The Diary: Alecky Blythe; Martin Creed; James Corden; Darren Criss; Jo Nesbo

 

Theatre to stoke the fires of hope

Alecky Blythe's London Road, a verbatim musical about the Ipswich prostitute murders was one of the biggest, and most unlikely, hits of this year. Now the playwright is taking her unconventional techniques to the Potteries for a play which will have its world premiere at the New Vic Theatre in April. Blythe has already spent time in Staffordshire interviewing Stoke City footballers, Potteries workers, schoolchildren and bingo players but has settled on a local talent contest, Stoke's Got Talent, as the subject matter for Where Have I Been All My Life? "I'm interested not necessarily in the eye of the storm, if you like, but more in the ripples it creates outside," says Blythe. The play will be the centrepiece for the 50th anniversary of the New Vic company – a change from its celebrated plays about mining and pottery workers. "The New Vic documentaries of the past were about working lives, about solidarity; about industry... The fact that this documentary seemed to be all about the desire to achieve 15 minutes of fame instead... saddened me at first," says Theresa Heskins, the Vic's artistic director. "But I'm starting to realise it's not about that at all. It's about aspiration ... regeneration and hope."

Eat to the art beat

The Turner Prize winner, rock star, choreographer and one-time tiler of the toilets at the London Library, Martin Creed is preparing to make his debut on London's food scene. The artist (for that is his day job) has been commissioned to design a new restaurant, to open in the "Gallery" space at Sketch, Mayfair, in March. The entire space will become a work of art from the walls and floor (Work No 1347) to Creed's choice of cutlery and crockery (Work No 1343). Whether diners will eat under flickering lights is to be confirmed. "Martin is choosing every single knife, fork, spoon, table and chair," I'm told. "No two forks will be the same." The main attraction will be a floor made of 96 types of marble laid in zigzags. Creed previously used marble to revitalise the Scotsman Steps in Edinburgh, a project unveiled almost a year behind schedule. He is unlikely to be allowed delays this time as the restaurant will have to close for weeks while the work is installed. Chez Creed will be in place for 18 months, after which it will be replaced by another artist's vision.

The show must go on

Comic actors across London are boning up on their pratfalls as James Corden's triumphant run in One Man, Two Guvnors is scheduled to end on 25 February. The National Theatre must be thinking of the sold-out show as a long-runner, so is it looking for a successor to Corden? "We are indeed exploring that option but nothing is confirmed yet," a spokesperson tells me. Owain Arthur stands in for Corden on his odd days off. He's already had practice stepping into the big man's shoes. He took over the role of Timms from Corden when The History Boys had its second run in 2005 in a cast that included Matt Smith and Ben Barnes.

The boy wonders of Broadway

Talking of takeovers, a poverty-stricken New York window cleaner is becoming the unlikely go-to role for teen heart-throbs keen to make their mark on Broadway. Daniel Radcliffe started the trend when he chose J Pierrepont Finch, the hero of How to Succeed In Business without Really Trying, as his first post-Potter role. When he finishes his contract on 1 January, Darren Criss aka Kurt's boyfriend in Glee, will take over for three weeks. After that Nick Jonas, of tweeny poppers the Jonas Brothers, will play the part until July. Who next? High School Musical's Corbin Bleu? Justin Bieber?

Crime pays

Move over Wallander and Blomkvist, there's a new Scandi crime story in town. Jo Nesbo's 2008 novel Headhunters has been made into a film which will open in April. The Norwegian movie, produced by the company behind the Millennium Trilogy and the English and Swedish versions of Wallander, stars Nikolaj Coster-Waldau as the ruthless headhunter-turned-art-thief. Nesbo turned down Working Title when they tried to buy The Snowman, the seventh novel in his Harry Hole detective series, explaining that he did not want to sell the rights to a series he was still writing. Headhunters is a standalone novel. The author had no input into the film, except for one contribution, he told Screen Daily. "They had trouble with the the punchline. So I wrote the last line of the movie." No spoilers here.

Arts and Entertainment
Jamie Dornan as Christian Grey in Fifty Shades of Grey

film Sex scene trailer sees a shirtless Jamie Dornan turn up the heat

Arts and Entertainment
A sketch of Van Gogh has been discovered in the archives of Kunsthalle Bremen in Germany
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
Eleanor Catton has hit back after being accused of 'treachery' for criticising the government.
books
Arts and Entertainment
Fake Banksy stencil given to artist Alex Jakob-Whitworth

art

Arts and Entertainment
'The Archers' has an audience of about five million
radioA growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried
PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
Taylor Swift is heading to Norwich for Radio 1's Big Weekend

music
Arts and Entertainment
Beer as folk: Vincent Franklin and Cyril Nri (centre) in ‘Cucumber’
tvReview: This slice of gay life in Manchester has universal appeal
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Arts and Entertainment
‘A Day at the Races’ still stands up well today
film
Arts and Entertainment
‘The Royals’ – a ‘twisted, soapy take on England’s first family’
tvAnd its producers have already announced a second season...
Arts and Entertainment
Kraftwerk performing at the Neue Nationalgalerie (New National Gallery) museum in Berlin earlier this month
musicWhy a bunch of academics consider German electropoppers Kraftwerk worthy of their own symposium
Arts and Entertainment
Icelandic singer Bjork has been forced to release her album early after an online leak

music
Arts and Entertainment
Colin Firth as Harry Hart in Kingsman: The Secret Service

film
Arts and Entertainment
Brian Blessed as King Lear in the Guildford Shakespeare Company's performance of the play

theatre
Arts and Entertainment
In the picture: Anthony LaPaglia and Martin Freeman in 'The Eichmann Show'

tv
Arts and Entertainment
Anne Kirkbride and Bill Roache as Deirdre and Ken Barlow in Coronation Street

tvThe actress has died aged 60
Arts and Entertainment
Marianne Jean-Baptiste defends Joe Miller in Broadchurch series two

tv
Arts and Entertainment
The frill of it all: Hattie Morahan in 'The Changeling'

theatre
Arts and Entertainment
Gillian Anderson and David Duchovny may reunite for The X Files

tv
Arts and Entertainment
Jeremy Clarkson, left, and Richard Hammond upset the locals in South America
TV
News
A young woman punched a police officer after attending a gig by US rapper Snoop Dogg
people
Arts and Entertainment
Reese Witherspoon starring in 'Wild'

It's hard not to warm to Reese Witherspoon's heroismfilm
Arts and Entertainment
Word up: Robbie Coltrane as dictionary guru Doctor Johnson in the classic sitcom Blackadder the Third
books

Arts and Entertainment
The Oscar nominations are due to be announced today

Oscars 2015
Arts and Entertainment
Hacked off: Maisie Williams in ‘Cyberbully’

Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challenge

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Eddie Redmayne in The Theory of Everything and Benedict Cumberbatch in The Imitation Game are both nominated at the Bafta Film Awards
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    Michael Calvin: Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links

    Michael Calvin's Last Word

    Time for Old Firm to put aside bigotry and forge new links
    Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

    Isis hostage crisis

    The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
    Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

    The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

    Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
    Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

    Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

    Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
    Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

    Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

    This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
    Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

    Cabbage is king again

    Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
    11 best winter skin treats

    Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

    Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
    Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

    Paul Scholes column

    The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
    Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

    Frank Warren's Ringside

    No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
    Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

    Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
    Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
    Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

    Comedians share stories of depression

    The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
    Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

    Has The Archers lost the plot?

    A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
    English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

    14 office buildings added to protected lists

    Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing