arts

Books: Balkan explorations

Published: June 6, 2017
Written by Paul Routledge

Border:?A?Journey To The Edge Of Europe by Kapka Kassabova Granta £14.99 The Balkans are a trap. Once in, there is no escape. Armies from Ottoman janissaries to the Wermacht found …

Film: Comedic outrage

Published: June 6, 2017
Written by Patrick Mulcahy

The Other Side of Hope Director: Aki Kaurismäki The Other Side of Hope (Toivon Tuolla Puolen) is writer-director Aki Kaurismäki’s second film, after 2011’s Le Havre, on a refugee theme. …

Theatre: Judy, Judy, Judy

Published: June 6, 2017
Written by Cary Gee

Judy Arts Theatre, London Judy Garland is “back in town”, and in writer and director Ray Rackham’s musical there are three of her. While the elder CBS Judy (Helen Sheals) …

Comedy: Enlightening laughs

Published: June 6, 2017
Written by Cary Gee

Ayesha Hazarika – State of the Nation Soho Theatre, London “Welcome to an evening of strong and stable comedy. Comedy means comedy and I intend to make a success of …

Theatre: Humane, fabulous fun

Published: June 6, 2017
Written by Aleks Sierz

An Octoroon Orange Tree Theatre, Richmond This is phenomenal. And pretty wild. Branden Jacobs-Jenkins’s An Octoroon is the most intelligent, theatre-savvy play in London today: it is a satire on …

TV: Strong storylines

Published: June 6, 2017
Written by Les Hull

EastEnders BBC 1 Count Arthur Strong BBC 1 There are two groups of writers of soaps in the world: those who write detailed scripts for the episodes, detailing all the …

Books: Shame of our colonial past

Published: May 20, 2017
Written by Paul Routledge

White Highlands by John McGhie Little Brown £14.99 On 6 June 2013, Foreign Secretary William Hague rose in the Commons to announce a compensation package for victims of Britain’s colonial …

Books: The six counties jigsaw puzzle

Published: May 20, 2017
Written by Martin Griffin

The Rule Of The Land: Walking Ireland’s Border by Garett Carr Faber & Faber £13.99 If you think of the Border, that invisible line between Northern Ireland and the Republic, …

Books: Myths and spin

Published: May 20, 2017
Written by Scarlett MccGwire

Wonders Will Never Cease by Robert Irwin Dedalus £9.99 In Robert Irwin’s fifteenth century Britain, myths are born, while legends are lived, deaths are foretold, ghosts walk abroad and magic …

Books: Germany – winners of the peace?

Published: May 20, 2017
Written by Denis MacShane

Berlin Rules: Europe and the German Way by Paul Lever IB?Tauris £17.99 There has never been a Europe question, only a German question. Unlike Britain, France, Spain or Italy, with …

Theatre: Toad in the surreal whole

Published: May 20, 2017
Written by Cary Gee

James Thierrée/Compagnie du Hanneton: The Toad Knew Sadlers Wells Theatre, London From the moment the red velvet curtain falls, when it should rise, you know to expect the unexpected. And …

Film: Unshakeable sights

Published: May 20, 2017
Written by Patrick Mulcahy

Lady Macbeth Director: William Oldroyd Their Finest Director: Lone Scherfig Normally in a cinema-going year I struggle to see one British movie that is truly ­exceptional. It is only May …

Theatre: Chaos of global politics

Published: May 20, 2017
Written by Aleks Sierz

Occupational Hazards Hampstead Theatre, London   The Pulverised Arcola Theatre, London   At a time when everyone is talking about globalisation, plays about the international reach of European countries are …

TV: The Doctor is in

Published: May 20, 2017
Written by Les Hull

Doctor Who BBC 1 Doctor Who has returned for a 10th season since its rebirth and this is the last with head writer and executive producer Steven Moffat as show …

Theatre: Ferryman pays dividends

Published: May 20, 2017
Written by William Russell

The Ferryman Royal Court Theatre, London and from June 20 at the Gielgud Theatre, London Obsession Barbican Theatre, London Jez Butterworth’s vast, sprawling superbly directed (by Sam Mendes) play really …

Books: Pacy political history, Sicilian style

Published: May 10, 2017
Written by Mike Parker

The Revolution Of The Moon by Andrea Camilleri Europa Editions £10.99 Regular readers of the Inspector Montalbano novels of Andrea Camilleri will be familiar with the great Sicilian’s pungent approach …

Books: Getting ahead in politics

Published: May 10, 2017
Written by Glyn Ford

Putsch by Julian Priestley Amazon £19.99 This is House of Cards played with a Labour deck. Written as a three hander, Helen Mitchison MP, BarrieJones Political  Assistant and Ned Warren, …

Comedy: Wham bam Pam Ann

Published: May 10, 2017
Written by Cary Gee

Pam Ann: Touch Trolley, Run to Galley Leicester Square Theatre, London Twenty years after she first took to the skies, Pam Ann’s latest touchdown in London is timed perfectly. After …