Front Row - 04/08/2009

Logo for Front Row - 04/08/2009

Arts news and reviews. Actor and playwright Kwame Kwei Armah discusses his new documentary series, On Tour with The Queen. In 1954, a 26-year-old Queen Elizabeth journeyed across five continents on a six-month Commonwealth Tour. The cameras follow Kwame as he follows in the Queen's footsteps, in an attempt to discover the true purpose of the tour and its lasting legacy. Natalie Haynes reviews Adam, the film debut for director Max Meyer, whose TV credits include The West Wing. Adam is a lonely man with Asperger's Syndrome who develops a relationship with his upstairs neighbour. Ansuman Biswas discusses his 40 days and nights alone in Manchester Museum's gothic tower, living as The Manchester Hermit. Previously speaking on Front Row, Ansuman was about to begin his residency and was excited at the prospect of being alone with so many historical riches. Now, the day before he rejoins the outside world, he discusses the experience and the results of his Hermit's Blog - and reveals what will happen to him next. Fifty years ago The New York Times announced the opening of 'one of the most opulently decorated dining establishments in the United States'. This was the Four Seasons restaurant, sited in the Seagram Building, a new skyscraper designed by Mies van der Rohe and Philip Johnson. The restaurant's decorations included a stage curtain painted by Picasso and four murals by Marc Rothko. Mies van der Rohe, Philip Johnson and Mark Rothko were all commissioned by Phyllis Lambert, the young daughter of the CEO of Seagram. On a recent visit to London, Phyllis Lambert told John Wilson how and why the commissions came about.