Arts

At Kingston Lacy, Dorset (right): Rubens’s ‘Portrait of a Noblewoman with a Dwarf’, 1606

The countryside contains enough show-stopping paintings to rival the National Gallery

27 August 2016 9:00 am

Martin Gayford says that summer is the perfect time to view the show-stopping art in Britain’s stately homes, which adds up to an alternative National Gallery

Grand visions: Birmingham’s Bull Ring shopping centre in 1965, a year after completion

Birmingham can be maddening – but culturally it has a lot to teach London

27 August 2016 9:00 am

On Saturday night, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra makes its first appearance at the BBC Proms under its new…

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A few things you didn't know about the Great British Bake Off – such as how it's all faked

27 August 2016 9:00 am

You know when late summer has arrived because conkers are starting to form on the horse chestnuts, your eagerness to…

Almodóvar’s loving gaze: Emma Suárez as Julieta

Red hot: Almodóvar's Julieta reviewed

27 August 2016 9:00 am

Everything about Julieta feels totally Almodóvarian. It’s a family saga that smoothly blends tragedy and levity, with exquisite performances from…

Groundhog Day, The Old Vic (Photo: Manuel Harlan)

Did Rodgers and Hammerstein intend Allegro for the theatre? Or for euthanasia treatment?

27 August 2016 9:00 am

‘European premiere of classic American musical’ is a phrase that deeply alarms the experienced playgoer. As I tootled along to…

scotballet

At times utterly gripping: Crystal Pite at the Edinburgh International Festival reviewed

27 August 2016 9:00 am

Crystal Pite, the Canadian dancemaker who combines intellectual, emotional and physical intelligence in rare degree, is classically trained, but her…

Victims of the atomic blast, Hiroshima (Photo: Getty)

How Radio 4 made it possible for people to talk to the dead

27 August 2016 9:00 am

One of the weirdest responses when someone close to you dies is the gradual realisation that now at last you…

Bob Geldof addresses the March for Europe rally, 2 July 2016

Luvvie anger over Brexit is palpable at Edinburgh – and it’s exposing their true colours

20 August 2016 9:00 am

Luvvie anger over Brexit is palpable. Lloyd Evans ponders the tantrums of the arts crowd

Mick Jagger at Knebworth, 1976

Stevie Wonder, Genesis, punk and the Stones – 1976 was the year that changed music

20 August 2016 9:00 am

Forty years ago, I spent 14 hours in a large field near the A1 in Hertfordshire. I had just taken…

Don Quixote

In her final column, Ismene Brown salutes the Bolshoi’s real stars: the corps de ballet

20 August 2016 9:00 am

The second half of the Bolshoi tour brought much fresher fare than the first: following the ubiquitous warhorses Don Quixote…

The Queen of Spades

A thrilling production: Opera Holland Park’s Queen of Spades reviewed

20 August 2016 9:00 am

Tchaikovsky’s The Queen of Spades is probably his greatest opera, certainly the one in which his characteristic strengths are on…

Too much of a good thing? Ricky Gervais in ‘David Brent: Life on the Road’

Some comedies should never be resurrected – this is one of them: David Brent – Life on the Road reviewed

20 August 2016 9:00 am

I should probably nail my colours to the mast and state that The Office is possibly my favourite TV sitcom…

(Photo: Getty)

Nietzsche, Lembit Opik, the NHS and taxes: Edinburgh Festival Fringe roundup

20 August 2016 9:00 am

Dominic Frisby is an actor best known for voicing the booking.com adverts (‘Booking dot com, booking dot yeah’). Voiceover specialists…

Diving - Olympics: Day 7

Why isn’t arse quality included in the judging for the diving? The Rio Olympics reviewed

20 August 2016 9:00 am

Stuff I have learnt after two solid weeks watching the Olympics on TV. 1. Tennis and golf shouldn’t be Olympic…

The Capability Brown-landscaped garden at Prior Park, near Bath, and the first know image of a railway line, from a drawing by Anthony Walker, 1750

Capability Brown is Britain's most influential – and pernicious – artist

20 August 2016 9:00 am

In a piece of light verse from the 1770s ‘Dame Nature’ — out strolling ‘one bright day’ — bumps into…

Quincy Jones performs at the Montreux Jazz Festival (Photo: Getty)

The women who were paid to sing for the dead in Ireland

20 August 2016 9:00 am

‘We think we’re in charge of this stuff but we’re not,’ said Quincy Jones, the composer, arranger, jazz trumpeter, musical…

Form, function and confusion: the Design Museum in 1989

How the Design Museum lost its way, by co-founder Stephen Bayley

13 August 2016 9:00 am

London’s Design Museum is on the move. But it lost its way long ago, says co-founder Stephen Bayley

Show your colours: a digital visualisation of this year’s Edinburgh International Festival’s closing light display

Scotland’s cultural scene is becoming vile, venal and parochial

13 August 2016 9:00 am

Many years ago an arts spokesperson for the SNP launched an extraordinary attack on Scottish Opera, saying, ‘If push comes…

This year's festival hosts more than 3,000 shows in nearly 300 venues across the city (Photo: Getty)

A filthy Noël Coward, snotty Frog, mad Swede and Maggie: Edinburgh Festival Fringe roundup

13 August 2016 9:00 am

Plus: Geoff Norcott, a refreshingly brilliant new comedic voice, whose ascent Beeb censorship will impede. See him live at the Underbelly

Keaton Nigel Cooke as Remi in ‘Wiener-Dog’

Love it or hate it, you will certainly never forget it: Wiener-Dog reviewed

13 August 2016 9:00 am

Todd Solondz’s Wiener-Dog is billed as a ‘dark comedy’ although it is far more dark than comic. If pressed to…

Macbeth at the Dorest Opera Festival (Photo: Fritz Curzon)

Michael Tanner won't forget Dorset Opera's thrilling Macbeth

13 August 2016 9:00 am

Dorset Opera seems to receive far less coverage than the rest of the country-house summer shows, although it is in…

The 80s with Dominic Sandbrook

The true queen of the Eighties wasn't Thatcher – it was Delia, according to the Beeb

13 August 2016 9:00 am

Proof that someone has really made it as a TV historian comes, I would suggest, when they join the likes…

‘Todo Custo’, 2015, Caroline Achaintre

What’s the avant-garde up to? Recycling (itself) and baffling (me)

13 August 2016 9:00 am

One overcast afternoon in late July I took a train to Norfolk. It seemed a good time and place to…

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‘Funny is now dangerous’: Michael Heath’s Desert Island Discs reviewed

13 August 2016 9:00 am

‘I’m off now,’ says Michael Heath, signing off from his selection of Desert Island Discs on Radio 4, ‘to go…

‘Ash Wednesday: 7.00am’, 2004/5, by George Shaw

In defence of suburbia

6 August 2016 9:00 am

The suburbs fuel creativity, says Philip Hensher. So why do writers and artists look down on them?