Arts and culture

The music of their eloquence

20 April 2024 9:00 am

It was a tweet by the novelist Joyce Carol Oates that warned us PBS, the American public broadcaster, had done…

Why one-man plays are all the rage

15 April 2024 11:08 pm

Well, it’s nice to feel on trend. The Today programme this morning carried an item on the popularity of one-man…

Somersaulting beauty of the songmaker

13 April 2024 9:00 am

It’s uncanny sometimes how it works. There we were last Saturday in Hamer Hall to hear what Stephen Layton from…

A lithe brilliance

6 April 2024 9:00 am

It figures that Australians should write great plays about sport because we are exceptionally – some people would say excessively…

Did he/didn’t he?

30 March 2024 9:00 am

Good witches and witches dubbed bad and born green. Wicked is one of those pieces of musical theatre that will…

What a strange thing

23 March 2024 9:00 am

It sounds irresistible, doesn’t it? A National Theatre Live version of a play by Jack Thorne (the magician who conjured…

Steve Harley was no one-hit wonder

19 March 2024 5:00 pm

Celebrity deaths range from the ‘tragically young’ (Amy Winehouse) to the ‘I thought they’d gone years ago’ (Peregrine Worsthorne) and the monumental (Michael Jackson). But there’s another…

Another popular feast

16 March 2024 9:00 am

Miriam Margolyes was not wrong – however intrepid she may have been – to remark to Her late Majesty the…

Moody shifts of tone

9 March 2024 9:00 am

It’s interesting to see a new production of The Sound of Music is on at the National Theatre (a somewhat…

Power beyond eloquence

2 March 2024 9:00 am

It was fascinating to catch up with the Grammys the other night. There was the cheering sight of Miley Cyrus…

An all-but-lost treasure

24 February 2024 9:00 am

Tennessee Williams is still looking like one of the greatest playwrights of the twentieth century and the plays he wrote…

A fey screeching parody

17 February 2024 9:00 am

Is it a necessary declension, the descent from histrionic splendour to self-parody and worse? For years now Ryan Murphy has…

Ophelia in her madness

10 February 2024 9:00 am

Why does Taylor Swift feel like such a force of nature? She transfigures the economy of wherever she lands and…

The writer with an incurable wound

5 February 2024 2:00 am

‘They were seated in the boat, Nick in the stern, his father rowing. The sun was coming up over the…

Artists behaving badly

3 February 2024 9:00 am

What a weird situation it is that the painter Donald Friend once treasured by Robert Hughes for the lyricism of…

A deeply elegiac work

27 January 2024 9:00 am

That superb poet Peter Porter who was also in love with music used to say there was no denying the…

Barbie’s Oscars snub isn’t sexist

25 January 2024 9:44 pm

Not for the first time, Hillary Clinton is outraged. Reacting to the news that Barbie star, Margot Robbie, and the…

Greek tragedies

20 January 2024 9:00 am

It’s the time of year when there’s a lot of talk about films and catching up with films. Along with…

Barbie’s bombshell

13 January 2024 9:00 am

Who would have thought the beery blokey jukebox musical The Choir of Man at Melbourne’s Playhouse would be such an…

Maestro Bernstein

6 January 2024 9:00 am

What do we know about Leonard Bernstein, who did everything to popularise classical music and wrote the Broadway classic West…

Why are theatres so cowardly?

30 December 2023 11:00 am

Looking back at the year’s West End theatre, a few shows stand out. First, the best. Vanya, starring Andrew Scott…

The British Museum is the best home for the Elgin Marbles

29 December 2023 5:30 pm

Should the Elgin Marbles be returned? Greece’s argument, put forward recently by the country’s foreign minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, is well…

Remembering John Gardner

21 December 2023 10:00 am

“Art begins in a wound, an imperfection,” said the late novelist John Gardner, one of the last American writers to…

A very distinguished monster monarch

16 December 2023 9:00 am

So the Matthew Warchus/Jack Thorne A Christmas Carol opened again to just as rapturous a response as it did a…

The Crown is going out in a blaze of camp glory

14 December 2023 5:00 pm

Say what you like about Netflix and Peter Morgan, the producers and creator of The Crown respectively, but they’ve certainly…