Arts and Entertainment

Avi Avital "Between Worlds" (Deutsche Grammophon)

Album: C P E Bach, Harpsichord Concertos – Staier/ Müllejans/Freiburger (Harmonia Mundi)

Published in 1772, C P E Bach's "Sei Concerti" marked the end of three decades of boredom as court harpsichordist to Frederick the Great.

Album: Charivari Agréable, Concerti Curiosi (Signum Classics)

Concerti Curiosi builds on the popularity of Charivari Agréable's recent recording of "Pachelbel's Vespers", the period ensemble here turning its attention to assembling a range of concerti by lesser-known composers of the Baroque era.

Album: Charles Ramirez, Rodrigo (Signum Classics)

Guitar virtuoso Charles Ramirez is on supple, sensitive form on this collection of Rodrigo suites, accompanied on the "Concierto de Aranjuez" and "Fantasia para un gentilhombre" by the Chamber Orchestra of Europe, before closing with the solo piece "Elogio de la guitarra".

Malcolm Smith

Further to the obituary of Malcolm Smith (11 March), during the interval of Barry Douglas and Camerata Ireland's 2006 performance in Cadogan Hall, I found a morose, pessimistic Malcolm reflecting blackly on the decayed state of the London musical world as he knew it, writes Robert Maycock. Not a hint of optimism from anybody listening went unchallenged.

New CD celebrates Joseph Joachim, lynchpin of music-making in the Romantic era

The British violinist Daniel Hope is setting out to restore Joseph Joachim (1831-1907) to his rightful place as the lynchpin of music-making in the Romantic era, with a new CD entitled The Romantic Violin. And it's not a moment too soon, for some of the 19th century's crucial musical developments revolved around this violinist and composer.

Album: Handel, Alexander's Feast – Ludus Baroque / Neville-Towle (Delphian)

Richard Neville-Towle delivers a toothsome account of Alexander's Feast with Ludus Baroque.

Album: Higdon / Tchaikovsky, Violin Concertos – Hahn / Petrenko / Royal Liverpool Phil (Deutsche Grammophon)

Tailor-made for Hilary Hahn's cool, brilliant sound, Jennifer Higdon's 2008 Violin Concerto has the swagger of an established favourite.

Album: Stefano Bollani, Riccardo Chailly, Gewandhausorchester, Gershwin: Rhapsody in Blue; Piano Concerto in F (Decca)

The resurgence of interest in Gershwin receives a further unusual fillip with this intriguing pairing of the Leipzig Gewandhausorchester under Riccardo Chailly with Italian jazz pianist Stefano Bollani, best known for his work with Enrico Rava and his interest in Brazilian jazz.

London Philharmonic Orchestra/ Jurowski, Royal Festival Hall

The Austro-Hungarian connection loomed large but it was the Hungarian bloodline which bound this typically shrewd Vladimir Jurowski programme – and out of the Trannsylvanian twilight came Peter Eötvös like a latterday Bartok.

Album: Anna Vinnitskaya, Prokofiev: Piano Concerto No 2 in G minor; Ravel: Piano Concerto in G major (Naïve)

For her second recording, the Russian pianist Anna Vinnitskaya has chosen a programme of two (not too dissimilar) early 20th-century piano concertos, both reflecting the era's passionate desire for new modes of expression.

Album: Simone Dinnerstein, Bach: A Strange Beauty (Sony Classical)

Simone Dinnerstein's title derives from the 16th-century philosopher Francis Bacon's contention that "there is no excellent beauty that hath not some strangeness in the proportion", which she illustrates with interpretations of Bach's Keyboard Concertos Nos 1 & 5 and several of his solo piano pieces, of which Kempff's fastidious arrangement of "Nun Freut Euch, Lieben Christen Gmein" offers the most dazzling display of her virtuosity.

London Symphony Orchestra / Gardiner, Barbican Hall, London

The tricky opening chord of Weber's Der Freischütz overture needed warming up – didn't we all – but a quartet of horns quickly lent a dappled glow to the proceedings and the mercury began to rise.

London Symphony Orchestra/ Gardiner, Barbican Hall

The tricky opening chord of Weber’s Der Freischutz Overture needed warming up – didn’t we all - but a quartet of horns quickly lent a dappled glow to the proceedings and the mercury began to rise.

Alexei Ogrintchouk to present a rare new oboe concerto

The oboe is the hardest instrument to play, so what drew the young virtuoso Alexei Ogrintchouk to it? "My parents took me to a lot of concerts in Moscow when I was young, and I was always fascinated by its sound. I loved its purity and naturalness."

Arts and Entertainment
Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)
tvOur review of the Doctor Who Christmas Special
News
peopleIt seems you can't silence Katie Hopkins, even on Christmas Day...
Arts and Entertainment
Left to right: Stanley Tucci, Sophie Grabol and Christopher Eccleston in ‘Fortitude’
tvSo Sky Atlantic arrived in Iceland to film their new and supposedly snow-bound series 'Fortitude'...
Arts and Entertainment
Jenna Coleman as Clara Oswald in the Doctor Who Christmas special
tvForget the rumours that Clara Oswald would be quitting the Tardis
Arts and Entertainment
Sir Bruce Forsyth with Tess Daly in the BBC's Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special
tvLouis Smith wins with 'Jingle Bells' quickstep on Strictly Come Dancing's Christmas Special
Arts and Entertainment
Japanese artist Megumi Igarashi showing a small mascot shaped like a vagina
art
News
The Queen delivers her Christmas message
newsTwitter reacts to Her Majesty's Christmas Message
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Life and Style
fashion
Sport
sport
Career Services

Day In a Page

Independent Travel
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence – Five-star MS Swiss Corona 7 nights from £999pp
Lake Como St Moritz & the Bernina Express 7 nights from £809pp
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
Spain
Prices correct as of 19 December 2014
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there