Arts and Entertainment

The Venetian contralto Sara Mingardo is one of a kind, and the nearest approximation to her clarion sound is to be found in the recordings of countertenor James Bowman in his prime; down in the baritone register her voice has masculine firmness, and when she opens up at the top her timbre is thrilling.

Graduate employment gulf revealed

More than a fifth of students at some of England's universities failed to find work after graduating last summer, official figures show.

Amore

Observations: Popera act Amore are graduating to the big time

Charlotte Church and Katherine Jenkins have done wonders in changing classical music's reputation as stuffy. But will British operatic group Amore succeed in putting the fun back in opera and be the next big opera band?

He played with 'pure heart and soul': André in 2008

Maurice André: Trumpeter loved by both critics and public

He said modern classical music reminded him of the sounds he used to hear going down the mines

All universities exceed £6,000 in tuition fees

Every English university is to charge students more than £6,000 a year.

Best candidates missed university

Many of the best A-level candidates were beaten to university places this year by those who did worse in their exams, it emerged last night.

The A-Z of Universities and Colleges

Updated for 2011 - our list of institutions across Britain, with all the statistics, info and advice you need to make the right choice

Andrew Buncombe: Was a gay Indian academic driven to take his own life?

Amid the flurry of sad stories that filled the papers today - for instance, the awful, heart-breaking accounts of the Indian troops under deadly fire from Maoist rebels phoning their families to say good-bye - the tale of Shrinivas Ramachandra Siras caught my eye.

Thousands may lose jobs in university funding cuts

Many of the UK's leading universities have stiffened entry requirements in the wake of a flood of applications and funding cuts that could result in the axing of thousands of teaching jobs.

'Reckless' agency threatens college rebuilding scheme

The future of a government scheme to rebuild England's colleges has been left hanging in the balance by the "reckless" behaviour of the agency in charge, according to MPs.

Jerome Taylor: Should universities be doing more to stop hate preachers?

Universities are wonderful places that should always promote the principles of free speech and vibrant intellectual debate - even if the subject matter is highly controversial.

Leading Article: Degrees of difference

You may not have known it, but the Government has been having a debate on the future of higher education for the past year. Last week's plea by the Universities Secretary, John Denham, for universities to offer more vocational degrees was part of his contribution to summing up what has been going on.

University chiefs urge degree grading shake-up

University vice-chancellors acknowledged today that the degree classification system is out of date.

Leading Article: Another funding furore

The news that MPs on the innovation, universities and skills select committee are going to take a long, hard look at higher education is welcome — particularly in the light of the cock-up over grants. Undergraduate support is being cut after poor estimates were made of how many students were eligible for funds. The review will feed into the Government's review of top-up fees, providing some much-needed evidence on the extent to which the fees are hindering access.

Boys beat girls in admissions tests

Boys have finally got the better of girls – by outperforming them in university admissions tests, according to a study published today.

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 today
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File: James Woods attends the 52nd New York Film Festival at Walter Reade Theater on September 27, 2014
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Sport
Martin Skrtel heads in the dramatic equaliser
SPORTLiverpool vs Arsenal match report: Bandaged Martin Skrtel heads home in the 97th-minute
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Billie Whitelaw was best known for her close collaboration with playwright Samuel Beckett, here performing in a Beckett Trilogy at The Riverside Studios, Hammersmith
people'Omen' star was best known for stage work with Samuel Beckett
Arts and Entertainment
Mark Wright has won The Apprentice 2014
tvThe Apprentice 2014 final
Arts and Entertainment
Darrell Banks’s ‘Open The Door To Your Heart’
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Detective Tam Bui works for the Toronto Police force
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Arts and Entertainment
X Factor winner Ben Haenow has scored his first Christmas number one
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Elton John and David Furnish exchange marriage vows
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Independent Travel
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
Vietnam
Lake Maggiore, Orta & the Matterhorn 7 nights from £939pp
South Africa
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Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
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'