sat 21/07/2018

Switzerland

theartsdesk at the Lucerne Easter Festival: Haitink, Schiff and an alternative Passion

Anyone passionate about great conducting would jump at the chance to hear 89-year-old Bernard Haitink giving three days of masterclasses with eight young practitioners of the art, his eighth and possibly last series in Lucerne (though he's not...

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Sonoro, Ferris, St Botolph-without-Bishopsgate review - intriguingly programmed launch concert

Launched into an already crowded choral scene in 2016, the professional choir Sonoro has marked its second birthday with the release of a debut CD. Last night was the launch concert, featuring items selected from the disc. On the evidence of both CD...

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Classical CDs Weekly: Diethelm, Grieg, Tippett

Diethelm: Symphonic Works Royal Scottish National Orchestra/Rainer Held (Guild)Swiss composers? There's Honegger, and Frank Martin… add to that list one Caspar Diethelm (1926-1997), a prolific musical polymath and teacher who also dabbled in...

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DVD/Blu-ray: My Life as a Courgette

Describe the plot of My Life as a Courgette to someone who’s not been lucky enough to see it and they'll find it hard to understand how a film with such a bleak premise can be so funny and emotionally involving. Swiss director Claude Barras’s...

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Mosquitoes, National Theatre review - Olivias Colman and Williams dazzle amid dramatic excess

There's enough plot for a dozen plays buzzing its way through Mosquitoes, Lucy Kirkwood's play that uses the backdrop of the Large Hadron Collidor (LHC) to chronicle the multiple collisions within a family. Veering off now and then into discussion...

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Travesties, Apollo Theatre

Tom Stoppard’s humungously funny play Travesties was born out of a piece of James Joyce doggerel about how a British diplomat sued him for the cost of two pairs of trousers. It’s like this. Joyce was organising an expat amateur production of Wilde’s...

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Travesties, Menier Chocolate Factory

Is this the most dazzling play of a dazzling playwright? First staged in 1974, Travesties is the one which manages to squeeze avant-garde novelist James Joyce, Dada godfather Tristan Tzara and communist revolutionary Lenin into a story which...

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CD: Yello - Toy

You couldn’t make Yello up. They’re a couple of wry Swiss synth-pop ironists fronted by a suave, moustachioed, septuagenarian multi-millionaire poker-player, golfer and industrialist. Everyone and their uncle makes electronic music now, but when...

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theartsdesk at the Verbier Festival 2016

Idyllic setting, star-rated musicians, the sense of an occasion. Verbier so wholly fulfils the clichés of an international music festival that to the cynical it can seem complacent or arrogant in doing so. To the uninitiated – and this was my first...

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Digital demands: time for artists to speak up?

Galloping technological change, collapsing incomes and a climate of violence facilitated by anonymity are just a few of the challenges facing creative artists in today's digitally driven world. What can be done to put all this right? The man to ask...

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DVD: Story of My Death

Since his debut Honour of the Knights back in 2006 Catalan director Albert Serra has carved out a niche for himself, creating cinema that is frequently oblique and visually engrossing. Story of My Death (Història de la meva mort), which won the...

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Guillaume Tell, Royal Opera

There are two operatic types who should leave Rossini’s epic swansong for the stage well alone. One would usually be a conductor who ignores many of the notes written by a master at the height of his powers, since even the least dramatic numbers...

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