Music

Jessie Ware: Things are looking up for the queen of UK soul

By Paul Lester, September 18, 2014

Back in the days when Jessie Ware was a young web reporter for the JC, she helped to compile a gig guide. "I used to do the listings for Jewish people appearing at Brixton Academy and now I'm playing there," says the acclaimed soul singer and songwriter, amazed by the transition. "It's fabulous." Has her change in fortunes exceeded her wildest expectations? "Absolutely."

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Opera review: Xerxes

By Stephen Pollard, September 18, 2014

I've seen Nicholas Hytner's production of Handel's comic opera at least a dozen times since it opened in 1985. And still I don't feel sated. This is simply one of the greatest opera productions - and it changed forever the perception of Handel as an opera composer. From box office death, Handel now almost guarantees a sell out.

This latest revival doesn't merely seem as fresh as ever.

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Interview: Patrick Bruel

By Barry Toberman, September 11, 2014

He's sold 14 million discs, has a string of movie credits and is a champion poker player to boot.

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Pianist is going to shul to launch concert series

By Richard J Oliver, September 4, 2014

Tel Aviv-born Inon Barnatan has won acclaim as one of the world's most sought-after young pianists. In his mid-30s, he has conquered America, being recently announced as the New York Philharmonic's first Associate Artist.

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Art conveys a picture of tranquility and travel

By Andrew Threlfall, August 21, 2014

Art Garfunkel is reminiscing about the early 1970s when, needing to escape the suffocation of superstardom, he loved "taking the Northern line up to Golders Green and Hampstead where I would meet many friends from the Jewish community". Or go looking for a bedsitter in Bayswater - "or was it Notting Hill?" - for a month or so to soak up London's vibrant multicultural life.

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Jess Glynne: The chart-topper who lives with her mum

By Paul Lester, July 24, 2014

In her description, Jess Glynne has experienced a "whirlwind" of a year. Twelve months ago, she was still working as part of the brand management team for a company dealing in the importing and exporting of alcohol. Then, last August, she handed in her notice, signed to the prestigious Atlantic label and began releasing records.

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Opera: Maria Stuarda

By Stephen Pollard, July 17, 2014

What is opera? One thing it isn't - or shouldn't be - is a parade of singers warbling for the sake of warbling. There is a long tradition of such productions - to wit, the regular vehicles staged for Dame Joan Sutherland to show off her vocal talents - that are more often than not hack works that would never deserve to be revived in any other context.

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Opera: Ariadne Auf Naxos

By Jessica Duchen, July 3, 2014

Rich sponsors calling the tune are a perennial thorn in the flesh of opera and this is the topic of Richard Strauss's quirky masterpiece. Covent Garden's latest revival of the sleek, sophisticated production by Christof Loy is a resounding triumph. His stylish split-stage Prologue offers the perfect contrast of arid, empty wealth upstairs with the artistic temperament and creativity below.

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Bringing back the sound of music to abandoned shuls

By Marcus Dysch, June 26, 2014

Tucked away in a remote corner of Hungary, the village of Mád constitutes little more than two streets of houses, a small hotel and a dusty café decorated with flowers. Vehicles rarely travel along Mád's roads. Two storks squawk from their nest overlooking the picture postcard countryside.

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Lana Del Ray: Ultraviolence

By Paul Lester, June 26, 2014

Lana Del Rey's previous album, 2012's Born To Die, sold seven million copies and made her one of the biggest new stars on the planet, albeit one of the most mysterious. She seemed almost too good to be true, like a '50s B-movie starlet who had stepped straight off the screen into a recording career. There were, as a result, questions raised about the authenticity of the artist born Lizzy Grant.

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