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Arts Ahead

The Morning Star's critics cherry-pick the best of what's on in coming weeks

Leeds: Dance 
Phoenix Dance Theatre Quarry Hill
September 26-29

As a taster to their new season, Phoenix give a short run to three of their most popular pieces, Melt, Signal and Repetition Of Change. If you haven’t seen this innovative company’s work before, this is a very good place to start.


London: Opera
English National Opera
St Martin’s Lane, WC2
September 25-October 16

Fidelio is Beethoven’s only opera and its subject matter is one which has undergone numerous creative interpretations over the last two centuries since. It tells the story of political prisoner Florestan who’s unjustly held captive by the corrupt governor of a state prison. His wife Leonore searches for him by assuming the disguise of a young man called Fidelio and joining the prison staff as a guard. Her rescue of Florestan is a triumph of marital love and fidelity over injustice and tyranny and it will be interesting to see whether the production succeeds in bringing the political and psychological undertones into focus.


London: Theatre
The Resistible Rise Of Arturo Ui
Duchess Theatre
Catherine Street, WC2
September 18-November 16

Shot through with trademark ferocious wit, The Resistible Rise Of Arturo Ui by Bertholt Brecht is a sharp and chilling take on the rise of Hitler. The excellent Henry Goodman takes the title role in this political allegory set in 1930s Chicago during the Great Depression where small-fry crime boss Ui and his henchmen plot to take control of the city by running protection rackets for workers and businesses. The parallells with the rise of nazism are never far below the surface in another Brecht play which hasbeen neglected for far too long.


Manchester: Music
The Leningrad Symphony
Bridgewater Hall
Lower Mosley Street
October 3

Symphony No. 7 by Dmitri Shostakovich was dedicated to the city of Leningrad, then under siege by the nazis, on its completion in December 1941. It was given its premiere the next year and became one of Shostakovich’s most popular works, with its fame spread rapidly beyond the Soviet Union as a symbol of resistance to totalitarianism and militarism. It’s regarded as the major musical testament to the estimated 25 million Soviet citizens who lost their lives in World War II. A magnificent and intensely moving orchestral work, performed by the Halle Orchestra, it’s unmissable if you live in or near Manchester.


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