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George Michael Croons, Rothko, Film Fest: London Weekend

Prima Ballerina Natalia Osipova
Russian prima ballerina Natalia Osipova, who quit the Bolshoi in 2011, performs in "Swan Lake" with Carlos Acosta at the Royal Opera House through October. Photographer: Gene Schiavone/Royal Opera House via Bloomberg

Shakespeare heads for Bollywood.

The Royal Shakespeare Company has boldly transposed “Much Ado About Nothing” to the courtyard of a large Delhi home. Besides the exotic set, the production features a feisty performance from the British-Indian comic actress Meera Syal.

Her sari-clad, marriage-fearing Beatrice displays a rich palette of gestures and emotions. While the rest of the cast can’t match her timing and talent, Syal makes it worth the trip.

“Much Ado About Nothing” is at the Noel Coward Theatre, 85-88 St. Martin’s Lane, WC2N 4AU. Information: or +44-844-482-5136.


If you’re upset about Tate Modern’s Mark Rothko room closing after a canvas got vandalized, don’t fret: There are other Rothko works around.

New York’s Pace Gallery has opened a London branch in the grandest of surroundings: at the back of the Royal Academy of Arts. For its first show, Pace pairs Rothko’s late paintings -- superposed blocks of black and gray -- with Japanese photographer Hiroshi Sugimoto’s hazy seascapes.

The exhibition ends Nov. 17 at the Pace Gallery, 6 Burlington Gardens, London W1S 3ET. Information: or +44-20-7437-1050.

The Frieze Art Fair is back in Regent’s Park this week, with a new twin located a short walk away.

Europe’s biggest living-artists fair runs through Sunday. You’ll find the usual suspects -- Damien Hirst (dot painting, drug cabinet), Tracey Emin (lewd embroidery), Richard Prince (nurse painting) -- and will have to look hard for up-and-coming contemporary-art gems.

The pre-21st-century Frieze Masters is a breath of fresh air. Quieter and aimed at a richer, older crowd, it’s full of visual treats, including a cheek-to-cheek Picasso couple (sold by Van de Weghe, priced $8.5 million) and Richard Avedon images from his 1979 “In the American West” series (at Gagosian).

Information: and Frieze London costs 27 pounds ($43.24) to view alone, and 35 pounds when combined with Frieze Masters.

Saturday Night

George Michael’s concerts now come with strings attached. The singer has added an orchestra for his “Symphonica” tour.

He runs through some of his hits, with “A Different Corner” even more a croon than ever, and adds a few torch songs such as “Love Is a Losing Game” and “Wild Is the Wind.”

The dates are rescheduled from last December, when Michael canceled because of pneumonia.

Earls Court One, Warwick Road, SW5 9TA, on Oct. 13 and 14. Information: +44-20-7385-1200, or

While Earl’s Court is no gastronomical destination, a new French bistro is attracting diners. Garnier belongs to London restaurant world veteran Eric Garnier, previously co-owner of the popular Racine. Information: +44-20-7370-4536 or

Otherwise, you can watch Russia’s hottest prima ballerina play a dying bird.

Natalia Osipova last year quit the Bolshoi for St. Petersburg’s Mikhailovsky Theatre. The ex-gymnast, famous for her vertiginous leaps, stars in “Swan Lake” at the Royal Opera House alongside the Cuban prodigy Carlos Acosta.

Information: or +44-20-7240-1200.


This is the opening weekend of the London Film Festival, a chance to see films well before their actual release.

The festival opens with Tim Burton’s 3D animation picture “Frankenweenie,” and later includes the world premiere of “Crossfire Hurricane” -- celebrating the Rolling Stones’ first half-century on the world stage.

The festival, which offers dozens of movies in almost every language, ends Oct. 21:

When in the West End, find time to try the Green Man & French Horn, St. Martin’s Lane. This is the latest venue of the team behind Terroirs, Brawn and Soif, known for natural wines and simple French food. The focus here is the Loire region. Information: +44-20-7836-2645. (No website.)

(Farah Nayeri writes for Muse, the arts and leisure section of Bloomberg News. The opinions expressed are her own.)

Muse highlights include Mark Beech on music, Scott Reyburn on the art market, Jason Harper on cars and Rich Jaroslovsky on technology.

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