mon 17/06/2024

Features & Interviews

First Person: The Henschel Quartet at 30

The Henschel Quartet

We vividly remember the image of Martin Lovett, the cellist of the legendary Amadeus Quartet, bursting out laughing. He tells his favourite true travel story.

First Person: LIFT artistic director Kris Nelson on delivering the best of international theatre to the nation's capital

Kris Nelson

LIFT 2024 is nearly here. It’s a festival that will take you on deep and personal journeys. We’ve got shows that will catch your breath, spark your mind and rev up your imagination. There’s adrenaline too. It’s international theatre for your gut. 

Remembering conductor Andrew Davis (1944-2024)


As a human being of immense warmth, humour and erudition, Andrew Davis made it all too easy to forget what towering, incandescent performances he...

Extract: Pariah Genius by Iain Sinclair

Iain Sinclair

Iain Sinclair is a writer, film-maker, and psychogeographer extraordinaire. He began his career in the poetic avant-garde of the Sixties and...

First Persons: composers Colin Alexander and...

Colin Alexander And Héloïse Werner

For tonight’s performance at Milton Court, the nuanced and delicate tones of strings, voices, harmonium and chamber organ will merge and mingle...

Subscribe to

Thank you for continuing to read our work on For unlimited access to every article in its entirety, including our archive of more than 15,000 pieces, we're asking for £5 per month or £40 per year. We feel it's a very good deal, and hope you do too.

To take a 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 gift subscription?

First Person: Leeds Lieder Festival director and pianist Joseph Middleton on a beloved organisation back from the brink

Joseph Middleton

Arts Council funding restored after the blow of 2023, new paths are being forged

First Person: actor Paul Jesson on survival, strength, and the healing potential of art

Paul Jesson

Olivier Award-winner explains how Richard Nelson came to write a solo play for him

First Person: author-turned-actor Lydia Higman on a play that foregrounds a slice of forgotten history

Lydia Higman

'Gunter' co-creator and historian connects a 1604 witch hit to the world today

First person: playwright Paul Grellong on keeping pace with American politics

Paul Grellong

The author of 'Power of Sail' sets the scene for his play's UK premiere

10 Questions for folk singer-songwriter Olivia Chaney - 'deeply personal songs that open out to the universal'

Tim Cumming

The Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter on 'Circus of Desire', her strongest album to date

First Person: conductor Peter Whelan on coming full circle with the Monteverdi Choir and Orchestra

Peter Whelan

From watching Handel's 'Israel in Egypt' on TV to conducting it

theartsdesk in Strasbourg: crossing the frontiers

Boyd Tonkin

'Lohengrin' marks a remarkable singer's arrival on Planet Wagner

First Person: Laurence Cummings on his 25th and final year as Musical Director of the London Handel Festival

Laurence Cummings

A blockbuster month begins tomorrow, mixing starry casts with new talent

First Person: violinist Tom Greed on breaking down barriers in the presentation of chamber music

Tom Greed

Unscary Schoenberg is on the bill of enterprising young musicians' latest new-look event

First Person: Ten Years On - Flamenco guitarist Paco Peña pays tribute to his friend, the late, great Paco de Lucía

Paco Peña

On the 10th anniversary of his death, memories of the prodigious musician who broadened the reach of flamenco into jazz and beyond

First Person: pioneering juggler Sean Gandini reflects on how the spirit of Pina Bausch has infiltrated his work

Sean Gandini

As Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch's 'Nelken' comes to Sadler’s Wells, a tribute from across the art forms

First Person: contralto Hilary Summers on going beyond her baroque and contemporary comfort zones

Hilary Summers

On recording 'Circus Dinogad', a wacky collaboration with distinguished Dutch colleagues

Best of 2023: Books


As the year draws to a close, we look back at the best books we opened

Best of 2023: Classical music concerts

David Nice

No drop in orchestral high standards, and youth shines again

Best of 2023: Theatre

Matt Wolf

The National Theatre fielded hit after hit, and smaller venues scored as well

Best of 2023: Film


Kicking off the top choices of the year, theartsdesk's film critics cast their net wide

theartsdesk in Ravenna - Riccardo Muti passes on a lifetime's operatic wisdom

David Nice

Three unforgettable evenings with the most experienced living exponent of Italian opera

Powell and Pressburger: The Composers

Graham Rickson

Two musicians, both largely forgotten, gave the duo's films much of their power

Powell and Pressburger: A Celtic storm brewing

Kristin M Jones

The Archers stepped up their wartime campaign against materialism with the mystical Scottish romance 'I Know Where I'm Going!'

First Person: novelist Pip Adam on the sound of injustice

Pip Adam

Author Pip Adam describes how her time working in prisons and interest in the jurisprudence of noise gave life to her recent sci-fi novel, 'Audition'

Michael Powell: a happy time with Bartók’s Bluebeard

David Nice

Fine performers in perfect balance with fantastical visuals for this profound one-act opera

First Person: Natalia Franklin Pierce, Executive Director of Nonclassical, on 'creating a sense of belonging'

Natalia Franklin Pierce

On bringing classical music to wider audiences - and appealing for help in a good cause

Powell and Pressburger: In Prospero's Room

Nick Hasted

A magical day at Derek Jarman’s Dungeness cottage, dancing with the ghosts of Shakespeare, Powell and Pressburger

Powell and Pressburger: the glueman cometh

Graham Fuller

A perverse village magus plays god with three wartime pilgrims in 'A Canterbury Tale', the Archers' strangest film


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

latest in today

Presumed Innocent, Apple TV+ review - you read the book and...

Scott Turow published his cunningly-wrought legal thriller in 1987, and Alan J Pakula’s powerful movie version, starring Harrison Ford, appeared...

Ashton Celebrated, Royal Ballet review - peerless delights f...

Launching a four-year global project to proclaim the genius of...

Freud's Last Session review - Freud and CS Lewis search...

How can it be part of God’s plan to allow so much pain and suffering in the world, asks Sigmund Freud (Anthony Hopkins) of a young Oxford don, CS...

Music Reissues Weekly: Margo Guryan - Words and Music

Late summer 1966. Jazz was Margo Guryan’s thing. She was not interested in pop music. This changed when she was played The Beach Boys’s “God Only...

Bach's Mass in B Minor, Collegium Vocale Gent, Herreweg...

There’s a masterful subtlety to Philippe Herreweghe’s interpretation of Bach’s last great choral work – it shuns blazing transcendence for a sense...

Sorcery review - a tale of shapeshifting revenge

Islands off the coast of southern Chile, to the Spanish and German settlers of the 19th century, represented the edge of the world. To the...

The Moor review - Yorkshire chiller is ambitious but muddled

A number of films in recent years have added a distinctly local flavour to the folk-horror genre. Mark Jenkin was inspired by...

Album: John Moreland - Visitor

The mournful, lonesome voice of John Moreland from Bixby, Oklahoma, will be known by a few, but not many, in this country. The 12 songs on his...

Smashing Pumpkins / Weezer, OVO Hydro, Glasgow review - doub...

The current trend for package tours with two headliners appears to be growing, and this jaunt presented somewhat unlikely bedfellows – the...