wet House, Soho Theatre

Marianka Swain

When gifting the unheard a voice, the temptation is often to make it a solemn one. Thankfully, Paddy Campbell has, for the most part, sidestepped...

Card Dungeon

Stuart Houghton

A clever twist on dungeon adventuring that mostly works

Memphis, Shaftesbury Theatre

Edward Seckerson

Tony-winning Broadway export is well-sung but unoriginal

Jimi: All Is By My Side

Karen Krizanovich

Andre Benjamin is early Jimi Hendrix in John Ridley's alluring biopic

The Babadook

Nick Hasted

A story-book monster stalks a mother and son, in emotionally rich Aussie horror

Russian Avant-Garde Theatre, Victoria & Albert Museum

Sarah Kent

The moment when Russian theatre was transformed by visionary directors

Lee Mack, Eventim Apollo

Veronica Lee

Amiable comic races through a disappointing set

Grayson Perry: Who Are You?, Channel 4

Jasper Rees

Engaging series about portraiture in action captures subjects at a crossroads

Pierre Huyghe/ Paul McCarthy, Hauser & Wirth

Fisun Güner

Eerie enviromental dystopias and hair-raising misanthropic rages

Fury

Emma Simmonds

David Ayer and Brad Pitt take the war film by the scruff of the neck

Culture Club, Heaven

Matthew Wright

Intriguing taster gig suggests successful reunion is on the way

quartet-lab, Wigmore Hall

David Nice

Four brilliant players need a stage director, but still electrify in Beethoven and Crumb

Nick Mulvey, Komedia, Brighton

Thomas H Green

One of Britain's most potent, original singer-songerwiters sparks bright

Neville's Island, Duke of York's Theatre

Marianka Swain

Like its marooned middle-managers, Tim Firth's comedy loses its way

Serena

Jasper Rees

Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper reunite. What can possibly go wrong?

The Scottsboro Boys, Garrick Theatre

Edward Seckerson

Kander & Ebb's startling, stirring musical gets a West End upgrade

The Way He Looks

Tom Birchenough

Gentle Brazilian gay adolescent drama rings stronger than its story suggests

Andrew Logan’s Alternative Miss World, Globe Theatre

Sarah Kent

The delightfully shambolic talent show that's become a national treasure

Witches and Wicked Bodies, British Museum

Florence Hallett

From classical antiquity to the Victorian era, witches have held artists under their spell

The House That Will Not Stand, Tricycle Theatre

Marianka Swain

A key moment in American race relations inspires a richly ambitious new drama

Storyville: Russia's Toughest Prison - The Condemned, BBC Four

Tom Birchenough

Nick Read's long-stretch documentary on remote Russian prison life

LFF 2014: Germany, Pale Mother

Nick Hasted

A revelatory female perspective on Nazi Germany

This Is Where I Leave You

Veronica Lee

Amusing and truthful comedy drama about adult siblings

Gypsy, Chichester Festival Theatre

Edward Seckerson

Imelda Staunton gives the performance of the year in possibly the show of the year

The spooky and the bold in the art of contemporary China

Mark Sheerin

Asia Triennial Manchester showcases the biggest exhibition of contemporary art from south of the Great Wall

newsletter

Get a weekly digest of our critical highlights in your inbox each Thursday!

Simply enter your email address in the box below

View previous newsletters

Subscribe to theartsdesk.com

Thank you for continuing to read our work on theartsdesk.com. For unlimited access to every article in its entirety, including our archive of more than 7,000 pieces, we're asking for £2.95 per month or £25 per year. We feel it's a very good deal, and hope you do too.

To take an annual subscription now simply click here.

And if you're looking for that extra gift for a friend or family member, why not treat them to a theartsdesk.com gift subscription?

latest in today

Lady Gaga, O2 Arena, London

Adoring Gaga fans rewarded with show of multifaceted brilliance

John Cooper Clarke, Town Hall, Birmingham

The alternative Poet Laureate and National Treasure hits the road

Wozzeck, BBCSSO, Runnicles, City Halls, Glasgow

Thomas J Mayer heads stellar cast in showy performance of Berg's maste...

Gerhard Richter, Marian Goodman Gallery

The heavyweight German artist inaugurates prestigious blue-chip gallery in...

Wet House, Soho Theatre

The desperate fate of addicts and outcasts is given bracingly humorous trea...

Card Dungeon

A clever twist on dungeon adventuring that mostly works

Memphis, Shaftesbury Theatre

Tony-winning Broadway export is well-sung but unoriginal

DVD: Maleficent

This dark re-imagining of Disney's wicked fairy delivers in style and...

Jimi: All Is By My Side

Andre Benjamin is early Jimi Hendrix in John Ridley's alluring biopic

The Babadook

A story-book monster stalks a mother and son, in emotionally rich Aussie ho...