wed 01/07/2015

Paris

La Traviata: Love, Death and Divas, BBC Two

Verdi's La Traviata has become one of the best-loved and most-performed works in the operatic repertoire, but this is no thanks to sections of the English press. In this entertaining romp through the opera's history, presenters Tom Service and...

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The Father, Tricycle Theatre

André is losing time. It’s not just his perennially mislaid watch, but whole hours, weeks, years. Is he still living in his Paris flat, or did he move in with his daughter Anne? Is she married, divorced, leaving the country with a new boyfriend? And...

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Girlhood

Confounding expectations from the first frames, Girlhood is the endearingly scrappy and staggeringly beautiful third film from French writer-director Céline Sciamma (Tomboy) and no relation to Boyhood. Intimate and exuberant, it's a coming-of-age...

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A Nation Divided? The Charlie Hebdo Aftermath, BBC Three

All the politicians lined up to chorus "Je suis Charlie" after the nauseating massacre of the Charlie Hebdo cartoonists in Paris in January, but three months later, how is that emotional declaration of solidarity against murderous extremism holding...

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Dior and I

If anyone thinks high fashion is an airy-fairy world populated by flibbertigibbets preoccupied with frills and furbelows, Frédéric Tcheng’s feature-length documentary Dior and I, a behind-the-scenes account of the race to prepare the 2012 Christian...

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Inventing Impressionism, National Gallery

Here is an exhibition that tells us how something we now take totally for granted actually came about: how our love affair with the Impressionists was masterminded by an art dealer, Paul Durand-Ruel (1831-1922). He was a prime mover in inventing the...

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Salt and Silver, Tate Britain

Captured in monochromes ranging from the most delicate honeyed golds to robust gradations of aubergine and deep brown, the earliest photographs still provoke a shiver of surprise and excitement. Even now, their very existence seems miraculous, and...

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Hannigan, Uchida, Philharmonia, Salonen, Royal Festival Hall

While the Berlin Philharmonic's progress through London with Simon Rattle has grabbed the column inches away from the rest of the capital's classical music offerings this week, a delightful mostly Ravel programme from the Philharmonia should not be...

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Six Characters in Search of an Author, Théâtre de la Ville-Paris, Barbican

"The fantastical should come so close to the real that you must almost believe it," declared Dostoyevsky on Pushkin’s ghostly short story The Queen of Spades. Emmanuel Demarcy-Mota and his superb French ensemble have brought off the feat twice now...

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DVD: Lucy

This has been Scarlett Johansson’s defining year. Previously seeming a slightly dazed, limited beauty, she bravely abandoned her comfort zone in Jonathan Glazer’s gruelling and strange Scottish s.f. vision Under the Skin, then had her biggest hit...

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DVD: The Kidnapping of Michel Houellebecq

There’s a wonderful drollery to Guillaume Nicloux’s wry and eccentric comedy The Kidnapping of Michel Houellebecq (L‘Enlèvement de Michel Houellebecq) which is quintessentially Gallic. Three years ago the enfant terrible of French literature...

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School of Babel

“God isn’t in this class, we’ll leave God outside.” Although teacher Brigitte Cervoni declares that matters of religion are not appropriate for her class of non-French children learning the language of their new country, a lengthy section of School...

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