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The Times Times 2 8 September 2017

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ARTS
On Friday
Make friends
Cast stars
house
Remortgage the
Hold your nerve
How to make a
West End hit
By super-producer Nica Burns
September 8 | 2017
2
1GT
Friday September 8 2017 | the times
times2
Caitlin
Moran
Celebrity Watch
10
DOWN
Madonna
Madonna has had a bad week. She
took to Instagram and Twitter on
Tuesday to complain to her millions
of followers, with admirable
diva-ish-ness, about some postal
problems she was having.
Underneath a photo of herself
looking extremely peeved, Madonna
explained that her sour expression was
due to “when you’ve been arguing
with fed-ex all week that you really
are Madonna and they still won’t
release your package. #bitchplease”.
Who knew that when Madonna
so wisely quoted Confucius, in Justify
My Love — “Poor is the man whose
pleasures depend on the permission of
another” — that nearly 30 years later
her pleasure would depend on the
permission of someone from FedEx to
release a parcel? Not Madonna, CW is
sure. It’s certain that, at the time, that
line was about bumming or something.
9
UP
Leonardo DiCaprio
You may recall that last week
CW relayed the news that Martin
Scorsese is planning a stand-alone
film about Batman’s nemesis the
Joker that will centre on the
character’s backstory: how he came
to be so disfigured and so full of
fury towards humanity.
This week, when it was revealed
that Leonardo DiCaprio is rumoured
to be taking the lead
role, that backstory suddenly got
a whole lot more guessable. Could
the Joker’s empathy and rage
problems have begun when he
survived a horrific accident at sea
— only to be denied a space on a
floating door because Kate Winslet
didn’t want to share?
7
8
UP
Romeo Beckham
DOWN
Flies
DOWN
James ‘Arg’ Argent
The latest film remake
is to be an all-female
Lord of the Flies. The
male film-making team Scott McGehee and David Siegel
Sie
i gell said:
said
id:
id
“We want to do a faithful but contemporised adaptation off the
th
book — with all girls rather than boys.”
McGehee added that they were “taking the opportunity
to tell it in a way it hasn’t been told before [that] shifts
things in a way that might help people see the story anew”.
And indeed it may. However, while CW doesn’t agree with
those who say a female remake wouldn’t work, since Lord of the
Flies is a study in “toxic masculinity” and a group of women
stranded on an island wouldn’t behave in such a manner —
CW’s been on hen weekends where things got very “I have the
conch” before the first gin-in-a-tin had been opened on the
Megabus — it does foresee one problem. The film will,
presumably, have to be retitled Lady of the Flies, which makes
it sound less like a power struggle in a dystopia, and more . . .
porny. CW is just saying. It’s just saying that’s
the problem with that title now.
With the world of celebrity continuing
its obsession with physical perfection,
CW was not
surprised by an
interview
with James
“Arg”
Argent,
star of The
Only Way
Is Essex.
Having
recently lost
3st, Argent has
discovered that, alas,
where you lose a bum, you gain
another problem: your nose looks
“too big” for your face.
“Now I’ve lost so much weight, my
features are more prominent. I think
if I have my nostrils made smaller,” he
told The Sun, “it would make me feel
more confident.” He plans surgery
later in the year.
Now, CW doesn’t want to rain on
anyone’s weight-loss parade. One of
the hardest things about being a
human being is avoiding just sitting
down and eating 47 pieces of hot
buttered toast while ignoring every
other goddam bullshit thing going on
in the world. Every time you resist that
siren-like urge, well done, you! Have
an — imaginary — cookie!
However. Statistics show that
more than 65 per cent of dieters
regain their lost weight within three
years. Because — toast. Given this,
there is every chance that, should
Argent reduce his nose to match his
legs, in a few years’ time he may have
to re-embiggen his nose, to
complement his returning thighage.
Since CW can’t think of anything
much more dispiriting than having
to say, “Give me my fat nose back,
please,” it urges Argent to delay his
nose lipo, just to let things settle down.
6
UP
Ryan
y Adams
CW presents to you a quick, definitive
case of “the difference that money
and fame makes”. In this week’s OK!
magazine we saw pap shots of Victoria
Beckham and her 15-year-old son,
Romeo, in New York.
“The stylish pair were snapped at
JFK airport, with Romeo looking to
have inherited his mother’s sartorial
savvy in a baseball jacket, Louis
Vuitton accessories and mismatched
socks,” OK! said.
Here’s the breakdown. If you’re
from a family worth more than
£500 million, carrying an old lady’s
suitcase and wearing mismatched
socks is “sartorial savvy”. The same
outfit on someone from a council
estate would be classified as “parental
neglect”.
4
Last week Ryan Adams took to Twitter to discuss allegations, in
the recent rock memoir Meet Me in the Bathroom, that he was
the one who introduced fellow rock stars the Strokes to heroin.
Turning the conversation to the Strokes’ Julian
Casablancas — a man who has become “cuddly” of late —
Adams asked: “Julian Casablancas: who got you strung out
on lasagna tho?” before adding: “I should have got them
addicted to writing better songs.”
When others on Twitter responded to Adams’s bitching,
he replied: “What’s he gonna do? Sit on me?”
It’s a festival of sniping! It’s Woodsnark!
5
UP
Nicole Scherzinger
There are many great things about
being a celebrity. The adoration of
the public. Getting a table in a
restaurant. Being able to refer
to “my glam squad” without
meaning your three uncles
who are into the Sweet.
And then of course there’s
creating your own perfume. Once
you’ve been famous for more than a
year, it’s almost certain you’ll be offered
the chance to front your own fragrance.
They’ve all done it. Britney Spears.
Ariana Grande. One Direction. Lady
Gaga. Dermot O’Leary. And, now, the
X Factor judge Nicole Scherzinger, who
this week launched her scent: “Chosen
— by Nicole Scherzinger.”
“I love it!” she told OK! magazine
“It’s fruity, it’s floral, it’s got a bit of
patchouli. This is my essence that I’m
leaving behind.” Although CW is sure that
Scherzinger means something different,
every time someone in CW’s life has said,
“Christ — what’s that? It’s your essence,
isn’t it? You’ve left it behind,” it was after
CW had spritzed the room with an entirely
less pleasant perfume.
For its usual fee of $777,777 CW is
willing to become Scherzinger’s interview
consultant — sitting in on all chats, and
hurriedly saying, “She doesn’t mean ‘fart’
when she says that!” any time she should
mistakenly reiterate she is “leaving her
essence behind”. That’s a service it can offer.
3
D
DOWN
Clowns
It’s bad news for clowns — the new
adaptation of Stephen King’s It,
featuring the terrifying clown
Pennywise, has hit the traditional
clowning industry badly.
“It movie causing legit clowns to lose
work,” the Hollywood Reporter noted.
“People had school shows that
were cancelled,” said the World Clown
Association president, Pam Moody.
“That’s very unfortunate.”
CW finds it ironic that clowns, of all
people, aren’t seeing the bright side of
all this. Yes, the public have a declining
interest in traditional clowns. But with
It being trailed everywhere, these are
surely the ideal circumstances for
clowns to do a quick bit of retraining
— and come back as the kind of
clowns everyone’s talking about right
now: terrifying, sinister, full of menace
and apt to make a child burst into
tears from a distance of 12ft.
The only problem is, quite how
this would differ from how clowns
are already, CW couldn’t tell you.
the times | Friday September 8 2017
3
1GT
times2
2
The hot list
What to do this weekend
DOWN
Calum Best
With this year’s wedding season almost
over, it seems that some celebrities are
turning their thoughts to the wedding
season 2018, and whether they will be
able to take part in it. “I’m on the hunt
1
UP
Katie Price
Ten years or so ago it would have
been understandable to think at some
point: “Why am I not a glamour
model-cum-reality TV star?”
For this was the time when Katie
Price, aka Jordan, was at her zenith
— worth a rumoured £45 million and
appearing on magazine covers under
such headlines as “A feminist icon of
our times?” She was featured in
OK! magazine so often that its owner,
Richard Desmond, apparently bought
her a pink helicopter by way of thanks.
She had a bed-linen range, a fashion
range, a lingerie range, an equestrian
range and bestselling novels, children’s
books and memoirs (“I haven’t
read some of the chapters yet,”
she confessed, endearingly, when
asked if she used a ghostwriter).
Before the advent of Kate
Middleton, she was the most
written-about woman in Britain
— her brash combination
of business, frankness (her
third memoir describes
her then-husband Peter
Andre’s penis, memorably,
as “cockalicious”) and
self-aggrandisement
(“Never underestimate
the Pricey!”) seemed
to be the perfect
encapsulation of the
times. Plus, she had
massive tits and went on
holiday — all. The. Time.
As you pulled on your
bobbly tights and
prepared for a crushing
commute to your
meaningless low-paid
job, it would have been
impossible to avoid a
simple conclusion: it was
a good idea to be Katie
Price. Girls wanted to be
her when they grew up.
Now, however, it would
be a particularly unhappy
person who would come to
that conclusion, however
shit their tights were.
Price’s USP has always
been having a life “full of
incident” — new boyfriends,
new weddings, new babies,
new divorces, new drunken
rants, new surgery (she left
the Celebrity Big Brother
house wincing with an
infected breast implant),
and new controversies
— all there to be sold to
magazines or filmed for
her reality TV shows.
She industrialised
the manufacturing,
then selling, of life experiences.
eriences
for Mrs Best,” the notorious lothario
Calum Best told Heat magazine last
week. Well, mate, that should be pretty
easy. Just ring your mum and ask her
where she is. Job done.
Indeed, Price’s incident factory is so
effective that in the past two months
she: 1) caused outrage by considering
hiring a sex worker to take her autistic
son’s virginity; 2) released a flop single;
3) renewed her marriage vows; 4) had
a facelift; 5) stated that her sex-addict
third husband has been having an
affair with their nanny — which the
nanny has denied — two years after
she announced he had been having
sex with her two best friends; 6) been
accused by her nanny and her
ex-husband of lying about the affair to
gain publicity for her badly selling tour;
7) announced her divorce; 8) revealed
she had a miscarriage last month;
9) revealed her mother has incurable
lung disease; 10) revealed that she
is to appear on Dancing on Ice.
The biggest news is her husband’s
infidelity and pending divorce. Or is it?
Even three years ago this story would
have filled newspapers for weeks.
But with hurricanes, North Korea,
the Duchess of Cambridge’s
pregnancy and Taylor Swift
dominating the space, Price’s
imploding family — served
up yet again — has been
relegated to third-division
coverage, below Wayne
Rooney’s drunken night
out. And the story of the
student in Bristol who got
stuck in a window, trying
to retrieve a poo.
Price’s problem is that
what is a “dramatic”
life in your twenties
increasingly looks
like a life that’s
falling apart in
your
forties.
y
The
T collateral
damage
mounts. Now
d
there
are five children to
th
consider — all growing up
in a family whose narrative
is being sold around them,
even as the business
empire crumbles.
According to some
sources, Price is in so
much financial trouble
that she can’t afford a
divorce. But the only way
she can earn money is for
there to be more chaos to
sell — to an audience
that now winces at her
instability. There’s no
market for a happy
ending and a declining
market for this
unhappy one too.
The business model
T
is failing. She’s running
out of life to sell.
Most people now
are glad they aren’t
glamour models-cumreality TV stars, and
think that it’s not a
great job after all. In
2017 no one wants
to be Katie Price.
Film
Wind River
Jeremy Renner, right with
Elizabeth Olsen, reminds us he’s
leading-man material in this
thriller about the murder of
a Native American woman,
set in a beautiful but brutal
corner of wildest Wyoming.
See review, page 9
Visual art
Can Graphic Design
Save Your Life?
A fascinating look at how
graphic design has affected
health for better and worse,
from Silk Cut adverts and plague
notices to a campaign that
increased organ donation
in Scotland by 242 per cent.
Obviously, the answer to
the title’s question is: yes.
Wellcome Collection, London
NW1 (020 7611 2222), today,
tomorrow and Sunday
Classical
The Last Night of the Proms
Sakari Oramo, right, conducts
a typically eclectic selection,
the highlights probably being
Nina Stemme singing the
Liebestod from Tristan und
Isolde as well as Rule, Britannia!
Royal Albert Hall, London SW7
(0845 4015040), tomorrow. Also
live on BBC TV and Radio 3
Comedy
David Sedaris
The American humorist, who
published his first volume of
diaries this summer, leaves his
West Sussex home for his latest
— and reliably entertaining —
reading tour. Colston Hall, Bristol
(0117 203 4040), tonight;
Usher Hall, Edinburgh
(0131 228 8616), tomorrow;
the Lowry, Salford
(0843 2086000), Sunday
Theatre
Follies
Imelda Staunton, right, is the
former showgirl who wonders if
she’s too old for true love in this
glitterati revival of Sondheim’s
musical. Tracie Bennett also
shines in a firmament of
powerful dazzlers. National
Theatre, London SE1 (020 7452
3000), tonight and tomorrow
Pop
John Legend
The super-smooth US
songwriter performs songs
from his jazz and soul-tinged
new album, Darkness and Light.
SSE Hydro, Glasgow
(0844 3954000), tonight
Opera
The Vanishing Bridegroom
Judith Weir’s trio of macabre
Gaelic stories (featuring Ida
Ranzlov, right) in this production
by British Youth Opera, part
of its 30th anniversary season.
Peacock Theatre, London WC2
(020 7863 8000), tonight
In Saturday Review tomorrow
Simon Rattle on his plans to shake
up London’s concert scene
Saturday September 9 2017
7-DAY
T
TV & RADIO
GUIDE
page 27
Double Degas
Dance into autumn
with two must-see
exhibitions 8
Rattle’s
return
The maestro’s
plans to shake
up London
art books theatre film music
television what’s on puzzles
4
1GT
Friday September 8 2017 | the times
arts story
cover
How to have a hit
in the West End:
my 10-step guide
As her new musical heads to the London stage, the theatre
impresario Nica Burns gives her top tips for putting on
a show — and (hopefully) getting your money back
N
ica Burns has
produced West End
shows including,
this year and last,
This House by James
Graham, Nell Gwynn
by Jessica Swale
starring Gemma
Arterton, Dead Funny by Terry
Johnson and, from November, the
musical Everybody’s Talking About
Jamie. She co-owns the Nimax group
of theatres (the Duchess, Vaudeville,
Apollo, Lyric, Garrick and Palace).
She has also been the director of the
lastminute.com Edinburgh comedy
awards (formerly the Perrier awards)
since 1984.
0 Learn the business — all of it
I never set out to be a theatre
producer. I read law at university in
London to please my mother, the deal
being that I would go to drama school
afterwards and act, which is what I
did. I spent my time at UCL at the
drama society. I wanted to learn every
aspect of putting on a play. I played
major roles, painted sets, made
costumes, choreographed two operas,
drove the van on a schools tour,
performed a play and a revue at the
Edinburgh Fringe. It was a fantastic
training ground. Wherever my mum
is now, she’d be smiling because
reading law trained my brain in a way
I wouldn’t have found for myself.
Logic plus lateral thinking — perfect
profile for a producer. My legal
training gave me my business brain.
0 The buck stops with you
A lot of people don’t know what a
producer does. A producer is simply
someone who decides they want to
mount a production. Everything flows
from that. You need to get the rights to
the play, choose the director, then the
rest of the creative team, cast it, find a
theatre. You budget it, raise the money
and sell it hard: press, marketing. You
have to be equally good at the creative
and business side. Showbusiness.
Producers are entrepreneurs. Your
Anyone who says
you can sustain
stardom without
talent is an idiot
didn’t fit in my Ford Escort, then we
had to mime it. Early on we had a
great review in The Scotsman — I’ve
still got it — and we sold out. We
made a profit of £48, which we split.
And I’ve never forgotten that £48, or
that £600 I invested in myself. The
best thing I’ve done in my life. And
as every penny was my hard-earned
savings, I learnt about cost control.
To this day I read every single invoice
and get the best price.
Nica Burns at the West End theatre
the Palace, which she co-owns
shows have to be very good, but if you
don’t succeed more than you fail,
you’ll be out of business. If you are
weak at one side of it, find a partner
on the same page as you who is strong
where you are weak. Otherwise do
something else.
0 It’s all about people
You have to make really good
relationships with a host of people —
creative, actors, agents, co-producers,
investors. One day you will be
creative, empathetic, touchy-feely,
workshopping a brand new play. The
next day you could be giving bad news
— closing a show early, steering
through a dispute, telling an investor
they have lost money or a creative
team that the new project is not good
enough for a full production. If you
can give bad news and retain the
relationship, you have done your job
well. Do your own crying at home.
I remember having to tell a cast the
show was closing early and I was so
upset the cast gave me their
handkerchiefs. Ouch!
0 Take the initiative
I am still proudest of my first
production. It was 1982, I was playing
good parts in rep. I read a novella,
Dulcima by HE Bates. I wanted to play
her on stage so I decided to make it
happen. I rang Colin Watkeys, my
regular director at UCL. We co-wrote
the adaptation and took it to the
Edinburgh Fringe. It cost my life
savings of £600 and it was a massive
personal risk. If a piece of the set
0 Know the value of a big name
With a play you’re usually on a limited
season because you can’t get the actors
indefinitely. You are lucky if you can
get a lead actor for 16 weeks, so you
have to get your money back quickly.
The West End and Broadway have
always had big stars, though — as a
student I recall paying £5 to sit in the
gods at the Haymarket to see Lauren
Bacall and Ingrid Bergman in Duncan
Weldon’s great classic seasons. I
recently watched young audiences
thrill to see Ken Branagh and Judi
Dench live on stage in The Winter’s
Tale and Lily James and Richard
Madden in Romeo and Juliet. The
ensemble company is a relatively new
invention — audiences love a star, and
you can’t sustain stardom without
enormous talent. Anyone who says
otherwise is, frankly, an idiot.
0 There’s good and there’s sellable
The first question is: could this be
brilliant? The second is: can I sell it?
Sometimes you can do a brilliant
production to critical acclaim that
you can’t sell. In 2001 I produced
Deborah Warner’s wonderful Medea,
starring Fiona Shaw. The reviews
Above: John McCrea
in Everybody’s Talking
about Jamie. Below:
Gemma Arterton
as Nell Gwynn
were stunning, they won Evening
Standard awards for best director and
best actress — and we lost all the
money. I’m still furious. Why didn’t
enough people want to see it? You
have to sell a lot of tickets in the West
End. The current play at the Donmar
Warehouse, which has about 250
seats, is running for seven weeks,
which is 14,000 tickets to sell.
Fourteen weeks at the Vaudeville with
about 700 seats, that’s almost 80,000
tickets to sell. For a mid-scale musical
that needs to run for a year, you’re
talking half a million tickets plus.
0 Theatre is a demanding mistress
I live a life in the theatre. I am
passionate about it. Theatre is work,
pleasure, social life, family, all
intermingled. I go to the theatre all the
time. I’m out and about in the
business. You’d be surprised what
comes from chance conversations.
I always get my best ideas at four in
the morning, which is bloody
the times | Friday September 8 2017
5
1GT
arts
cover story
JOHAN PERSSON; ROBBIE JACK; JUSTIN GOFF/GETTY IMAGES; TRISTRAM KENTON; JUSTIN GRIFFITHS-WILLIAMS
irritating. I think I’m lucky, having a
vocation. You have setbacks — I have
had my share of terrible times — but
you pick yourself up. I love my work
and my theatre family. So does my
lovely husband [Marc Hutchinson, an
Australian-born finance lawyer], thank
goodness, otherwise we wouldn’t be
celebrating our 30th wedding
anniversary in November.
0 Productions take time: play the
long game
I always have productions in
development. New plays take a great
deal of time. I like to do readings as
the script is getting refined, and
workshops depending on how the
director and author work. We would
nearly always do an initial production
as the final piece of the jigsaw. With
The Duck House, starring Ben Miller,
we did a regional tour. Otherwise we
would do a regional co-production.
Casting always takes time. Dead Funny
took two years. The writer-director,
Terry Johnson, was very happy with
the Vaudeville cast of Katherine
Parkinson, Steve Pemberton, Ralf
Little, Rufus Jones and Emily
Berrington. We also co-produce and
transfer productions from other
theatres: this year Love in Idleness
from the Menier Chocolate Factory
and The Mentor from Bath Theatre
Royal. I have two new plays in
development for next year and two
revivals with a current production
slate of six shows.
0 Hold your nerve
In 2004 a bunch of comics led by
Owen O’Neill asked me to produce
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest in
Edinburgh and the West End. I
agreed on the basis that we would
have two big names in the roles of
McMurphy and Nurse Ratched. We
had a number of setbacks, but
celebrated when Christian Slater and
Frances Barber accepted the roles. I’d
had to put more money in the show
than I was comfortable with, then
disaster struck. Christian got chicken
pox towards the end of rehearsals. All
the shows were sold out. I cancelled
the first five and went with Christian
to the doctor, who said: “You’re not
contagious any more, but I am signing
you off for the next few weeks.”
Christian said: “Not contagious? I’m
not going to disappoint any more
audiences. I’m doing it.”
He had learnt all his lines in bed,
hadn’t seen the set and went on the
next day. It’s the bravest thing I’ve seen
an actor do. He nailed it. At the end
the actors cried, the audience cried
and we all cheered ourselves hoarse. It
sold out 17 weeks at the Gielgud and
because I’d had to put more money in,
I got more of the profits. This meant
that I had some cash as a deposit for
the biggest risk of my life.
In 2005 I was working for Andrew
Lloyd Webber as part of the team
that was selling his four London
playhouses. Bill Kenwright — the
theatre producer, chairman of Everton
FC and a friend — said: “If you love
them so much, why don’t you buy
them?” What with, Bill? “Start by
mortgaging your house.” Several
months later I was buying them 50:50
with the Broadway producer Max
Weitzenhoffer (the Max in Nimax).
Our home, everything we had ever
had, was on the line. We were due to
sign the contracts on July 7, 2005. It
was exciting but scary. Then the
bombs went off. Now it was only very
scary. None of us knew what was
going to happen next. We couldn’t get
to the lawyer’s. Four
hours late, Max and
I walked into the
lawyer’s office.
All the contracts
were laid out.
Everyone had
trusted me — I lost
my nerve and walked
out. I was in a Greek
tragedy. A lifetime ticked
The cast of This House
at the Garrick. Below:
Christian Slater and
Frances Barber in One
Flew Over the Cuckoo’s
Nest at the Gielgud
To this
day I read
every
single
invoice
away, but hours later we signed.
We’d booked a celebration dinner
at the Connaught. We poured the
champagne, but couldn’t drink it.
Nobody talked. We were staring into
the abyss of risk. We were learning
what really holding your nerve
feels like.
0 Seize the moment
I was incredibly proud of bringing
This House by James Graham into the
West End last year. I saw it at the
National in 2012, loved it, and the
transfer didn’t happen. On election
night 2015 I went to see The Vote at
the Donmar, also written by James.
Then the chance conversation
happened. At the party afterwards
I asked him about This House and he
said the rights were available. Great, I
said. Give me the rights and I promise
I will put it on in the West End. We
did the deal on the play the next day
and I produced it in the Garrick the
following year. It was a five-star hit.
I’d heard good things about
Everybody’s Talking About Jamie, a new
musical that played 19 performances
at the Sheffield Crucible in February.
I went to the 18th performance and
loved it. A terrific story about the
unconditional love of a mother for a
son who is different, set on a Sheffield
council estate. It was one of the best
afternoons I’ve had in the theatre. The
audience went mad. At the end I did
what I always do: I joined the queue at
the ladies and asked everyone what
they thought. They loved it too. I went
straight into the foyer, found the
director and said: “I want to produce
your show in London and I’ll give you
a theatre.” So we are opening in
November at the Apollo.
It was an instinctive, gut reaction.
It’s a brand new musical-theatre
writing team, a 26-strong cast plus a
band of eight, no stars, and guess
what? The bad news: our new
home-grown musical is opening a
week before the multi-award-winning
Broadway megahit that is the fabulous
Hamilton. The good news: Hamilton
is sold out for the foreseeable future.
I think we have discovered a major
new star in the 23-year-old lead,
John McCrea.
Yes, of course I am begging you
all to come, but, dear Times readers,
your chief theatre critic gave it five
stars and I wouldn’t be much of a
producer if I didn’t try to entice you
to buy a ticket or six.
Nica Burns was talking to Dominic
Maxwell. Everybody’s Talking About
Jamie is at the Apollo, London W1
(0330 333 4809), from November 6
6
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Friday September 8 2017 | the times
arts
Richard Morrison the arts column
This is a brash modern intrusion on to a wild and craggy coastline
T
he formidable Oxford
archaeologist Nowell
Myres summed up the
legend of King Arthur
in one perfect sentence
of consummate
contempt. “No figure
on the borderline of
history and mythology has wasted
more of the historian’s time,” he wrote.
Spot on. Except that, as the mother
of all heritage battles rages on in
Cornwall, you can add councillors,
tourism leaders, planning officers,
journalists, environmentalists and
architects to the list of those whose
time is being wasted by this quite
probably nonexistent British chieftain.
For if it weren’t for the alleged
Arthurian associations of Tintagel —
the majestic promontory on the north
Cornish coast — English Heritage
(EH) wouldn’t dream of spending
£4 million on building a 72m-long,
high-level cantilevered bridge across
to the remains of a castle. And
Cornwall county council wouldn’t now
be embroiled in a planning row that
has raised tempers on all sides.
You can see why. At first sight the
proposal seems preposterous. And at
second and third sight too. The bridge
will be a brash modern intrusion on to
a wild and craggy coastline. EH has
come up with strong arguments about
access to the castle, particularly for
wheelchairs and buggies and those
who can’t manage steep descents and
climbs on rough stone steps, but as an
objector on the council website says:
“The whole ethos behind this unique,
mythical place is one of mystery,
inaccessibility and imagination.”
Another objector says it “would be
like putting a lift up Everest”, and
many others accuse EH of “wanting to
turn Tintagel into a theme-park” —
especially since the organisation has
already allowed a sculptor to carve a
spurious “head of Merlin” into
Tintagel’s rock face to mark the spot
where the whiskered wizard
supposedly carried the baby Arthur to
safety. Which would be hilarious if it
weren’t also so worrying. The crass
commercialisation and trivialisation of
another symbolic piece of Cornish
coast — Land’s End — is an awful
warning of how easily an untamed
landscape can be ruined.
There’s also a strong undercurrent
of Cornish nationalist resentment
MRC, NEY & PARTNERS & EMILY WHITFIELD-WICKS
An artist’s impression of the proposed 72m-long footbridge to Tintagel Castle in Cornwall. The planning row has raised tempers on all sides
An opera
you can’t
refuse
(never hard to inflame) about
“English” Heritage cocking up
arguably the most important historical
site west of the Tamar, predating the
very concept of “England” by five
centuries. “They wouldn’t do this to
Stonehenge” is a remark you often
hear. That’s true. At Stonehenge,
EH is campaigning for a £500 million
road tunnel to be built so that the
surrounding landscape can be restored
to its prehistoric state. At Tintagel, by
contrast, it seems happy to scar the
landscape by imposing a hugely
prominent 21st-century intervention.
I have some sympathy for EH.
Artists’ impressions of the proposed
bridge suggest that it will be as slim
and graceful as possible. One could
argue that it restores, symbolically at
least, the entry route along an eroded
isthmus that would have existed when
Richard, Earl of Cornwall (himself
infatuated with fictitious Arthurian
mythology) built his romantic castle
there in the 13th century.
EH also deserves credit for
commissioning some highly
productive archaeological digs at
Tintagel. The site’s links with King
Arthur and the Celtic legend of
Tristan and Iseult may be medieval
Horlicks, enriched by the feverish
imaginations of 19th-century
romantics such as Tennyson and
Wagner, but there’s a growing mass of
evidence suggesting that Tintagel was
one of the most significant ports in
post-Roman Britain, with trading links
extending to the Byzantine Empire.
What are the 20 greatest operas?
To answer that BBC Music Magazine
asked 172 top singers to nominate
three operas each. The results are
in its latest issue.
No huge surprises, though I’m
sad that the opera I revere as the
greatest written testament to the
human spirit — Beethoven’s Fidelio
— doesn’t make the Top 20. Instead,
The Marriage of Figaro heads a list
that predictably includes four Verdis,
three Wagners and two each by
Puccini, Monteverdi and Mozart.
Worryingly, it seems even today’s
opera singers don’t rate today’s
operas. Just two written in the past
100 years (Britten’s Peter Grimes and
Berg’s Wozzeck) make the Top 20.
Still, at least one famous singer
boldly champions the new. The tenor
Roberto Alagna apparently believes
that a work called Le dernier jour
d’un condamné is one of the three
greatest operas. It may well be —
but in the interests of journalistic
objectivity I must point out that it
was composed by Roberto’s brother
David, with a libretto concocted by
another brother, Frederico, and by
Roberto himself. Full marks for
family loyalty, though. Very Sicilian.
Excavations over the past two years
have uncovered medieval buildings
and a fascinating range of 5th and
6th-century objects, including north
African pottery, Spanish glassware and
evidence of lavish banquets with cod,
oysters and pork on the menu. In
short, these discoveries have revealed
that the Dark Ages were a lot more
civilised, organised and pleasurable
than we thought — at least in this
corner of Cornwall.
To accuse EH of “Disneyfying”
Tintagel is to ignore these vital
scholarly projects — work that
could overhaul our understanding of
British history. However, world-class
archaeology costs money and EH is an
independent trust that has to make
ends meet. To fund its archaeological
and conservation work it needs paying
punters — lots of them. And a kiddiethrilling high bridge over the rocks
and the sea could double the numbers
coming to Tintagel.
The trouble is that Tintagel already
gets 200,000 visitors a year, mostly
packed into what passes for the
Cornish summer. A big increase could
easily destroy what remains of its
atmosphere and lead to chronic jams
on already crowded access roads.
For all those reasons I think the
bridge is a bad idea, but I also think
this issue is too important for a few
county councillors to decide by
themselves. The contesting parties
should be made to argue their case in
a public inquiry. Seated at a round
table, of course.
the times | Friday September 8 2017
7
1GT
arts
THE
CRITICS
Ed Potton
shivers at a windy Wyoming thriller p9
Will Hodgkinson
finds Sparks flying again p11
Rachel Campbell-Johnston
sees new life in still life p12
It? It’s just not scary enough
Krueger of Derry, and his job is to run
around the shadows, leaping into
camera, giggling, drooling, and talking
a lot. As portrayed by Bill Skarsgard,
under thick latex make-up, often
augmented with CGI teeth, this
Pennywise has eschewed the gravelthroated “Noo Yoika” delivery of
Curry’s version, and instead opts for a
gurgle that’s not scary enough and
lands somewhere between Gollum
from Lord of the Rings and Yoda from
Star Wars. Terrified, not you will be.
And that, ultimately, is the central
crisis facing the new It. It’s simply not
the big film
A movie version
of Stephen King’s
story about
Pennywise the
Clown is too tame,
says Kevin Maher
I
t was never going to be easy.
Let’s be honest. Adapting
Stephen King’s It — a
profoundly influential novel
that’s more than 1,000 pages
long and features a vast, erajumping narrative, some bonkers
cosmology and a pivotal yet
profoundly creepy underage orgy —
was always going to take some serious
ambition and creative ingenuity.
Erasing memories of the 1990
mini-series adaptation of It that gave
us Tim Curry’s iconic killer clown,
Pennywise, was going to be tricky too.
Add to that a production process on
this new It that has been notable for
the departure of the original director,
Cary Fukunaga (he made the brilliant
first series of True Detective), and the
original star, Will Poulter (he left
because of “creative differences”), and
you have a film, even before the first
scene unfolds, that has a sizeable
mountain to climb.
Well, alas, the makers of the new
and improved It, including the
Argentine director Andy Muschietti
(he made the Jessica Chastain horror
Mama), don’t exactly reach the
summit. Nor do they fall dramatically
on their faces. They just cruise
aimlessly around the middle ground,
in stark repetitive circles, delivering a
kids-in-peril horror movie that feels
like every other kids-in-peril horror
movie, only more so.
This one arrives under the shadow
of the recent Netflix hit Stranger
Things, which was itself a homage to
classic
film
of the
week
It’s like every
other kids-inperil horror film
— only more so
body. In the book, obviously and
infamously, this undercurrent of
primal desire climaxes with a loving
and very polite preteen orgy in the
Derry sewer system, which provides
the text with a metaphorical bonanza
(orgy in the sewers!) and a thematic
point (horror as the emergence of
sexual desire). The orgy is not in the
film, obviously, but its troubling roots
remain, leaving deeply uncomfortable
scenes, such as the reservoir strip, that
seem to conflate Beverly’s abuse with
her nascent sexuality.
The plot choices don’t help. Wholly
removing the “modern” section of the
narrative (the book and the mini-series
ping back and forth between the young
protagonists and their adult selves,
creating a complex sense of character)
has left the villain, Pennywise the
Clown, with a lot of heavy lifting. He
has gone from being a billion-year-old
cosmic entity to being the Freddy
scary. Or not scary enough. Obviously,
coulrophobics out there will be
catatonic with fright, but it’s a gamble
to allow the efficacy of your horror
adaptation to rest entirely on the sight
of a man in clown make-up doing
screamy faces to camera.
Plus, you can always measure the
desperation levels in a horror flick by
the amount of “auditory scares” on the
soundtrack. And It is loaded with
superfluous screams. The effect is like
having someone poking you in the
ribs, relentlessly, while shouting:
“Scary, isn’t it? Scary! Right!?”
Near the climax, one of our young
heroes stares at Pennywise and says:
“I’m not afraid of you!” Pennywise
replies: “Oh, you will be!” Then he
flashes his computer-generated
shark’s teeth. Nope. Still not afraid.
The cast acquit themselves with easy
chemistry, and Lillis is the standout,
giving the most nuanced performance.
It all ends on a greedy, grubby, note
with the prospect of not just a sequel,
but an entire It-related franchise.
Which is ambitious. And, ironically
enough, probably the most ambitious
thing about this whole endeavour.
sexual agonies. Luis Buñuel’s film, by
comparison, is so delicate, so sweet.
Deneuve, left, is the bored bourgeois
housewife Séverine Serizy, married to
the handsome Pierre (Jean Sorel), yet
frozen with fear in bed. What to do?
Therapy? Pills? No, Séverine becomes
a high-class prostitute who works only
during the day (hence the title), drives
men wild and is eventually “cured” of
her sexual reticence. The only snag is
that, along the way, Pierre is shot by a
lusty young mobster (Pierre Clémenti
— amazing, way before his time).
It’s an exercise in style, and not
just because of Deneuve’s collection
of Yves Saint Laurent showstoppers.
No, it’s Deneuve herself, an icon of
glacial minimalism. She’s put through
the emotional wringer with barely
a flicker. The less she gives, the
more we watch. It’s mesmerising.
Kevin Maher
4K restoration on general release
Bill Skarsgard as the giggling, drooling Pennywise, who lands somewhere between Gollum and Yoda
It
15, 135min
{{(((
Belle de Jour
(1967)
18, 101min
{{{{(
King, to Stand By Me and to movies
such as The Goonies and Super 8, and
an entire world of 1980s-set
adventures featuring wisecracking
Middle American preteens on bikes
facing insurmountable odds (think
Ethan Hawke’s Explorers, or even ET).
The preteens here, slightly older
than the book’s 11-year-olds, are a gang
of seven outsiders, with often troubling
backstories, living in the fictional
town of Derry, Maine, in 1989. They
include the sensitive stuttering hero
Bill (Jaeden Lieberher), the comedy
motormouth Richie (Finn Wolfhard
from Stranger Things), the portly
history buff Ben (Jeremy Ray Taylor)
and the no-nonsense token girl
Beverly (Sophia Lillis).
Beverly is the victim of sexual abuse
by her father and an object of desire
among the boys. She strips off readily
when they swim at the local reservoir,
and our heroes openly lust after her
T
here’s something incredibly
quaint about Belle de Jour.
The subject of a “normal”
person who is taken to
extremes by their libido has,
since the release of this Catherine
Deneuve classic, become an arthouse
staple. Movies such as Steve
McQueen’s Shame and Lars von Trier’s
Nymphomaniac have battered the
modern viewer with bodily fluids,
male members and protracted
8
1GT
Friday September 8 2017 | the times
arts
film reviews
Danger within:
the real Folsom
prison blues
Convicts and civilians clash in this
thrilling documentary, says Kevin Maher
The Work
T
15, 89min
{{{{{
he scene is a converted
chapel in Folsom
maximum-security
California state
penitentiary. The
character is Rick,
a wiry, terrifying
and heavily tattooed
former white supremacist with
a blue bandana, a thick Southern
accent and narrow, piercing eyes. The
lighting is low, Rick’s head is down. He
suddenly lifts it up and, with a broken
sigh, says: “People have betrayed me
my whole life. And I don’t know what
love looks like. I’m 47 years old and
I’m only just learning now.”
It’s the kind of carefully crafted
line, and deftly moving scene,
that you might expect from a tough
but touching Cormac McCarthy
adaptation, yet it’s just one of the
many better-than-fiction moments
from the riveting prison documentary
The Work. Set over four eventful
days during Folsom’s biannual
group-therapy programme, it follows
a handful of fearsome inmates as
they put aside gang loyalties and
prison-yard affiliations and instead
delve deep inside themselves to
excavate the psychological source
of their torments.
The twist (one of many pleasing
surprises to come) is that the convicts
are also joined, from day one, by men
from the outside. These are caterers,
teaching assistants and “museum
associates”, soft and essentially
pampered civilians who are nurturing
first world anxieties (why am I not
happy?) and using the prison’s
programme, called the Inside Circle
Foundation, to reach a greater
understanding of their masculinity.
And, yes, apparently the civilians are
crucial to the success of the therapy
sessions (the prisoners learn from
them and vice versa), but, boy, does it
make for thrilling, compelling viewing.
The threat of danger from hardened
killers, for instance, never quite lifts
Inmates put aside
gang loyalties to
delve deep inside
themselves
from the air, especially when teaching
assistant Brian becomes, with every
single sharing, more and more
confrontational.
There is a heart-in-your-mouth
moment, like something from a Coen
brothers screenplay, when Brian
suddenly interrupts a painfully
revealing confession from a senior
prison alpha to critique the substance
of the confession and to imply that the
prisoner is a hypocrite.
Naturally, sparks fly, chests are
beaten, yet within seconds the
tables are turned and Brian is
wailing with grief, spitting with
rage and being held in the centre
Primaire
12A, 103min
{{{((
Amanda Fry and Paulina Longenbaugh seek buried treasure in The Lure
The Lure
80min
{{(((
A fascinating premise, some quirky
characters and ravishing landscape
cinematography dwindle into nothing
in this only fitfully interesting
documentary from the director
Tomas Leach.
It describes the treasure-hunting
hysteria surrounding the eccentric
octogenarian art dealer Forrest Fenn,
who in 2010 claimed to have buried
more than a million dollars’ worth of
gold and jewels in the Rocky
Mountains. Since then, 65,000 seekers
have attempted to solve a riddle-filled
poem that leads to the secret location.
The film follows some of these
hunters as they hike across the often
breathtaking New Mexico landscape
and share theories about Fenn and the
treasure spot.
Plus we get lots of Fenn on camera,
espousing his belief in myth and
the enduring power of the buried
treasure. But, alas, Fenn turns out
to be a one-note, muttering bore (“I’m
thinking 10,000 years from now,” he
says, when contemplating his legacy)
and there’s only so much time you can
spend watching hikers fruitlessly
shoving sticks into bushes before you
lose the will to live. KM
Life inside Folsom
prison is exposed
in The Work
This sweet and upbeat French drama
might as well have been called
Teachers Are Awesome. Filled with
jaunty music and easily negotiated
emotional conflicts, it’s set in a
primary school where the teachers
are saintly, almost pathologically
obsessed with the betterment of their
pupils. They only complain when
they get together in the staffroom
to worry about national educational
standards and the way that, thanks
to government policy, “teaching
is conditioning the children for
the workplace”.
Chief among the teacher-saints
is Florence (Sara Forestier,
utterly convincing), who lives
on-site in a school apartment,
dealing with the fallout from
a divorce and also teaches
her troubled son (Albert
Cousi). Things
heat up considerably
when Florence takes
a school bully under
her wing (of course
she does), and has
a fling with said
bully’s swarthy
guardian (Vincent
Elbaz). It’s light, it’s good
fun and it will make you
want to send your kids
to France. KM
of a violently restrictive seven-man
prison sandwich.
Better still, without ever once
being heavy-handed, the film makes
broader claims for the essential nature
of masculinity — all men, it says
(and it’s hard to argue, based on this
lot), are the victims of their fathers,
in every way. Plus the co-director
Jairus McLeary is a former Inside
Circle attendee, so the intimacy of the
experience, and the obvious trust that
the participants place in the constantly
prying camera, is never in doubt.
It’s a difficult, enthralling,
occasionally dizzying experience.
A film about men, for everyone.
The Vault
15, 91min
{{(((
Heist meets horror in Dan Bush’s film,
with a team of robbers finding a lot
more than dollar bills in the vault of
the bank they are holding up.
The heist bit is quite smartly
handled, with James Franco rocking
a natty moustache-and-mullet combo
as a bank employee and Taryn
Manning, better known as
Pennsatucky in Orange Is
the New Black, impressively
obstreperous as one of
the robbers.
The horror part,
however, is
dreadfully
underpowered,
with no hint of
a scare and peril of
the vaguest kind
provided by some
hooded nasties.
A late twist
slightly livens
things up, but by
tthen you’ve
stopped caring. EP
James Franco is a little
tied up in The Vault
the times | Friday September 8 2017
9
1GT
arts
film reviews
Shocks and savagery in the snow
Mismatched cops
battle evil and the
elements in a taut,
turbulent thriller,
says Ed Potton
Wind River
I
15, 107min
{{{{(
f you run six miles barefoot
through snow at minus 20C,
your lungs will explode. That’s
the gruesome piece of biological
trivia that opens Taylor
Sheridan’s Wind River, a curious
but ultimately humane story
of brutality and grief on a vast
Native American reserve in Wyoming.
Sheridan is best known for writing
the Oscar-nominated screenplay to
last year’s Hell or High Water, which
did all kinds of unexpected things with
the heist genre. Wind River, his second
film as director, again plays with
expectations. It’s flawed, to be sure, but
it has a plangent, spacious savagery
that lingers long after the credits roll.
Jeremy Renner stars as Cory
Lambert, an agent for the US Fish
and Wildlife Service, the kind of tough
but slightly weird guy who spends his
days speeding across icy wastes on his
snowmobile and sitting in bushes in
his camouflage suit, picking off wolves
with his telescopic rifle.
Searching for a mountain lion that
has been eating livestock, Lambert
instead stumbles on the frozen body
of an 18-year-old Native American
woman. She has been raped and
beaten but what killed her, he learns,
Elizabeth Olsen as
the FBI agent Jane
Banner in Wind River
is that aforementioned barefoot slog
through the snow.
The death has a special sting
for Lambert, who lost his daughter
three years earlier under similar
circumstances. He is separated from
her Native American mother, but
remains on relatively good terms with
some of the tribal community, which
is ground down by violence, substance
abuse and patronising white people.
Homicide on a Native American
reserve is a federal crime, however, so
this is one for the FBI. Enter special
agent Jane Banner (Elizabeth Olsen),
fresh from Las Vegas and woefully
kitted out for conditions in this part of
Wyoming, which move with mystical
speed between calm and blizzard. “It’s
sunny for an hour,” says the tribal
police sheriff (Graham Greene). “Then
you’re right back in hell again.”
Goon: Last of
the Enforcers
Dennis Skinner:
Nature of
the Beast
15, 97min
{((((
This tedious, ultra-violent Canadian
“comedy” sequel about ice hockey and
fighting features American Pie’s Seann
William Scott as a dim-witted sports
star called Doug Glatt. He’s famous for
his bone-crunching antics on the rink
(he’s the enforcer of the title) and for
his hilarious lack of intelligence.
When his supportive, pregnant and
submissive wife, Eva (Alison Pill, in a
shocker of a role), says that her “water
has broken”, for example, Doug says:
“It’s OK, I can buy you another one
at the gas station.” Way-hey! It’s the
return of Groucho Marx!
It begins with Doug being badly
hurt during one of his trademark
punch-ups (buckets of blood flying
in slo-mo). He spends the rest of the
movie trying to decide between a
boring life as an employee of an
insurance company (where his boss
has a comedy prostate problem —
yep, it’s one of them) and an exciting
life of sport and violence.
It’s really awful. Like Will Ferrell’s
Semi-Pro, but with blood instead of
proper jokes. KM
The Times
Film Show
102min
{{(((
Watch Kevin Maher
and Ed Potton discuss
the new remake of It
at thetimes.co.uk/arts
Hiam Abbass as the steely matriarch trying to calm her family in Insyriated
Insyriated
15, 86min
{{{{(
The tone of the movie is similarly
changeable, lurching from saturnine
murder hunt (Olsen’s green agent,
surrounded by sceptical men, has
more than a hint of Jodie Foster
in The Silence of the Lambs) to
Fargo-style smalltown black comedy
to sober issues movie (a postscript
tells us that Native American women
are the only demographic for which
proper missing-persons records are
not kept). Sheridan also steals a clever
editing trick from The Silence of the
Lambs, which spins the film in a
shocking new direction.
Such narrative turbulence can feel
queasy, although it’s generally kept
in check by the stillness of the
snowscapes and knitted together
by Lambert, who assists Banner
on the case. Renner is a strange
but often moving actor whose
squashed-together features and
introverted emotion can make a scene
work, even when the dialogue is a bit
shoddy, as it is here at times. Nine
years after The Hurt Locker, his
performance reminds you that he is a
leading man, albeit an unconventional
one, who has been wasted for too long
playing sidekicks and superheroes.
Olsen is rather too glamorous truly
to convince in her role, but she still
makes a decent fist of it, balancing
pluck with vulnerability. The real
disappointment is the villain of the
piece, played by James Jordan, who is
so cartoonish, a leering, grunting ball
of evil with no redeeming features,
that he almost derails the movie.
Thankfully he doesn’t, and the
picture you leave with is of a less
melodramatic kind of evil, the kind
that flourishes in isolated communities
where anyone can vanish into the
wilderness and no questions are asked.
As the sheriff of Wind River says with
a sigh: “Luck don’t live out here. It
lives in the city.”
Ignore the awful punning title; this is a
serious and searing piece of work from
the Belgian director Philippe Van
Leeuw. It takes place entirely inside an
apartment in Damascus where three
generations of a family and others are
sheltering from the civil war.
The great Palestinian actress Hiam
Abbass (Munich, The Visitor) plays
Oum Yazan, the steely matriarch
attempting to calm her petrified loved
ones as bombs rain down, snipers take
potshots and invaders rattle on the
doors. There’s one annoying break
in plausibility but this is otherwise a
dignified, nerve-shredding portrait
of leadership in crisis. Sometimes
Yazan makes the right call, sometimes
she doesn’t, but she always has the
guts to make a call. EP
Dennis Skinner is one of our most
colourful and principled MPs,
scourge of the right and vehement
defender of causes from the miners
(he used to be one in his native
Derbyshire) to stem-cell research.
A shame, then, that the Beast of
Bolsover comes across as either
smug or boring for much of this
hagiographic documentary.
We get flashes of fire — Skinner
calling John Gummer a “little
squirt of a minister” in the House
of Commons and mischievously
heckling Black Rod.
However, while he is proud of his
integrity as a parliamentary loner, it
would have been instructive to hear
from his colleagues directly, rather
than his on-side brothers and
constituents and, mostly, Skinner,
whose opinion of himself is not
inconsiderable.
“There isn’t an imperfect candidate
standing anywhere,” he says of
politicians, adding, as if it needed
emphasising: “Including me.” EP
10
1GT
Friday September 8 2017 | the times
artsmusic
music
SASHA ARUTYUNOVA/THE NEW YORK TIMES/EYEVINE; MATS BÄCKER
The Swedish
Valkyrie heads
to the Proms
Nina Stemme
and, below, with
John Lundgren in
Göteborg Opera’s
Notorious
Nina Stemme, famed for her Wagner
heroines, talks to Anna Picard about
headlining classical music’s biggest night
I
t is mid-afternoon on a brazenly
sunny day in Vienna. Inside the
café near Nina Stemme’s
apartment the walls are dark
brown and the menu is heavy
with noodles and schnitzel.
When the world’s leading
dramatic soprano strides in, you
would expect a round of applause, but
Stemme, who is top of the bill in this
year’s Last Night of the Proms, looks
less like a rebel Valkyrie than an art
teacher on holiday.
Now 54 years old, with a schedule
that takes her from Salzburg, Vienna
and Munich to London, New York and
San Francisco, Stemme has a large,
clever mouth, large, clever eyes, a tart
sense of humour and the kind of
composure that comes from having
worked hard to nurture her career.
These tools, as much as her strong,
supple voice, are what she uses to
transform herself into Strauss’s bitter,
traumatised Elektra, Shostakovich’s
predatory Katerina Ismailova,
Wagner’s love-drunk Isolde and the
three incarnations of Brünnhilde in
the Ring cycle: virgin, bride and widow.
“That’s why I decided to sing her,”
Stemme says of Brünnhilde. “She does
develop. Because it’s not grateful to
sing. It’s hard. It’s high. It’s low. It’s
here. It’s there. Short. Long. Crazy.
Calm. Childish. In love. Vengeful. And
you don’t get all the answers! That’s
what makes her so interesting. That’s
why I can’t get enough of her.” She will
sing the part when the Royal Opera
revives its production of the Ring for
four cycles in autumn 2018.
Stemme was a late starter. The
daughter of an architect, she was raised
in Stockholm, spending one year on an
exchange programme in the US. (“The
school year when Ronald Reagan was
elected president, John Lennon was
shot and they put a name on Aids.”)
She studied business and economics,
taking classes at Operastudio 67, and
worked part time as a secretary and
bookkeeper to fund her singing lessons.
(“I kept myself busy!”)
It was 1990 before she started her
four-year course at the Stockholm
University’s Operahögskolan as a
“lyric soprano with a little bit spinto”.
Aged 30, she had her first child. “I
never had a career without a family,”
she says. “I decided to go for
everything at once, and let the singing
take its time.”
Agents and artists (“especially other
women”) in the opera houses where
she was working made her nervous
about the effect of motherhood on her
career. “When I was expecting our
second child, they said, ‘Wow!’.” What
did they say when she had her third?
“One colleague came up to me and
said, ‘Aber, Nina, du musst an dein Kunst
denken!’ Think of your art! I was sort of,
‘Yeah, betraying my art by having my
children? Okaaay. I do have a husband.
And we’re supposed to share.’ ”
Stemme rocks with laughter as she
remembers getting a card from the
great Wagnerian soprano Birgit
Nilsson telling her that when God
said, “Go forth and multiply”, he did
not mean that Stemme should do it
single-handedly.
Nilsson, who died in 2005, was
Stemme’s operatic godmother: “She
was very supportive, very honest,
funny. She regarded me as a colleague
and I thought, ‘Wow! How can this
star, so much bigger than me, even see
me?’ That is incredibly important when
you’re young. The biggest difference
was that I decided to have a family and
she decided not to have a family. She
went all-in for her profession.”
Stemme’s husband, the set designer
and director Bengt Gomér, “took the
bigger half” of the childcare. They talk
about their work “more and more now
that the children are grown up. The
fact that he is a designer encouraged
me to talk to the production team and
learn what they are thinking.”
Stemme dislikes directors who
“over-simplify”, and consults full
scores rather than relying on the
piano reductions printed in vocal
scores. “Because, like the subtext of a
character changes my expression, the
orchestration changes my vocal
production. This is such a complicated
process that it has to go on in the back
of my mind. It’s layer on layer on layer.
So I don’t have to think. I can just feel,
if you like, like a medium.”
The pied à terre in Vienna is a
pragmatic purchase. Stockholm is still
home and Stemme is now in a position
where she can choose whom to work
with: “It’s my only way of feeling that I
have some power. Because I want to
give my best. I know a few people
where the chemistry is not good
between us. We shouldn’t work
together. There are more where the
chemistry is exceptional,
and this is wonderful,
we should do more.”
Stemme’s
Proms debut
The Last Night of the
Proms is at the Royal
Albert Hall (0845
4015040) tomorrow.
It will also be broadcast
live on BBC Two
from 7.15pm and
BBC One from 9pm,
and on BBC Radio 3
was in 2010, singing Berlioz. In 2013
she returned as Brünnhilde in Daniel
Barenboim’s Staatskapelle Berlin Ring
cycle, and in 2014 she sang the title
role in Strauss’s Salome. She knows the
Royal Albert Hall but the Last Night
will be her first collaboration with the
conductor Sakari Oramo.
Whatever she wears (“I’m not going
to tell you”), it won’t be today’s Klimthunter outfit of floppy hat, long
cardigan and multicoloured sundress.
With a programme that includes the
Liebestod from Tristan und Isolde,
songs by Kurt Weill and Thomas
Arne’s Rule, Britannia!, it’s an
interesting sartorial challenge.
Especially after Juan Diego Flórez’s
Inca costume last year. “I thought it
was beautiful,” she says, laughing. A
two-frock concert, then? “At least
two.” Horns? “I don’t like horns.” A
helmet? Silence. Then a wink.
The Weill selection allows Stemme
to show a different side to her singing.
“I have a weak spot for his
melodies, his tunes, his texts
and his chameleon way of
changing from French to
German to English. The
wonderful thing with
Weill is it can be sung by
actors. Some just speak it.
It’s just as touching because
it’s so honest, or it’s ironic
or sarcastic. I feel that the
female middle-range voice,
treated well, is very sexy. I
want to bring this sexiness
back.” She laughs at herself.
“God, now I have to go home
and practise.”
Television cameras hold no fear:
“I try not to exaggerate too much,
because the face is stronger than you
think, and there’s nothing worse than
exaggerating opera singers.”
Long before high-definition cinema
relays from opera houses became the
norm, she played the Marschallin in
Yannis Houvardas’s 2002 Göteborg
Opera production of Der
Rosenkavalier. “Before we came on to
the set he had been rehearsing for five
weeks with three video cameras to fix
the angles to ‘zoom in’ on our psyches.
I’m not a film actress. Not at all. So I
had to guess and learn. But it is
actually very good for the singing to
have a relaxed face, because it means
that everything behind it is as relaxed
as it should be.”
Stemme has sung Tristan und Isolde,
an opera she describes as “like a
Bergman film”, more than a hundred
times over the past 14 years. How
different is it to sing the Liebestod in
concert? “It is a little strange because
I don’t get the chance to tell the story
before. You’re more humble at the end
of a full performance when it’s just the
‘hit number’ left and you’ve been
singing for four hours. I can only
present what I have at the moment
and do my best.”
So she never thinks: “Oh no, not this
again?” “How can you? It’s impossible!
That’s why we do this live. It’s a new
piece every single time. Some things
get easier. You know what you’re
going to sing and you know that your
voice will manage it. But then I try to
reinvent myself and I can’t help it, I
really can’t.”
the times | Friday September 8 2017
11
1GT
arts
music reviews
Dark horses — bright Sparks
The arcane, dapper
outsiders are still
brilliant in their
fifth decade, says
Will Hodgkinson
The National
Sleep Well Beast
4AD
{{{{(
If the National bristle at being
described as America’s Radiohead,
their seventh studio album won’t do
them any favours. From the gloomy
piano, subdued beats and croaked
vocals of the opener, Nobody Else Will
Be There, onwards there is so much
here to remind us of Oxfordshire’s
favourite depressed music boffins. Yet
the National add to Radiohead’s
experimentalism and portentousness a
sense of warmth, even fun.
“I’m always thinking about useless
things,” sings Matt Berninger on Walk
It Back, a beautiful dystopian love
song, while the squealing guitars on
Turtleneck come close to fist-pumping
heavy rock. And although Berninger’s
lyrics have been opaque, clarity wins
out here. “It’s nobody’s fault, no guilty
party, we’ve just got nothing left to
say,” he sings on the mournful Guilty
Party. A portrait of a divorce
(Berninger is actually still married to
his wife, who helped him to write the
lyrics), it’s as stark as it’s tragic.
pop
Sparks
Hippopotamus
R
BMG
{{{{{
are is the band who
sound as innovative in
their fifth decade as
they did in their first.
Enter Sparks.
Hippopotamus has all
the traits that made
Ron and Russell Mael
stand out from the early 1970s
onwards: a sophisticated but awkward
mix of rock and musical theatre,
minor subjects treated with hysterical
significance, childlike humour
throwing a veil over melancholy. Yet it
is different from anything else they
have done. You wonder how they do it.
The answer lies in Ron (72,
toothbrush moustache) and Russell
(68, boyish fringe) never quite finding
their way into the party. Dapper
Californian anglophiles, the Maels
have spent their adult lives making
pop that has only been fitfully popular.
Nor is Hippopotamus likely to make
them household names. The song
subjects hardly scream mass appeal: a
large mammal appears in a swimming
pool on the title track; a girlfriend
comes to Russell’s house to see his
furniture on Scandinavian Design; the
vaudevillian I Wish You Were Fun
tackles the dilemma of being attracted
to a dullard. But the album is brilliant.
It also lacks self-importance.
Russell’s fraught falsetto may suggest
high emotion, the melodies may be
affecting, but Ron’s lyrics never
assume that the listener is interested
in the brothers’ lives. “Taylor Swift has
something new. Nike has a brand new
shoe,” Russell sings on Unaware, listing
things a baby girl is oblivious to,
thereby making these distractions of
adult life seem insignificant. What the
Hell Is It This Time? imagines an
classical
Jonas Kaufmann
L’Opéra
Sony Classical
{{{{(
C
Ron and Russell Mael
of Sparks
all this unfinished business.
Jonas Kaufmann won his
spurs as the Royal Opera
audience’s favourite tenor
when he sang Don José in
Carmen in 2006, but he hasn’t sung a
French role in London since.
The German tenor withdrew from a
run of Berlioz’s Les Troyens in 2012
and plans for him to sing the hero of
Offenbach’s Les Contes d’Hoffmann at
the Paris Opera last year went
similarly awry. With big, heavy roles
such as Verdi’s Otello behind him and
Wagnerian summits to come (Tristan
looms, ominously), it’s unlikely that he
will be able to attempt these characters
now or revisit other French parts that
he has sung with distinction elsewhere.
Nick Mulvey
Wake Up Now
Reprise
{{{((
It’s been a whole eight months since
Neil Young last put out an album, so
he has elected to unearth some
recordings he made over a single night
in 1976 with his regular producer,
David Briggs, at the Indigo Ranch
studio in Malibu. During them he
accompanied himself on acoustic
guitar, pausing “only for weed, beer
or coke”.
The accordingly sloppy takes were
shelved and most of the songs
appeared in new forms on later
albums, but Young is an artist who
benefits from a lack of polish. His
fragile yet determined whine suits
Pocahontas, about the massacre of an
Indian tribe, and Powderfinger, the
story of a young man defending his
family against a gunboat.
Young obsessives will want to hear
the previously unreleased Hawaii and
Give Me Strength — the former is
lovely, the second forgettable — but
for the casual listener this long-buried
sketchbook is inessential. It does,
however, give a touch of insight into
Young’s complex artistry and
character: insouciant and heartfelt,
sophisticated and primal, inspiring and
annoying, all at the same time.
Fiction
{{{{(
Mulvey is the former hang (modified
steel drum) player of the experimental
jazzers the Portico Quartet who
broke out on his own and garnered
a Mercury prize nomination in 2014
for his solo debut. He has returned
with an album that aligns the jolly,
vibrant world-music style of Paul
Simon’s Graceland with some weighty
philosophical and spiritual concerns.
Recorded at Peter Gabriel’s Real
World Studios and written after
Mulvey experimented with the
hallucinogenic drug ayahuasca and
became a father, Wake Up Now is an
unusually profound inquiry into the
nature of humanity. The haunting
When The Body Is Gone makes a
case for the eternity of the soul, the
groove-led Transform Your Game
is about letting go of the ego. With
pretty backing harmonies and some
gentle fingerpicked acoustic guitar, it is
an uplifting pop-folk album that wears
the significance of its words lightly.
So here is, instead, L’Opéra, a grand
celebration of 19th-century French
opera, with fine support from
Kaufmann’s “home” band, Munich’s
Bayerisches Staatsorchester, and two
other star singers, the baritone
Ludovic Tézier and the soprano Sonya
Yoncheva. The good news is that it’s
probably Kaufmann’s most effective
album recital since he moved to Sony
in 2013. Oh, and for once the publicity
shots don’t make him look like a
refugee from the Boden catalogue.
Most of the men here are dreamers
and chancers, filled with desire or
ambition, refusing to face the hard
slap of reality. Here’s Gounod’s Roméo,
possibly a little husky and grave to
be the Veronese teenager wild on
hormones, and there’s Massenet’s
Werther, sounding a little weathered,
but certainly terminally depressed in
his lament, Pourquoi me réveiller.
In those very lyrical numbers
Kaufmann’s voice moves a little more
creakily than it used to, and his vocal
registers don’t always sound ideally
knitted. Yet there should be no carping
at his finely judged phrasing, his
psychological acuity and, when he hits
a sweet spot, sheer seductive swagger.
His and Tézier’s searing delivery of
the famous duet from Bizet’s The Pearl
Fishers is as good as any you will hear
on record. For a rarity, by contrast,
try the sweet, sad aubade from Lalo’s
Le Roi d’Ys or a prayerful declaration
of love from Ambroise Thomas’s
Mignon. His encounter with
Massenet’s manipulative Manon
(Yoncheva on luscious form) is
frustrating only for its brevity.
As the repertoire gets heavier, so
the album builds to a terrific climax.
There’s something of Kaufmann’s
newly acquired Otello in O Souverain,
from Massenet’s Le Cid. A father’s
lament from Halevy’s La Juive has
an unbridled ferocity.
To finish there’s a double whammy
of Berlioz. First, the haunted, hunted
hero of La Damnation de Faust, and
then the pugnacious, self-deluding
Aeneas from Les Troyens. What a pity
this role was the one that got away.
Neil Fisher
Released on September 15
irritated God being hassled by the
minor prayers of humans.
Perhaps Hippopotamus does mark
the start of a late-flowering career high
for Sparks. Annette, the Maels’ musical
about a stand-up comedian and an
opera singer with a gifted daughter,
has been picked up by the French
director Leos Carax for a movie
starring Adam Driver and Michelle
Williams. I wouldn’t bank on a move
to the mainstream, though. This is
bright, witty music that lives on the
margins. Where else would they get
away with writing a paean to sexual
conformity called Missionary Position?
Neil Young
Hitchhiker
12
1GT
Friday September 8 2017 | the times
arts
visual art
Putting the thrill into still life
COURTESY GUILDHALL ART GALLERY; MARCUS COPE; COURTESY MICHAEL CRAIG-MARTIN AND THE ALAN CRISTEA GALLERY, LONDON; NANCY FOUTS; MATT SMITH
A dying genre is
reanimated in this
rich and audacious
exhibition, says
Rachel CampbellJohnston
I
n English we call it still life. In
French they say nature morte.
Translated literally that means
“dead nature”. And it is no
accident, it emerges, that the
curator Michael Petry chose to
use the French title for his new
Guildhall Art Gallery show.
Contemporary audiences, their
responses too often blunted by the
brash and the brazen, can easily
dismiss the still life as dull and
outmoded. The prospect of looking
at flower arrangements and defunct
fishes hardly sounds enticing. Yet,
although you will find both in this
Guildhall exhibition, you will also
discover plenty that’s rather less
predictable: a squirming confection
of pornographic cut-outs; a bullet
created from a ground-down finger
bone; a sickening close-up of freshly
butchered entrails; a stuffed rabbit
with hair rollers curling its ears.
This show translates a traditional
genre into contemporary language. It
sets out to reinvigorate a once-popular
tradition, to make it look not just
fresh again, but feel politically,
socially and, most saliently,
philosophically relevant.
The still life first came into its own
in the mid-17th century. It was then
that Netherlandish artists began to
paint their stilleven paintings of objects
that, instead of being treated as mere
props in some more salient drama,
were treated as main players.
You can see this in a number of
otherwise fairly unremarkable
paintings that, drawn from the
Guildhall’s collection of Dutch
golden age paintings, now go
on show. Floris van
Schooten focuses on
breakfast cheeses;
Pieter Claesz shows
us a dinner to be
swilled down with
a tankard of ale.
Whatever the
subject, the curators
of this show suggest,
the term “still
life” cannot do it
justice. These are,
quintessentially, allegorical
images. They are freighted with
messages about life, its meanings,
its morals and, most saliently, its
fundamental brevity. They are
basically, the curator argues, all about
death, but it was left to the French,
in the 18th century, to coin the name
that best conjures up this darkly
brooding symbolism.
A newly restored 18th-century
painting, on show for the first time,
makes the point clear. It is not
particularly riveting. There are books
in the foreground; at the back a
. . . and a Cello, 2002, painted by
Michael Craig-Martin
candlestick. And before
conservation a pot and
paintbrush, which had
been added two
centuries later.
Now, removed by
restorers, they
reveal a human
skull beneath. This
canvas, like so many
works of its genre, was
intended to function
as a “vanitas”. The
name, Latin for “emptiness”,
alludes to the transience of
human existence and warns of
the worthlessness of all our earthly
goods. It is this presence of death
These allegorical
images contain
messages about
life’s brevity
that gives this picture its gravitas.
Nature Morte is a touring exhibition,
designed to accompany the lavishly
illustrated book that Petry published
a few years ago. It has already been
in a number of international venues.
This is the only chance to see it in the
UK. Its fundamental argument is that
these images of frequently mundane
objects have been adapted over
centuries. A tradition that can be
traced back as far as ancient Egyptian
tomb paintings is reinvigorated by
contemporary artists for our modern
age. This show presents anything
from textiles to taxidermy, digital
projections to a skull made from
sloughed-off human skin. Yet,
however radical the style or the
medium, death and its metaphors
remain lurking.
Artists from two dozen countries
are chosen to illustrate the argument.
A few are quite famous — Gabriel
Orozco, for instance — but most
are little known. Those who bought
Petry’s book may well be disappointed.
You won’t find Gerhard Richter’s
Marcus Cope’s Various
Titles, 2009. Below:
Nancy Fouts’s Rabbit
with Curlers, 2010.
Left: Matt Smith’s
Looking for a
Chicken Hawk, 2015
painted candles or Damien Hirst’s
diamond skull. But don’t be dismayed.
This is an intellectually vivid (despite
the banal text panels) and visually
striking show. It intersperses its
handful of fairly uninspiring but
usefully illustrative period pictures
with a vibrant array of modern pieces
in a broad range of media.
Divided into sections, the hang
focuses on such subjects as the
depictions of food or domestic
accoutrements, the symbolism of
animals or the allegories of flowers.
Yet the range of approaches is
stimulatingly wide. Several artists
refer directly to their Dutch
predecessors. Maciej Urbanek
details each desiccated wrinkle on
the skins of citrus fruit as carefully
as Rembrandt painted the slack
furrows on an ageing sitter’s skin.
Alexander James photographs
underwater still lifes. But for John
Kaine it is enough just to spell out
“Dead Roses” in rusted steel capitals.
The flowers, he suggests, would decay
into a memory as stark as this.
Berthold Bell photographs a dead rat
as part of a series that documents
political crisis in contemporary
Greece. Bill Jacobson’s blurry pictures
are about the Aids pandemic. Images
in this show, it emerges, can allude to
pretty much anything from mental
illness through street death squads to
threats to our biosystem — although I
defy anyone to guess that James Hart
Dyke’s painting of a rubber duck is
about secret intelligence without
reading the label.
At times the show is rather too
all-encompassing. Does Guillaume
Paris’s digital animation starring
Pinocchio coughed up by a whale
really count as a still life?
Then again, one of the points of
this exhibition is to provoke us into
reconsidering the art-historical genre
it deals with. Contemporary artists
pick up the metaphors of the
traditional still life painting and carry
them into new territories. The result
is a richly varied and audaciously
imaginative range of work, but death,
it emerges, is the most treasured prize.
You can’t miss it. The grinning skulls
of the nature morte are everywhere.
Nature Morte: Contemporary Still
Life is at Guildhall Art Gallery,
London EC2 until April 2
the times | Friday September 8 2017
13
1GT
ANDREW BILLINGTON
arts
first night
Pop
Sinkane
Heaven, WC2
Prom 71
LPO/Jurowski
Royal Albert Hall
S
E
{{{{(
inkane, real name Ahmed
Gallab, was at the heart of one
of the most rapturous evenings
I’ve spent in a concert hall,
a show in 2015 by Atomic
Bomb, the supergroup who play the
music of the Nigerian synth star
William Onyeabor. Gallab was the
musical director of an ensemble
featuring David Byrne, the Malian duo
Amadou and Mariam, and Alexis
Taylor of Hot Chip, who all but melted
the roof off the Royal Festival Hall.
This show, the biggest that the
singer, songwriter and multiinstrumentalist had played as Sinkane,
wasn’t quite that good. Not many
could be. Yet his five-piece band were
still dangerously groovy, powering him
on a levitating display of expansive
funk and psychedelic rock. Gallab, the
child of Sudanese college professors
who grew up in Ohio, was a beaming
presence, his voice switching between
piercing falsetto and fluid tenor.
His music nods to Sly and the
Family Stone, Pink Floyd and Byrne’s
Talking Heads, who are all linked,
I suppose, by their fondness for
transcendent jams. There were plenty
of those here, from the cosmic
interludes, electronic tweaks and
squealing guitar of Telephone to the
animated Seventies swirl of Theme
from Life & Livin’ It, on which Gallab
swapped his guitar for the drums,
attacking them with vim.
Some of the wig-outs slightly
outstayed their welcome — The Way
and the cymbal-crashing Yacha, for
example, would have worked better
as three-minute pop songs. But when
Gallab and his colleagues got their
pacing right, they were glorious.
Favorite Song conjured an enveloping,
wistful glow with sing-song vocals
from Gallab, and on the short, sweet
Warm Spell he shared the spotlight
with his imperious backing vocalist
Amanda Khiri over a Tears For
Fears guitar riff.
They signed off with a heroic encore
in Jeeper Creeper, whose spiralling
outro took in Hammond organ
flourishes, a fierce guitar solo and
a final blow-out from the redoubtable
Khiri. Gallab seemed genuinely
moved by the reaction at the end.
“Thank you very much for your time,”
he said with endearing formality.
The pleasure was all ours, sir.
Ed Potton
Theatre
A Song for Ella Grey
Northern Stage, Newcastle
D
{{{((
avid Almond is one of the
most prolific and highly
acclaimed writers of novels
for children and young
adults to hail from the
northeast of England. Known for
his distinctive merging of realism
with the fantastic, he has adapted
several of his best-known works for
the stage, notably Heaven Eyes, which
follows a trio of runaways from an
orphanage, and The Savage, about
a young boy’s grief after the death of
his father.
{{{{{
Masasa Mbangeni and Siyabonga Thwala as the young couple in a tale of 1950s South African apartheid
Slow but sure-footed
Great music
and a fine cast
enhance this
spare South
African show,
says Dominic
Maxwell
Theatre
The Suitcase
Hull Truck
{{{((
Ann Treneman
sees Wait Until
Dark on tour
First Night, main paper
T
his memorable import from
the Market Theatre in
Johannesburg tells a story
that is familiar and surprising.
Familiar because James
Ngcobo’s play, adapted from a novel by
Es’kia Mphahlele, for a long while
follows just the trajectory we expect.
A young couple in apartheid-era
1950s South Africa leave their village
in search of better things in the city.
Yet the man, Timi, can’t find a job.
After months of searching he even
loses his temper at the tomorrow’sanother-day optimism of his wife,
Namhla, who is carrying their child.
He does something rash. On the bus
one day he takes a suitcase that
a woman leaves on the floor. He
hopes it might offer salvation. What
actually happens is . . .
Well, no, you should see Ngcobo’s
spare but handsome production if you
want to know the result of the suitcase
swipe. The Suitcase is beautifully
played by its cast of four, and blessed
with a terrific score by Hugh Masekela
that’s played by a lone guitarist and
three stupendously good female
singers who sing sometimes from the
stage, sometimes from the front row.
My only objection is this: it takes
so long to come to the boil. In a
At first glance, A Song for Ella Grey,
adapted by Almond from his
award-winning 2014 book, looks
a familiar enough chronicle of first
love in all its intensity and confusion.
Lorne Campbell’s production for
Northern Stage is deceptively simple
too. Amy Cameron, playing Claire,
the tale’s breathless narrator, delivers
the 75-minute monologue on a bare
stage crammed with cardboard boxes
that come to represent supporting
characters as well as the flora and
fauna of the Northumberland coast,
a key setting for the story.
The opening act takes place amid
the heady excitement of Claire, her
best friend for ever Ella and their
classmates planning a trip to
Bamburgh beach as a last hurrah
before leaving school. Ella’s strict
90-minute show, it takes more than
an hour to get to the suitcase itself.
By that point we have more than
got the idea about the harsh position
Timi and Namhla are in. We have
had more than enough time to get to
know and like the cast of supporting
characters played so nimbly by
Desmond Dube and Nhlanhla Lata:
a drunk bumming a cigarette, a
beret-wearing neighbour, street
hawkers and, best of all, Dube
as the tolerant landlord from the
same village as Timi and Namhla.
If the pace is too stately to start
with, the music lends it all character.
Nadya Cohen’s design is uncluttered
but distinctive. And in its final third,
as Siyabonga Thwala brings
desperation and frayed decency to
Timi, as he puts on a cassock to sing
with extraordinary intensity as Timi’s
son, it all finds its focus.
Masasa Mbangeni is his match as
Namhla, telling us the story of what
happened to her son’s father. The early
simplicity earns its dividend. Yet I can’t
help but think that The Suitcase could
get faster to a potent final half-hour
that finally exceeds expectations.
Box office: 01482 323638, to Sat,
then touring to Newcastle, Derby,
Lancaster and Liverpool
parents forbid her to go, but Claire
returns with a stranger in tow,
the beguiling, lyre-playing
Orpheus. One doesn’t need
an in-depth knowledge of
Greek mythology to guess
that when lovely, wistful Ella
falls for the ethereal boy,
trouble lies ahead.
This set-up is nicely
realised in the staging by the
unforced clarity of Cameron’s
performance and the inspired
touch of having 60 members
of the theatre’s young company
appear on video screen and in
voiceover as an inquisitive
chorus, endlessly nettling Claire
for information.
Less resonant is the show’s second
part, in which the audience are
Amy Cameron, as
Claire, delivers a
75-minute monologue
xperts will argue for ever
about the true meaning of
Shostakovich’s Symphony
No 11, The Year 1905. Is it what
it says on the label: highquality Communist propaganda using
proletarian tunes to commemorate the
heroes of the failed 1905 Russian
uprising? Or a coded condemnation
of the Soviet Union’s crushing of the
1956 Hungarian revolution, which
took place just before Shostakovich
wrote this turbulent 65-minute work?
Or was this most cryptic of composers
playing a double bluff, like some
master spook in a Le Carré thriller?
Well, none of that matters. What
counts is whether this cinematically
expansive symphony can be made
to work as pure music. In the hands
of Vladimir Jurowski and the on-fire
London Philharmonic it emphatically
did. Jurowski can seem cool in some
repertoire, but here his emphasis on
rapport and balance, and his refusal
to overplay the histrionics, produced
a stunning account that uncovered
the music’s slowly ignited emotions.
That was the climax of a Russian
Revolution-themed programme,
thought out with characteristic logic
by Jurowski. It also included rarities by
Stravinsky (the recently rediscovered
and untypically romantic Funeral Song
and a clodhopping version of the Song
of the Volga Boatmen) and Britten
(the baleful brass piece Russian
Funeral, using the same tune as
appears in Shostakovich’s symphony).
They framed a mesmerising account
of Prokofiev’s First Violin Concerto
in which Alina Ibragimova conjured
unearthly timbres to give this
seemingly sweet-natured work
a refreshingly raw, unnerving edge.
It was probably daft to rush from
that meaty event to the subterranean
concrete bunker of the Tanks at Tate
Modern for an avant-garde late-night
Prom by the London Contemporary
Orchestra. By comparison it seemed
full of pieces that managed to be piffle
and pretentious at the same time.
A “prepared” snare-drum
synchronised with bad disco lighting?
The “live sounds of London at night”
mixed with a guy playing half-filled
wine glasses? Eight singers riffing,
seemingly at random, on an old
American hymn tune? Those were the
better items. Great venue, though.
Richard Morrison
plunged into darkness as Claire
journeys through the underworld
in search of her friend.
The soundscape, created by
Mariam Rezaei, is suitably
uncanny, but Claire’s quest
seems a little rushed and
winds up being resolved
too abruptly.
Almond’s script, in
particular his beautiful
re-creation of the
Northumberland landscape,
is always compelling, but
Campbell’s production is at its
best in its depiction of young people
looking forward to an exciting,
unknowable future.
Allan Radcliffe
Box office: 0191 230 5151. The
production runs to Sept 16
14
1GT
Friday September 8 2017 | the times
arts
television
Dr Foster’s rival
will see you now
It’s GP wars as Sherlock actress Sian Brooke plays the
latest medic in the surgery. John Nathan meets her
T
he plot of Doctor
Foster is a secret. But
after this week’s series
two opener we know
that Simon (Bertie
Carvel) is poised to
wreck Gemma’s life for
a second time and that
Gemma (Suranne Jones) has a new
colleague at her GP’s surgery. She is
the instantly unlikeable Sian, played
by the immediately likeable Sian
Brooke. The names are not a
coincidence. It is a role that the
Doctor Foster creator and acclaimed
playwright Mike Bartlett (King Charles
III) wrote for Brooke without even
knowing if she wanted to do it.
In that first episode GP Sian was as
cold as a stethoscope. Real-life Sian is
warm and chatty. Although, as she
Benedict and I
became friends
when I played his
psychotic sister
picks over a pub salad in Brixton,
south London, the actor is saying
nothing about how her character
develops. The BBC’s spoiler police are
out in force for this one. The climax of
the award-winning first series was
watched by ten million and the show’s
publicist is sitting at the next table.
“I’m under orders,” says Brooke with
a deadpan certainty. But she is used to
keeping secrets. She was central to one
of the most fiendish plot twists seen on
British television when she played
Holmes’s unhinged sister, Eurus,
opposite Benedict Cumberbatch’s
Sherlock (she had already played
Ophelia to his Hamlet). It was a role
that meant playing four characters, all
of whom turned out be Eurus. She
couldn’t even tell close friends,
although some would ring up after an
episode to say: “It’s you, isn’t it?”
When the reveal came, it was so
startling that for many Sherlock fans
Brooke upstaged Cumberbatch.
Something similar happened with
her performance as Natalie in The
Moorside, the BBC drama based on the
real-life kidnapping of nine-year-old
Shannon Matthews, set in the West
Yorkshire town of Dewsbury. It starred
Sheridan Smith but, again, Brooke got
a big share of the acclaim.
She’s still on a high after playing
Eurus. “That sort of part just doesn’t
come along,” says Brooke. “When do
you get to play four different roles? It
was like being at drama school where
you have to play loads of characters,
including the grandmother.”
Brooke grew up in Lichfield,
Staffordshire; her father was a
policeman and her mother a teacher.
Her surname was Phillips, but she
changed it so not to be confused with
the well-known actress and took the
name of a Civil War general who, it is
said, was shot dead in Lichfield.
Bartlett says her work on Doctor
Foster shows she is a leading actress:
“Sian can and will be holding scenes
and shows in her own right as a lead.”
A graduate of Rada, Brooke began
on TV in shows such as Midsomer
Murders and A Touch of Frost, and
The Commander, in which she
played Detective Constable
Marion Randall. There were
times when it was useful to
have a policeman in the
family. “My dad was in the
CID in an era that was
quite exciting, when The
Sweeney was on TV. When
I’ve played detectives I can
ask Dad and get inside
knowledge. I do find that
world fascinating. I still talk
to my dad about his cases.”
The Sweeney may have
been exciting, but it was made
at a time when roles for women
Right: Sian Brooke as
Sian in Doctor Foster
and, below, with her
Hamlet and Sherlock
co-star Benedict
Cumberbatch
in drama were usually housebound.
Only now are there real signs that
actresses are getting parts as juicy as
those given to their male colleagues.
She agrees. “There is so much good
stuff around. Brave choices are being
made. People are trusting the writing,
so yeah, I do think it’s a good time.
There’s Suranne’s part [as Gemma
in Doctor Foster] and in Sherlock,
the fact that Eurus was Sherlock’s
sister and not her brother — and
unlikeable! — was fantastic. And Jodie
Whittaker! I’m not a huge Doctor Who
fan, but that’s a genius choice. It’s
going to be really interesting
to see what that does in terms
of young girls having that
character to look up to.”
Perhaps producers will make
other normally male roles
available to women?
“There are definitely some
male TV roles that I think,
‘Oh, I’d quite like to have a
go at that,’ ” says Brooke. I
suggest she could be Hamlet,
with Cumberbatch as her
Ophelia. Brooke’s head rocks
back in laughter. It’s a good
Saturday-night-out kind of laugh.
Sherlock helped a lot when it came
to sharing a stage with Cumberbatch,
she reckons. “We became good friends
when I was playing his evil, psychotic
sister. So there was a history there and
it couldn’t help but come across on
stage.” She took the role not long after
giving birth to her second son, now
two. Her elder child is four.
“Sian is one of the best actors I’ve
ever seen,” Bartlett says. “Surprising,
truthful, moving and funny — she can
do it all. I don’t normally think of
actors when I write, but I had Sian
Brooke in mind as Sian in Foster from
the moment I started writing her. I
was too embarrassed to tell her,
though I suppose the name was a
pretty big clue. As [Doctor Foster] Sian
she is a real match for Gemma,” he
adds, which gives us some clues as to
what is in store next week and beyond.
“She’s intellectually her equal and, we
suspect, may be just as ruthless.”
Brooke isn’t shying away from taking
the spotlight. “I am sure there are lots
of people who say there is stuff I can’t
do,” she says modestly. “But there is
nothing I won’t have a go at.”
Doctor Foster continues on Tuesday
at 9pm on BBC One
the times | Friday September 8 2017
15
1GT
television & radio
An equal opportunities killer? Well, it’s a start
JUSTIN SLEE/ITV
Carol
Midgley
TV review
Safe House
ITV
{{{((
Tin Star
Sky Atlantic
{{{{(
V
iolence against women
is, as we know, sexy, sexy,
sexy. It must be because
it has provided the juicy
filling in more TV crime
dramas than you can shake a
kidnapper’s stick at. Hear those
women scream in terror! See how
they beg for their lives!
Perhaps mindful that viewers are
becoming sickened by the “female fear
as entertainment” trope, the return
of Safe House seems to offer a twist.
This abductor, goes the theory of
Radio Choice
Catherine Nixey
The News Quiz
Radio 4, 6.30pm
Among the many
longstanding rituals that
signal the advent of autumn,
one of the happier ones is
the return of The News
Quiz. Host Miles Jupp
seems to be sticking to his
determination to do what
the quiz had for so many
years rather forgotten to
do — namely talk about
the news — and the show
is much more amusing as
a result. And considerably
lighter in tedious stories
about comedians’ cats.
Prom 74
Radio 3, 7.30pm
Symphony No 7 is one of
Beethoven’s toe-tappers.
It was, he said (with what
sounds like a touch of the
Uriah Heeps) “one of the
happiest products of my
poor talents”. Here, it is
performed alongside some
other popular hits including
Brahms’s Variations and
Mozart’s Piano Concerto
No 14. The Vienna
Philharmonic Orchestra are
conducted by Michael Tilson
Thomas with Emanuel Ax
on piano. The excellent
Martin Handley presents;
in the interval Clemency
Burton-Hill discusses
18th-century Vienna
with Gavin Plumley and
Professor David Wyn Jones.
ex-cop Tom Brook (Stephen Moyer),
who once worked on a similar case,
snatches women, but it’s not their
pain and misery that interests him.
He likes to see them watching their
husband or partner, bound, gagged
and powerless to act. “It’s all about the
men, watching them grieve and cry
and fall apart.” This makes a change,
though it’s equally wretched. And the
female, in this case a dental nurse
called Julie, is still left weeping, tied
to a chair in a camisole nightie, in
what looks like a cage. So there is that.
But we appreciate the gesture.
In fairness no one tunes into a crime
thriller for laughs and fairy dust so
let’s also say this: it is beautifully shot
and exudes a quality that suggests the
violence won’t be entirely gratuitous.
It is also very creepy. The weirdo has
a signature habit of fashioning tall
tents. Tom, an ex-cop, who runs a
police safe house on Anglesey with his
partner (Zoe Tapper), thinks he may
be an accomplice of the now jailed
“Crow” who abducted women
in similar circumstances, his fetish
also being their menfolk’s suffering.
One was the brilliant Jason Watkins,
who we last saw in Line of Duty about
to dismember Thandie Newton with
an electric saw. He declines the offer
of the safe house, though Julie’s
fretting partner, John, and her
daughter agree to go. John wants to
keep his mobile phone switched on.
Radio 1
FM: 96.7-99.8 MHz
6.33am The Radio 1 Breakfast Show with
Nick Grimshaw 10.00 Clara Amfo 12.45pm
Newsbeat 1.00 Scott Mills 4.00 The Official
Chart with Greg James 5.45 Newsbeat 6.00
Radio 1’s Dance Anthems with Greg James
7.00 Annie Mac 10.00 Pete Tong 1.00am
B.Traits 4.00 Radio 1’s Essential Mix
Radio 2
FM: 88-90.2 MHz
6.30am Chris Evans 9.30 Ken Bruce 12.00
Jeremy Vine 2.00pm Steve Wright 5.00
Simon Mayo 7.00 Tony Blackburn’s Golden
Hour. Popular music from the past 50 years
8.00 Friday Night Is Music Night. Clare Teal
presents Swing No End at the BBC Proms
10.00 Sounds of the 80s. Sara Cox plays a
selection of music from the decade 12.00
Anneka Rice: The Happening 2.00am
Radio 2’s Funky Soul Playlist 3.00 Radio 2
Playlist: New to 2 4.00 Radio 2 Playlist:
21st Century Songs 5.00 Huey on Saturday
Radio 3
FM: 90.2-92.4 MHz
6.30am Breakfast
Music, news and the occasional surprise,
presented by Petroc Trelawny. Including
the announcement of the Proms Poetry
winner and at 7.00, 8.00 News
9.00 Essential Classics
Rob Cowan is joined by the theatre and film
director Dominic Dromgoole, who chooses
more of his favourite classical works. The
Proms Artist of the Week is Alina Ibragimova
12.00 Composer of the Week:
Mozart (1756-1791)
Donald Macleod explores the miraculous
chamber music of Mozart’s Vienna years,
concluding by considering a late masterpiece
and music for an instrument said to drive its
performers insane. Mozart (Larghetto in B
flat for piano and wind quintet, K452a;
Adagio and Rondo in C for glass harmonica,
flute, oboe, viola and cello, K617; and
Clarinet Quintet in A, K 581)
1.00pm News
1.02 Radio 3 Lunchtime Concert
The final programme of this series from LSO
St Luke’s in London celebrating the beautiful
and little-heard chamber music of Edward
Elgar. The Elias Quartet complement Elgar’s
String Quartet with Fantasias by his great
English precursor Henry Purcell. Presented by
Fiona Talkington. Purcell (Three Fantasias);
and Elgar (String Quartet)
Stephen Moyer and Zoe Tapper in the creepy thriller Safe House
2.00 Afternoon Concert
Another chance to hear last Sunday’s
Prom in which Valery Gergiev conducted
the Mariinsky Orchestra. Presented from
London’s Royal Albert Hall, by Sara
Mohr-Pietsch. Prokofiev (Cantata for the
Twentieth Anniversary of the October
Revolution, Op 74); Tchaikovsky (Piano
Concerto No 3 in E flat); and Shostakovich
(Symphony No 5 in D minor) (r)
4.30 In Tune
Ian Skelly presents a selection of music, with
studio guests and a round-up of news from
the arts world. Including 5.00, 6.00 News
6.30 Composer of the Week:
Mozart (1756-1791) (r)
7.30 Live BBC Proms 2017
At London’s Royal Albert Hall, the Vienna
Philharmonic, under the conductor Michael
Tilson Thomas, performs works by Brahms,
Beethoven and Mozart, assisted by the
pianist Emanuel. Presented by Martin
Handley. Brahms (Variations on the St
Anthony Chorale); Mozart (Piano Concerto
No 14 in E flat, K449); and Beethoven
(Symphony No 7 in A). See Radio Choice
10.00 Free Thinking
Rana Mitter is joined by Sarah Peverley,
Charles Forsdick, Alasdair Cochraine, Eveline
de Wolf and Michael Szollosy to debate
mermaids, robots, humans and animals at
FACT in Liverpool. The broadcast was
originally part of the University of Liverpool’s
Being Human festival programme and was
first aired in November 2016 (r)
10.45 The Essay: WB Yeats
Originally broadcast to mark the 150th
anniversary of his birth in 1865, five of
Ireland’s leading cultural figures reflect on
their relationship with the poet, dramatist
and prose writer William Butler Yeats.
Winner of the Nobel Prize in 1923, Yeats is
a commanding presence in 20th-century
literature and has inspired, and occasionally
infuriated, successive generations of readers,
writers, and performers ever since. In this
edition, the writer and cultural commentator
Fintan O’Toole explains that it is not
necessary to like everything about
Yeats, to appreciate his poetry (r)
11.30 World on 3
Kathryn Tickell presents a live studio session
by the renowned folk guitarist and singer
Martin Simpson, the Scunthorpe-born
performer who has just released his 20th
solo album, Trials & Tribulations. Simpson
lived in New Orleans in the 1980s and shares
some of his favourite archive recordings from
The Crescent City inbetween songs
1.00am Through the Night
Radio 4
FM: 92.4-94.6 MHz LW: 198kHz MW: 720 kHz
5.30am News Briefing
5.43 Prayer for the Day
5.45 Farming Today
5.58 Tweet of the Day
6.00 Today
With Sarah Montague and Justin Webb
8.31 (LW) Yesterday in Parliament
9.00 The Reunion
Former leaders of Solidarity recall the bitter
struggle for democracy in Poland (4/5) (r)
9.45 (LW) Daily Service
9.45 Book of the Week:
Every Third Thought
By Robert McCrum (5/5)
10.00 Woman’s Hour
With Andrea Catherwood. Including at 10.45
the 15 Minute Drama: Claudine Toutoungi’s
comedy drama The Inheritors (5/5)
10.30-6.45 (LW) Test Match Special:
England v West Indies
Day two of the third Test at Lord’s
11.00 PowerPointless
The impact of PowerPoint presentations
11.30 The Cold Swedish Winter
Sitcom, by Danny Robins. The comedian
Geoff and his wife Linda acclimatise to life in
a tiny, cold village in northern Sweden (3/4)
12.01pm (LW) Shipping Forecast
12.04 Home Front
By Sarah Daniels
12.15 You and Yours
1.00 The World at One
1.45 Streets Apart:
A History of Social Housing
A look at the future of social housing after
the fire at Grenfell Tower (10/10)
2.00 The Archers (r)
2.15 Drama: The Lesson
By Virginia Gilbert. Former teacher James is
publicising his latest novel, but an ex-pupil
has issues with his version of the story.
With Harry Lloyd and Fiona O’Shaughnessy
3.00 Gardeners’ Question Time
Experts answer listeners’ queries
3.45 Short Works
Swim, by Emma Flint
4.00 Last Word
Obituaries, presented by Matthew Bannister
4.30 More or Less
Tim Harford investigates the numbers that
are prevalent everywhere (3/6)
4.55 The Listening Project
A mother and daughter anticipate their lives
apart now the latter is off to Cambridge (r)
5.00 PM
With Eddie Mair
5.54 (LW) Shipping Forecast
Oh dear. Are you sensing this house
won’t be very safe at all?
Maybe you’ve already watched all
ten episodes of Tin Star, available
as a box set on Sky. If I didn’t have
work, school runs and a dog to walk,
I’d join you. This has all the weird,
sinister qualities of Fargo but with a
vital extra ingredient: Tim Roth.
Roth is Jim, a recovering alcoholic,
ex-London police officer and general
good guy who has moved his family to
a Canadian Rockies town where he’s
sheriff, to his bored teenage daughter’s
frustration. “London’s shit,” he says.
You end up in some suburb like
“Rayners f***ing Lane”. Fair point.
Christina Hendricks is deftly cast as a
ball-busting, oil-refinery big cheese.
But it is the glimpses of Jim’s
apparent dark alter ego that make
this so thrillingly promising (warning:
spoilers ahead). Is this the second
self he alludes to at his AA meeting
who would kill anyone who crossed
him? Well, now they have. After a
horrifying scene at a desolate gas
station in which Jim’s young son is
murdered and his wife severely
injured, Jim stands in a hospital
bathroom soaked in their blood and
looks in the mirror. Staring back is a
slightly different, Mr Hyde-like face:
bleak, psychotic and evoking chilling
memories of Twin Peaks’ Killer Bob.
I’ll watch the lot tomorrow.
carol.midgley@thetimes.co.uk
6.00 Six O’Clock News
6.30 The News Quiz
Miles Jupp returns with the topical comedy
panel game. See Radio Choice (1/8)
6.45 (LW) The News Quiz
Miles Jupp returns with the topical comedy
panel game. See Radio Choice (1/8)
7.00 The Archers
Ian cannot hold in his excitement
7.15 Front Row
Arts programme
7.45 The Inheritors
Comedy drama (5/5) (r)
8.00 Any Questions?
From Aylesbury High School in
Buckinghamshire
8.50 A Point of View
Reflections on a topical issue
9.00 Home Front Omnibus
Parts 26-30. By Sarah Daniels
10.00 The World Tonight
10.45 Book at Bedtime:
Crime Down Under — The Dry
By Jane Harper (5/10)
11.00 Great Lives
Helen Sharman champions the cause of food
scientist Elsie Widdowson (6/9) (r)
11.30 Today in Parliament
Mark D’Arcy reports from Westminster
11.55 The Listening Project (r)
12.00 News and Weather
12.30am Book of the Week:
Every Third Thought (r)
12.48 Shipping Forecast
1.00 As BBC World Service
Radio 4 Extra
Digital only
8.00am I’m Sorry I’ll Read That Again 8.30
Brothers in Law 9.00 Who Goes There? 9.30
After Henry 10.00 The Pallisers 11.00 Short
Works: The World of Somerset Maugham
11.15 Angel Story 12.00 I’m Sorry I’ll Read
That Again 12.30pm Brothers in Law 1.00
Sidney Chambers and the Shadow of Death
1.30 The Best of Everything 2.00 The Siege
2.15 Charisma: Pinning Down the Butterfly
2.30 South Riding 2.45 Country Girl 3.00
The Pallisers 4.00 Who Goes There? 4.30
After Henry 5.00 Tomorrow, Today! 5.30
Dave Podmore’s Big Bake Off Bash 6.00 The
Heart of Hark’un 6.30 Soul Music 7.00 I’m
Sorry I’ll Read That Again. Comedy with John
Cleese and Bill Oddie 7.30 Brothers in Law.
Roger Thursby tries to stop a leak of
confidential information 8.00 Sidney
Chambers and the Shadow of Death. By
James Runcie 8.30 The Best of Everything.
The influence of Rona Jaffe’s 1958 novel
9.00 Short Works: The World of Somerset
Maugham. Rain, part two 9.15 Angel Story.
By Hattie Naylor 10.00 Comedy Club: Dave
Podmore’s Big Bake Off Bash. The cricketer
prepares to enter The Great British Bake Off
10.30 Mitch Benn’s Crimes Against Music.
The comedian considers the glitzy of world of
pop 11.00 Life: An Idiot’s Guide. Stephen K
Amos provides an idiot-proof guide to life
11.30 Revolting People. Comedy
Radio 5 Live
MW: 693, 909
6.00am 5 Live Breakfast 10.00 5 Live Daily
with Chris Warburton 1.00pm The Friday
Sports Panel 2.00 Kermode and Mayo’s
Film Review 4.00 5 Live Drive 7.00 5 Live
Sport: The Friday Football Social 10.00
Stephen Nolan. Topical debate 1.00am
Up All Night 5.00 5 Live Boxing with
Costello & Bunce 5.30 5 Live Sport (r)
talkSPORT
MW: 1053, 1089 kHz
6.00am The Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast
10.00 The Two Mikes 1.00pm Goldstein and
Jacobs 4.00 Adrian Durham and Darren
Gough 7.00 Kick-off 10.00 James Brown and
David Preece 1.00am Extra Time
6 Music
Digital only
7.00am Shaun Keaveny 10.00 Lauren
Laverne 1.00pm Stuart Maconie 4.00 Steve
Lamacq. The Disco World Cup winner 7.00
Henry Rollins 9.00 Tom Ravenscroft. With
a guest mix by Sampha 12.00 Nemone’s
Electric Ladyland 2.00am 6 Music Classic
Concert 3.00 6 Music Live Hour 4.00 The
Record Producers 5.00 Chris Hawkins
Classic FM
FM: 100-102 MHz
6.00am More Music Breakfast 9.00 John
Suchet 1.00pm Anne-Marie Minhall 5.00
Classic FM Drive 7.00 Smooth Classics 8.00
The Luciano Pavarotti 10th Anniversary
Concert, Live from Verona. Catherine Bott
presents a concert marking the tenth
anniversary of Luciano Pavarotti’s passing.
Roberto Casalino/Tiziano Ferro (Non ti
scordar mai di me); Ernesto Tagliaferri/
Nicola Valente (Passione); Gaetano Donizetti
(Ah mes amis); Giacomo Puccini (Vissi
d’arte); Giacomo Puccini (Che gelida manina);
and Giuseppe Verdi (La donna e’ mobile)
10.00 Smooth Classics 1.00am Katie
Breathwick 4.00 Emma Nelson
16
1GT
Friday September 8 2017 | the times
television & radio
Viewing Guide
James Jackson
Cold Feet
ITV, 9pm
What was
once a
Sunday-night
staple made
its comeback last year
as a Monday-night
mainstay. Now the gang
is back and moving slot
again — to a frisky
7PM
Early
Top
pick
Friday-night home.
As end-of-week
comfort food for the
middle-aged, Mike
Bullen’s comedy drama
could be just right. The
travails and pratfalls,
divorces and dilemmas
of the knocking-on-50
Manchester friends
always have that
peculiarly watchable
mix of heart and
humour. We catch up
on them with cock-of-
8PM
9PM
And so on. As ever, the
chaps mull over their
problems over pints in
the pub, the women
over chardonnay in an
All Bar One. Bullen’s
characters have the
same charm as they did
when we met them in
their thirties in 1997;
now they just have more
debts, responsibilities
and all-round baggage.
“When you’re younger,
courting is a voyage of
discovery; when you’re
older, it’s like a ride on
the Belfast-Liverpool
ferry,” says Adam.
Expect, too, those
sudden hyper-real
dream sequences that
lurch just as quickly
back into cold reality.
Tonight these include
a song-and-dance
number; I’m not sure
that Nesbitt’s singing
isn’t better when he’s
playing a Hobbit.
BBC Proms 2017
BBC Four, 7.30pm/9.30pm
If tonight’s double bill
begins with something
a touch too cosmic for
your taste — Sinfonia
(for Orbiting Spheres),
by the young American
composer Missy
Mazzoli, is music “in
the shape of the solar
system” apparently —
stick around for the
more traditional
appeal of Bartók’s
sparkling Second Piano
Concerto and Dvorák’s
Eighth Symphony.
Then, at 9.30pm,
it’s the Proms debut
of the Chineke!
ensemble, Europe’s first
professional orchestra
of black and minority
ethnic players, whose
programme will feature
works by George
Walker, Handel and
Rimsky-Korsakov.
BBC One
BBC Two
ITV
Channel 4
Channel 5
6.00am Breakfast 9.15 Council House Crackdown. A law
student caught unlawfully subletting her council flat
10.00 Homes Under the Hammer. Properties about to be
auctioned in Telford and Carlisle (r) 11.00 Dom on the
Spot. Dominic Littlewood monitors events within West
Mercia Police after a call comes in concerning a potential
firearms incident 11.45 Thief Trackers. The building site
burglars whose every move was monitored 12.15pm
Bargain Hunt. From Newark, Nottinghamshire (r) (AD)
1.00 BBC News at One; Weather 1.30 BBC Regional
News; Weather 1.45 Doctors. Zara is stunned by an
elderly woman’s reaction to bad news, while and Valerie
supports Ayesha at the funeral parlour (AD) 2.15 Red
Rock. Sparks fly as Michael’s situation worsens. Last in
the series (AD) 3.00 Escape to the Country. A couple who
wish to relocate from Hertfordshire to Northamptonshire
(AD) 3.45 Garden Rescue. The team transforms a sea of
dingy gravel and paving (AD) 4.30 Celebrity Money for
Nothing. Upcycling items found in the homes of Louie
Spence and Cassidy Little 5.15 Pointless. Quiz show
hosted by Alexander Armstrong 6.00 BBC News at Six;
Weather 6.30 BBC Regional News; Weather
6.00am Flog It! Trade Secrets (r) 6.30 Council House
Crackdown (r) 7.15 Garden Rescue (r) (AD) 8.00 Sign
Zone: Gardeners’ World (r) (SL) 9.00 Victoria Derbyshire
11.00 BBC Newsroom Live 12.00 Daily Politics 1.00pm
For What It’s Worth (r) 1.45 Countryfile (r) 2.10 Glorious
Gardens from Above. Christine Walkden takes to the skies
above Gloucestershire (r) 2.55 Coast Australia. The team
explores the former penal colony of Norfolk Island, where
Alice Garner meets descendants of mutineers from HMS
Bounty at their annual festival (r) (AD) 3.45 Great
British Railway Journeys. Michael Portillo journeys from
Cheshire to Staffordshire (r) (AD) 4.15 Planet Earth II.
Animals that live in deserts, including swarms of locusts,
desert lions hunting giraffes, sand grouse flying to gather
water, and a tiny bat defending itself against a scorpion
(r) (AD) 5.15 Flog It! The antiques experts Charlie Ross
and Thomas Plant view the public’s potentially valuable
items on a visit to the Fleet Air Arm Museum at HMS
Heron in Yeovilton, Somerset (r) 6.00 Richard Osman’s
House of Games. Nish Kumar, Clara Amfo, Anneka
Rice and Al Murray compete in Double Points Friday
6.30 Eggheads. Quiz show hosted by Jeremy Vine
6.00am Good Morning Britain. The singer Neil Sedaka
chats about his long career in the music industry and his
latest tour. Presented by Ben Shephard, Kate Garraway
and Charlotte Hawkins 8.30 Lorraine. Entertainment and
fashion news, as well as showbiz stories, cooking and
gossip. Presented by Lorraine Kelly 9.25 The Jeremy Kyle
Show. Studio chat show 10.30 This Morning. Chat with
famous faces and lifestyle features, including a look at
the stories making the newspaper headlines and a recipe
in the kitchen. Presented by Eamonn Holmes and Ruth
Langsford 12.30pm Loose Women. Guest panellists
engage in topical debate and interviews with famous
faces from a female perspective 1.30 ITV News; Weather
2.00 Judge Rinder. Cameras follow criminal barrister
Robert Rinder as he takes on real-life cases in a studio
courtroom 3.00 Dickinson’s Real Deal. David Dickinson
and the dealers are in Penygroes, north Wales, where
David Hakeney tries to buy some boys’ toys and Fay
Rutter’s interest is sparked by a collection of matchboxes
(r) 4.00 Tipping Point. Ben Shephard hosts the quiz show
5.00 The Chase. Quiz show hosted by Bradley Walsh
6.00 Regional News; Weather 6.30 ITV News; Weather
6.00am Countdown (r) 6.45 The King of Queens (r)
8.00 Everybody Loves Raymond (r) 9.00 Frasier (r)
10.05 Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares USA. Gordon
Ramsay travels to Queens in New York to help the owners
of a steakhouse (r) 11.00 Coast vs Country. A couple with
six children who want to move to Northumberland (r)
12.00 Channel 4 News Summary 12.05pm Couples Come
Dine with Me. Three couples from Guernsey and Alderney
compete (r) 1.05 French Collection. Three Brits scour a
market in Leyment near Lyon for treasures to upcycle and
sell in Oxford 2.10 Countdown. With Gloria Hunniford in
Dictionary Corner 3.00 Cheap Cheap Cheap. Noel Edmonds
welcomes more contestants who hope to win a £25,000
jackpot 4.00 A Place in the Sun: Winter Sun. A Hampshire
couple hoping to buy a holiday home in Cape Verde (r)
5.00 Come Dine with Me. On the last night in
Middlesbrough, Julie’s Indian menu gets mixed reviews
5.30 Streetmate. Scarlett Moffatt helps Lucy and Zantha
find love. Last in the series 6.00 The Simpsons. Bart and
Lisa look into the future (r) (AD) 6.30 Hollyoaks. Zack
encourages Lisa to go for it with Brody, while Lily
continues to struggle with her urges to self-harm (AD)
6.00am Milkshake! 9.15 The Wright Stuff 11.15 Can’t
Pay? We’ll Take It Away. Two enforcement agents make a
shocking discovery in a child’s bedroom during an eviction,
and a debtor gets physical when he is visited over wages
owed to a freelancer (r) 12.10pm 5 News Lunchtime
12.15 The Hotel Inspector. Alex Polizzi visits The Hotel
Continental in Harwich, Essex, where a downturn in
business in the area has left owners Gordon and Blossom
Hoyles in dire financial straits (r) 1.15 Home and Away
(AD) 1.45 Neighbours (AD) 2.20 NCIS. The team works
alongside the FBI to catch the killer of an Immigration and
Customs Enforcement agent who was murdered during a
poker game at the Secretary of the Navy’s house (r) (AD)
3.15 FILM: Jesse Stone: Death in Paradise (15,
TVM, 2006) A detective investigates the suspicious
death of a teenager, only to come into conflict with
mobsters. Third in the crime drama series with Tom
Selleck and Edward Edwards 5.00 5 News at 5 5.30
Neighbours. Nick is suspected of stealing cancer drugs
from the hospital and his parole is revoked (r) (AD)
6.00 Home and Away. Raffy stands up to the girl who
is bullying Coco (r) (AD) 6.30 5 News Tonight
7.00 This Farming Life David gathers his
sheep as early snow falls on the
Western Highlands, while Martin, Mel,
and Erin hope for a windfall at the
Carlisle bull sales. On Mull, Janet and
Alastair put Owen to the test as Stevie
risks the wrath of the buffalo mothers
when he ear tags four calves (3/12)
7.00 Emmerdale Tracy gets her hopes up
about going on an exotic holiday and
Nell seeks comfort over her
relationship with Jai (AD)
7.30 Coronation Street Will masterminds
a drugs raid, Faye suspects Seb of
hiding something, and Rita confides in
Norris about her memory lapses (AD)
7.00 Channel 4 News
7.00 Cricket on 5 England v West Indies.
Mark Nicholas presents highlights of
the second day of the third Test, which
took place at Lord’s. With commentary
provided by Michael Vaughan,
Geoffrey Boycott and Simon Hughes
8.00 Mastermind The specialist subjects
are Australian Test Cricket, James
Ellroy’s LA Quartet, the singer
Kirsty MacColl and King Henry VI
8.30 Only Connect Victoria Coren Mitchell
presents the quiz show as three
cricket fans take on a team of
professional question setters
8.00 Teach My Pet to Do That A horse
and a dog learn to shut multiple
kitchen cupboard doors (4/8)
8.00 The Crystal Maze Richard Ayoade
guides a group of high-kicking
martial arts enthusiasts through
the Aztec, Medieval, Industrial and
Future zones of the Maze, tackling a
range of skill, mystery, physical
and mental challenges (AD)
8.00 Celebrity 5 Go Motorhoming
Don Warrington, Lesley Joseph, Nick
Heyward, Cleo Rocos and Melvyn Hayes
forego their usual creature comforts to
travel through Wales in motorhomes.
Heading towards Snowdonia, the gang
enjoy the freedom to take in detours
and unscheduled stops (2/4)
9.00 Gardeners’ World At Longmeadow,
Monty Don demonstrates how to
harvest and store potatoes, and also
adds late summer colour to the cottage
garden and prunes shrub roses.
Adam Frost takes a close look at the
design of an outstanding small garden
in Oxford. Including Weather
9.00 Cold Feet New series. The strength
and longevity of landlady Tina’s
affection for Adam is tested, while
Karen’s launch of her fledgling
publishing house serves to remind
Jenny that life is no rehearsal. Comedy
drama starring James Nesbitt.
See Viewing Guide (1/8) (AD)
9.00 Gogglebox New series. The
fly-on-the-wall series capturing
households’ instant reactions to this
week’s television returns, as the
armchair critics pass judgment from
the comfort of their own sofas
9.00 Cruising with Jane McDonald
The presenter returns to Naples, from
where takes a ferry to Capri hoping to
fulfil an ambition she has had all her
life — to follow in the footsteps of the
entertainer Gracie Fields (2/4)
7.00 The One Show Alex Jones hosts
the final edition of the week
7.30 A Question of Sport Sue Barker
hosts the light-hearted sports quiz,
with Jazz Carlin, Liam Phillips, Martyn
Williams and Kevin Campbell (r)
8.00 EastEnders The Taylors are
distraught over their loss, leaving
Karen barely holding it together
for the sake of her children (AD)
8.30 Celebrity MasterChef The last of
the heats sees the battle for the
remaining semi-final places reach its
climax. The contenders are tasked to
make tempura prawns, vegetables and
a dipping sauce in just 15 minutes.
They then have to prepare lunch at
King’s College Dental Institute for 120
staff and students. Back at HQ, the
famous faces must then cook a twocourse meal, judged by John Torode,
Gregg Wallace, Sophie Thompson, Lisa
Faulkner and Andi Peters (8/12) (AD)
10.00 BBC News at Ten
11PM
10.25 BBC Regional News and Weather;
followed by National Lottery Update
10.35 Comedy Playhouse: Mister Winner
One-off sitcom about a hapless man,
with Spencer Jones. See Viewing Guide
11.05 Room 101 Frank Skinner hosts
with Bridget Christie, Robert Peston
and Greg James (7/9) (r)
Late
10PM
the-walk Adam
(James Nesbitt) lost in
romantic rumination
as he considers
whether to ask his
landlady, Tina (Leanne
Best), to move in with
him. Karen (Hermione
Norris) is burning
herself out launching
her publishing
house; David (Robert
Bathurst) is reduced
to going door to door
selling life insurance.
11.35 Little Voice (15, 1998) A shy woman
with a talent for impersonating famous
performers is spotted by a greedy
promoter who realises her considerable
money-sspinning potential, but the
shrinking violet proves reluctant to
step into the limelight. Comedy drama
starring Jane Horrocks (AD)
1.10am-6.00 BBC News
10.00 Mock the Week Topical comedy show
hosted by Dara O Briain, with Angela
Barnes, Ed Byrne, Ed Gamble, Milton
Jones and Nish Kumar (7/12)
10.30 Newsnight Analysis of the day’s
events presented by Emily Maitlis
8.30 Coronation Street Michelle vows to
put a stop to Rich’s reign of terror, Faye
plans a secret trip for Seb, and Rita
dismisses Gemma’s concerns (AD)
10.00 ITV News at Ten
10.30 Regional News
10.45 Tonight at the London Palladium
Variety entertainment from the stage
of the famous West End theatre,
featuring the singer-songwriter Emeli
Sandé, a performance from Phantom of
the Opera, the magician Peter Firman,
and the pop band Steps. Hosted
by Bradley Walsh (1/8) (r)
10.00 Naked Attraction Anna Richardson
invites a psychology student and a
woman from London to each select
their dates from a line-up of potential
partners revealing themselves
one body part at a time (AD)
10.00 Liberace: In Life and Death
The final hours of Liberace’s life in
February 1987 and the subsequent
controversy regarding the cause
of his death at his home in Palm
Springs, which are shrouded in
mystery. See Viewing Guide
11.00 Inside Balmoral Cameras reveal how
as a young Queen, one of Elizabeth’s
biggest challenges was combining
monarchy and motherhood. It also
covers the period up to 1992, when she
sought refuge at Balmoral during one
of her lowest points, which she dubbed
her “annus horribilis” (2/3) (r)
12.00 SuperCasino 3.10am Exploding Sun. Part one
of two. Sci-fi drama starring David James Elliott 4.40
Access. Showbiz news and gossip 4.45 House Doctor.
A cluttered home in Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire (r)
(SL) 5.10 House Busters. Life-enhancing changes
to a home (r) (SL) 5.35-6.00 Nick’s Quest (r) (SL)
11.05 Dragons’ Den Deborah Meaden,
Peter Jones, Touker Suleyman, Tej
Lalvani and Jenny Campbell consider
the profit-making potential of a
crowdfunded range of personalised
luxury bags, a range of free-from,
allergy-friendly frozen curry sauces and
a thick-yarn crafting business (r) (AD)
11.45 Tipping Point Ben Shephard hosts
the arcade-themed quiz show (r)
11.05 Married to a Celebrity: The
Survival Guide Wayne and Frankie
Bridge, Michael and Hilary Whitehall,
and Martina Navratilova and partner
Julia Lemigova write a list of ways
their partners drive them crazy,
before airing their grievances
face-to-face (2/3) (r)
12.05am Sign Zone: Undercover: Britain’s
Immigration Secrets — Panorama A report from an
immigration removal centre (r) (SL) 1.05 Dangerous
Borders: A Journey Across India & Pakistan. Adnan Sarwar
and Babita Sharma explore the Punjab provinces (r) (SL)
2.05-2.35 Normal for Norfolk (r) (AD, SL)
12.40am Jackpot247 Viewers get the chance to
participate in live interactive gaming 3.00 Storage
Hoarders. Aggie MacKenzie tries to help two women to
stop hoarding their possessions, but finds it a struggle
to take souvenirs from four continents out of Irene’s
storage unit (r) (SL) 3.50-6.00 ITV Nightscreen
12.05am Back Comedy series (r) 12.40 The Great
British Bake Off: An Extra Slice (r) (AD) 1.30 FILM: Get
On Up (12, 2014) Biopic of James Brown starring
Chadwick Boseman (SL) 3.45 Selling Houses with
Amanda Lamb (AD) 4.45 Location, Location, Location (r)
(SL) 5.40-6.10 Trail Running: Yuzhu Peak Challenge
the times | Friday September 8 2017
17
1GT
television & radio
Rock and Roll
Sky Arts, 9pm
This thoughtful new
rock series — ordered
around a theme each
week — turns to the
idea of pain in music.
Why are so many songs
about heartache and
feeling blue? As the
Eurythmics maestro
Dave Stewart says:
“Annie [Lennox] and
I lived for five years
together as a couple
and didn’t write one
song together; then
broke up and wrote 120
songs about breaking
up.” Meanwhile, John
Legend recalls the
tragic soul music of
Donny Hathaway,
who succumbed to
schizophrenia, and
Richard Hawley talks
about Hank Williams’s
achingly lonesome
country songs.
Liberace: In Life
and Death
Channel 5, 10pm
Was there ever a public
figure who hid his
sexuality in plain sight
with such flamboyance
as Liberace? To go with
the ivory-tinkling were
the rhinestones, the
diamond rings, the
candelabras and the
young, airbrushed
chauffeur who sued
the performer for
palimony. Liberace
still maintained that
he wasn’t homosexual.
This made his
death-certificate claim
of a fatal cardiac arrest
the subject of dispute,
as this documentary
raking over old coals —
or rather the autopsy
report — examines.
It was, of course,
Aids that did for
Mr Showmanship.
Comedy
Playhouse:
Mister Winner
BBC One, 10.35pm
You may recall the
comedian Spencer
Jones from the
Shakespeare sitcom
Upstart Crow, playing
the actor William
Kempe in the style
of David Brent. Here he
has his own series pilot,
playing Leslie Winner,
a well-meaning but
hapless chap who
is prone to accidents
and generally landing
himself in unusual
situations. Mostly these
involve his girlfriend, to
whom he is planning
to propose, oblivious
that she is on the verge
of leaving him. No
preview was available,
but Jones has a winning
habit of creating
amusing nonsense.
Sport Choice
Sky Sports Main Event, 7pm
Derby County welcome
Hull City to Pride Park
as domestic football
returns after the
international break
(kick-off 7.45pm). Both
sides have seven points
after five matches. And
the US Open tennis
continues — tonight is
the men’s semi-finals
(Eurosport 1, from 5pm).
Sky1
Sky Atlantic
Sky Living
Sky Arts
Sky Main Event
Variations
6.00am Hawaii Five-0 (r) 8.00 Monkey Life (r)
(AD) 9.00 The Dog Whisperer (r) (AD) 10.00
Modern Family (r) 11.00 NCIS: Los Angeles (r)
12.00 Hawaii Five-0 (r) 2.00pm NCIS: Los
Angeles (r) 3.00 Supergirl (r) 4.00 The Flash
(r) 5.00 Modern Family. Double bill (r)
6.00 Modern Family. Phil and Claire help out
with their children’s school projects (r)
6.30 The Simpsons. Triple bill (r)
8.00 Modern Family. Each of the clans run late
for a dinner reservation at a plush restaurant (r)
8.30 Modern Family. Gloria hires a male nanny.
Nathan Lane guest stars (r)
9.00 Zoo. Logan tries to destroy the hybrid
nests before they activate
10.00 The Greatest Sci-fi Movies in the
Universe. Last in the series
12.00 A League of Their Own. Sports quiz (r)
(AD) 1.00am The Force: Manchester (r) (AD)
2.00 Ross Kemp: Battle for the Amazon (r) (AD)
3.00 Motorway Patrol (r) (AD) 4.00 Animal 999
(r) (AD) 5.00 The Dog Whisperer (r) (AD)
6.00am Fish Town (r) 8.00 Storm City (r) (AD)
10.00 The West Wing (r) 12.00 Without a Trace
(r) 1.00pm CSI: Crime Scene Investigation (r)
2.00 Blue Bloods (r) (AD) 3.00 The British (r)
(AD) 4.00 The West Wing (r)
6.00 Without a Trace. The team searches
for a missing 20-year-old prostitute (r)
7.00 CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. Grissom
tracks a serial killer (r)
8.00 Blue Bloods. A detective from
Danny’s precinct is killed (r) (AD)
9.00 Game of Thrones. First episode of the
fantasy drama starring Sean Bean (r) (AD)
10.20 Game of Thrones. Bran suffers another
attempt on his life (r) (AD)
11.35 Dexter. The forensic guru goes in search
of a serial killer from Dr Vogel’s list (4/12)
12.40am FILM: The Wolfpack (15, 2015)
Documentary about six film-obsessed brothers
who were banned from leaving their New York
flat by their father (r) 2.20 The Wire (r)
3.35 Looking (r) 4.10 The West Wing (r)
6.00am Cooks to Market (r) 6.15 60 Minute
Makeover (r) 7.15 Border Security: Canada’s
Front Line (r) (AD) 8.15 Road Wars (r) 9.15 My
Kitchen Rules: Australia (r) 10.30 Nothing to
Declare (r) (AD) 12.00 Criminal Minds (r)
1.00pm Bones (r) (AD) 2.00 Cold Case (r) 3.00
Cooks to Market (r) 3.15 Stop, Search, Seize (r)
(AD) 4.15 UK Border Force (r) (AD) 5.15
Nothing to Declare (r)
6.15 Nothing to Declare (r)
6.45 My Kitchen Rules: Australia
8.00 Sun, Sea and A&E. A DJ fights for his life
after putting his arm through a window (r)
9.00 Nashville. Gunnar joins Avery on his tour
10.00 Bones. The team investigates why a
diamond was found in a corpse’s mouth (r) (AD)
11.00 Bones. A serial killer from the past
resurfaces. Emily Deschanel stars (r) (AD)
12.00 Bones. The team races to locate Brennan
(r) (AD) 1.00am Cold Case (r) 2.00 Bones (r)
(AD) 3.00 Stop, Search, Seize (r) 4.00
Elementary (r) (AD) 5.00 Nothing to Declare (r)
6.00am Saint-Saëns & Schubert: Bertrand 7.30
Roland Petit’s Le Rendez-Vous 8.00 Auction
8.30 Watercolour Challenge 9.00 Tales of the
Unexpected 10.00 Tina Turner: Live in
Amsterdam 12.00 Discovering: Charlton Heston
(AD) 1.00pm Tales of the Unexpected 2.00
Auction 2.30 Watercolour Challenge 3.00
Soundstage Presents Stevie Nicks 4.00
The Lot of Fun: Where the Movies Learned
to Laugh 5.00 Discovering: David Bowie
6.00 Discovering: Judy Garland (AD)
7.00 Trailblazers: Punk. The origins of punk
8.00 The Sixties. The Vietnam War
9.00 Rock and Roll. Heartache’s pervasive
presence in the genre. See Viewing Guide
10.30 Tony Visconti’s Unsigned Heroes
11.30 The Big Beat: Fats Domino and the
Birth of Rock ‘n’ Roll. The influence of the
American pianist and singer-songwriter
1.30am Tales of the Unexpected 2.30 Auction
3.00 Watercolour Challenge 3.30 Rock and Roll
5.00 The South Bank Show Originals
6.00am Good Morning Sports Fans 8.30 Rugby
Greatest Games 8.40 Live New Zealand NPC
Rugby: Manawatu v Bay of Plenty (Kick-off
8.45). Coverage of the match from the fourth
round of fixtures, which takes place at Forsyth
Barr Stadium in Dunedin 10.40 Live Test
Cricket: England v West Indies. Coverage of day
two of the series-concluding third Test at Lord’s
6.30pm Test Cricket: The Verdict.
Analysis of, and reaction to, the second day of
the third Test between England and the
West Indies, which took place at Lord’s
7.00 Live EFL: Derby County v Hull City
(Kick-off 7.45). Coverage of the Championship
match, which takes place at Pride Park. This is
the first meeting between these sides since the
play-off semi-final in May 2016
10.00 Live The Debate. Discussion
on the latest Premier League news
11.00 Manchester City v Liverpool Preview.
A look ahead to the Premier League fixture
12.00 Through the Night
BBC Two Scotland
As BBC Two except: 7.00pm-8.00 This
Farming Life. Martin and Mel introduce their
four-month-old daughter, and buffalo farmer
Stevie must select a new bull from his herd
BBC Two Wales
As BBC Two except: 7.00pm Mastermind.
John Humphrys hosts the celebrated quiz, with
specialist subjects Australian Test Cricket,
James Ellroy’s LA Quartet, the singer Kirsty
MacColl and King Henry VI 7.30 Live Scrum V:
Leinster v Cardiff Blues (Kick-off 7.35). Ross
Harries presents coverage of the match from
the second round of PRO14 fixtures, which
takes place at Royal Dublin Society. With
analysis from Jonathan Davies and Martyn
Williams 9.30-10.00 Only Connect. Victoria
Coren Mitchell presents, as three cricket fans
take on a team of professional question setters
STV
As ITV except: 8.00pm-8.30 Animal 999.
A rescued golden retriever is so badly matted
he needs to have all his fur shaved off, and a
stranded seal makes life difficult for animal
rescue officer Karen 12.40am Teleshopping
1.40 After Midnight 3.10 ITV Nightscreen
5.05-6.00 The Jeremy Kyle Show (r)
UTV
As ITV except: 8.00pm-8.30 UTV Life.
Pamela Ballantine eases viewers into the
weekend with an entertaining and eclectic
mix of stories and studio guests 12.40am
Teleshopping 1.40-3.00 ITV Nightscreen
BBC Four
E4
More4
Film4
ITV2
7.00pm World News Today; Weather
7.30 BBC Proms 2017. At London’s Royal Albert
Hall, Sara Mohr-Pietsch introduces a concert by
the BBC Symphony Orchestra, under the
conductor Karina Canellakis, in Bartok’s Second
Piano Concerto and Dvorák’s Eighth Symphony.
The evening opens with Sinfonia (for Orbiting
Spheres), by the young American composer
Missy Mazzoli, music “in the shape of the
solar system”. Featuring the American
pianist Jeremy Denk. See Viewing Guide
9.30 BBC Proms 2017. Europe’s first majority
BME orchestra Chineke! performs, joined by the
cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason, the soprano
Jeanine De Bique and the conductor Kevin John
Edusei. See Viewing Guide
11.00 Definitely Dusty. Members of Dusty
Springfield’s protective inner circle of friends
highlight the woman behind the pop diva
persona. Includes contributions by Tom Jones,
Elton John and Neil Tennant (r)
12.00 Dusty Springfield at the BBC. A tribute to
the pop diva (r) 1.00am Only Yesterday: The
Carpenters’ Story (r) 2.00 Shirley Bassey at
the BBC (r) 3.00-4.00 Definitely Dusty (r)
6.00am Hollyoaks (r) (AD) 6.30 Coach Trip:
Road to Zante (r) (AD) 7.00 Made in Chelsea (r)
8.00 Melissa & Joey (r) (AD) 9.00 Black-ish (r)
(AD) 10.00 Baby Daddy (r) 11.00 How I Met
Your Mother (r) (AD) 12.00 The Goldbergs (r)
(AD) 1.00pm The Big Bang Theory (r) (AD)
2.00 Melissa & Joey (r) 3.00 Baby Daddy (r)
4.00 2 Broke Girls (r) (AD) 5.00 The Goldbergs.
Comedy starring Sean Giambrone (r) (AD)
6.00 The Big Bang Theory (r) (AD)
6.30 The Big Bang Theory (r) (AD)
7.00 Hollyoaks. Lisa is still uncertain about
being a surrogate for Louis and Simone (AD)
7.30 Coach Trip: Road to Zante (AD)
8.00 FILM: GI Joe: Retaliation (12, 2013)
Action adventure sequel with Dwayne Johnson
10.00 Celebs Go Dating. The agents pair Arg
with 20-year-old Holly from Essex (AD)
11.05 The Big Bang Theory (r) (AD)
11.35 The Big Bang Theory (r) (AD)
12.00 Tattoo Fixers on Holiday (r) (AD)
1.05am Celebs Go Dating (r) (AD) 2.10 First
Dates Hotel (r) (AD) 3.05 Body Fixers (r)
3.55 Rude Tube (r) 4.20 Baby Daddy (r)
4.45 How I Met Your Mother (r) (AD)
8.55am A Place in the Sun: Summer Sun (r)
11.00 Four in a Bed (r) 1.40pm A Place in the
Sun: Summer Sun (r) 3.50 Time Team (r) 5.55
Vet on the Hill. Scott Miller has to deliver
devastating news to his sister-in-law (r)
6.55 George Clarke’s Amazing Spaces. George
meets a couple who want to transform two
air-raid shelters in their garden (r) (AD)
7.55 Grand Designs. Kevin McCloud looks at the
transformation of a derelict mill cottage in
Northumberland, the longest-running project
ever featured on the programme (1/12) (r) (AD)
9.00 Professor T. A law student goes missing,
and it soon becomes clear that he had a number
of secrets to hide. Meanwhile, Professor T pays
an escort to visit him for a chat. In Flemish (AD)
10.10 24 Hours in A&E. The medics treat sport
enthusiasts involved in accidents, including a
19-year-old who has suffered multiple spinal
injuries in a motocross race (2/8) (r) (AD)
11.15 24 Hours in A&E. A tree surgeon
is rushed in after a fall (3/8) (r) (AD)
12.15am Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmares USA (r)
1.15 24 Hours in A&E (r) (AD) 2.15 Grand
Designs (r) (AD) 3.15-3.55 8 Out of 10 Cats (r)
11.00am Oh! What a Lovely War (PG,
1969) Richard Attenborough’s First World War
musical starring Ralph Richardson 1.55pm
Broken Arrow (PG, 1950) Western starring
James Stewart 3.45 Hatari! (U, 1962)
Comedy adventure with John Wayne
6.55 Eragon (PG, 2006) A farm boy and the
last surviving dragon fight to overthrow the
tyrannical leader who has taken control of the
kingdom. Fantasy adventure starring Ed
Speleers, Jeremy Irons and Robert Carlyle (AD)
9.00 This Is England (18, 2006) A 12year-old boy is drawn into a world of racism and
violence after joining a group of skinheads.
Shane Meadows’ drama set in the 1980s with
Thomas Turgoose and Stephen Graham (AD)
11.05 Quadrophenia (18, 1979) A teenage
mod in 1960s London has his naive outlook on
the world shattered over a violent weekend in
Brighton. Drama based on the Who album
starring Phil Daniels and Leslie Ash
1.15am-3.10 Trainspotting (18, 1996)
A heroin addict tries to kick the habit, but his
friends keep dragging him back into selfdestruction. Drama starring Ewan McGregor
6.00am You’ve Been Framed! Gold (r) 6.25
Totally Bonkers Guinness World Records (r) 7.15
Below Deck (r) 8.00 Emmerdale (r) (AD) 9.30
The Ellen DeGeneres Show (r) 10.20 Below Deck
(r) 11.15 Dress to Impress (r) 12.20pm
Emmerdale (r) (AD) 1.50 The Ellen DeGeneres
Show (r) 2.45 The Jeremy Kyle Show (r)
6.00 Dress to Impress. Three singletons
attempt to impress a cheerleader
7.00 You’ve Been Framed! Gold Top 100
Sport Stars. Sport-themed clips (r)
8.00 Two and a Half Men. Jake discovers Alan
has been secretly dating Eldridge’s mother (r)
8.30 Two and a Half Men. Alan struggles to
decide whether to move in with Lyndsey (r)
9.00 Family Guy. Brian and Stewie are
accidentally locked in a bank vault (r) (AD)
9.30 Family Guy (r) (AD)
10.00 Family Guy (r) (AD)
10.30 Family Guy (r) (AD)
11.00 Family Guy (r) (AD)
11.30 American Dad! (r) (AD)
12.00 American Dad! (r) (AD) 12.30am
Two and a Half Men (r) 1.30 Through
the Keyhole (r) 2.30 Teleshopping
ITV3
ITV4
Dave
Drama
Yesterday
6.00am The Royal (r) (AD) 7.50 Heartbeat (r)
(AD) 8.50 Where the Heart Is (r) (AD) 9.55
Judge Judy (r) 11.10 Rising Damp (r) 11.40
You’re Only Young Twice (r) 12.10pm On the
Buses (r) 12.45 Griff’s Great Britain (r) 1.10
Heartbeat (r) (AD) 2.15 The Royal (r) (AD)
4.20 On the Buses (r) 5.30 Rising Damp (r)
6.00 Heartbeat. A valuable painting is stolen
from a retired German art dealer’s home (r) (AD)
7.00 Royal Stories. How the role of royal
wives has changed over the years (r)
7.30 Diana, Our Mother: Her Life and Legacy.
The Duke of Cambridge and Prince Harry
talk about their mother (r) (AD)
9.00 The Street. The attentions of a new
colleague lead Eddie to reassess his life (6/6) (r)
10.20 Law & Order: UK. A skeleton is
found in the boot of a car (3/8) (r) (AD)
11.20 The Suspicions of Mr Whicher: The
Murder in Angel Lane. Having left his career
at the Met, Whicher is hired to investigate
the murder of a woman’s niece (r) (AD)
1.15am If I Had You (r) 2.55 Jane Eyre (r) (AD)
4.50 Judge Judy (r) 5.30 ITV3 Nightscreen
6.00am Football Rivalries (r) 6.10 Minder (r)
(AD) 7.00 The Professionals (r) (AD) 7.55
Cycling: Vuelta a España (r) 8.55 Storage Wars:
Texas (r) 9.25 Cycling: Tour of Britain (r) 10.30
Live Cycling: Tour of Britain. Coverage of stage
six 3.45pm Football Rivalries (r) 4.00 Minder
(r) 5.00 The Professionals (r) (AD)
6.00 Storage Wars: Texas (r)
6.30 Storage Wars: Texas (r)
7.00 Cycling: Vuelta a España. Action from
the 19th stage of the Grand Tour race
8.00 Cycling: Tour of Britain
9.00 FILM: On Her Majesty’s Secret
Service (PG, 1969) James Bond is sent to
track down master criminal and arch-enemy
Blofeld, who is intent on destroying world peace.
Spy adventure starring George Lazenby (AD)
11.55 FILM: Game of Death (18, 2011)
A government agent protects a hospitalised
diplomat when the hitmen who tried to kill
him return to finish him off. Action thriller
starring Wesley Snipes and Zoe Bell (AD)
2.00am Minder (r) (AD) 2.50 ITV4
Nightscreen 3.00 Teleshopping
6.00am Home Shopping 7.10 Scrapheap
Challenge 8.10 American Pickers 9.00 Storage
Hunters UK 10.00 American Pickers 12.00 Jay
Leno’s Garage 1.00pm Top Gear (AD) 3.00
Brojects in the House 3.30 Brojects 4.00 Cops
UK: Bodycam Squad 5.00 Top Gear (AD)
6.00 Top Gear. Jeremy Clarkson spares no
expense when he tests the BMW X6 (AD)
7.00 Cops UK: Bodycam Squad. Rookie cop Ash
is in the thick of it during a late night brawl
8.00 Motorway Cops. Two motorway police are
flagged down by a drunk student asking for
a lift to France, a car is hit by a runaway horse
and a night-time collision leads to chaos
9.00 FILM: Swordfish (15, 2001) A computer
hacker is recruited by a former anti-terrorist
agent to embezzle millions of dollars from the
US government. Thriller with John Travolta,
Hugh Jackman and Halle Berry
11.00 QI XL. Comedy quiz with David Mitchell,
Sue Perkins, Alan Davies and Sami Shah
12.00 Would I Lie to You? 12.40am Mock the
Week 1.20 QI 2.00 QI XL 3.00 Parks and
Recreation 4.00 Home Shopping
7.10am The Bill 8.00 Dangerfield 9.00 Pie in
the Sky 10.00 Bergerac 11.00 The Bill 1.00pm
Last of the Summer Wine 1.40 Brush Strokes
2.20 Birds of a Feather 3.00 Dangerfield 4.00
Pie in the Sky 5.00 Bergerac
6.00 Brush Strokes. Lesley continues
her relentless pursuit of Jacko
6.40 Last of the Summer Wine.
Seymour invents a car safety device
7.20 To the Manor Born. Audrey organises
a protest rally. Guest starring Richard Thorp
8.00 The Brokenwood Mysteries. A guest judge
and wine critic attending a wine show are
found dead, drowned inside a fermenting vat,
prompting DI Mike to investigate (2/4) (AD)
10.00 New Tricks. An abduction case from 1992
is reopened when a body identified at the time
as that of a missing woman turns out to be
someone else — while the presumed victim
turns up alive (3/8) (AD)
11.20 Birds of a Feather. Tracey is disturbed
when her son falls for an older woman
12.00 The Bill 1.00am The Cazalets 2.10
Garrow’s Law (AD) 4.00 Home Shopping
6.00am Antiques Roadshow 7.10 Medieval
Dead 8.00 WWI’s First Frontline Cameraman
(AD) 9.00 Tenko 10.00 Time Team 2.00pm
Secrets of War 4.00 Sharpe
6.00 Tenko. Marion doubts her leadership
abilities in the face of increasing tension
7.00 Hitler’s Olympics: The Boys of ’36.
The story of the 1936 games held in Berlin
8.00 Who Do You Think You Are? Gregg Wallace
solves a family mystery as he discovers what
happened to his great-grandfather (AD)
9.00 Fawlty Towers. Hotel inspectors
throw Basil into a panic (AD)
9.40 Fawlty Towers: Re-opened. A tribute
originally made to mark 30 years since the
screening of the comedy’s final episode
11.40 Hitler’s Olympics: The Boys of ’36. The
story of the 1936 Olympics held in Berlin,
revealing how the games led to Nazi Germany
gaining international praise as a nation that had
triumphed following the Depression
12.45am Mummies Alive. Examining three
Incan mummies 1.40 Secrets of War 2.35
Raiders of the Lost Art 3.00 Home Shopping
BBC Alba
5.00pm Sgriobag (Get Squiggling) (r) 5.15 Na
Braithrean Cuideachail (The Koala Brothers) (r)
5.25 Botannan Araid Uilleim (William’s Wish
Wellingtons) (r) 5.30 Na Luchagan Fhiacla
(Tales of the Tooth Fairies) (r) 5.35 Ceitidh
Morag (Katie Morag) (r) 5.50 Seonaidh
(Shaun the Sheep) (r) 6.00 Glac Blake (Get
Blake) (r) 6.10 Alvinnn agus na Chipmunks
(ALVINNN!!! and the Chipmunks) (r) 6.35
Machair (r) 7.00 An Là (News) 7.25 Live
PRO14 Rugby Union 9.30 Stoidhle (The
Dressing Up Box) (r) 10.00 Horo Gheallaidh
(Celtic Music Sessions) (r) 11.00 An Klondike
11.50-11.55 Dhan Uisge (Loch Maree) (r)
S4C
6.00am Cyw: Hafod Haul (r) 6.15 Guto
Gwningen (r) 6.30 Sam Tân (r) 6.40 Twt (r)
6.50 Peppa (r) 7.00 Cacamwnci (r) 7.15
Olobobs 7.20 Digbi Draig (r) 7.35 Dona Direidi
(r) 7.50 Sara a Cwac (r) 8.00 Ysbyty Cyw Bach
(r) 8.15 Ty Mel (r) 8.20 Y Dywysoges Fach (r)
8.35 Syrcas Deithiol Dewi (r) 8.45 Dwylo’r
Enfys (r) 9.00 Igam Ogam (r) 9.10 Oli Dan y
Don (r) 9.25 Chwedlau Tinga Tinga (r) 9.35
Cymylaubychain (r) 9.45 Bach a Mawr (r)
10.00 Hafod Haul (r) 10.15 Guto Gwningen (r)
10.30 Sam Tân (r) 10.40 Twt (r) 10.50 Peppa
(r) 11.00 Cacamwnci (r) 11.15 Olobobs (r)
11.20 Digbi Draig (r) 11.35 Dona Direidi (r)
11.50 Sara a Cwac (r) 12.00 News S4C a’r
Tywydd 12.05pm Heno (r) 12.30 Hedd Wyn:
Canrif o Gofio (r) 1.30 Ar Drywydd Dic
Aberdaron (r) 2.00 News S4C a’r Tywydd 2.05
Prynhawn Da 3.00 News S4C a’r Tywydd 3.05
Portreadau (r) 3.30 Cadw Cwmni gyda John
Hardy (r) 4.00 Awr Fawr 5.00 Stwnsh: Ffeil
5.05 Stwnsh: Cog1nio (r) 5.30 Stwnsh: Mwy o
Mwfs: MOM (r) 5.45 Stwnsh: Gwboi a Twm
Twm (r) 6.00 News S4C a’r Tywydd 6.05 100
Lle (r) (AD) 6.30 Garddio a Mwy (r) 7.00 Heno
8.00 Pobol y Cwm. Sylweddola DJ fod rhywbeth
pwysig ar goll. DJ realises that something
important is missing (AD) 8.25 Codi Pac.
Geraint Hardy heads to Wrexham, looking at
interesting activities, places to stay, where to
eat and what to see 9.00 News 9 a’r Tywydd
9.30 Jiwcbocs y Stiwdio Gefn. Lisa Gwilym
showcases the best of Welsh contemporary
music, featuring Al Lewis, Cowbois Rhos
Botwnnog, Caryl Parry Jones, Geraint Jarman,
Tecwyn Ifan, Huw Chiswell and Yws Gwynedd
10.30 Caryl. Sioned Grug asks a well-known
composer for inspiration for her show O Walia
i Awstralia. Plus, the host catches up with
Val a Jo Jo (r) (AD) 11.00-11.35 999:
Ambiwlans Awyr Cymru. The Swansea crew
deals with a policeman who has been thrown
off his bike, while a Carmarthenshire farmer
incurs serious injuries. Last in the series (r)
18
Friday September 8 2017 | the times
1GT
What are your favourite puzzles in MindGames?
Email: puzzles@thetimes.co.uk
MindGames
times2 Crossword No 7439
2
3
4
5
6
16
7
8
20
1
15
10
9
17
12
21
21
17
10
11
12
13
14
15
18
17
17
11
13
22
15
18
9
18
16
26
13
9
Scrabble ® Challenge No 1954
5
8
13
17
1
24
20
14
7
22
20
19
19
1
9
20
21
20
17
15
21
22
19
9
4
18
2W
6
6
8
25
17
7
20
26
2L
25
13
22
13
6
24
17
21
6
20
21
7
26
14
6
20
7
8
9
10
2W
F
2W
2W
L
3L
3L
A
2L M 2L
BOOZY
TIKE 2L
3L
2L
D
E
F
G
H
I
J
K
2W
2W
19
11 12
2W
L
22
1
9
7
19
21
24
17
1
22
9
3
15
25
17
1
15
4
25
15
16
15
19
What play covers two doubleword squares with this rack?
22
19
17
9
22
VEWHERF
Y
19
18
22
Across
Raise (a sensitive topic) (6)
Board game (5)
Sphere of activity (5)
Statement of sum due (7)
More intoxicating (7)
Stringed instrument (4)
Lyric poem (3)
Attendant for horses (5)
(Of video) fast spreading (5)
Solution to Crossword 7438
S
T
A
R
F
I
S
H
H
A
N
S
H
H
BOD
M
L I F
N
OGG
P
H I L
G
T EU
O
ON I
H
E
R
E
S
Y
L
Y
R
I
C
7
7
19
2
17
26
What is the highest-scoring play
involving the V ?
M
27
18 Fool (3)
20 Sweet; expensive (4)
22 Young child (7)
24 Withdraw (a statement) (7)
25 Lacking experience (5)
26 Relating to countryside (5)
27 Successful period (6)
Down
1 Rough tight embrace (4,3)
2 Aromatic herb (7)
3 Compelling charm (8)
4 Spanish sparkling wine (4)
5 Improve the mind of (5)
6 Division of an act (5)
7 Extremely small (5)
13 Information in law case (8)
16 Recovered in health (7)
17 Theft (7)
19 Say; condition (5)
20 Albrecht —, artist (5)
21 Main feature in church (5)
23 Be unsuccessful (4)
Need help with today’s puzzle? Call 0906 757 7188 to check the
answers. Calls cost 80p per minute plus your telephone company’s
network access charge.
SP: Spoke, 0333 202 3390 (Mon-Fri 9am-5.30pm).
20
23
20
6
15
2
15
25
15
Use only the board area shown. Collins Official
Scrabble Words is the authority used, although the
solutions are not unusual words. Standard Scrabble
rules apply for making the word plays.
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25
26
H
14
M
© PUZZLER MEDIA
26
Y
Fill the grid so
that every
column, every
row and every
3x2 box contains
the digits 1 to 6
Cluelines Stuck on Codeword? To receive 4 random clues call 0901 322 5000 or text
TIMECODE to 88010. Calls cost 75p plus your telephone company’s network access
charge. Texts cost £1 plus your standard network charge. For the full solution call
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charge. SP: Spoke, 0333 202 3390 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5.30pm).
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Solve the puzzle
and text in the
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TIMES followed
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by midnight. Leave your three
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and your contact details.
No 3910
C
A
E
Z
T
C
O
N
E
E
S
C
I
C
U
A
L
I
K
J
C
N
B
A
S
R
O
U
M
S
D
W
S
R
L
N
E
E
E
C
M
A
U
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E
Slide the letters either horizontally or vertically back into the grid to produce a
completed crossword. Letters are allowed to slide over other letters
KenKen Difficult No 4115
Futoshiki No 2995
Kakuro No 1954
© 2010 KENKEN PUZZLE & TM NEXTOY. DIST. BY UFS, INC. WWW.KENKEN.COM
3
All the digits 1 to 6 must appear in every row and column. In
each thick-line “block”, the target number in the top lefthand corner is calculated from the digits in all the cells in the
block, using the operation indicated by the symbol.
∨
Challenge compiled by Allan Simmons
SCRABBLE® is a registered trademark of J. W. Spear & Sons Ltd ©Mattel 2017
Win a Dictionary & Thesaurus
Numbers are substituted for letters in the crossword grid. Below the grid is the
key. Some letters are solved. When you have completed your first word or
phrase you will have the clues to more letters. Enter them in the key grid and
the main grid and check the letters on the alphabet list as you complete them.
Yesterday’s solution, right
No 3909
Key
2L = double letter
3L = triple letter
2W = double word
3W = triple word
Letter values
AEIOULNRST=1
DG=2 BCMP=3
FHVWY=4 K=5
JX=8 QZ=10
HOMBIER
H
25
P E B B L EDA
O A A O
P I CA S SO
P K H D
Y E AH HA L
N H H
I ND I E
M F N H
POOHPOOH
I
R A M
S A T YR AM
H H T G
HY P ER
6
2W
23
1
4
8
9
10
11
12
14
15
5
3L
19
6
20
9
5
4
3
10
11
7
6
>
6
30
6
20
3
24
28
33
<
>
∨
14
28
15
<
16
8
4
∧
17
3
27
4
29
29
3
3
4
10
7
6
Fill the blank squares so that each row and column contains
all the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5. Use the given numbers and
the symbols that tell you if a number in the square is larger
(>) or smaller (<) than the number next to it.
24
16
24
14
17
Fill the grid so that
each block adds up
to the total of the
block above or to
the left. You can
only use digits 1-9
and you must not
use the digit twice
in one block. The
same digit may
occur more than
once in a row or
column, but must
be in a separate
block.
7
27
17
4
19
3
7
24
4
6
3
© PUZZLER MEDIA
1
Codeword No 3123
the times | Friday September 8 2017
19
1GT
MindGames
White: Zoltan von Balla
Black: Gyula Breyer
Budapest 1916
Philidor Defence
1 e4 e5 2 Nf3 d6 3 Nc3 Nf6 4 d4
Nbd7 5 Bc4 h6
It is now known that this isn’t
necessary as the tactics against f7
after 5 ... Be7 do not favour White.
For example, the line 6 dxe5 dxe5
7 Bxf7+ Kxf7 8 Ng5+ Kg8 9 Ne6
Qe8 10 Nxc7 Qg6 11 Nxa8 Qxg2
is good for Black.
6 h3 c6 7 0-0 Qc7 8 Be3 Be7 9
Bd3 g5
This looks ambitious but is justified by White’s slow play.
10 Nh2 Nf8 11 Re1 Ng6 12 Bf1
Nf4 13 d5 Rg8 14 Ng4 Bxg4 15
________
árD DkD 4]
à0pDqgpD ]
ß Dp0 h D]
ÞD DP0 D ]
ÝPD DP0PD]
ÜD H DPD ]
Û )PD D D]
Ú$ DQ$BI ]
ÁÂÃÄÅÆÇÈ
21 dxc6
Panic. Black’s kingside attack
looks worrying but even when he
doubles rooks on the h-file, White
can respond Bg2 and Black is still
a long way from landing a killer
blow. 21 a5 is still better.
21 ... bxc6 22 Nd5 Nh7
White’s play is based on the
obvious trap 22 ... cxd5 23 Bb5,
pinning the queen.
23 Nxe7 Kxe7 24 Bg2 Ng5
The upshot of White’s various
exertions is that he has driven all
the black pieces into promising
attacking posts. White is horribly
weak on the dark squares and his
bishop far inferior to Black’s knight.
25 Qd3 Qb7 26 Red1 Rh6 27 Ra3
a5 28 Rb3 Qa7+ 29 Kf1 Rah8 30
Ke2 d5 31 Qc3 Rh2 32 Rg1 Nxf3
33 Rb7+ Qxb7 34 Qc5+ Ke6 35
Kxf3 f6 36 Re1 Qd7 37 Kf2 dxe4
38 Qc4+ Ke7 39 Qxe4 R8h3 40
Qxf4 Qa7+ White resigns
________
árD Dri D] Winning Move
àD D DpD ]
ßpDpD h D] Black to play. This position is from
Helsingor 2017.
ÞD DpD $ ] Ivarsson-Kaasen,
Both kings are somewhat exposed but
Ý D D DbD] Black now strikes quickly with a fine
Ü1 DBH ) ] combination based on the clumsy position
Û DPD DQD] of White’s pieces. How did he continue?
ÚD D $KD ] For up-to-the-minute information, follow
ÁÂÃÄÅÆÇÈ my tweets on twitter.com/times_chess.
♠ A KQ
♥K 10 9
♦J 6 3 2
♣Q 10 2
♠K 5
♥10 5
♦A J 7 4 2
♣KQ 4 2
♠Q 3
♥AQ 9 7
♦A K J 7
♣KQ 2
(i). Open 1♦ (one of the longest
suit, irrespective of strength), planning to rebid notrumps. This will
show 15-19 balanced.
(ii). Open 1♦. You are unbalanced
(two doubletons), so should not
open 1NT. Incidentally, your
14
MEDIUM
187
x 4 + 86
HARDER
295 + 813
SQUARE
IT
x4
♠6 5
♥A K
♦7 4 3 2
♣A 8 6 4 3
♠ Q 10 8 3 N
♥Q 10 8 3 W E
♦J 6
S
♣K J 2 ♠ A K 4 2
♥J 9 2
♦A K 5
♣9 7 5
W
N
E
1♠
Pass
2♣
Pass
2NT(1) Pass
3NT(2) End
(1) By opening a suit and rebidding
notrumps, South is showing 15-19 balanced.
(2) North knows there are 25+ points for
game and chooses the nine-trick game; note
he does not have to be balanced to bid 3NT.
+1/2 – 644 75% + 978
OF IT
OF IT
Killer Moderate No 5616
12
14
8
6
13
70%
OF IT
2/3
OF IT
÷5
+8
+ 38
+1/2
OF IT
+ 884 x 2
8min
15
19
16
4
4
13
9
12
21
15
5
8
22
3
15
16
22
7
55min
13
20
22
11
12
24
7
11
30
15
9
7
6
5
8
4
3
1
2
2
5
4
7
1
3
6
9
8
8
3
1
6
2
9
5
4
7
6
2
9
4
5
8
7
3
1
=
14
3
8
1
9
5
6
4
2
7
9
4
2
3
8
7
5
6
1
6
5
7
4
2
1
8
3
9
1
2
4
5
9
8
3
7
6
2 2
4
As with standard Sudoku, fill the grid so that every
column, every row and every 3x3 box contains the
digits 1 to 9. Each set of cells joined by dotted lines
must add up to the target number in its top-left corner.
Within each set of cells joined by dotted lines, a digit
cannot be repeated.
=
13
Please note, BODMAS does not apply
2
1 3
7
3 9
1
6
7
4
8 9
6 8
A
BUM
BRA
B
N O
OV A L
T
N
H
RAGE
I N
S I GN
J
S
A
OU S T
K
U Q
E V E
D
DU S
9
8
8
5
6
7
9
3
4
4
8
5
1
3
7
9
2
6
5
4
8
3
7
2
1
6
9
1
9
2
8
6
5
4
7
3
7
6
3
9
4
1
2
8
5
8
7
6
1
3
2
9
5
4
5
9
3
7
6
4
2
1
8
2
1
9
6
4
3
7
8
5
7
3
5
8
1
9
6
4
2
4
6
8
2
7
5
1
9
3
2
9
6
3
5
7
1
8
4
5
3
1
4
8
9
7
6
2
4
8
7
1
6
2
3
5
9
7
4
3
9
1
6
5
2
8
7
4
1
6
2
8
9
3
5
9
3
8
4
5
1
7
6
2
2
5
6
9
3
7
8
1
4
8
9
3
7
1
5
2
4
6
9
6
8
2
7
5
4
3
1
3
7
4
5
2
8
9
1
6
8
1
5
6
9
4
2
7
3
6
2
9
7
3
1
8
4
5
4
6
5
3
9
2
1
8
7
1
7
2
8
6
4
5
9
3
3
2
4
5
8
9
6
7
1
5
8
7
1
4
6
3
2
9
6
1
9
2
7
3
4
5
8
1
5
1 < 3
∨
4
5
2
∨
3 > 2
4
5
2
4
2
1
3
4
7
x
-
2
1
5
1 < 3
∧
5 > 4
5
3 2
6
2
-
+
-
+
3
8
9
-
x
+
-
Suko 2024
M
S
I T
O
UR
K
1
6
5
7
9
2
8
3
4
8
7
2
4
3
5
1
9
6
4
3
9
1
6
8
2
7
5
6
4
7
2
5
9
3
8
1
9
1
3
8
4
6
7
5
2
5
2
8
3
7
1
4
6
9
3
5
1
6
8
4
9
2
7
7
9
4
5
2
3
6
1
8
2
8
6
9
1
7
5
4
3
T
U
U
F
B
E
O
I
T
N
I
S
E
N
H
E
E
D
O
Z
Lexica 3908
Set Square 1956
3
Scrabble 1953
EYESHADOW H7
across (60)
HOEDOWN C12
down (45)
W
S E
E
E D
Y
S
Lexica 3907
Futoshiki 2994
3
UB
U
R
F E
A
P U
E
T E
X
S P
E
C
L T
Sudoku 9300
1
5
2
8
4
3
6
9
7
Killer 5615
6
2
6
6
3
P
C L
I
A
Z ON E
Z
O
AUN T
N O
C L I N
E
I
T T I C
R
D
UA I L
S
O
T
MA
Sudoku 9299
3
1
7
2
9
6
8
5
4
Cell Blocks 3005
24
-
Codeword 3122
23
18
+
x
=
21
Kakuro 1953
KenKen 4114
25
6
used in this
grid, but only
once. Can you
work out their
= 26 positions in the
grid so that
each of the six
different sums
works? We’ve
= 11 put 2 numbers
in to help you.
Do the sums
left to right and
top to bottom
Solutions
8
7
x
+
3
18
All the digits
+
4
7
Divide the grid
into blocks.
Each block
must be square
or rectangular
and must
contain the
number of
cells indicated
by the number
inside it.
= 98 from 1-9 are
+
+
16
21
4
3
2
x
x
Killer 5614
Killer Deadly No 5617
+
+
Sudoku 9298
29
2
4 2
10
4
7 8
3 1
9 6 7
2 5
1
8 4 9
3
4 2 1 5
2
3 1
2
3 1
9 7
4 5 1 2 9 7 3
3 1
4 8 1
7 5 9 8
4
9 8 7
7
13
21
4
6
2
2
9
8
2
1
4
21
8
12
9
28
17
15
Contract: 3NT, Opening Lead: ♥ 3
andrew.robson@thetimes.co.uk
+ 77 x 2 – 88
–3
Yesterday’s answers
acerbity, airy, artic, bait, barite, beira,
bice, bier, bite, biter, ceiba, ciré, cite,
city, crib, erica, irate, rice, rite, tabi,
terai, tier, tire, triac, tribe, trice, yeti
S
West led ♥3 (South had bid
1♠ ). Declarer won dummy’s ♥K
and counted seven top tricks
(♠ AK, ♥AK, ♦AK and ♣A). He
looked to dummy’s five-card club
suit to provide two more.
To preserve communication, at
trick two declarer led dummy’s ♣3.
East’s ♣10 won and declarer won
his ♥5 with dummy’s ♥A. At trick
four, declarer led dummy’s ♣4,
again crucial to retain ♣A. East
won ♣Q and led ♥7 to West’s
♥Q10. However, declarer could
win ♦J return, cross to the crucial
♣A entry and enjoy ♣86. ♠ AK
bring your trick tally to nine.
OF IT
+ 11 x 2
Set Square No 1957
19
♠J 9 7
♥7 6 5 4
♦Q 10 9 8
♣Q 10
50%
OF IT
2/3
From these letters, make words of
four or more letters, always including
the central letter. Answers must be in
the Concise Oxford Dictionary,
excluding capitalised words, plurals,
conjugated verbs (past tense etc),
adverbs ending in LY, comparatives
and superlatives.
How you rate 13 words, average;
18, good; 24, very good; 30, excellent
planned rebid should be 2♣, showing more about your shape.
(iii). Open 2NT, showing a balanced opening hand with 20+ pts.
Dealer: South, Vulnerability: Neither
+8
Polygon
9
Bridge Andrew Robson
Beginner Corner 20
Bidding Strong Balanced hands
You can open the bidding holding
at least 12 points. First ask, “Is my
hand balanced ie no void, no singleton, not more than one doubleton, namely 4432, 4333 or 5332?”
Say you have a balanced opening hand (just under half of all
hands are balanced — more if the
cards haven’t been well shuffled).
If you have 12-14 points, open 1NT.
If you have more than that, do not
open 1NT or partner will underassess the combined power.
With 15-19 balanced, open one
of a suit — your longest (not your
strongest). Plan to rebid notrumps
next time. Partner will deduce that
you cannot have 12-14 points or
you’d have opened 1NT. Therefore
you must have more than 12-14.
If you have a really strong balanced opening hand, 20+ points
(that’s half the pack), open 2NT. As
we’ll learn, hands with 20+ points
open at the level of Two.
So we have this scheme for balanced opening hands:
12-14: open 1NT
15-19: open one of a suit; rebid
notrumps.
20+: open 2NT.
(i)
(ii)
(iii)
EASY
–7
© PUZZLER MEDIA
The fertile brain of Gyula Breyer
was not restricted to chess. He was
one of those chess experts who felt
attracted to alternative forms of
intellectual and logic puzzles. Some
champions and notable players
such as José Capablanca, Alexander Alekhine and Bobby Fischer,
focused their energies predominantly on chess. Others, including
Emanuel Lasker, Anatoly Karpov,
Marcel Duchamp and my colleague, twice British champion, Bill
Hartston, have been attracted by a
wider spectrum of games, embracing bridge, draughts and general
acrostics. Breyer belonged firmly to
this latter category, which, on the
chessboard, implied that he was a
problem solver rather than a warrior. Today’s game is a case in
point. Gyula Breyer, the Chess Revolutionary by Jimmy Adams is published by New in Chess.
hxg4 Qd7 16 f3 h5 17 gxh5 N6xh5
18 g4 Nf6
The position is balanced. Black
has a powerful knight on f4 but
White is always able to exchange
it if necessary.
19 a4 Rh8 20 Bxf4
Premature. Better is 20 a5.
20 ... gxf4
ANSWER ANSWER ANSWER
The puzzler
Cell Blocks No 3006
Brain Trainer
© PUZZLER MEDIA
Chess Raymond Keene
1
÷
+
4
Quiz 1 Doris Lessing 2 LCD Soundsystem
3 Decem (ten) — the numbers being four and six
4 Thutmose III 5 The Open University 6 Chile
7 Dr Strangelove 8 Egypt 9 Separate Tables
10 Click beetles 11 Romanian 12 Crete 13 Norway
14 Kansas City Royals 15 Wallace Collection
S
P
I
O
N
A
C
C
H
Y
M
G
E
E
C
L
O
L
U
M
S
Y
Word watch
Paraffle (c) Embroidery
Paraffinoid (a) Of or
resembling paraffin
Parfleche (b) A form
of stiff leather, made
from rawhide
Brain Trainer
Easy 27; Medium 1,002;
Harder 9,076
Chess 1 ... Rxe3! 2 Rxe3
Qc1+ 3 Kf2 (to protect
the rook) 3 ... Qd2+ 4 Be2
Bxe2 5 Rxe2 Qxg5 winning
08.09.17
MindGames
Sudoku
Mild No 9301
Fill the grid so that
every column, every
row and every 3x3
box contains the
digits 1 to 9.
Difficult No 9302
3
Paraffle
a An umbrella
b To complain
c Embroidery
Paraffinoid
a Like paraffin
b Oblong
c Suspicious
4
2
5
8
6
9 4
3
1
6
5 2
9
3 7
1
9
For interactive
Sudoku puzzles, visit
thetimes.co.uk/puzzles
Answers on page 19
2
7
4
1 7
3
2
6
7 2 9
1 8
12 In Greek myth,
Icarus tried to
escape from which
Mediterranean island?
6 The largest city south
of the 46th parallel
south, Punta Arenas is
in which country?
5 “Learn and Live” is
the motto of which
public distance learning
and research university?
el-Tin Palace are
presidential residences
in which country?
7 “Gentlemen, you
can’t fight in here!
This is the War
Room!” is a quote
from which 1964 film?
9 What is the
collective name of
Terence Rattigan’s
two plays, Table by
the Window and Table
Number Seven?
8 The Heliopolis
Palace, Montaza
Palace and Ras
10 Wireworms are the
larvae of which insects
in the family Elateridae?
13 Which country is
home to Vinnufossen,
the tallest waterfall
in Europe?
Yesterday’s
F
D
A
B
E
Quick
F R I E ND
A B S E
Cryptic
E
T
J
R
T
S T A R
UN B E A T
solution
W
I
S
E
B
No 913
14 Based in Missouri,
which baseball team
plays its home games
at Kauffman Stadium?
15 Which London
museum’s Great
Gallery is pictured?
Answers on page 19
The Times Quick Cryptic No 914
1
2
3
4
5
8
6
9
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
O
N T
C
E N
O T
E
H E
N
E A
G
GE
R
S
D
T
R
Follow The Times Crossword
Editor @timescrosswords
by Rongo
7
10
1
The Times Quiz Book by
Olav Bjortomt is out now.
To order your copy visit
harpercollins.co.uk or call
0844 576 8120. Also available
from all good bookshops.
DOOMS T E R
L
R
E
V
I
S K I N
P E R I S
T
I
E
H
T H E A T R E S M
A
L
A
I
E
CH A L E T
S I N
A
Y
E
T
T
Across
1 Scratch a piece of bed linen —
match results shown here? (10)
8 Vote against closure of Electric
Avenue, curving inwards (7)
9 Show some flashiness? (5)
10 Kiln’s broken connection (4)
11 Other ranks nominate
every other part of unit for
decoration (8)
13 Result of photo of the sky? (6)
14 Place of eternal punishment,
unending for each abettor? (6)
17 Somehow salvages desert city
(3,5)
19 Move on the subject of
bloodshed (4)
21 Stone added to display rack (5)
22 Lad tore ragged, stretchy
costume (7)
23 Knot with large wave — it
should produce an outright
winner (3-7)
Down
2 Dogs one brought into film
festival location (7)
3 Spoiled pear harvest (4)
6
7 3
8 4
9
8
by Olav Bjortomt The Times Quiz Book
15
4 Which Egyptian
pharaoh routed the
Canaanite forces at
the Battle of Megiddo
in c 1457BC?
7
8
3 9 2
1
8
7
11 What is the
only Romance
language native to
eastern Europe?
3 In Latin, quattuor
and sex add up to
which number?
5
8
to receive four clues for any of today’s puzzles. Calls cost 75p plus your telephone company’s
network access charge. SP: Spoke, 0333 202 3390 (Mon-Fri 9am-5.30pm).
1 Which British Nobel
prizewinning novelist
wrote The Golden
Notebook (1962) and The
Good Terrorist (1985)?
6
4
Cluelines Stuck on Sudoku, Killer or KenKen? Call 0901 322 5005 before midnight
The Times Daily Quiz
2 Fronted by James
Murphy, which US
band released the 2017
album American Dream?
7
3
8
7
Parfleche
a Scantily-clad
b Rawhide
c Whipped eggs
8 9
PUZZLER MEDIA
Word watch
by Josephine
Balmer
1
9
5 7 2 8 4
6 8
4
9
2 5
Fiendish No 9303
4 Alcoholic drink from the
woman beginning to
renationalise railway (6)
5 Spaces for printers: City editor
keeps five in servitude (8)
6 Bitter harangue cutting off Di
and a close-knit group (5)
7 Landlord boss’s pre-printed
stationery (10)
8 Colonel associated with us, not
so neutral or tame? (10)
12 Unwilling to work with British
on Muslim festival, the French
(4,4)
15 Fuel sometimes supplied in
bottles supporting sheet of
glass? (7)
16 Garment maker alternatively
extending part hanging at back
of coat (6)
18 Clever sting (5)
20 Choice of mild anaesthetic
initially prolonged
unconsciousness (4)
5
9
8 1
1
5
2
3
4
5
9
5
4
1
6
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