thu 24/10/2019

Bible

Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, London Palladium review - bright, brash, largely irresistible

Cheeky and broad and (for the most part) as entertaining as seems humanly possible, this embryonic entry from the collaborative pen of Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber is back at its onetime London home, the Palladium. It's a production far...

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Jesus Christ Superstar, Barbican review - Andrew Lloyd Webber's musical lives again

Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s 1970 musical had a heavenly resurrection at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre three years ago, with an encore run the following summer. It’s soon heading off on a US tour, but first there’s another chance for...

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Belshazzar, The Grange Festival review – songs of freedom

Cut almost anywhere into the lesser-known seams of Handel’s oratorios and you may strike plentiful nuggets of the purest gold. It may not be quite the case that Handel's Belshazzar, its score studded with nearly-forgotten musical treasures, has...

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Solomon, Royal Opera review - an awkward compromise of a performance

There was no synopsis in the programme for the Royal Opera’s concert performance of Handel’s Solomon. Maybe that was an oversight, but perhaps it’s simply because there really is no plot to summarise. Handel’s oratorio, set to an anonymous...

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Saul, Glyndebourne review - from extravaganza to phantasmagoria

It's swings and roundabouts for Glyndebourne this season. After the worst of one director currently in fashion, Stefan Herheim, in the unhappy mésalliance of the house's Pelléas et Mélisande, only musically gripping, comes the already-known best of...

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Listed: The 10 Best Biblical Novels

From the myths of the Old Testament to the miracles of the New, the Bible has been as much a source of inspiration to writers, artists and composers as it has to theologians and priests. One of the most infamous yet influential of all Old Testament...

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Salome, Royal Opera review – lurid staging still packs a punch

David McVicar may seem too gentle a soul for the lurid drama of Strauss's Salome, but his production, here returning to Covent Garden for a third revival, packs a punch. He gives us plenty of sex and violence – or at least nudity and blood – but...

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Nicholas Blincoe: Bethlehem - Biography of a Town review - too few wise men but remarkable women

Suitably enough, Nicholas Blincoe begins his personal history of the birthplace of Jesus with a Christmas pudding. He carries not gold, frankincense and myrrh but this “dark cannonball” of spices, fruit and stodge as a festive gift to his girlfriend...

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Salomé, National Theatre review - Yaël Farber’s version is verbose and overblown

Is God female? It says a lot about Yaël Farber’s pompous and overblown new version of this biblical tale at the National Theatre that, near the end of an almighty 110-minute extravaganza, all reason seemed to have vacated my brain, and its empty...

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Sughayer, Manchester Camerata Soloists, Manchester Cathedral

Two works whose whole significance depends on (unspoken) sacred texts made a stimulating combination for a concert in Manchester Cathedral’s sacred space. Haydn’s The Seven Last Words of our Saviour on the Cross – usually heard in its string...

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The Inn At Lydda, Sam Wanamaker Playhouse

Part Biblical melodrama, part Carry On Up The Colosseum, with a bit of Horrible Histories thrown in for good measure, it’s hard to see how John Wolfson’s wildly uneven The Inn at Lydda graduated from a rehearsed reading last season to a full-blown...

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Michael Palin’s Quest for Artemisia, BBC Four

For his latest journey Michael Palin, actor, writer, novelist, comedian, Python, traveller, has gone beyond geography in search of the visual arts with his characteristic enthusiasm, eclectic curiosity, and sense of discovery.With his usual...

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