Arts and Entertainment Elton John performing in New York - he interrupted a performance in Moscow to condemn Russia's anti-gay laws as inhumane

He issues a call for harmony and compassion

Our national love affair with Venice

For centuries, English writers and artists have fallen in love with Venice. Peter Ackroyd, literary Londoner, is the latest. Peter Popham celebrates the seductive city

Party Of The Week: You Cannes be my best friend now

Oscar winner Penelope Cruz made it to the Hollywood Domino party at the Cannes Film Festival on Monday night, despite a bout of food poisoning earlier in the day.

Finnish photographer wins £30,000 award

Esko Männikkö has been awarded the 2008 Deutsche Börse Photography Prize.

Pandora: 'Get exclusives!' Unless you happen to be a BBC boss...

There's plenty of smirking over at the BBC Politics office in Millbank, as correspondents watch their dragon-boss, Sue Inglish, squirm during the Peter Hain dodgy undeclared donors affair.

The 'best celeb' awards

Many award shows are shams, with the gongs going to the most famous faces who can be persuaded to turn up on the night. So says old hand Anthony Noguera

Look where my big mouth has got me now

Janet Street-Porter happily agreed to model for one of her friends - but then reality set in. What about the glasses, the cellulite and all those skinny waifs? This is her Milan report

Why it's been a bad week for homosexuals

There's no going back now for the oh-so ambiguous George Michael

Diana 1961-1997: The celebrities - Funeral for a friend

Jojo Moyes and Vanessa Thorpe on a diverse congregation

Elton John still standing tall after 50 fantastic years

Glittering in a silver costume topped with a 3.5ft wig crowned by a silver galleon and a train of ostrich feathers borne by two semi- naked Adonis-style attendants, Elton John set off for his 50th birthday celebrations last night in a removal van.

Moll nominated for best actress in Baftas

Alex Kingston, who starred in ITV's raunchy adaptation of Moll Flanders (right), was last night shortlisted as best actress in nominations for the 1997 Bafta awards - known as the "British Oscars". She will face stiff competition from Gina McKee, whose performance in the BBC's acclaimed Our Friends in the North was among seven nominations for the pounds 3.5m series.

Elton marks half a century by joining classical greats

The Royal Academy of Music, more usually associated with the sounds of classical maestros, has extended honorary membership to Elton John, to mark his 50th birthday. Once known as much for his wild lifestyle as his music, the flamboyant singer-songwriter joins a growing list of modern musicians to be honoured by the academy.
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Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before