sun 08/12/2019

Paris

Svetlana Zakharova, Modanse, London Coliseum review - impeccably chic but soul-less

What price a pair of seats at the ballet? If you’re talking the latest starry Russian import then, with a few perks thrown in, you might not see much change from £800. And yet the size of the first-night crowd queuing for Modanse, a double bill...

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Orphée, English National Opera review – through a screen darkly

Like almost everything that it touches these days, English National Opera’s autumn season of shows rooted in the Orpheus myth has enjoyed a fairly mixed reception. The company’s programme of visits to the Underworld concludes with another high-risk...

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Spiral, Series 7, BBC Four review - hard-hitting return of our favourite French cop show

And welcome back to our favourite French cop show – perhaps our favourite cop show from anywhere, in fact – which has raced into its seventh series (on BBC Four) with some typically grimy storylines about death and lowlife in a very de-romanticised...

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Non-Fiction - adultery spices up digitisation drama

It isn’t provable whether adultery is more accepted in French bourgeois life than in that of other countries, but French films often suggest it’s nothing to get in a lather about. Olivier Assayas’s Non-Fiction, in which three of the four main...

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Manon, Royal Opera House review - splendid start to the season

The Royal Ballet’s choice of season opener could be dismissed as safe and predictable. But as the glorious naturalistic detail of 1830s Paris unfolds in Kenneth MacMillan’s 1974 retelling, you see the reasoning. It’s only a year since the Royal...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Albert Roussel, Roy Budd, Propellor

Albert Roussel Edition (Erato)Be grateful that Albert Roussel became a composer at all. Born in 1869 and orphaned at a young age, he was a talented pianist who joined the French navy as a teenager. Music was an enjoyable distraction during his...

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The Son, Duke of York's Theatre review - a piercing drama of depression

A tale of teenage depression and its family resonances, Florian Zeller’s The Son has a devastating simplicity. It’s the final part of a loose trilogy, following on from the playwright’s The Father and The Mother, but the new play eschews the...

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CD: Caravan Palace - Chronologic

Parisian outfit Caravan Palace have now had a career that’s lasted over a decade. They’ve not busted the British charts open (although they have had hit albums in France), but they’ve long been festival favourites with multi-millions of YouTube...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Gounod, James MacMillan, Johannes Pramsohler

 Gounod: Symphonies 1 and 2 Iceland Symphony Orchestra/Yan Pascal Tortelier (Chandos)Roger Nichols’ lucid sleeve note underlines the point that Berlioz's Symphonie Fantastique singularly failed to kick off a 19th century French symphonic...

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Félix Vallotton: Painter of Disquiet, Royal Academy review – strange and intriguing

Félix Vallotton is best known for his satirical woodcuts, printed in the radical newspapers and journals of turn-of-the-century Paris. He earned a steady income, for instance, as chief illustrator for La Revue blanche, which carried articles and...

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John McEnroe: In the Realm of Perfection review - a fascinating oddity

Film buffs who are also tennis fans (there must be quite a few of us who fit in that particular Venn diagram) will love this quirky and experimental documentary by Julien Faraut, which uses archive footage and narration to examine the idea of a...

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DVD/Blu-Ray: La Vérité

For admirers of Henri-Georges Clouzot or Brigitte Bardot, this Criterion restoration of their rarely seen 1960 collaboration is a must have. La Vérité may not be Clouzot’s greatest film, the pace is a little slow and for British viewers...

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