Arts features

Interview: Adam Guettel

By John Nathan, May 16, 2014

If you don't know Adam Guettel's name, that's not too surprising. His work has not been performed on a major stage in London. But among those who love their musical theatre in New York, there is no one whose talent is held in higher regard. Except that of the greatest living composer/lyricist Stephen Sondheim. And even he counts himself as one of Guettel's admirers.


Israeli Arab brings her musical fusion to JW3

By Rosa Doherty, May 16, 2014

Mira Aawd, the first Israeli Arab to represent Israel in the Eurovision Song Contest, gave a London concert at JW3 this week.

"My multicultural background really influences my music," she says. “Languages are fascinating to me in music. I write in Arabic, English and Hebrew. When you are multilingual and you come to write a song , you choose the language with the audience in mind.”


Interview: Mark Ronson

By Paul Lester, May 15, 2014

Amy Winehouse's producer Mark Ronson hasn't exactly been quiet since last interviewed by the JC in 2007. He released a solo album called Record Collection in 2010 and has produced, among others, Adele, Bruno Mars, Duran Duran, Beyonce's sister Solange, Kaiser Chiefs, rap legends Nas and Ghostface Killah, and Paul McCartney.


How Holby tackled a story from the Shoah

By Rosa Doherty, May 15, 2014

Viewers of prime-time BBC One hospital drama Holby City are being gripped by a storyline involving a Jewish doctor and a patient with a Nazi past, which the programme makers have included to put antisemitism in the spotlight.


Bringing Bart back to his original stage

By John Nathan, May 12, 2014

It is apparent that for Elliot Davis, Lionel Bart (who died in 1999) is very much alive. We — that is me and Davis — are talking at the gorgeous Theatre Royal Stratford East where Davis’s reworked version of Bart’s 1959 musical Fings Aint Wot They Used T’Be, starring Jessie Wallace from EastEnders and Spandau Ballet’s Gary Kemp, is opening.


‘When Eichmann opened his mouth, I saw the gates of the crematorium’

By Jenni Frazer, May 12, 2014

In the late 1950s and early 60s, the teenage Tami Hausner was aware that some of her schoolmates were the sons and daughters of Holocaust survivors. But she today admits: “We did not treat them very nicely.” Their parents had arrived in post-war Israel in shock and trauma, only rarely speaking about their Shoah experiences because they were afraid their new families would not believe them.


To be totally Frank, Jon Ronson's interests are on the margins

By Stephen Applebaum, May 12, 2014

Over the years, Jon Ronson’s fascination with finding out what makes people on the margins tick has seen him hang out with members of the Klu Klux Klan [“They didn’t know I was Jewish — they do now”] and the Aryan Nations [“They asked: ‘What is your genealogy?’ That’s the one time I felt some risk”].


A touch of glass brings creative fulfilment

By Charlotte Oliver, May 9, 2014

Peter Layton has worked up something of a sweat over the course of his long career. But that is not surprising given that he handles molten glass at temperatures exceeding 700 degrees Fahrenheit.


Broadway lyricist puts in some good words for London staging

By John Nathan, May 5, 2014

One of the early big laughs in the Broadway musical Dirty Rotten Scoundrels — now in the West End and starring Robert Lindsay and Rufus Hound as a couple of con men targeting rich women on the Cote d’Azur — is delivered by the song Great Big Stuff.


Meet Tarantino’s favourites

By Brigit Grant, May 5, 2014

Having given Big Bad Wolves a well merited five star review when it was released here last December, the opportunity to interview the film’s Israeli directors Aharon Keshales and Navot Papushado was too good to miss. But first I had to find them.