Brian Donaldson

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2015 Highlights: Stage

17 Dec 2014

Featuring: Manipulate, Slab Boys, Coppelia, Cirkopolis, Kevin Bridges and Glasgow Comedy Festival

Weaving together puppetry, visual theatre and dance, Manipulate's vision is international, experimental and accessible. Kicking off with Edinburgh Festival hit Maria Addolorata, which examines the limits of physical pain and ecstatic joy, through dance…

Live Comedy DVDs Roundup

16 Dec 2014

Featuring Lee Mack, Richard Herring, Al Murray, Jon Richardson, Jim Davidson and Harry Hill

If ever there was evidence to suggest that some people should just leave their past glories well alone, it’s right there, deep inside Harry Hill: Sausage Time. While you can’t help but admire the nerve of a 50-year-old man jumping up and down on a…

Top 5 Comedy Gigs of 2014

16 Dec 2014

You laughed, you cried, you heckled: Brian Donaldson breaks down the best acts of the year

After a successful 2013 Fringe debut as a twosome, Ben Ashenden and Alex Owen returned with that difficult second show and very nearly re-drew the rules of the sketch game. Their hour featured routines which played with the form while managing to keep…

David Shrigley and Malcolm Middleton – Music and Words

15 Dec 20142 stars

Middleton and Shrigley are capable of creating something much more subtle and powerful

When the first track of this collaboration between former Arab Strapper Malcolm Middleton and Glasgow School of Art alumnus David Shrigley was released, there was plenty to get excited about. ‘Story Time’ told the tale of a delightful wildlife scene…

The Hot 100 2014: 100-91

11 Dec 2014

Sophia George, Richard Youngs and Carina Contini among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors

The Hot 100 is The List's annual celebration of the figures who've contributed most to the cultural landscape during the year. From chefs and theatre-makers to writers and musicians, you'll find them here.

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The Hot 100 2014: 90-81

11 Dec 2014

Hanna Tuulikki, Vanishing Point and Bloody Scotland among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors

The Hot 100 is The List's annual celebration of the figures who've contributed most to the cultural landscape during the year. From chefs and theatre-makers to writers and musicians, you'll find them here.

The Hot 100 2014: 80-71

11 Dec 2014

Chvrches, Comar and Claire Cunningham among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors in 2014

The Hot 100 is The List's annual celebration of the figures who've contributed most to the cultural landscape during the year. From chefs and theatre-makers to writers and musicians, you'll find them here.

The Hot 100 2014: 70-61

11 Dec 2014

Counterflows, Glasgay and Daniel Sloss among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors in 2014

The Hot 100 is The List's annual celebration of the figures who've contributed most to the cultural landscape during the year. From chefs and theatre-makers to writers and musicians, you'll find them here.

The Hot 100 2014: 60-51

11 Dec 2014

The Glad Café, David Mackenzie and Still Game among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors in 2014

The Hot 100 is The List's annual celebration of the figures who've contributed most to the cultural landscape during the year. From chefs and theatre-makers to writers and musicians, you'll find them here.

The Hot 100 2014: 50-41

11 Dec 2014

Braw Gigs, Rally & Broad and John Byrne among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors in 2014

The Hot 100 is The List's annual celebration of the figures who've contributed most to the cultural landscape during the year. From chefs and theatre-makers to writers and musicians, you'll find them here.

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The Hot 100 2014: 40-31

11 Dec 2014

The Twilight Sad, Drygate and The Scottish Ensemble among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors

The Hot 100 is The List's annual celebration of the figures who've contributed most to the cultural landscape during the year. From chefs and theatre-makers to writers and musicians, you'll find them here.

The Hot 100 2014: 30-21

11 Dec 2014

Karen Gillan, Paolo Nutini and Rose Leslie among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors in 2014

The Hot 100 is The List's annual celebration of the figures who've contributed most to the cultural landscape during the year. From chefs and theatre-makers to writers and musicians, you'll find them here.

The Hot 100 2014: 20-11

11 Dec 2014

Summerhall, Ilan Volkov and Green Door Studios among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors

The Hot 100 is The List's annual celebration of the figures who've contributed most to the cultural landscape during the year. From chefs and theatre-makers to writers and musicians, you'll find them here.

The Hot 100 2014: 10-2

11 Dec 2014

Rachel Maclean, Young Fathers and National Collective among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors

The Hot 100 is The List's annual celebration of the figures who've contributed most to the cultural landscape during the year. From chefs and theatre-makers to writers and musicians, you'll find them here.

Christmas TV roundup

11 Dec 2014

Comedians, catastrophes and quiches dominate the festive small screen line-up

This time last year, Rik Mayall was appearing as Greg Davies’ mischievous dad in a Man Down Christmas special. Twelve months on and tragically, inexplicably, the BBC are laying on a tribute to the late, very great comedic whirlwind who died in June at…

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Interview: Michelle McManus – First and last

11 Dec 2014

On time out from Treasure Island, the Scottish personality talks Chanel, KT Tunsall and calendars

First panto you remember going to see Cinderella. I was six years old and I remember thinking that I wanted to live in pantoland when I grew up. Last New Year’s Resolution you were able to keep Absolutely none. I'm honestly the worst person ever at…

Iain Macwhirter – Disunited Kingdom

8 Dec 20144 stars

An authoritative and peerless sequel to Road to Referendum

While the space between deadlines for Iain Macwhirter finishing and publishing his post-indyref book was clearly a tight one, it still missed the event which perhaps encapsulated his central point most perfectly. With newspapers continuing to struggle…

Opinion: When our heroes go bad

21 Nov 2014

'Whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty?'

In the past year, my 12-year-old daughter has immersed herself in the back catalogue of Michael Jackson. It certainly marks a welcome relief from her fixations with X-Factor and hilarious YouTube ‘comedians’, but she can’t seem to see that ‘Billie Jean…

Remember Me

21 Nov 20144 stars

Old-fashioned ghostly fare with a modern twist from the BBC starring Michael Palin

While Christmas is traditionally viewed as the ideal time for retelling ghost stories, the BBC have sprung their spooks on us early with Remember Me. This three-part drama already contains an inherent rising from the crypt with the acting career of…

Babylon

12 Nov 20143 stars

A bad cop/worse cop comedy-drama lacking true grit

After a pilot episode in February which seemed hell-bent on kettling far too many ideas and personalities into a stuffed and confused comedy-drama riot, police show Babylon is back for a full series. Given the pedigree of its writers (Jesse Armstrong…

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Five things you might not know about … John Bishop

12 Nov 2014

Comedian is heat Magazine's no. 9 weird crush of 2014 and a late comer to the circuit

1 Born on a council estate in Liverpool, John Bishop only got into comedy in his mid-30s while working in middle management in a pharmaceuticals company and going through divorce proceedings. He has subsequently admitted that his comedy career saved…

The best comedy programmes on Radio 4

12 Nov 2014

Including Hal, The Elephant Man, James Acaster's Findings and Start / Stop

The ‘Radio 4 comedy voice’ has been mercilessly mimicked and mocked by both Simon Munnery and Stewart Lee, and it’s cranked up to 11 in a variety of shows currently on the station. They would routinely hate Hal (Radio 4, Sun 16 Nov, 7.15pm ●●●), the…

Opinion: the first post-independence referendum St Andrew's Day

11 Nov 2014

'66% of Scots now apparently would vote Yes if another referendum happened tomorrow'

Life is inherently filled with awkward moments full of cringe-inducing regret. No more so than when you have to come face to face with those you have upset. In that vein, Sunday 30 November 2014 marks the first St Andrew’s Day since us Scots decided we…

We Are The Giant

11 Nov 20144 stars

Frontline tales from the Arab Spring brought together by director Greg Barker

A small girl sings a song of hope and freedom in the street, just as an explosion wreaks havoc around her. A peace activist interrupts a downbeat interview about whether nonviolent protest has been unsuccessful when a shell rocks the street outside. And…

Stanley Odd – A Thing Brand New

10 Nov 20144 stars

Scottish hip hop at its best from Dave Hook and co

With the Mercury Music prize victory for Young Fathers still causing some reverberations in Londonista music circles, it’s eminently possible that this moment could be a turning point for Scottish hip hop. One act who might reap benefits from this…