Arts feature

Lloyd Evans

‘Basically, I’m a spineless wimp’

Steven Berkoff admits to Lloyd Evans that, despite his reputation, he’s not tough at all On the waterfront. This, literally, is where I meet Steven Berkoff to discuss his stage adaptation of the classic Fifties movie. Berkoff’s east London office is a sumptuous, spotlessly clean apartment with wraparound views of the grey-green Thames. He strolls

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Open your eyes

Palladio: His Life and Legacy Royal Academy, until 13 April In a truly civilised society, a basic understanding and appreciation of architecture would be taught in schools. After all, most of us spend a large portion of our lives in buildings. Yet you only have to look around you to see that architecture is dishonoured

City of dreams

Die tote Stadt Royal Opera House The Queen of Spades Barbican At last, after 88 years, Erich Korngold’s almost impressive opera Die tote Stadt has reached the UK in a handsome production, and in every respect the Royal Opera does it proud. If it isn’t quite a major work that’s because it vertiginously occupies a

Caledonian whimsy

Be Near Me Donmar Complicit Old Vic Here’s the odd thing about the Donmar, the country’s pre-eminent theatrical power-house. Its productions are nearly always stunning and rarely (very rarely) atrocious. They don’t do so-so. But here we have it, an OK sort of show done with tremendous affection and commitment but with numerous elementary flaws.

Keep it cool

Triple Bill Royal Ballet, Royal Opera House ‘Saucy’ and ‘funky’ are not terms one would normally expect to hear in relation to a ballet performance. Nor is the irritatingly ubiquitous ‘cool’, which is what my young(er) date uttered last Saturday at the end of the Royal Ballet’s triple bill. Yet they all suit perfectly well

Still stood time

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button 12A, Nationwide The most curious thing about The Curious Case of Benjamin Button is that it could receive 13 Oscar nominations when it is such tedious schmaltz, and not just any tedious schmaltz. This is the worst kind of tedious schmaltz; the kind that doesn’t even have the decency

Setting the tone | 7 February 2009

Nationwide tribute (BBC 4, Thursday); Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares USA (Channel 4); Charles Darwin and the Tree of Life (BBC1, Sunday) Nationwide began 40 years ago, and on Thursday BBC4 showed a tribute. The show ran nightly up to 1983, and was always the cheekie chappie of BBC programming. In the early 1980s I did a

Front man

At the cinema the other night to see Frost/Nixon, at least five minutes of the commercial break were devoted to selling Radio Four. It was such an odd experience. Nothing to watch, just a blank screen, with Paul Merton and co. telling a few jokes in Dolby sense surround. But we’d bought tickets to watch

Get things moving

With Ford posting losses of over $10 billion, Honda shutting its Swindon factory until June and fields full of unsold cars, we might be excused for thinking that doom and gloom is here to stay. But we shouldn’t, and we can start changing it now. Probably you’re not thinking of buying a new car today,