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The Guardian

Roundelay review both magnificent and a disappointment

Stephen Joseph, ScarboroughAlan Ayckbourns experimental playlets are moving and hilarious but their fragmentary nature often hobbles the drama.

The Script: No Sound Without Silence review stadium rock lacking in substance

There's a close symbiosis between the chest-beating music of Irish behemoths the Script and the pop-rock theatre of their live shows.

Sarah Jane Morris: Bloody Rain review cold fury and compassion

(Fallen Angel)Sarah Jane Morris has had many roles over the years Communards hit-maker, jazz crooner, Brechtian big band diva the common thread being an octave-leaping voice brimming with drama and passion. Here she hits a career high with an album dedi

Anna Nicole review an abject story told indecently well

Royal Opera House, LondonUncompromising production and an excellent cast bring the right balance of pathos, intelligence and vulgarity to this real-life operaMark-Anthony Turnages Anna Nicole, making a comeback to the ROH (its premiere was in 2011), is op

Fatherland review an absorbing account of a Serbian fanatic

Nina Bunjevac tackles exile and the horrors of nationalism in this vivid and timely memoirFatherland, a graphic memoir from the same school as Marjane Satrapis Persepolis, is a heartfelt and extremely absorbing examination of exile, reconciliation and des

The Culinary Imagination review a survey of food in western culture that doesn't quite cut the mustard

Sandra Gilbert explores food's role in sin and sacrament in her slightly indigestible buffet"Just about everyone, lately, seems to want to read about one aspect or another of food," observes the scholar and poet Sandra M Gilbert as she begins her own atte

Northern Ballet: Dracula review lashings of gothic coupling

Javier Torress Count may be a touch too wholesome, but theres plenty of heaving bosoms and dripping fangs to entertainIn his production of Dracula for Northern Ballet, choreographer-director David Nixon gives us the vampire as hard-bodied sex symbol. Inde

Tricky: Adrian Thaws review back to his quietly menacing best

You never know what to expect from Tricky, whose oeuvre ranges from ghastly (Angels With Dirty Faces) to groundbreaking (Maxinquaye) by way of several so-so affairs.

Clara's Daughter by Meike Ziervogel review stark and acutely observed realism

A strange, oppressive power struggle between mother and daughter makes for an uncomfortable and moving readMichele's elderly mother, Clara anxious, frail and frightfully stubborn reluctantly moves into Michele's basement after a fall. Simultaneously, Mi

How to Be Both by Ali Smith review playful, tender, unforgettable

Smith's Man Booker-longlisted novel pairs parallel narratives of a teenage girl and a 15th-century Renaissance artistIn a flashback scene in Ali Smith's Man Booker-longlisted new novel, a British mother visiting Italy sits in a cafe with her two children