What's On

Paris

Everything that opera can do is here. English Touring Opera’s double bill of short Puccini operas, which reached Cambridge Arts Theatre this week (April 16-21) included the tragic Il Tabarro (the cloak) and the comic opera Gianni Schicchi named after a character who deceives all the others to do a good deed.

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There may be a more amusing version of The Marriage of Figaro than this one from English Touring Opera, but I haven’t seen it and don’t expect to. This ingenious English translation by Jeremy Sams rhymes and it’s cheeky. When Antonio, the gardener describes seeing a man fall out a woman’s bedroom window and he’s asked where the is man now, he sings: “I don’t know, he buggered off.”

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army

On the first night of The Importance of Being Earnest in 1895 the story goes that the father of Oscar Wilde’s lover, Bosie, planned to disrupt the play by throwing rotten fruit. Wilde got wind of the plan and The Marquess of Queensbury was refused entrance to the theatre. If the playwright had seen this production by The Original Theatre Company, he might have welcomed him in.

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This Oscar nominated picture tells the story of controversial American figure skater Tonya Harding who was accused of conspiring to attack one of her rivals during the build up to the 1994 olympics.

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Boston

Written and directed by Greta Gerwig and staring Irish actress Saoirse Ronan in the lead role. Lady Bird follows 17 year old Christine MacPherson, through her

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The moment Paul Nicholas walked onto the stage on the first night of Quartet at Cambridge Arts Theatre, I thought how alluring he was, aged 73.

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India

Winner of this year’s Oscar for best picture, The Shape of Water is the latest film from highly rated Mexican film maker Guillermo Del Toro, who also won the academy award for Best Director.

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The evil Rob Titchener, the wicked husband in Radio 4’s The Archers, who personified “coercive control” and ended up both being jeered at in the street and asked to open village fetes, stole the show on the opening night of The Winslow Boy at Cambridge Arts Theatre.

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House of Commons

Marvel’s latest instalment in their cinematic universe sees Chadewick Boseman reprise his role as the Black Panther and follows on directly from the events of his previous appearance in Captain America: Civil War.

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Saffron Walden singing teacher, Joanna Eden, whose pupils include the young Sam Smith, says she regrets taking part in the BBCs All Together Now talent show.

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Sam Smith

Downsizing is the new film from Alexander Payne, the writer/director behind About Schmidt and Sideways. Staring Matt Damon in the lead role of Paul Safranek, the story is built around a groundbreaking new procedure designed to combat over population, which allows people to permanently shrink themselves to five inches tall.

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Do you have the cookery skills to get a perfect ten out of ten on TV show Couples Come Dine with me?

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James Graham’s play, This House, takes you back to the 1970s. It’s set in the House of Commons and it opens with MPs waving their order papers to a band with skinny musicians in jeans with long, flowing tresses. It then moves into the punk era and like the band’s spikey hair and the studs, everything gets harsher.

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House of Commons

A rattling good story is always a good place to begin, so this convoluted tale of conmen being conned set Saffron Walden Musical Theatre Company off to a flying start (for their show at Saffron Town Hall from March 6-10).

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Acclaimed director, Paul Thomas Anderson returns with this tale set in the 1950s of Reynolds Woodcock, a renowned dressmaker in postwar London, whose fastidious lifestyle is disrupted when he falls for a strong willed young waitress.

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London

The audience at Cambridge Corn Exchange on Wednesday, March 7, applauded and cheered for several minutes at the end of a performance of Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninoff by the Russian Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Valery Polyansky with virtuoso pianist Valentina Lisita.

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United States

I won’t be the first to say that the opening for The Weir, Conor McPherson’s spell-binding play, with three men and a woman walking into a bar, sounds like the start of a joke.

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Directed by Steven Spielberg and nominated for two Oscars, including Best Picture, The Post tells the story of the Washington Newspaper’s battle to publish the highly controversial Pentagon Papers which detailed the USA’s involvement in the Vietnam war and exposed a cover-up which spanned four presidents.

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Vietnam

This third film from British writer/director Martin Mcdonagh stars Frances McDormand in the lead role of Mildred Hayes a grieving mother coming to terms with the brutal murder of her daughter. She hires three billboards outside her home town of Ebbing, to advertise the fact the local police department has yet to catch the killer.

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America

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