Arts feature

An ‘intelligent spectacle’

Henrietta Bredin talks to David Pountney about running the Bregenz Festival Back in the days when David Pountney was director of productions at English National Opera, his so-called office was a tiny broom cupboard of a space carved out of a backstage cranny of the London Coliseum, with a single grubby window overlooking a narrow

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Close to the Bone

Sir Muirhead Bone: Artist and Patron The Fleming Collection, 13 Berkeley Street, W1, until 5 September The Fleming Collection mounts loan exhibitions of artists represented in its permanent collection, its focus on Scottish artists a strength rather than a limitation. (Would there were an institution in London which just showed American artists. Perhaps then we’d

One in a thousand

Katya Kabanova Opera Holland Park The Mask of Orpheus, Act II Proms I took yet another amazed Londoner to the Opera Holland Park production of Janacek’s Katya Kabanova — he was amazed not only by the pleasant comfort of the place, but also by the standard of the performance, which would have been a credit

Northern exposure

Edinburgh is a flashers’ convention. Edinburgh is a flashers’ convention. Everyone wants exposure. They come to build their brand, to raise recognition levels among the oblivious, to smuggle themselves into your brain while you’re not looking. So don’t feel obliged to buy a ticket. Your attendance is sufficient reward. Performers know the fringe is a

Proms profusion

Grasping the content of the Proms these days has become a bewildering business. The best image I can give is of a contrapuntal web, teeming with themes, in which the principal subjects stand out against the detail, but where the detail nonetheless clamours for attention and the sheer profusion of it can seem overwhelming. When

Street life | 22 August 2009

I expected to dislike Walk on the Wild Side (BBC1, Saturday), fearing sub-Johnny Morris, anthropomorphic, animals-say-the-darndest-things whimsy. Instead it turned out to be funny, inventive and even acerbic. The notion is that comedians take genuine footage of animals from natural-history programmes, and voice-over short routines matched to the creatures’ movements, often with surreal effect. It’s

Brewing up

One minute we were in Brent Town Hall witnessing a Citizenship Ceremony, as a group of Somalis, Sri Lankans and Iraqis were welcomed as fully paid-up (to the tune of £2,500-plus) British citizens, the next in a beekeeper’s garden in Acton, west London. One minute we were in Brent Town Hall witnessing a Citizenship Ceremony,