Sunday, 17th December 2017

Cat Stevens to tour US for the first time since 1976

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Cat Stevens - also known as Yusuf Islam - is to perform a series of dates in the US for the first time since 1976.

The musician, who converted to Islam in 1977 and put his career on hold, will play six concerts in December.

The 66-year-old, who was inducted into the US Rock and Roll Hall of Fame earlier this year, is now known by his original stage name and Yusuf.

He is best known for his 1971 recording of Christian hymn Morning Has Broken, a top 10 hit in both the UK and US.

Stevens had a number of other hits during the 1960s and 70s, including Wild World and Peace Train.

The British-born singer, who now lives in Dubai, is due to release a new album on 27 October - his first in five years.

He says he has been gradually reconnecting with this music career in the US.

"I've been a bit slow in coming around to the United States, but there were so many people asking me to do that, that I just felt an obligation," he said in an interview with the Associated Press.

The six dates announced so far will take in Boston, New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Chicago and the Canadian city of Toronto.

A further six concerts around Europe are also scheduled, including one in the UK at London's Hammersmith Apollo.

The tour is entitled Peace Train... Late Again in a nod to his long musical break and gradual moves to resume his recording career.

The musician says he is not concerned about his faith becoming an issue when he resumes touring in the US.

"I'm afraid that a lot of things that people believe about Islam are totally different from the religion that most of us recognise.

"I was really fortunate that I got to know Islam before it became a headline," he said.

Emma Thompson 'wept' over stage return in Sweeney Todd

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Oscar-winning actress Emma Thompson has revealed her recent stage comeback in New York was a "beautiful, inspiring" experience that brought her to tears.

"It was magical to be in front of an audience again," she said of her role in Stephen Sondheim's Sweeney Todd at the Lincoln Center. "It made me weep."

Thompson and co-star Bryn Terfel will reunite in 2015 when their production is revived at the London Coliseum.

The semi-staged production will have a limited run of 13 performances only.

Thompson said it was "like a dream coming true" to be invited to bring Sweeney Todd to London following its five-performance run in New York in March.

"It was so terrible to think of it ending," explained the actress, who plays eccentric pie-maker Mrs Lovett to Terfel's serial-killing Demon Barber of Fleet Street.

The 55-year-old, who has won Oscars for both acting and screenwriting, said she was hoping there would be "a slight improvement" when she reprises her role next March, "and by that I mean no nausea".

"If I can manage the fear without the nausea I'll be fine," she continued, describing Sondheim's Tony-winning score as "very difficult and fantastically complex".

Match fixed: Mohammad Amir ties the knot

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Match fixed: Mohammad Amir ties the knot

Before being banned by the International Cricket Council, Amir was hailed as the ‘next big thing’. PHOTO: FILE
KARACHI: Cricketer Mohammad Amir, who is currently serving the remainder of his five-year ban for involvement in spot-fixing four years ago, recently tied the knot with Nargis, a British Pakistani. The former wunderkind, who is close to completing the ban imposed on him by the International Cricket Council (ICC) in 2010, has been making amends and in his quest for stability, decided it was time to get hitched.
“I felt it was the right time for me to get into a relationship,” Amir tells The Express Tribune. “One has to get a life partner at some stage of life, so I decided to do it now. I didn’t feel the need to wait any longer.” Amir and Nargis have had their Nikkah ceremony, while the rukhsati is scheduled to take place in a year’s time.

The 22-year-old Pakistani pacer, who made his International debut in 2009, played a prominent role in leading the Pakistani team to winning the T20 World Cup the same year. Before being banned by the ICC, he was hailed as the ‘next big thing’ on the international circuit and touted as the heir to the ‘sultan of swing’ Wasim Akram.
When asked whether his marriage to Nargis was arranged, Amir shared that he liked Nargis and married her only after her parents’ approval.
Amir represented Pakistan in 14 Tests, claiming 51 wickets while dismissing 25 batsmen in 15 One Day Internationals (ODIs). In addition to that, he has played in 18 T20Is for Pakistan, claiming 23 wickets.
Unable to partake in any cricketing activity, Amir signed a Lollywood movie titled Blind Love while he was still single. But now that he is married, we wondered whether or not his wife would allow him to continue with the project. “Honestly speaking, it was Nargis who encouraged me to do the film, so, I hope there will be no issues,” he clarifies.
The left-arm pacer recalls how horrible he felt when certain sections of the media were associating him with his British lawyer Sajida Malik. “Certain media outlets ran the news that Sajida and I were in love and would be getting married soon. She was like a mother to me, but some people tried to create controversy and I am hoping all of them got their answer after my Nikkah,” comments Amir.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 16th, 2014.

George Clooney to receive honorary Golden Globe

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US actor, director and producer George Clooney is to receive an honorary award at next year's Golden Globes.

Organisers said the 53-year-old would be given its Cecil B DeMille award for "his outstanding contributions both in front of and behind the camera".

Clooney was being recognised "as much for his global humanitarian efforts as he is for his accomplishments in the entertainment industry," the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) said.

2015's awards take place on 11 January.

Recent recipients of the DeMille award, named after the famed producer of The Ten Commandments, include Martin Scorsese, Steven Spielberg and the late Robin Williams.

Woody Allen was honoured at this year's event, though the actor and director did not travel to Los Angeles to collect his accolade.

Clooney is no stranger to the Golden Globes, having been previously honoured by the HFPA for his performances in The Descendants, O Brother Where Art Thou and Syriana.

The former ER star and Hollywood heartthrob is expected to tie the knot shortly with human rights lawyer Amal Alamuddin.

Entertainment

16/09/2014, 21:32 OUTPOST
cat-stevens-to-tour-us-for-the-first-time-since-1976 Cat Stevens - also known as Yusuf Islam - is to perform a series of dates in the US for the first time since 1976. The musician, who converted to Islam...
16/09/2014, 21:28 OUTPOST
emma-thompson-wept-over-stage-return-in-sweeney-todd Oscar-winning actress Emma Thompson has revealed her recent stage comeback in New York was a "beautiful, inspiring" experience that brought her to...
16/09/2014, 20:01 OUTPOST
george-clooney-to-receive-honorary-golden-globe US actor, director and producer George Clooney is to receive an honorary award at next year's Golden Globes. Organisers said the 53-year-old would be...
16/09/2014, 00:19 OUTPOST
match-fixed-mohammad-amir-ties-the-knot Match fixed: Mohammad Amir ties the knot Before being banned by the International Cricket Council, Amir was hailed as the ‘next big thing’. PHOTO:...