fri 22/06/2018

Cuba

Albums of the Year 2017: Daymé Arocena - Cubafonia

All things considered, there aren’t many criteria by which this album, however cosmopolitan its influences, sensitive and precise its vocals and supple its rhythms, is really the best of the year. I’ve had a few sleepless nights recently over the...

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Blue Planet II, BBC One review - just how fragile?

The eel is dying. Its body flits through a series of complicated knots which become increasingly grotesque torques. Immersed in a pool of brine — concentrated salt water five times denser than seawater — it is succumbing to toxic shock. As biomatter...

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CD: The Rolling Stones - Blue & Lonesome

It’s a been a good year for the Stones as they play into their sixth decade – a free festival audience in Havana in March, preceded by an adulatory South American trek that saw some of the band’s best performances in recent times – down at the...

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Boardwalk Empire, Series 5, Sky Atlantic

Fans of this dense and rewarding odyssey of Prohibition and American gangsterism are doubtless still reeling from the news that its fifth series will be the last, despite the riotous applause which greeted series four. This unwelcome state of...

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Love Tomorrow

Feature films about ballet are rarities - are the memorable ones those that are realistic about their strenuous world or are they the expressionistic shockers that let rip with the red eyes and OTT fantasies? Black Swan became an instant world hit...

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Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag

It's the disease most feared among all mainstream videogame franchises – featuritis. That is, the endless quest for some new marketing tick box addition dreamed up to ensure the fans keep coming back. That, sadly, appears to be the rapidly looming...

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Carlos Acosta, Classical Selection, London Coliseum

The mighty adorable Carlos Acosta is at the London Coliseum this week in all his might and all his adorableness - four times, you may like to know, he appears without his shirt on. This is relevant, because it’s not the preening bare-...

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Buika and London Lucumi Choir, Union Chapel

The choir sing off stage at first, under the wide arch to the side before filling the platform and singing the praises of Cuba’s Orisha spirits. Those Orisha guys must be shining like beads on a necklace. Lucumi were finalists in the 2008 BBC Choir...

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Feast, Young Vic

Feast aims high. Very, very high. Steered by experienced and much-lauded director Rufus Norris, five playwrights and one choreographer seek to make a fusion of physical theatre, dance, onstage music, straight drama, abstract poetic dialogue,...

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This World: Cuba With Simon Reeve, BBC Two

The singer-songwriter Jesse Malin opens one of his songs with a monologue about a trip to Russia. Fresh out of a relationship, and invited by the gypsy punk troupe Gogol Bordello to open their tour of the country, he looked forward to seeing Red...

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7 Days in Havana

The most famous hotel in Havana is the Hotel Nacional de Cuba, since the 1930s the only place to stay for writers, mobsters and, most of all, film stars. During the city’s film festival, the Nacional is the hub, with dozens of filmmakers sitting in...

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Alternative National Anthems

With Euro 2012 about to end and the Olympics looming, we'll be hearing an awful lot of national anthems over the next couple of months. Don't we all agree that the majority of them are inadequate - often being turgid tunes with no reference to the...

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