Sergei Filin had been receiving intimidating phone calls for a while, and had had his tyres punctured and his email hacked, but the acid attack that has shocked the dance world is beyond all reasoning. While police are not ruling out a personal vendetta, it is almost certainly an attack by someone who wants him removed from his position as head of the prestigious Bolshoi … [Read more...] about Cruelty at the Bolshoi: acid attacks and smear campaigns. Tsiskaridze responds.
Silvano Bussotti, known as Sylvano, is an Italian eccentric, some say genius, and the word 'flamboyant' appears in many articles about this modern Renaissance man. He is a composer, poet, set and costume designer, painter, journalist, actor, singer, theatre and film director and sometime bad boy of the arts. Internationally he is more known as a composer, and the Oxford Grove … [Read more...] about Sylvano Bussotti: flamboyant composer, poet, set and costume designer, theatre director, and… and… and…
Michael Feinstein’s book on the Gershwins called, sensibly, “The Gershwins and Me” (Simon & Schuster) was published in October. While he was still working in piano bars, Feinstein got to know Ira Gershwin intimately, cataloguing his collection of records, unpublished sheet music and rare recordings in the Gershwin home over a period of six years. The gay or not gay … [Read more...] about The Man I Love – was George Gershwin gay?
The second of six programmes brought to London by the Mariinsky was a triple bill of Mikhail Fokine's choreography: Chopiniana, The Firebird and Scheherazade. The Times explained the programming: In the space of two years, Mikhail Fokine created a trio of works that helped to change our perception of classical ballet. Chopinianaembodied the very idea of abstract ballet; The … [Read more...] about Critics round-up: Mariinsky at Covent Garden, Homage to Fokine
Opera North today announces that the community opera, Beached, by Harvey Brough to a text by Lee Hall, is continuing as planned. Here is the statement from their blog: We have been at pains to work closely with the writers at all times, and have supported their rights of artistic expression throughout. We have also worked equally hard to ensure that the schools and … [Read more...] about A fresh wind from the north: Lee Hall and Opera North’s Bridlington community opera will go ahead as planned
Lovers of Hollinghurst's writing have been waiting a long time for the end of June 2011 and the publication of his new novel. In fact, the wait has been seven years, but now we know that it was worth it. As we sit with the book in our hands, the critics start penning their reactions. Here are some extracts from the first: Marvellously acute in its attention to … [Read more...] about Alan Hollinghurst’s new novel, The Stranger’s Child: “an extraordinary achievement”
Lee Hall, the creator of Billy Elliott, has caused a Twitter storm accusing Opera North of being homophobic. He is the librettist of 'Bleached', an exciting project based in Bridlington, East Yorkshire, to create a new community opera as a major part of Opera North’s two-year project with the seaside town. His brief was to think: Benjamin Britten, the seaside, inclusivity and … [Read more...] about A gay painter, an outraged headmistress, and Billy Elliott’s literary dad: opera and homophobia up north
An opera involving primary school pupils has been cancelled after the writer refused to remove references to a gay character's sexuality. The opera, Beached, written by Billy Elliot creator Lee Hall, was due to open later this month in Yorkshire. Bay Primary School in Bridlington has pulled 300 pupils from the project. Mr Hall accused Opera North, which is behind the … [Read more...] about Opera by Billy Elliot writer Lee Hall cancelled over gay reference
The Guardian went to meet Patrice Chéreau who is in London to rehearse the first play he has ever directed in the UK. It's a coup for the Young Vic. The play he is rehearsing is I Am The Wind, a spare, concentrated two-hander written by the Norwegian Jon Fosse. He talked about working with English actors: They are very disciplined, very open, and because of the condition of … [Read more...] about Patrice Chéreau on English actors, the theatre, and his homosexuality
Today's press A London-born beauty who never lost her clipped, clean way of speaking, Ms. Taylor possessed vivid features known to three generations of filmgoers: Raven hair, dark eyebrows, ivory skin, a near-perfect figure and, most remarkably, violet eyes that were among the most commented-on physical attributes in Hollywood history. Her great beauty arguably both aided … [Read more...] about Elizabeth Taylor: selection from a life… what today’s press has been saying, her best films and her changing look