Voices

To buy a ticket for a hotly tipped play, within seconds of booking opening, requires perseverance and nerve as websites falter, payments vanish and a confirmation finally limps through. The goal is to see a top cast, whose fluency and fluidity is testament to years of determination – getting to drama school, being noticed at the end-of-year shows, getting an audition, getting a part and nailing it.  

Better than real life: Gamers report video-game mechanics appearing in their vision

A study of 'game transfer phenomena' reports gamers seeing video games menus and music in real life

A scene from 'Hamlet' at the New Diorama theatre

Hamlet, theatre review: 'A fresh account in modern dress'

New Diorama, London

Bill Grimsey to advise Labour over high streets and business rates

The former chief executive of Wickes and Iceland Bill Grimsey has been made an adviser to the Labour party and will help draw up the opposition’s strategy over business rates for small businesses – one of the hottest topics for retailers.

The UK chief executive of Rolls-Royce Torsten Müller-Ötvös in London yesterday to celebrate the company’s 110th birthday

Rolls-Royce is on a roll as the super-rich get all revved up

Sales are booming for Britain's luxury car makers as everyone from Chinese tycoons to film stars scrambles to buy one

Remains of cars at the partially destroyed village of Oradour-sur-Glane, south-western France, where German SS Nazi troops massacred 642 people on June 10, 1944

Former SS man charged with taking part in massacre at French village that killed 642

Oradour-sur-Glane has been deliberately left untouched as a permanent memorial to the 642 people slaughtered there on 10 June 1944

David Moyes shows his frustration on another difficult night for the United manager

Comment: David Moyes' position at Manchester United is much more complicated than a matter of stick or bust

Three defeats in a row has led to more questions about his appointment that ever

Album review: Bruce Springsteen, 'High Hopes' (Columbia)

A few low notes but the Boss has still got it covered

Chiwetel Ejiofor in Steve McQueen's 12 Years a Slave

12 Years A Slave star Chiwetel Ejiofor 'didn't want to be the guy that messed it up'

The actor told the BBC he was 'hesitant' about playing Solomon Northup

Benedict Cumberbatch in the new season opener

Sherlock 'The Empty Hearse' review: So, how did the great detective fake his own death?

A thoroughly satisfying season opener

High Cross House in Dartington, Devon played host to Bertrand Russell, Lucian Freud and many others

Celebrated Modernist home closed to visitors by the National Trust due to lack of interest

High Cross House in Dartington, Devon, failed to attract enough visitors to make it financially sustainable

Guests came suitably attired for the sleepover in the museum's imposing entrance hall

A night at the Natural History Museum – just don’t try doing what comes naturally at this sleepover for grown-ups

It’s billed as a sleepover, but as Kunal Dutta discovered, what with insect-based snacks there was far too much happening at the Natural History Museum

Invisible Ink: No 204 - Ghost writers

Remember the odd history of Virginia Andrews? Her Flowers In The Attic novels began appearing in 1979 and became surprise best-sellers. They were airless, claustrophobic works about four siblings locked in an attic in order to gain an inheritance. The incestuous melodramas appealed to teenaged girls, so when Andrews died in 1986 she was replaced by a ghost writer called Andrew Neiderman, who penned more than 40 further volumes in her name. They did so well that her estate kept her alive and earning, the Inland Revenue Service cannily arguing that her name was still a taxable asset.

2013 - the year in review: The best books of the year

"The Hired Man" by Aminatta Forna (Bloomsbury)

Veteran told he had three months to live after World War II celebrates his 100th birthday

Every 100th birthday is a cause for celebration, but even more so when you are a war veteran who has cheated death.

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A teenager boy wakes up.
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Researchers have said it could take only two questions to identify a problem with alcohol
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Critics say Kipling showed loathing for India's primitive villagers in The Jungle Book
filmChristopher Walken, Bill Murray, Scarlett Johanssen Idris Elba, Andy Serkis, Benedict Cumberbatch, Cate Blanchett and Christian Bale
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Playing to win: for Tanith Carey, pictured with Lily, right, and Clio, even simple games had to have an educational purpose
lifeTanith Carey explains what made her take her foot off the gas
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A still from Duncan Campbell's hour-long film 'It for Others'
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Tony Hadley in a scene from ‘Soul Boys Of The Western World’
musicSpandau Ballet are back together - on stage and screen
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From left to right: Ed Stoppard as Brian Epstein, Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black and Elliott Cowan as George Martin in 'Cilla'
tvCilla review: A poignant ending to mini-series
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Prices correct as of 26 September 2014
Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?
Royal Ballet star dubbed 'Charlize Theron in pointe shoes' takes on Manon

Homegrown ballerina is on the rise

Royal Ballet star Melissa Hamilton is about to tackle the role of Manon
Education, eduction, education? Our growing fascination with what really goes on in school

Education, education, education

TV documentaries filmed in classrooms are now a genre in their own right
It’s reasonable to negotiate with the likes of Isis, so why don’t we do it and save lives?

It’s perfectly reasonable to negotiate with villains like Isis

So why don’t we do it and save some lives?
This man just ran a marathon in under 2 hours 3 minutes. Is a 2-hour race in sight?

Is a sub-2-hour race now within sight?

Dennis Kimetto breaks marathon record
We shall not be moved, say Stratford's single parents fighting eviction

Inside the E15 'occupation'

We shall not be moved, say Stratford single parents
Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

Talks between all touched by the crisis in Syria and Iraq can achieve as much as the Tornadoes, says Patrick Cockburn
Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

The Tory MP speaks for the first time about the devastating effect of his father's bankruptcy
Witches: A history of misogyny

Witches: A history of misogyny

The sexist abuse that haunts modern life is nothing new: women have been 'trolled' in art for 500 years
Shona Rhimes interview: Meet the most powerful woman in US television

Meet the most powerful woman in US television

Writer and producer of shows like Grey's Anatomy, Shonda Rhimes now has her own evening of primetime TV – but she’s taking it in her stride
'Before They Pass Away': Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

Jimmy Nelson travelled the world to photograph 35 threatened tribes in an unashamedly glamorous style