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It gripped Sunday night audiences with its chilling portrait of global crime, now Misha Glenny, the journalist and author behind McMafia is coming to the region to share his story and the real stories that inspired it. Simon Parkin spoke to him.

Legendary South African a cappella male choir Ladysmith Black Mambazo, who found global fame on Paul Smith’s Graceland album, tells us about bringing their rich harmonies to the Norfolk and Norwich and Bury St Edmunds festivals this month.

Kathleen Turner’s sparky attitude, husky voice and sex appeal turned her into a star with a string of hit films in the 1980s and 90s. Now she is telling stories from her career and singing songs in a new one-woman show coming to the region.

A painting that threatens to wreck the friendship of three men is the subject of smash hit comedy Art. Stephen Tompkinson tells us how he is having a ball being reunited with Nigel Havers and Denis Lawson for its 20th anniversary tour.

Fresh from his retirement from international cricket commentary, Henry Blofeld isn’t just yet declare just yet and is returning to the region on his farewell tour, looking back at 50 years behind the Test Match Special microphone.

Terrifying stage show Ghost Stories has been turned into a film that is set to scare the pants off cinema audiences this week. Simon Parkin looks at 10 British horror classics that still have the power to shock.

Softly spoken Irish singer Daniel O’Donnell has had an album in the UK charts every year for the last 30 years, yet is the most unlikely pop star. He tells us about his remarkable career, his fiercely loyal fans and why he was actually a music rebel.

Mind-reader Alex McAleer began his magic career on stage in Suffolk before developing successful cabaret shows in Norwich. Now he has found international success as part of hit show Champions of Magic.

Martine McCutcheon is still remembered as Tiff off EastEnders, but she’s also had a number one single, won an Olivier for My Fair Lady and starred in Love Actually. Ahead of her show in Clacton-on-Sea, she tells us how her love of music has helped her overcome debilitating illness.

Efforts to portay the enigmatic and misunderstood Mary Magdalene on the big screen have often proved controversial. Now a new take on the life of the apostle aims to turn sparse factual history into a story of faith and heroism.

Hollywood’s great and good gather on Sunday for the Oscars. Guillermo del Toro’s fantasy drama The Shape Of Water leads nominations with 13 but a host of British talent is in the running too. But who are your hot tips to pick up a golden statuette?

Kevin Kennedy will forever be best known as Coronation Street’s loveable loser Curly Watts, but he is also a stage star. His latest role is an all-star musical version of Kay Mellor’s Fat Friends, which allows him to rekindle his love of this region.

From Beauty and the Beast to King Kong, women have been falling in love with otherworldly creatures are a cinema staple. As Oscar front runner The Shape of Water opens why are we so obsessed with monsters in love?

Strictly Come Dancing professional Pasha Kovalev is heading back to the region with his new show. He tells Simon Parkin about his Russian childhood, winning the series with Norfolk’s Caroline Flack and his shock at the departure of Brendan Cole.

The actor, who was born in Ipswich, plays Captain Stanhope in a new film version of R.C. Sherriff’s 1923 play set in the trenches, directed by Saul Dibb. They tell Simon Parkin about a film that marks the centenary of the end of the First World War.

It may be 30 years old but the classroom themes of John Godber’s school comedy Teechers remain as relevant as ever. As it heads back to the region, Simon Parkin finds out more from to those behind Blackeyed Theatre’s new revival.

The stars of Nick Park’s latest film Early Man, in cinemas this weekend, have a go at creating their own Hognob with Aardman’s model maker Jim Parkyn — what will yours look like?

The new film Downsizing in cinemas this weekend shrinks Matt Damon to four inches high. But it is far from the first shrinking man film. Simon Parkin offers a big guide to the 10 best films about tiny people.

Video: Oscar nominations: Who’s up for what?

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Guillermo del Toro’s fantasy drama The Shape Of Water leads the Oscar nominations with 13 but a host of British talent is in the running too, including Gary Oldman, Daniel Day-Lewis, Sally Hawkins, Lesley Manville and Daniel Kaluuya.

With the world lurching from one crisis to another, affable comedian Stephen K Amos’ latest thought-provoking show, Bread and Circuses, aims to cheer us up even if he is still tackling some thorny subjects.

Cheeky chappie, rock ‘n’ roll pioneer and a man who has a lifetime of hilarious tales to tell, from Johnny Cash to The Beatles to The Singing Postman, Joe Brown is heading back to East Anglia on his biggest tour ever.

With Steven Spielberg’s The Post, starring Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep, hot off the presses and in cinemas, we look at 10 of the best films about journalism and how they reflect our love/hate relationship with reporters.

Sinatra anointed him his heir. He’s released 70 albums, won Grammys and even has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Now Jack Jones is visiting the region as part of a tour celebrating turning 80 this weekend.

Darkest Hour tells the story of Winston Churchill in the early days of the war. It also features a remarkable portrayal by an almost unrecognisable Gary Oldman. But how does it compare to the many others who have played him?

From The Communards to communion, the Reverend Richard Coles has a unique vicar style. As he prepares for a busy Christmas, he talks Strictly, festive music, East Anglia and why he will relax by watching The Walking Dead.

Sequels, prequels, remakes, return of the musical and a spate of films about race, it’s been another eventful year at the cinema. Here we highlight our 10 best films of 2017 (in no particular order), and a some that nearly made the grade.

He has become a household name thanks to more than a decade on Strictly Come Dancing, but now Anton Du Beke has released his debut album From The Top. The affable dancer reflects on this new venture as well as his past, present and future on the Strictly dance floor.

Families will be gathering around the TV set once again this Christmas Day in what is always one of the biggest viewing nights of the year — but could you name the year just from the programmes on BBC1?

DIY SOS and Who Dares Wins host Nick Knowles has long had a secret yearning for music. Now the presenter-turned-singer, who has fond memories of growing up in East Anglia, has released his debut album — at the age of 55.

Netflix series Shot in the Dark revisits the subject of LA crime stringers seen in Jake Gyllenhaal film Nightcrawler. It’s the latest example documentary/film crossovers. But which can you most trust?

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