Letter from London: A guide to winter 2013 in the West End
But those looking for new writing with a distinctly British flavour could head north, to the Tricycle Theatre in Kilburn, for Moira Buffinis Handbagged, in which the Iron Lady and former Prime Minister, the late Margaret Thatcher faces down the Queen. It plays until 9 November. For something sillier, and as English as warm beer and cricket whites, punters with a taste for nostalgia can opt for Jeeves and Wooster: Perfect Nonsense at the Duke of Yorks, running from 30 October. Romantics will struggle to resist Jumpers for Goalposts, a touching gay love story among the players on a hopeless pub soccer team, by the rising young writing talent Tom Wells. It plays at the Bush the diminutive fringe new-writing venue with a mighty reputation from 26 November. Likely to be far knottier is nut, the new play by incendiary writing talent debbie tucker green. The lower-case styling of her name and the works title are indicative of her terse intensity; her previous pieces, jaggedly poetic dramas on subjects including urban street violence and domestic abuse, have been short, sharp and shocking. nut about which advance publicity reveals little, but which may, judging by the cryptic clues, have to do with identity and psychological disorder runs at the Shed, an experimental pop-up space at the National Theatre, from 30 October. Booking for it may be something of a blind date, but on tucker greens past form its well worth the gamble. For the more risk-adverse, three plays of established excellence return. Arnold Weskers Roots, the centrepiece of his great Socialist trilogy, is at the Donmar. And Mojo, the play about London gangland that made the name of writer Jez Butterworth (Jerusalem) and was a key text in the hugely influential 1990s In-Yer-Face drama movement, returns to the West End, staged by Ian Rickson, who directed the original Royal Court production. The cast includes Ben Whishaw, and previews kick off 26 October at the Harold Pinter Theatre. Finally, in November London will extend an especially warm welcome to one transatlantic visitor. Sarah Ruhls 2009 drama In the Next Room, or The Vibrator Play, already seen at Victory Gardens in Chicago, gets its London premiere at the St James Theatre, a stones throw from Buckingham Palace.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS Keepers “heartbroken” as tiger cub found dead in enclosure at London Zoo Newborn animal believed to have drowned in pond after mother carried it outside Three-week-old cub was first Sumatran tiger to be born at zoo in 17 years London (CNN) — Keepers at London Zoo are “distraught” after a newborn tiger cub — the first Sumatran tiger born there for 17 years — drowned in a pool at its enclosure. The animal was born to five-year-old first-time-mom Melati just three weeks ago, and its arrival was greeted with huge excitement and celebration at the zoo, where experts were “over-the-moon” about the birth. But on Saturday, keepers raised the alarm when they could no longer see the young tiger on cameras inside its den; a search of the enclosure revealed the animal’s body. It is thought Melati carried the cub out into the paddock area of the zoo’s “Tiger Territory,” where it fell into the pond and drowned. Meet the newest resident at London Zoo Animals weighing in at London Zoo Wanted: Female for last surviving fish “We’re heartbroken by what’s happened,” said London Zoo’s Malcolm Fitzpatrick. Melati is said to be a very nervous tiger who prefers routine, and experts at the zoo had opted to allow her full access to the whole enclosure fearing that any changes to her environment might cause her to injure or abandon her cub. “At the time we thought it was in the best interests of Melati and her cub to allow her continued access to the full enclosure as normal,” Fitzpatrick said. “We didn’t want to put her on edge by changing her surroundings or routines, in case she abandoned or attacked the cub.” London Zoo is to carry out a full review of the circumstances which led to the cub’s death. “We would do anything to turn back the clock, and nobody could be more upset about what’s happened than the keepers who work with the tigers every day,” said Fitzpatrick. They are devoted to those tigers and are distraught.” The zoo had kept Melati’s pregnancy a secret for about 105 days before her cub was born on September 22. Hidden cameras were installed in her enclosure to keep watch over her throughout, and the speedy birth, which lasted just six minutes, was also caught on video.
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Everyone knows Koonsyou either love him or you hate him. In this case, its a prime example of how a gallery can put the Fun Fair feeling into the fair. Here, a trio of Tweetie Pies perch on a tyre swing and a giant blue heart balloon with a magenta bow stands as if suspended in mid air. Theres also an inflatable-looking red lobster, and a cat in a sock (not a hat). Big, bold, and bright, if you have a kiddie or two in tow, and even if not, this display is one to make you smile. 11. Kon Trubkovich, Crazy Me. Crazy You., Oil on linen, 2013 (Marianne Boesky Gallery, New York) The New York-based Marianne Boesky Gallery is another that has chosen to focus on just one artist in a bid to counter that famous fair fatigue. Five works by Russian-born artist Kon Trubkovich decorate its booth. Trubkovich uses VHS as a primary source of images for his paintings; he uses the motif of a moving image interrupted by bars of static interference to observe the way in which subjects shift over time. The results are blurry and eerie, but bound to catch your eye. 12. Kathryn Andrews, Umbrella Stand, Chrome-plated aluminium and steel, stainless steel, dye-sublimated prints on nylon; polyester, vinyl, 2013 (David Kordansky Gallery, Los Angeles) Kathryn Andrews Umbrella Stand will brighten up the day of any bedraggled beholderas it did for anyone coming out of that wet and windy weather on Wednesday morning of VIP day. 13. Helio Oiticica & Neville DAlmeida, Maileryn (from the series, Cosmococa), slide projections, soundtrack and tactile elements, 1973 (A Gentil Carioca, Rio de Janeiro) The idea is to cover Marilyn with cocaine, announced the gallery assistant.
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On Monday, Britain unveiled simpler visa rules aimed at luring Chinese tourists. Osborne’s trip marks a return to normal exchanges after Beijing derailed a planned visit by Prime Minister David Cameron in April in retaliation for the British leader having met the Dalai Lama, the exiled Tibetan spiritual leader. Investors in London will be allowed to apply for licenses to invest yuan directly into China, Osborne announced. He said the Chinese central bank set an initial quota for London of 80 billion yuan ($12.7 billion). Tuesday’s announcement put London ahead in the race by global financial centers to gain a share of yuan-denominated business as Beijing gradually expands use of its currency for trade and investment. Hong Kong was the first financial center outside mainland China where trading of yuan was authorized. London banks have traded yuan since early last year. “Now London is a major global offshore center for the trading of the Chinese currency,” Osborne told reporters. Britain and China signed an agreement in June to have their central banks swap 200 billion yuan for 20 billion pounds. The European Central Bank and Beijing announced a similar agreement this month to swap 350 billion yuan for 45 billion euros. That suggested Frankfurt also might be in to become a center for business denominated in yuan. Also Tuesday, Osborne said China’s state-owned banks will be allowed to expand their operations in Britain by setting up wholesale branches. Cameron was forced to abandon his April trip after China said he would not be able to meet senior officials. Some lower-level meetings also were put on hold. British diplomats say Cameron’s visit is being rescheduled but a date has yet to be announced.