Holly to Bolly: Il Volo to entertain at Taste of Abu Dhabi, Johnny Depp to star in JK Rowling’s next instalment, and more

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Il Volo is set to perform at this year's Taste of Abu Dhabi Festival at Zayed Sports City. The Italian pop trio has confirmed a trip to the capital and will take the stage at 3pm on Saturday, November 12. The award-winning trio, who describe their music as 'popera', consists of baritone Gianluca Ginoble, tenor Piero Barone and tenor Ignazaio Boschetto. Il Volo has performed with iconic artists such as Barbara Streisand, Celine Dion and Placido Domingo. The performance is included with a Saturday ticket to the Taste of Abu Dhabi festival (Dh65 online, Dh85 at the door). The Taste of Abu Dhabi is a food-filled celebration that features signature fare from some of the newest and best restaurants around the city. For tickets, visit www.tasteabudhabi.com/tickets.

JK Rowling’s next franchise features Johnny Depp

Johnny Depp is set to be part of Harry Potter author JK Rowling's Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them in a secret role. Depp will appear in a cameo in the first film, which opens on November 18, and have a bigger role alongside star Eddie Redmayne in the sequel in 2018. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is based on Rowling's book of the same name and set 60 years earlier than Harry Potter, in 1926 New York. There are five films planned in the Warner Bros. Franchise. -AP

Instashopping on Instagram

Instagram says it will start testing features that let smartphone or tablet users easily buy items they find on the popular photo and video sharing service. The test, slated to begin next week in the United States, will be tailored for Instagram applications on Apple mobile devices. The move will build on a strategy by the world’s leading online social network to connect shoppers and shops, earning revenue from purchases. Instagram cited industry statistics indicating that smartphone purchases are commonly used in the US to browse or research options regarding potential purchases. Twenty US retailers, including Kate Spade and JackThreads, will take part in the Instagram e-commerce test, sharing posts that provide more information along with Shop Now icons for streamlined purchasing. -AFP

French president to create safe house for art from war-torn countries

French President Francois Hollande says the Louvre could house threatened treasures from Iraq, Syria and other war-torn countries at a secure site in northern France. The precious items could be placed in safe keeping at a conservation facility due to open in 2019 in Lievin, 200 kilometres north of Paris. Hollande said France will make the proposal at a December conference in Abu Dhabi on endangered heritage. Representatives from around 40 countries are expected to take part. “We are going to suggest that the Lievin conservation site is where these works can be protected,” says Hollande. The Abu Dhabi conference will also launch a fund, suggested by Hollande in September, which will aim to gather $100 million to help save endangered art. — AFP

Priyanka Chopra proud of latest movie

Actress Priyanka Chopra says she is proud of her work in Ventilator. "Ventilator, my first Marathi venture, is a film I'm truly proud of, and I can't wait for you guys to see it! November 4," Chopra tweeted this week. She shared the trailer of the film, which has as many as 116 actors, including filmmaker Ashutosh Gowariker. The film is centred around an ailing senior member of a family who is being put on a ventilator just days before the Ganapati festival, leading to varied degrees of speculation and panic among the large clan he belongs to. Ventilator is written and directed by Rajesh Mapuskar. — IANS

Charlie Puth wants to be the ‘people’s artiste’

Singer Charlie Puth says he will release a new album every year to keep his fans happy, according to a report on femalefirst.co.uk. Puth said: “I’m going to put out an album a year. I don’t want to go missing for four years and be all mysterious. I want to be the people’s artiste.” However, Puth added he also wants to sell plenty of records so he can pay off his mortgage. Puth says he writes his best music when on the road. “I don’t love travelling, but I write better music when I’m on the move, when I’m comfortable.” - femalefirst.co.uk

Amy Schummer forks out $12 million for penthouse

Actress and comedienne Amy Schumer has reportedly paid $12.1 million for a five-bedroom penthouse in New York City, after the asking price was dropped by more than $6 million. The Trainwreck star's new pad is spread over two floors with glass walls that provide views of the Hudson River and New Jersey. The house is listed as having 4,500 square feet inside and an additional 3,000 square feet of outdoor space. — The National staff