Rita Rudner, Leicester Square Theatre, London

On her last visit to London, 19 years ago, Rita Rudner appeared in the Royal Variety Show at the Dominion Theatre. Tonight, she played the more modest, 420-seater, Leicester Square Theatre. However, the American has not lost her lustre and in-between time has become Las Vegas's most successful comedians.

The marriage of Figaro and footie

I'm working-class, tattooed and a football fan. I also run an opera venue. So don't call me elitist, says Michael Volpe

The Business On: Stephen Billingham, chairman-elect, Punch Taverns

Can he pull a decent pint?

Tuilagi should be banned – but let the punishment stop there

In the muddy world of rugby, the centre's punch on Chris Ashton was no worse than nicking the beer kitty and shouldn't affect his England chances, argues Chris Hewett

Deborah Ross does DIY: Can the hapless homemaker become a practical woman-about-the-house?

When I am first called by this magazine and asked to attend a couple of "You Can Do It" DIY classes at B&Q I say: "No, but thanks for thinking of me. I am always thinking of you. Bye, now".

The most scandal-ridden government ever known?

The Labor government of Australia's largest and most populous state is facing an epic defeat tomorrow after 16 years in power, following a string of scandals possibly unrivalled in the Western world.

Punch to sell thousands of pubs after debts soar

Punch Taverns has unveiled a radical plan to sell off up to 2,650 pubs over the next five years and split the debt-laden group into two listed companies, one for managed and one for leased pubs.

Jon Hamm - It's all started to ad up...

After starring in one of TV's great series, Mad Men's Jon Hamm is moving his pitch to the big screen. Kaleem Aftab meets him

Matt Prior: Siddle annoyed me but I didn't challenge him to a punch-up

Ashes Insider: Losing is a hammer blow of course but we will leave the defeat in Perth

Album: Saint Etienne, A Glimpse of Stocking (Foreign Office)

Without bells on – the atheist's guide to Christmas music

The business on...Ian Dyson, Chief executive, Punch Taverns

The new head barman?

Mr Dyson is indeed new to the post, having replaced Giles Thorley, the pubs group's colourful ex-boss, only three months ago.

Pubs serve up success story on a plate

Food is one of the 'Five Fs' that pumped up the profits for a trade that many said was sunk

Dom Joly: Fit? Me? I'm like a pot-bellied pig with a punchbag

Trying to get fit is not as simple an affair as I would have thought. I've been here before, of course – keen visits to the local gym, multiple purchasing of revolting sportswear and then, three weeks in, I get bored, the visits tail off and the sportswear joins the collection abandoned in the bottom drawer.

Pub landlord reveals his literary side

Al Murray, the bar-room comic, is making a documentary about his ancestor William Makepeace Thackeray

Thea Gilmore - Motherhood and the rebirth of a songstress

One of Britain's most under-appreciated songwriters tells Chris Mugan about the unexpected theme of her new album
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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 1 May 2015
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