mon 21/08/2017

Barbican

Trajal Harrell: Hoochie Koochie, Barbican review - flamboyant and mesmerising

Two performers rush down the stairs and sweep through the audience, their designer outfits splaying out as they speed elegantly around the gallery and disappear as quickly as they came. Thus begins a series of performances that are an intriguing mix...

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Kozhukhin, LSO, Rattle, Barbican

Gorgeous sound, shame about the movement – or lack of it. That seems to be the problem with too many of Simon Rattle's interpretations of late romantic music. It gave us a sclerotic Wagner Tristan und Isolde Prelude last night, Karajanesque and not...

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The Tempest, Barbican Theatre review - sound and fury at the expense of sense

Can The Tempest open on stage without a tempest – of crashing, shrieking and torment – and thus without what can become five minutes-plus of inaudibility? In Gregory Doran’s 2016 Stratford production for the RSC, revived at the Barbican Theatre...

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Britten Sinfonia, Adès, Barbican

Thomas Adès and the Britten Sinfonia here reached the most revolutionary works in their twin portrait season of Gerald Barry and Beethoven: Barry’s Chevaux-de-frise and Beethoven’s "Eroica". Adès, ever-keen to play the iconoclast, emphasised all the...

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Radamisto, Guildhall School, Milton Court

''…after various Accidents, it comes to pass that he recovers both Her and his Kingdom”. Handel's Radamisto may be a tale of warring kingdoms, noble self-sacrifice and mature, wedded love, but it’s also a fairly daft piece of dramatic belief-...

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LSO, Haitink, Barbican

Bernard Haitink is one of the great Bruckner conductors of our time. His interpretations are expansive yet vivid and always go straight to the heart of the music. But he is also an old man, and physical frailty is increasingly inhibiting his work,...

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Ariodante, The English Concert, Bicket, Barbican

To hear The English Concert playing Handel is to arrive in technicolour Oz after a lifetime of black and white baroque in Kansas. We’re not short on period bands in the UK, but few bring this music into anything like the kind of focus that Harry...

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Total Immersion: Edgard Varèse, Barbican

Made from girders, say the brewers of an infamous Scottish fizzy drink. If you could siphon the music of Edgard Varèse into a can, that’s what it would taste like. Blunt, acrid, inimitable, fizzing with closely guarded, possibly unpleasant...

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Obsession, Barbican review - Jude Law on serious form in Ivo van Hove's latest

There is a distinctive look, feel, even sound to a stage production directed by Ivo van Hove, which is becoming rather familiar to London theatregoers after two cult hits, A View From the Bridge and Hedda Gabler. You know you’re in van Hovenland as...

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Doctor Atomic, BBCSO, Adams, Barbican

Bomb-dropping is the new black again in Trump's dysfunctional America. Awareness of that contributed to the crackling cloud of dynamic dread hanging over last night's concert staging of John Adams's opera-oratorio - my description, not his - about...

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Caetano Veloso and Teresa Cristina, Barbican

Caetano Veloso is a unique figure in world popular music. As bright as the likes of David Byrne and Brian Eno, but also a genuine pop star, beloved by “chamber maids and taxi drivers” as well as the intellectual liberal élite. In the late 1960s, he...

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Tamestit, LSO, Roth, Barbican

François-Xavier Roth is a distinctive presence at the podium. He is short and immaculately attired, and first appearances could lead you to expect a civilised and uneventful evening. But the facade soon drops. His movements are brisk and erratic, as...

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