ALBUM OF THE MONTH: Hotspot by Pet Shop Boys (February 2020)

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

OUT: now

TRACKLIST: Will-o-the-Wisp; You Are The One; Happy People; Dreamland; Hoping For A Miracle; I Don’t Wanna; Monkey Business; Only The Dark; Burning The Heather; Wedding In Berlin

It seems a very Pet Shop Boys moment that, as the UK leaves the EU, the duo’s ‘Berlin album’ enters this country’s chart at number three.

  • Read on for reasons including how this is the Boys’ best album for 14 years

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PREVIEW: 9 reasons why we can’t wait for January (2020) starring Madonna

  1. Madonna brings Madame X to the London Palladium

2019’s Madame X collection made our Album of 2019 shortlist and was Madonna’s best since 2005’s Confessions. We were at her last London gig at The 02 in 2015 and are looking forward to the shift from arenas to theatres for this 15-gig run. Tickets The tour opened in the US in the autumn and, despite the late starts, promises much. We’re just glad we don’t have to be up early after what is shaping up to be a late night albeit in thrall to the Queen of Pop.

  • Read on for reasons including new Pet Shop Boys album, Richard Armitage’s West End return and VAULT Festival

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GIG REVIEW: Pet Shop Boys at Hyde Park for BBC Radio 2 Live

By Neil Pugmire

WHERE? Hyde Park (press ticket)

WHEN? 15/9/19

If you had to choose the perfect headliners for a Radio 2 festival, it might be the Pet Shop Boys. Famous for matching intelligent lyrics with irresistible synth-pop hooks, and with a 30-year back catalogue to plunder, they could easily entertain thousands of 30 to 50-somethings gathered in Hyde Park on a balmy Sunday evening.

  • Read on for reasons including Bananarama, Clean Bandit, Westlife and Status Quo

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LAST NIGHT: THEATRE REVIEW: MUSIK starring Frances Barber at Leicester Square Theatre

WORTH A LOOK?: ****

WHERE? Leicester Square Theatre RUNTIME: 60 minutes

WHEN? 7/9/19, closes 7/9/19

STOP PRESS: MUSIK returns to the Leicester Square Theatre 5/2 – 1/3/20. Tickets

‘About me, the critics lied. I ignored them – and survived,’ sang character Billie Trix in song Friendly Fire (see below) played by Frances Barber in ahead-of-its-time 2001 Pet Shop Boys’ musical Closer To Heaven.

  • Read on for reasons including how this show needs a longer West End run soon

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PREVIEW: 9 reasons why we can’t wait for September 2019 starring Frances Barber in MUSIK

  1. Frances Barber brings MUSIK to London and Pet Shop Boys play Hyde Park

Billie Trix was the most compelling character from Pet Shop Boys musical Closer To Heaven and author Jonathan Harvey has brought the star played by Frances Barber back for an hour-long show with new songs by the duo. For Every Moment was our Song Of The Month for August. An Edinburgh Festival hit, MUSIK takes its bow at the Leicester Square Theatre 3-7/9. Tickets Pet Shop Boys also play Radio 2 Live In Hyde Park 15/9 Tickets

  • Read on for reasons including Reece Shearsmith, Jay McGuiness, Kimberley Walsh and Big

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PREVIEW: 9 reasons why we can’t wait for August 2019 starring Fleabag

  1. Fleabag takes the stage

Author Phoebe Waller-Bridge won our 2016 Best TV/Film actress monsta for her work on the 1st TV series (5 reasons to watch here) of this show and the original play on which it is based comes to the West End’s Wyndham’s Theatre 20/8 through 14/9/19. Tickets

  • Read on for reasons including Michael Ball, Alfie Boe, Carrie Hope-Fletcher & Shura

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