It’s flippin’ Friday! Head home, take a little disco nap, then hit London hard with one of these brilliant events. Bounce your way to Peckham for a ping-pong themed club night, grab some bevies at a pedal-powered cocktail bar or check out the latest bonkers offering from artist Marvin Gaye Chetwynd. Here are the best things to do in London this weekend…
Fun things to do
The Stylist’s Rail Autumnal Wardrobe Wonderment, The Hoxton Hotel, Saturday, free. See in the new season in style with The Stylist’s Rail’s afternoon of Wardrobe Wonderment. It’s not your average shopping event – discerning shoppers can browse and buy directly from the cupboards of London’s best stylists, fashion editors, and independent designers and vintage labels.
Zombie Blitz 1940, Waterloo Station, Saturday, £65. As the Third Reich’s Luftwaffe continues destroying Britain, and reports of an enemy scientist unleashing biological weapons grip the nation, you’re invited to take shelter in Waterloo station’s underground maze of tunnels and vaults. Join the soldiers as they take you through the passages and face-to-face with zombie war horrors.
Big Bookshop Party, Foyles Charing Cross Road, Saturday. Fans of the written word will enjoy Foyles’ events in support of the ‘Books Are My Bag’ initiative, which celebrates the way that bookshops help people to enjoy their passion for books. The party will involve three events from popular comedians, each priced at £5 per ticket.
Africa on the Square, Trafalgar Square, Saturday, free. A jam-packed programme inspired by the traditions and cultures of the African continent. As well as musical acts, there will also be an exclusive fashion show directed by Africa Fashion Week London (AFWL) and Simplicious (of African Street Style Festival fame).
House of Peroni, 64 Lincoln’s Inn Field, all weekend, free. Sure, the Italian beer brand is interested in marketing its product, but it’s also come up with an interesting showcase of contemporary Italian culture covering artists and designers, food and music and, well, plenty of booze.
Shaped in Mexico, Bargehouse, all weekend, free. Taking place on the South Bank, this pop-up brings together over 20 talented and award-winning artists, fashion designers and musicians, all living in or inspired by Mexico.
Brite Space London, Old Street Station, all weekend, prices vary. Eventbrite curates this line-up of activities and events that span food, design, music, fashion and media. Expect beer-tasting with Beerbods, a radio DJ crash course with Hoxton Radio and screen printing workshops from Made in Arts London.
The Knitting and Stitching Show, Alexandra Palace, all weekend, £16, £13 adv, £6 children. This textiles event is a must for anyone with a crafty bone in their body. The vast show boasts nearly 400 exhibitors, a gallery showcasing well-known textile artists from the UK and a tea room if you require a break from the fabric frenzy.
Steam Extravaganza, Granary Building, Sat-Sun, free. Discover how people powered all sorts of machinery before the wonders of electricity took over at this indoor family festival dedicated to the golden age of steam. Visitors can build their own train track out of Lego, try to win prizes in the coal-shovelling competition (which in its original era would likely be considered an internship), climb into a real steam carriage and even ride around King’s Cross on full-size pump trolleys.
Face to Face: British Portraits from the Clifford Chance Art Collection, Sir John Soane’s Museum, Fri-Sat, free. The show consists of 40 engravings, etchings, screenprints and lithographs from the award-winning Clifford Chance collection, which is normally displayed in the law firm’s offices.
The Okido Monster Arcade, Doodle Bar, Sunday, free. Join creative, colourful children’s magazine Okido for a day of terribly silly and wonderfully wacky monsters. The interactive art and science games involve drawing, throwing, thinking and spinning, and include such monstrous classics as ‘Pin the Bone on the Skeleton’, ‘Electric Poo’ and ‘Throw the Organs into the Body’.
Royal Parks Foundation Half Marathon, Hyde Park, Sunday, free. If you’re not keen on the energetic part, but quite fancy showing your support, you can still join in. Spectators will be treated to a food and fitness festival in the park, with live music, entertainment and sports to try out.
…or check out more events happening in London this weekend.
Eating and drinking
Hendrick’s Boneshaker Cocktail Bar, B1866, all weekend, free. If ‘shaken, not stirred’ is your mantra, Hendrick’s have just the contraption for you during London Cocktail Week. Their pedal-powered cocktail shaker will churn out six different gin-based tipples for thirsty visitors from its base at Brooks B1886.
Colony Grill Room at The Beaumont, Mayfair. A class act with retro interior and dishes.
London Cocktail Week, various locations, all weekend, £15 wristbands. For one week, 200 bars will throw open their doors to offer £4 cocktails to wristband wearers. There are also plenty of pop-ups, parties and tastings happening across the capital.
The Rumfest, ILEC Conference Centre, Ibis Hotel, Sat-Sun, £49.95. The RumFest returns to London for its eighth year, showcasing rums from around the world and the best brands on the market. Rum lovers can attend tastings, masterclasses, seminars and cocktail-making sessions, with experts on hand to recommend the perfect bottle.
…or check out the latest restaurant reviews.
Liam Williams – Capitalism, The Invisible Dot Ltd, Fri-Sat, £10, £8.50 concs. Punters were queuing for over an hour at the Edinburgh Fringe to catch Liam Williams’s pessimistic (and free!) stand-up show, which deservedly bagged him a Foster’s Edinburgh Comedy Award nomination. ‘Capitalism’ is an erudite, eloquent hour about Generation Y angst in which the 26-year-old comic (who was also nominated for Best Newcomer in 2013) skilfully picks apart his own depression and contradicting personalities.
John Kearns – Shtick, Soho Theatre, Fri-Sat, £10-£15. John Kearns, 2014’s triumphant winner of the Foster’s Edinburgh Comedy Award, brings his superb, gong-bagging show ‘Shtick’ to Soho Theatre for a month-long run.
EastEnd Cabaret – Sexual Tension, Soho Theatre, Fri-Sat, £10-£15. EastEnd Cabaret – vaguely Eastern European femme fatale Bernadette Byrne and her stalky, hermaphroditic accompanist Victor Victoria – have been playing the cabaret circuit for years. But now they’ve gone proper ‘comedy’, with sharp-witted, musically rich songs about – you guessed it – sex.
Kevin Hart & Friends – Hartbeat Weekend, Wembley Arena, Sunday, £46. He might be small in stature but this talented US comic is fast becoming a comedy giant, chalking up box-office hits (‘About Last Night’) alongside his globe-straddling stand-up success. They say absence makes the Hart grow fonder, so the fast-talking funnyman must be positively itching to return to the UK.
…or check out all the critics’ choice comedy shows.
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Electric Ballroom, TONIGHT, £17. Ten years after their first shows, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah are on the brink of becoming indie veterans, although the band is now effectively a solo project for strangle-voiced singer Alec Ounsworth.
Hans Zimmer Revealed, Eventim Apollo Hammersmith, Fri-Sat, £35-£90. Is it just us, or is there something a bit weird about the title of this event? We’re hoping that the multi-award-winning film composer (and king of pirate music) will not be taking to the stage in anything too risqué, and that any revealing tonight will be solely of a musical nature.
Oxjam Dalston, various Dalston venues, Sat-Sun, £10-£15. The perennially popular Dalston Oxjam Takeover returns, with one wristband getting you in to see more than 60 acts spread across several venues. Highlights include ambient-toned dream-pop by My Panda Shall Fly, harmonic alt folk by Landshapes and trendy folk-rockers The Night VI.
Buzzcocks, The Forum, Saturday, £20. The Mancunian punk-popsters play in their most recent incarnation, with Pete Shelley delivering camply lovelorn laments over Steve Diggle’s trademark buzzsaw guitar, alongside Chris Remmington and Danny Farrant. Expect songs old and new including, of course, ‘Ever Fallen in Love (With Someone You Shouldn’t’ve)’.
…or take a look at all 42 live music events in London this weekend.
Episodes, Fire, TONIGHT, £5. It’s an impressive line-up for the launch of the identity-hopping club night. The techno and footwork-leaning Addison Groove goes up against his former dubstep-driven alias Headhunter, while fellow dubstep dude Plastician breaks out his old Plasticman alias – his set could include anything from wobbly dub basslines to sharp garage cuts.
The Doctor’s Orders Present: Nas, Trapeze, TONIGHT, £8. Marking the London premiere of documentary ‘Nas: Time is Illmatic’ as part of London Film Festival, The Doc’s Orders host a special dedicated to the influential hip hop figure. Mr Thin, Spin Doctor and Chris Read spin the tunes.
The Funk, Soul And Rare Groove Review, Bussey Building, TONIGHT, £5 adv. These guys won’t be getting sued for a misleading title – this furiously funky and free event at Peckham’s Bussey Building is a melting pot of groove gold, with the focus firmly on the dancefloor and having plenty of fun.
Slowbounce, Canavan’s Peckham Pool Club, Saturday, £3 before 11pm, £5 after. There’s no way a ping-pong tournament with drink prizes followed by dancing can’t be a good thing. Practice your backspins on the table and on the dancefloor at this sweet monthly club night.
Werk, Basing House, Saturday, £10. New York’s very own disco don John Morales swoops into London to spin golden grooves at an essential party. Further disco goodness comes from Horse Meat Disco’s Severino, Stevie T and Danny Langan.
Theo Parrish, Plan B, Saturday, £18. After embarking on some very well-received live shows earlier this year with a full band, Detroit’s most soulful selector goes back to his roots and plays a welcome all-night-long set over six hours.
Abode, Studio 338, Sunday, £10-£20 adv. This new monthly Sunday party at vast Greenwich club Studio 338 looks to be the perfect reason to get out of bed at a reasonable-ish hour on Sundays. The organisers are going all out and setting the bar high, hoping to make a big mark on Sunday clubbing with a roster of heavyweight house, disco and techno DJs, plus live visuals and performers to add to the festival-like atmosphere.
…or see all 57 parties planned this weekend.
Classic Cinema Club: ‘One, Two, Three’, Ealing Town Hall, TONIGHT, £7, £6 concs. Billy Wilder’s coarse Cold War satire is structured largely as farce, with James Cagney as the aggressive Coca-Cola executive in West Berlin trying to win advancement by selling the beverage to Russia, while simultaneously attempting to prevent his boss from discovering that the latter’s bird-brained daughter has married a rabid Commie from East Berlin. Marvellous one-liners abound.
The Man on the Eiffel Tower, Barbican Centre, Saturday, £9.50, £8.50 concs. Throughout October, the Barbican presents a series of films featuring that scourge of the Paris criminal underworld, Inspector Maigret, the creation of novelist Georges Simenon. This 1950 Hollywood production casts Charles Laughton as Maigret, pursuing Franchot Tone’s crazed killer all across the metropolis, climaxing – as the title suggests – in a chase up the Eiffel Tower.
London Film Festival: ‘My Darling Clementine’, BFI Southbank, Saturday, £9-£13.75. Throughout the London film festival you can catch sparkling new prints of numerous classic movies, including ‘The Colour of Pomegranates’, Michael Powell’s ‘Tales of Hoffman’ and this stirring John Ford western presenting the infamous gunfight at the OK Corral ‘exactly the way it had been’ (according to Ford).
Or at the cinema…
Gone Too Far! ★★★★☆ British director Destiny Ekharaga’s debut short film ‘Tight Jeans’ was a perfect miniature, a smart look at race in Britain in the form of a simple comic sketch. Her first feature, ‘Gone Too Far!’, retains the wit, the wisdom and the Peckham setting, but it has a great deal more to say.
The Maze Runner ★★★☆☆ Teenagers are getting it in the neck again, in the latest dystopian Young Adult literary sensation to get the Hollywood treatment. ‘The Maze Runner’, adapted from the first novel in a series by James Dashner, takes a ‘Lord of the Flies’ setting of boys fending for themselves in the great outdoors and chucks in some ‘Lost’-style sci-fi.
’71 ★★★☆☆ Belfast, 1971, and Gary (Jack O’Connell), a young private in the British army, is thrown in at the deep end of the Troubles; more than that, his hands are tied and there are bricks in his pocket. This quiet lad from Derbyshire has barely been in Belfast a day when he finds himself in the middle of a violent street riot sparked by a heavy-handed house search by police in a Catholic area.
…or see all of the latest releases.
Electra, Old Vic, Fri-Sat, £10-£55. An unquestionably solid link in the Old Vic’s 2014 renaissance, a tremendously visceral and wholly uncompromising exploration of emotional pain.
James I: The Key Will Keep The Lock, National Theatre, Olivier, Saturday, £15-£35. Furiously exciting from the start, this 1420s-set production cheekily references Shakespeare’s most beloved history play as it begins with James Sives’s wonderfully arsehole-ish Henry V goading his royal prisoner James Stuart into deciding the fates of three captured Scots nobles.
Fantastic Mr Fox, Little Angel Theatre, al weekend, £14, £12 concs. The popularity of Roald Dahl’s fox fantasy received a major boost with Wes Anderson’s wry 2009 animated flick. So it was only a matter of time before a new stage version emerged in Dahl-crazy London – and here it is, a delightful puppet adaptation from the Little Angel.
Manon, Royal Opera House, Fri-Sat, £4-£77. Leave the children at home for this salacious ballet. For the past 40 years, Kenneth’s MacMillan’s three-act masterpiece, adapted from Abbé Prévost’s book ‘L’Histoire du Chevalier des Grieux et de Manon Lescaut’ has entranced audiences and divided critics.
…or see our theatre critics’ choices here.
This week’s best new art
Sigmar Polke: Alibis, Tate Modern, all weekend, free. The German painter, who gave the polka dot contemporary art status, is surveyed through this retrospective of his unusually varied five-decade career.
Damien Hirst: Schizophrenogenesis, Paul Stolper, Fri-Sat, free. A pharmaceutical-inspired playground of giant pills, syringes, medicine bottles and packaging to reflect the former YBA’s eternal fascination with the quasi-spiritual relationship between man and science.
Richard Serra, Gagosian Britannia St, Saturday, free. Gravity defying sculptures that alter your spatial experience is what the American sculptor has excelled at creating for the past 50 years. Here, he presents four new monumental pieces, ‘Backdoor Pipeline’, 2010; ‘Ramble’, 2014; ‘Dead Load’, 2014 and ‘London Cross’, 2014 all made with Serra’s characteristic material of choice, steel.
Tracey Emin: The Last Great Adventure is You, White Cube Bermondsey, Fri-Sat, free. As always the artist’s own life comes under scrutiny in her first show with the gallery in five years. Comprising bronzes, paintings, embroidery and neon works, Emin turns her attention towards the period of contemplation during the creation of work.
Matthew Barney, Sadie Coles Kingly St, Fri-Sat, free. The American artist presents new sculptures that originate from motifs in his recent epic and monumental film, ‘River of Fundament’.
Islington Contemporary Art and Design Fair, Candid Arts Trust, Sat-Sun, free. Art enthusiasts and curious shoppers alike will find plenty of gems at this fair showcasing some of Islington’s finest creative talents. Over the month of October more than 200 artists will exhibit and sell their work, with each weekend focusing on a different set of skills.
Marvin Gaye Chetwynd: Hermitos Children 2, Studio Voltaire, Sunday, free. Screening of Chetwynd’s latest and largest commission, ‘Hermitos Children’ that takes the form of a TV crime drama following detective Joan Shipman as she cracks sex-crimes.
…or see all London art reviews.
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