Natalie Portman will star alongside Michael Fassbender in a new adaptation of Macbeth

Natalie Portman to play Lady Macbeth opposite Michael Fassbender in new film adaptation

Natalie Portman will play Lady Macbeth alongside Michael Fassbender in a new film adaptation of Shakespeare's play.

You last-minute dropouts are causing a flakiness epidemic

It seems the current social trend is to rack-up a number of options for one’s Saturday night and then decide, last minute, which is the most appealing

Culture secretary Maria Miller is calling for the support of arts organisations to make the 'economic case' against further cuts

If Maria Miller wants art that sells, she should focus on getting art that's good

She said the arts must make the case for themselves as a "commodity". How her audience prevented themselves from pelting her with coffee cups, I just don't know.

Between the Covers 28/04/2013

Your weekly guide to what's really going on in the world of books

Cultural life: Mark Ravenhill, playwright

Cultural life: Mark Ravenhill, playwright

Theatre

As You Like It, Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon

Theatre review: As You Like It, Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon

This revival begins in a sombre mood with the thrust stage covered in crunchy desiccated leaves which a bleak Orlando, in servitude to his abusive older brother, and the loyal ancient Adam (beautifully played by David Fielder) have been tasked to sweep into a wheelbarrow.

Dan Wheeler (Katherine) and Vince Leigh (Petruchio) in Propeller's 2013 production of The Taming of the Shrew

Theatre review: The Taming of the Shrew, Rose Theatre, Kingston-upon-Thames

Propeller Arts is an all-male-troupe, which is unusual in itself when gender-blind casting in Shakespeare is on the rise and more women are taking leading male roles.

Adrian Lester plays the title role in the National Theatre's production of 'Othello'

First Night: Othello, National Theatre, London

Othello pays a glorious tribute to Hytner's decade at the National

Zadie Smith's long-awaited fourth novel, NW, is out next month

Between the Covers 21/04/2013

Your weekly guide to what's really going on in the world of books

The Blagger's Guide To: Liverpool literature

World Book Night highlights the quality of Mersey

Shakespeare to be celebrated in schools with children as young as five

Shakespeare week will mark the Bard's 450th birthday

James Bond and other fictional stars whose names were changed

The name's Bond...but it very nearly wasn't.

Paperback review: The Green Road into the Trees, By Hugh Thomson

Hugh Thomson sets off to walk through England by ancient pathways from Dorset to Norfolk.

Two Gentlemen of Verona at the Tobacco Factory, Bristol

Theatre review: Two Gentlemen of Verona, Tobacco Factory Theatre, Bristol

What if there were no magic potion in A Midsummer Night’s Dream? What if your best friend fell for your girl and no enchanted flower could lift the spell? That is the premise of Shakespeare’s rarely performed comedy Two Gentlemen of Verona. And this is the play that director Andrew Hilton and Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory have chosen to stage in rep with their recent Richard III.

Diogo Morgado as Jesus in TV series 'The Bible'

A mini-series of epic proportions: US drama The Bible to air on Channel 5

The Bible, a US mini-series dramatising the Bible’s best known stories, is coming to Channel 5.

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Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders