Giuseppe di Stefano: Tenor who sang alongside Callas

Giuseppe di Stefano, with his dark, Sicilian good looks, and warm, velvet-toned tenor voice of an exquisite natural beauty, was liberally endowed with all the gifts an opera singer could hope to possess.

My Life In Travel: Cherie Lunghi, actress

'The Chinese harp sent me into a world of cherry blossom and bamboo'

Patrick Hamilton: Itinerant writer and painter

Asked to leave theological college in the late 1940s after a sudden extinction of his faith, Patrick Hamilton soon came to make a habit of losing his job. He was sacked first by BP, then by the publishers Longmans, and finally, at the pinnacle of his salaried career, in 1969, he achieved dismissal by Robert Maxwell. But he discovered creativity and, aged 46, found his path in life, as a writer and painter.

24-Hour Room Service: Riva Lofts, Florence

The peach-hued buildings, artisan shops and Renaissance landmarks begin to peter out as you follow the River Arno from the historic centre of Florence to Riva Lofts. But with them go the crowds; they are soon replaced by Florentines going about their daily business. After a day milling around the sights of the often claustrophobic streets in the centre, Riva Lofts feels like a sanctuary.

Plans for a new airport bringing cheap flights to Tuscany provoke furious opposition

Eight kilometres from the city of Siena, in the heart of Tuscany, is an airport. One of dozens in Italy that have never made any money, it consists of a 1,500m runway, a squat control tower and a terminal building out of a Tintin book. If you check the airport's website you will find that no flights are scheduled, either today or next week. One small, single-engine plane sits on the runway. Airport facilities consist of a pizzeria.

Has 'David' got too big for Florence?

A proposal to move Michelangelo's most famous sculpture from its home in a Florentine gallery has provoked uproar among the art elite. Peter Popham reports

Renaissance Siena : Art For A City, National Gallery, London

By Michael Glover

The Forgotten Renaissance

The National Gallery’s new show recognises Siena’s unsung role in the cultural rebirth. Ciar Byrne reports

Why Renaissance Siena is finally on the art map

It's the Renaissance, but not as you know it: a new exhibition at the National Gallery is finally putting Siena in the spotlight. It's about time, says the show's curator Luke Syson

Femi Kuti: 'We are in a state of anarchy'

Femi Kuti says he has cut down on interviews because they get him so worked up. But ask him to comment on Nigerian politics and there's instantly a venomous tirade, says Alex Hannaford

The Derby: Sir Percy wins the race of races

Tregoning's bargain usurps aristocrats in closest finish since 1913 as disaster strikes Horatio Nelson

Milder than forecast winter aids acquisitive Homeserve

The emergency repair group Homeserve unveiled a better than expected 28 per cent jump in its annual pre-tax profits yesterday, boosted by a milder than forecast UK winter.

Candida Crewe: The weigh-in could become a weapon in the war against fat

At the beginning and end of each term we were ordered into a queue for our turn at the stake: a step up in front of everyone on to the old-fashioned scales in the school hall. They closely resembled the outsized ones in the school kitchen, daily employed to weigh large slabs of meat or dough.

Caesar by Adrian Goldsworthy

At least he cut their throats first
Arts and Entertainment
Banksy's 'The Girl with the Pierced Eardrum' in Bristol
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Life and Style
tech

Sales of the tablet are set to fall again, say analysts

Life and Style
A street vendor in Mexico City sells Dorilocos, which are topped with carrot, jimaca, cucumber, peanuts, pork rinds, spices and hot sauce
food + drink

Trend which requires crisps, a fork and a strong stomach is sweeping Mexico's streets

Arts and Entertainment
George Lucas poses with a group of Star Wars-inspired Disney characters at Disney's Hollywood Studios in 2010
films

George Lucas criticises the major Hollywood film studios

Sport
football West Brom vs Man Utd match report: Blind grabs point, but away form a problem for Van Gaal
Arts and Entertainment
Bloom Time: Mira Sorvino
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Gotham is coming to UK shores this autumn
tvGotham, episode 2, review
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Independent Travel
Vietnam & Cambodia
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Bruges
India & Nepal
Japan
Berlin, Dresden, Meissen & Colditz
Prices correct as of 17 October 2014
Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities - not London, or Edinburgh, but Salisbury

Salisbury ranked seventh in world’s best tourist cities

The city is home to one of the four surviving copies of the Magna Carta, along with the world’s oldest mechanical clock
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album