Arts and Entertainment

There is a certain pleasure (however smug) in being ahead of the curve when spotting a particularly gifted writer, and a certain regret when the masses catch up with your discovery. The latter, of course, is the state desired by author and publisher, and Peter May has now made the transition from connoisseurs’ taste to popular bestseller.

Inquiry begins into death of child in neglect case

An independent inquiry began yesterday into the death of a girl aged seven alleged to have starved to death at her home.

You write the reviews: Fram, National Theatre, London

Tony Harrison's Fram is long and mind-knottingly complex, but it is neither self-indulgent nor superfluous. It is one of the most stimulating, engaging and extraordinary evenings on offer. Its message is simple: it asks what role the arts can play in a world where illegal immigrants fall from their hiding places in the wheel bays of aircraft, and four-year-olds starve to death in the Russian famine. So the beautiful ballet that Viviana Durante dances and that so many critics have complained about has to be performed in its entirety, juxtaposed as it is against the gritty realism of starving Russian children. The frills of a verse drama are necessary in the same way: the play needs a lack of realism, it needs to be elaborate in the way that the ballet is elaborate, to question its place in the world. The layers at work are extraordinary: we are constantly made aware that we are in the National Theatre watching actors playing actors putting on a play watching a play.

Taylor Wimpey profits hit by mortgage famine

Taylor Wimpey, the UK's biggest housebuilder, added to the gloom descending over the nation's housing market yesterday after it revealed falling profits and gave a pessimistic outlook for the rest of the year.

Sir Geoffrey Cox

One of the most searching examples of Geoffrey Cox's integrity as a human being, writes Paul Trewhela [further to the obituary by Leonard Miall, 4 April], came in the early 1930s when Cox measured himself against one of the most complex issues of the day, differentiating his own perceptions from those of a close colleague at Oxford University, the young Bram Fischer, later to become chairman of the illegal South African Communist Party and leading counsel in the defence of Nelson Mandela and his colleagues in the Rivonia Trial of 1963-64.

Rising prices threaten millions with starvation, despite bumper crops

There has never been anything remotely like the food crisis that is now increasingly gripping the world, threatening millions with starvation. For it is happening at a time of bumper crops.

Radio: The Things We Forgot to Remember, Radio 4; Longing for Silence, Radio 4

It takes Michael Portillo to remind us how lucky we are

Condoleezza Rice: 'The President's heart aches to see people in need'

From remarks made by the US Secretary of State en route to Alabama to visit areas struck by Hurricane Katrina

Miles Kington: Those who think Albanian, talk Albanian

How cruel to give a man a clock when he retires. Much kinder to give it him when he joins the company

Niger's agony spreads to her neighbours

Sahel in crisis: Food aid is trickling in, but agencies warn that three other countries in the region need immediate outside help

I don't know how to describe five million starving kids any more. I'm sick of it myself

Two decades on, rock star turned entrepreneur returns to Africa as 12.6 million more face starvation because of droughts
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Denny Miller in 1959 remake of Tarzan, the Ape Man
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Arts and Entertainment
Cheryl despairs during the arena auditions
tvX Factor review: Drama as Cheryl and Simon spar over girl band

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Piers Morgan tells Scots they might not have to suffer living on the same island as him if they vote ‘No’ to Scottish Independence
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i100Exclusive interview with the British analyst who helped expose Bashar al-Assad's use of Sarin gas
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Rob James-Collier, who plays under-butler Thomas Barrow, admitted to suffering sleepless nights over the Series 5 script
tv'Thomas comes right up to the abyss', says the actor
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newsIn short, yes
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Angel Di Maria celebrates his first goal for Manchester United against QPR
Football4-0 victory is team's first win under new manager Louis van Gaal
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Arts and Entertainment
Calvin Harris claimed the top spot in this week's single charts
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BoxingVideo: The incident happened in the very same ring as Tyson-Holyfield II 17 years ago
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Independent Travel
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These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week
The fall of Rome? Cash-strapped Italy accused of selling its soul to the highest bidder

The fall of Rome?

Italy's fears that corporate-sponsored restoration projects will lead to the Disneyfication of its cultural heritage
Glasgow girl made good

Glasgow girl made good

Kelly Macdonald was a waitress when she made Trainspotting. Now she’s taking Manhattan
Sequins ahoy as Strictly Come Dancing takes to the floor once more

Sequins ahoy as Strictly takes to the floor once more

Judy Murray, Frankie Bridge and co paired with dance partners
Wearable trainers and other sporty looks

Wearable trainers and other sporty looks

Alexander Wang pumps it up at New York Fashion Week
The landscape of my imagination

The landscape of my imagination

Author Kate Mosse on the place that taught her to tell stories