Arts and Entertainment

"Bo Burnham: What", Pleasance Grand, Edinburgh Fringe, August

Alice Jones' Edinburgh Diary: The Traverse scouts the fringes to make playwrights' dreams come true

One lucky playwright is to have a play they haven't written yet performed at the Traverse this month. David Greig and the theatre's artistic director, Orla O'Loughlin, have already commissioned 10 playwrights – including Alan Wilkins and Janice Galloway – to submit their 45-minute "Dream Plays", or scenes from a play they never dreamed would be staged.

You can be serious: Top comics play it straight at Fringe

Some of Britain's top comics are putting away their one-liners to perform in straight dramas at the Edinburgh Festival

Izzard said he was delighted to be invited to take the role

It's time to get serious, says new Crystal Palace director Eddie Izzard

Crystal Palace have announced that the comedian and actor Eddie Izzard, who is a boyhood fan of the club, has become an associate director of the Championship club.

Natalie Haynes: Don't you just loathe fun runners?

I am not an uncharitable person. Honestly. I give money to a few charities each month, and I am a sucker for any mailshot that includes a picture of anyone looking sad or brave, even if it is a donkey. But several times every year, the park I walk through to get into town is commandeered by fun-runners.

Sport Relief 2012: A letter from today's guest editor, David Walliams

Quality newspapers are normally quite boring. Not monumentally boring, just a bit dull and worthy. If they were a colour, they would be brown.

David Walliams talks to Eddie Izzard

'So, Eddie Izzard, were your marathons an attempt to trump my swims?'

David Walliams talks to Eddie Izzard

Natalie Haynes: Fun-runners. Don't you just loathe them?

They take over the paths, running in packs, pulverising walkers

On Thursday 22nd March, David Walliams will take on the role of Editor for one day, for a special Sport Relief edition of The Independent and i, to be published on Friday 23rd March

David Walliams to guest edit The Independent and i for Sport Relief

Guest contributors include John Bishop, Jimmy Carr, Rob Brydon and more…

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Alan Carr

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Zooey Deschanel, in Channel 4's latest sitcom import New Girl, hovers between adorable and irksome

It's elementary – just lie back and enjoy

The second series of 'Sherlock' gets us off to a promising start, and there's always more 'Downton' to look forward to

Radio Choice: Generations Apart / 9am, Radio 4

Fi Glover traces the fortunes of people from two different generations – the first "baby boomers" born in 1946 now turning 65, and the children born in 1990, at the time of the advent of the worldwide web, and now turning 21. In today's programme, she meets the baby boomers.

Eddie Izzard: Stripped, Théâtre de Dix Heures, Paris

"Tout en Français!" the posters proclaim, and indeed Stripped – Eddie Izzard's whistlestop tour through the history of civilisation, which he has performed on and off in English since 2008 – sees him hold forth on evolution, Nazis, sharks, God being a crack addict and giraffes playing charades – all in French.

Confusion, caricature, half-truths: tactics that rattled Yes campaign

Even before polling booths closed last night, recriminations began over how electoral reformers appeared to have blown a once-in-a-generation chance to change the voting system.

Armando Iannucci: Why do I want to change the system? The answer really is as simple as 1, 2, 3

AV is not complicated unless you call counting to three complicated. It's more modern and sophisticated
Voices
There will be a chance to bid for a rare example of the SAS Diary, collated by a former member of the regiment in the aftermath of World War II but only published – in a limited run of just 5,000 – in 2011
charity appealTime is running out to secure your favourite lot as our auction closes at 2pm tomorrow
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Elton John and David Furnish will marry on 21 December 2014
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Arts and Entertainment
Caroline Flack became the tenth winner of Strictly Come Dancing
tvReview: 'Absolutely phenomenal' Xtra Factor presenter wins Strictly Come Dancing final
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A still from the 1939 film version of Margaret Mitchell's 'Gone with the Wind'
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J Jefferson Farjeon at home in 1953
booksBooksellers say readers are turning away from modern thrillers and back to golden age of crime writing
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Amir Khan is engaged in a broader battle than attempting to win a fight with Floyd Mayweather
boxing Exclusive: Amir Khan reveals plans to travel to Pakistan
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Stacey Dooley was the only woman to be nominated in last month’s Grierson awards
mediaClare Balding and Davina McCall among those overlooked for Grierson awards
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Joseph Kynaston Reeves arguing with Russell Brand outside the RBS’s London offices on Friday
voicesDJ Taylor: The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a worker's rant to Russell Brand
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Twitchers see things differently, depending on their gender
scienceNew study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
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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
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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
The 12 ways of Christmas: Spare a thought for those who will be working to keep others safe during the festive season

The 12 ways of Christmas

We speak to a dozen people who will be working to keep others safe, happy and healthy over the holidays
Birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends, new study shows

The male exhibits strange behaviour

A new study shows that birdwatching men have a lot in common with their feathered friends...
Diaries of Evelyn Waugh, Virginia Woolf and Noël Coward reveal how they coped with the December blues

Famous diaries: Christmas week in history

Noël Coward parties into the night, Alan Clark bemoans the cost of servants, Evelyn Waugh ponders his drinking…
From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

From noble to narky, the fall of the open letter

The great tradition of St Paul and Zola reached its nadir with a hungry worker's rant to Russell Brand, says DJ Taylor
A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore: A prodigal daughter has a breakthrough

A Christmas ghost story by Alison Moore

The story was published earlier this month in 'Poor Souls' Light: Seven Curious Tales'
Marian Keyes: The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment

Marian Keyes

The author on her pre-approved Christmas, true love's parking implications and living in the moment
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef creates an Italian-inspired fish feast for Christmas Eve

Bill Granger's Christmas Eve fish feast

Bill's Italian friends introduced him to the Roman Catholic custom of a lavish fish supper on Christmas Eve. Here, he gives the tradition his own spin…
Liverpool vs Arsenal: Brendan Rodgers is fighting for his reputation

Rodgers fights for his reputation

Liverpool manager tries to stay on his feet despite waves of criticism
Amir Khan: 'The Taliban can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'

Amir Khan attacks the Taliban

'They can threaten me but I must speak out... innocent kids, killed over nothing. It’s sick in the mind'
Michael Calvin: Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Sepp Blatter is my man of the year in sport. Bring on 2015, quick