Arts and Entertainment

Autumnal gloom may be descending, but cinematically there are manifold reasons to be cheerful, as the studios stem the stream of comic-book blockbusters (next week’s Thor sequel excepted) and wheel out their prestige fare on the hunt for some of next year’s Oscars. 

Coming soon in dance: Le Corsaire, Romeo and Juliet and Rambert

With every Cabinet reshuffle it’s a while before new incumbents make their mark. And so it is in the world of dance. Big changes at the top – the Royal Ballet, English National Ballet, and Scottish Ballet all gained new directors last year – are only now beginning to register, as long-laid production plans come to fruition.

Coming soon in classical: Big things by Britten, Strauss and Verdi

Benjamin Britten dominates programming in the weeks before the centenary of his birth next month. This Saturday, at the Royal Festival Hall, Vladimir Jurowski conducts the London Philharmonic Choir and Orchestra in the War Requiem. Soloists include quintessential Britten tenor Ian Bostridge.

Mr Dadson has become the UK's oldest graduate

Britain's oldest graduate: 'Suduko and crosswords seemed a bit non-productive'

93-year-old man earns arts degree from Open University

Sketch: It's panto time again… and starring a saints and sinners performance

Aviva AGMs are usually like Christmas pantos: they come round once a year, feature heroes and (mostly) villains and the audience always enjoys taking part.

Judd Trump ponders his shock defeat in the UK Championship

Snooker: Trump left shell-shocked by Joyce's stirring comeback as door opens for chasing pack

Judd Trump criticised his own performance as the world No 1's title defence at the UK Championship in York was halted at the first hurdle by qualifier Mark Joyce last night.

Arthur Scargill has gone to the High Court to fight an attempt by his union to stop paying the cost of his London flat

Arthur, Arthur, Arthur Out! Out! Out!

Miners' union and Scargill in court over claim they must still pay for the £1.5m Barbican flat he moved into in the 1980s

Chick Corea and Gary Burton at the Barbican, London

“We knew we’d get you with that one,” claims Chick Corea after sustained applause for “Eleanor Rigby”, a track that’s been covered over 140 times by such luminaries as Shirley Bassey, Ray Charles and Ethel the Frog.

Judd Trump: 'I'd love to become the world No 1, it's a big ambition of mine'

Snooker: Trump holds nerve to end Allen fightback

Judd Trump, snooker's latest exciting prospect, toasted sweet success last night when he was crowned the new UK Championship winner in York. The 22-year-old from Bristol bravely fought back from 3-1 down to clinch an impressive 10-8 victory over Mark Allen in a gripping best-of-19 frame final.

London Symphony Orchestra & Chorus/ Elder, Barbican Hall

Elgar’s The Kingdom arrives in the heat of inspiration on a surge of orchestral magnificence. A glorious theme representing “New Faith” is announced in the strings, as noble and aspirational as anything Elgar wrote.

Macbeth, The Pit, Barbican Centre, London

Poland's Song of the Goat Theatre company – their name alludes to the Greek word for tragedy – created a stir in 2004 with Chronicles: A Lamentation, a startling 45-minute piece based on the epic of Gilgamesh.

Les Misérables, Barbican Theatre, London

There are ghosts and survivor's guilt in the second act of Les Misérables that sound like a trailer for the upcoming stage adaptation of Birdsong; Victor Hugo's Marius (played by pop idol Gareth Gates) comes through the carnage on the Paris barricades and sings of empty chairs and tables in the ABC café while his friends materialise in a celestial, supportive chorus.

Macbeth, Barbican Centre, London

There are no visible knives, gore, cauldrons or fateful letters. The witches are reduced to female voices that emerge from the silhouettes of the 12-strong company. Yet by the power of paradox and strong theatrical suggestion, Declan Donnellan's superb Cheek by Jowl version of Macbeth has a terrible and transfixing presence.

First Night: Macbeth, Barbican Centre, Silk Street, London

Mind games and murder

Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra/Chailly, Barbican, London

Leipzig's venerable Gewandhaus Orchestra arrived at London's Barbican Centre with so much more than Bach's St Matthew Passion. They brought with them history, tradition and Bach's very own choir from St Thomas's Church, where his passion first startled Leipzig's faithful on Good Friday 1727.

Ravi Shankar, Barbican Hall, London

Hushed awe as the master bows out on a high note
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