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A liver transplant patient turned up to her operation appointment at a German hospital with a bottle of vodka in her bag, a court has heard.

`It was known you were going to be murdered by work'

THE TALL, slightly stooping figure of Roman Halter pauses as if in great silent pain as he explains life as a slave labourer.

Porcelain is the next 'Longitude'

THE STORY of a self-styled alchemist's accidental discovery of the formula for porcelain is tipped as a potential successor to the non-fiction literary sensation of the Nineties: Dava Sobel's Longitude.

Obituary: Klaus Tennstedt

Klaus Tennstedt, conductor: born Merseburg, Germany 6 June 1926; Guest Conductor, London Philharmonic Orchestra 1977-80, Principal Guest Conductor 1980-83, Principal Conductor 1983-87, Conductor Laureate 1987- 94; married 1960 Ingeborg Fischer; died Kiel, Germany 11 January 1998.

Classical music: So, what's the story so far?

Music on Radio 3

Classical music: `Never lose sight of what the music means'

From Leipzig to New York, conductor Kurt Masur has been challenging orchestras to see things his way. Edward Seckerson finds him calling the tune in rehearsal with the NY Philharmonic

PROMS Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra / Neville Marriner Royal Albert Hall, London / Radio 3

Early promenaders sheltering in the arena from last Thursday's downpours looked on happily as members of the Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra grappled with key passages from the evening's forthcoming programme. The lead cellist tackled The Mastersingers overture's spiralling sequences and the oboist toyed with fragments of Schumann's Piano Concerto as an aleatoric crescendo of sounds familiar and unfamiliar filled the hall. An hour later and Sir Neville Marriner sent Wagner's most contrapuntal overture on a comfortable course, slowing somewhat for the "Prize Song" episode but taking full advantage of the band's unique tonal properties, its solid though soft-grained violins, full-bodied lower strings (the basses are the best I've heard in concert), rich woodwinds (lots of vibrato and a pleasingly mellow texture) and sonorous brass - the horns sporting just a spot of East European-style vibrato. Anyone familiar with the Gewandhaus Orchestra's many recordings will instantly have recognised their mellifluous, mahogany sound. Patches of shaky ensemble notwithstanding, the Wagner performance was nicely centred, musically satisfying and just a little low in voltage.

The virgin rebirth

Lucas Cranach probably painted more naked women than any other artist in history. But he only ever had one ideal figure in mind: the true Renaissance woman. By Andrew Graham-Dixon

National library speaks volumes about Germany

Low-key opening for Frankfurt's book palace

Letter : The lighter side of Sir Nikolaus Pevsner

Jonathan Glancey's portrait of Nikolaus Pevsner ("The Doktor goes for a drive", Review, 9 March) was much too grim, and so was the photo. No doubt Pevsner could be nanny-ish. No one could do so much without running other people occasionally into the ground.

Kohl's heirs listed

The parliamentary leader of Helmut Kohl's Christian Democrats, who earlier this month mentioned himself as a possible successor to the Chancellor, named eight more possible contenders.

SEASONAL MUSIC: Christmas Music from Leipzig Wigmore Hall, London

The New Year's Eve concert at the Wigmore Hall was Christmas music from Leipzig, performed by eight singers and 12 instrumentalists of The King's Consort directed by Robert King. Extracts from JS Bach's Christmas Oratorio were interspersed with seasonal music by his predecessors as Cantor and a sinfonia by his pupil Johann Ludwig Krebs. These also-rans, or "interesting historical figures", are at a disadvantage when isolated works by them are heard against Bach's familiar music. You're already warm to Bach, but need to be persuaded by the unknowns. Even so, allowing for that, Krebs's Sinfonia in C minor, just for the strings, seemed not much more than a mildly pleasant change, and had a pretty dull middle movement. Kuhnau's "sacred concerto", O heilige Zeit, began and ended prosaically, with fugal sections on a distinctly humdrum subject, but the intervening arias were more engaging and included a winsome triple- time solo for James Bowman, though he sang it a bit patchily.

Rusedski and Smith hit the heights

The British No 2, Greg Rusedski, and Sam Smith, the 24-year-old Essex player, both gained outstanding victories yesterday.

Saxony battles Brussels in VW subsidy row

The robots on the assembly line and their human assistants do not have much time to worry about Europe's future.

Political exile finds new angle in Saxony

LOCAL HEROES ": Kurt Beidenkopf

Royal couple could not afford lavish life

German prince and wife in hunting rifle suicide pact
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War with Isis: Iraq declares victory in the battle for Tikrit - but militants make make ominous advances in neighbouring Syria's capital

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Scientists develop mechanical spring-loaded leg brace to improve walking

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Peter Ackroyd on Alfred Hitchcock: How London shaped the director's art and obsessions

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Ryan Reynolds branches out in Woman in Gold

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Why Michael Carrick is still proving an enigma for England

Why Carrick is still proving an enigma for England

Manchester United's talented midfielder has played international football for almost 14 years yet, frustratingly, has won only 32 caps, says Sam Wallace
Tracey Neville: The netball coach who is just as busy as her brothers, Gary and Phil

Tracey Neville is just as busy as her brothers, Gary and Phil

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