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Culture lane

Abba reunite, announce new songs

Abba have announced that they have written and recorded their first new songs since they split in 1983. The Swedish four-piece, who had nine No 1 hits in the UK between 1974 and 1980, and who have sold hundreds of millions of records worldwide, announced on Instagram that they had recorded two new songs for a project in which avatars of the band will perform. The band said in a statement: “The decision to go ahead with the exciting Abba avatar tour project had an unexpected consequence. We all felt that, after some 35 years, it could be fun to join forces again and go into the recording studio. So we did. And it was like time had stood still and we had only been away on a short holiday. An extremely joyful experience!”

One of the two new songs that resulted, called I Still Have Faith in You, will feature in a TV special to air in December. The statement concluded: “We may have come of age, but the song is new. And it feels good.” Abba’s Björn Ulvaeus revealed details of the band’s forthcoming project in Brussels earlier this week. The centrepiece is the two-hour TV show co-produced by NBC and the BBC, which will see the band perform as computer-generated avatars. Ulvaeus said the band had been digitally scanned and “de-aged” to look like they did in 1979, when they performed their third and final tour. The avatars are then set to tour the world from next year. Abba formed in Stockholm in 1972. They comprised two couples: Ulvaeus and Agnetha Fältskog; and Benny Andersson and Anni-Frid Lyngstad, all of whom had enjoyed musical careers in Sweden.

New Game of Thrones book is coming

George RR Martin told fans that the long-awaited sixth volume in his Game of Thrones fantasy series, The Winds of Winter, would not be published this year — but softened the blow by revealing that his “imaginary history” of the Targaryen family in Westeros would be released on November 20. Fire and Blood is set 300 years before the events of A Song of Ice and Fire and, said its publishers Bantam and Voyager, will chronicle “the Targaryen civil war that nearly ended their dynasty forever”. In a post on his blog, Martin described the book as his “the GRRMarillion (or the first half of it, at least); that is to say, my version of Tolkien’s mammoth history of Middle Earth”, and revealed it ran to almost 1,000 manuscript pages. He first mentioned the volume, the first of a planned two histories of Westeros, last summer, saying at the time that he was not sure if it, or The Winds of Winter, would be released first in 2018.

Today, he confirmed that fans would have to content themselves with the history, for this year at least. The fifth book in the sequence on which the hit HBO series Game of Thrones is based, A Dance With Dragons, was published in 2011, with the television series now taking Martin’s characters far beyond the places they have reached in the books. “No, winter is not coming … not in 2018, at least. You’re going to have to keep waiting for The Winds of Winter. You will, however, be able to return to Westeros this year,” Martin said.

And the year’s scariest film is...

Families were forced to flee an Australian cinema when a trailer for a horror film dubbed “the year’s scariest film” was accidentally shown before a school holidays showing of Peter Rabbit. WAtoday reports that the incident occurred an Anzac Day holiday screening of the Beatrix Potter adaptation at Event Cinemas in Innaloo, Perth. As audience members settled down for the film, a trailer for Hereditary began to play. The film, which stars Toni Colette, has received an MA15+ rating in Australia for “themes of strong horror”. Its trailer features a number of unsettling scenes, including one in which a child appears to cut the head off a dead pigeon with a pair of scissors. “It was dreadful. Very quickly you could tell this was not a kid’s film,” an audience member told the newspaper. “Parents were yelling at the projectionist to stop, covering their kids’ eyes and ears. Some parents fled the cinema with their kids in tow.” The cinema eventually switched off the screen, and later offered audience members complimentary tickets as a gesture of goodwill. A spokesperson for Event Cinema’s parent company, Event Hospitality and Entertainment, said that the issue was being “investigated internally to ensure situations like this do not occur again”.

 
 
 
 
 

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UTC to use 180 buses to ferry Yoga participants

21 Jun 2018 | PNS | Dehradun

Uttarakhand Transport Corporation (UTC) would use 180 buses of its fleet on Dehradun and Haridwar routes to ferry the Yoga participants from Haridwar and also to take them back after the International Yoga Day show at Forest Research Institute (FRI) in Dehradun is over. Divisional manager (Operational) UTC Dehradun, Pawan Mehra while talking to The pioneer said on Wednesday that around 280 busses operate from Dehradun depot...

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