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44 fabulous things to do this week in London

©Umbreen Hafeez https://www.facebook.com/RealLondonPhotos

[Photo © Umbreen Hafeez]

It’s August! Stop worrying about where the year’s gone and start planning your week. Get hysterical at the Camden Fringe, chow down on some gelato at Harvey Nics, try your hand at Hip Hop Karaoke and plenty more. 

Stuff to do


Night Safari, Natural History Museum, Monday. Learn all about the latest research into Mars and meteorites at this evening of talks.

Wikimania, Barbican Centre, Wednesday-Sunday. Just imagine how much you’ll learn at this five-day Wikipedia festival!

London Contemporary Orchestra: ‘There Will Be Blood’, Roundhouse, Wednesday and Thursday. The LCO accompany the film screening and a performance of Jonny Greenwood’s soundtrack.

Street Velodrome, Exchange Square, Liverpool Street, Thursday. Come test your personal speed or watch the pros battle it out at this pop-up velodrome.

Buckingham Palace Summer Opening, all week (until Sept 28). The royals are off on their hols so you can go have a nose around their State Rooms.

Out of the Ordinary, Christie’s, South Kensington, all week (until Sep 3). An auction of the weird and wonderful stuff that won’t fit into any of their other categories. Get your bids in for a medieval sword, Sir Paul McCartney’s front door or a pair of taxidermy zebracorns.

Tower of London WWI Centenary Commemoration, all week. Visit the 888,246 ceramic poppies filling the Tower’s moat to mark each British and Colonial fatality during World War I.

Arabica Bar & Kitchen

Eating and Drinking

Chipotle giveaway. From Tuesday, a whopping 14,000 free burritos will be given out over seven days by Chipotle. Keep an eye on #BurritoWatch for your chance to nab a special voucher.

Bishopsgate Market, 100 Bishopsgate, Tuesday and Wednesday. Street food market comes to the city with burgers, fishdogs and doughnuts.

Arabica Bar & Kitchen, London Bridge. Sit at the bar and watch this Middle Eastern kitchen at work. Gorge on fresh flatbreads and pickled aubergine.

Stax Diner, Soho. Dig into chicken and waffles, fried shrimp and decadent desserts.

Eat 17, Clapton. Homerton has found itself a stylish new bistro.

Lerryn’s Cafe and Bar, Peckham. Having just nabbed their licence, Lerryn’s are now serving up drinks alongside ‘stuff on toast’.

Snowflake Gelato at Harvey Nichols, Knightsbridge. Cool down after a summer shopping spree with handmade ice cream at this pop-up.

…or take a look at new restaurant openings.

Frankie Boyle- Camden Fringe


The Phoenix Fringe, 37 Cavendish Square, until Sat, £10, £8 adv, £20 day ticket. London’s answer to the Edinburgh Fringe. The line-up includes big names like Frankie Boyle, Al Murray and Ed Byrne.

Cutting Edge, Comedy Store, Tuesday, £14, £9 concs. Stand-up competitions, topical material and short sets from various comedians.

James Dowdeswell – Wine, Ale and I 2014, Camden Head, Tue-Thu, £6, £5 concs. Bursting with booze facts and ancedotes, Dowdeswell has shaken up his solo show for Camden Fringe.

Andrew Bird – Up Against It, Camden Head, Tue-Wed, £6, £5 concs. Another top-notch solo show on the Camden Fringe bill from seriously funny, Andrew Bird.

Clapham Comedy Club, Bread & Roses, Thursday. This week’s line-up includes cockney philosopher Jeff Innocent, Neev Spencer, Tom Greeves, Andrew Hammond and MC Sion James.

…or check out all the comedy shows in London this week.

Perfume Genius

Live Music

Perfume Genius, Chats Palace, Monday, £10. Perfume Genius promises a magical live show with a pin-droppingly intimate atmosphere.

Dill Katz, 606 Club, Tuesday, £10. Ex-Nucleus electric bassist Katz leads this jazz-rock quartet with support from uber-talented saxophonist Reinstein.

Alvvays, Birthdays, Tuesday, £5. Effortlessly cool Canadian band Alvvays, bring indie beats to the Dalston masses.

Jamie T, The Dome, Thursday, prices vary. After a five-year hiatus, Jamie T is back and ready to release his new album. Expect to hear new material and a few classics thrown in for good measure.

The Dictators, The Garage, Thursday, £17.50. The New York band revisit their greatest hits for a night of proto-punk fun.

…or see the other gigs happening across the capital here.

Hip Hop karaoke

Club nights

Hip Hop Karaoke, The Social, Thursday, £5. Dust of your mic and head to this rap-tastic night if you think you could give Jay-Z or Nicki Minaj a run for their money. Rappers are rewarded with free beers and prizes for having a go.

Proud Presents, Proud Camden, Thursday, £5, £3 adv. A night of UK garage vibes, brought to you by Artful Dodger. Transport yourself back to the early 2000s, or two-step your way into an early weekend.

…take a look at all 30 parties happening this week.

Luna Cinema


The Luna Cinema, various venues, Wed-Thu, £12-£40. Spread across numerous parks and gardens in London, the Luna Cinema is showing silver-screen classics and recent blockbusters all summer long. This week, head out to see ‘Back to the Future’ or ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’.

Everyman: The Power of Summer, Battersea Power Station, £10-£25. Battersea Power Station is summer’s best venue to catch a film… and a burger (Street Feast are doing food and there’s a bar). This week watch ‘The Terminator’ or ‘The Darjeeling Limited’.

Or at the cinema…

The Deer Hunter ★★★★ One of the great films of the ’70s gets a re-release on the big screen.

Step Up: All In ★★☆ The fifth incarnation of the dancing franchise heads to Vegas. Expect dozens of dances-offs.

Moon Indigo ★★☆☆ Michel Gondry directs Audrey Tautou in a surreal French love story.

…or see our reviews of other films in cinemas right now.

The Crucible

At the theatre

The Crucible, Old Vic, all week, prices vary. Three-and-a-half-hours engulf your soul like a black mass in this titanic, ritualistic production of Arthur Miller’s tragedy.

Forbidden Broadway, Menier Chocolate Factory, Tue-Sun, prices vary. Ripping through audiences for over 30 years, this take-no-prisoners Broadway revue is dangerously funny.

The Pajama Game, Shaftesbury Theatre, all week, prices vary. The show may be called ‘The Pajama Game’ but there’s nothing sleepy about a production that harkens back to Eyre’s legendary revival of ‘Guys and Dolls’.

The Elephantom, New London Theatre, all week, prices vary. It’s official: there ain’t no party like an elephant party.

1984, Playhouse Theatre, all week, prices vary. A brilliant but brutal production.

Watch this Space, St John’s Church Waterloo, Wed-Sat, free. The National Theatre’s six-week festival of outdoor street theatre, dance and cabaret.

…or see all critics’ choice theatre shows.

Cut, copy, paste

This week’s best art

Cut, Copy, Paste, Beers Contemporary, Tue-Sat, free. Collage is put under the spotlight in this show of three American artists; Frank Hallam Day, Michael Mapes and Brian Porray.

Primrose: Early Colour Photography in Russia, Photographers’ Gallery, all week, free. The social history of Russia is charted through this beautiful and intriguing assortment of images.

James Ostrer: Wotsit All About, Gazelli Art House, all week, free. The gallery’s Window Project has had a Willy Wonka makeover with James Ostrer’s sugary sweet photographs of figures covered in all things saccharine.

Lorenzo Vitturi: Dalston Anatomy, Photographers’ Gallery, all week, free. Focusing on east London’s Ridley Road Market, the Italian artist and local resident distils the area’s individuality and dynamism in these captivating photographs.

Zinger! // Humdinger, Canal, all week, free. This group show celebrates all things summer; energy, vibrancy and heat induced headiness.

Summer Screen Prints, Somerset House, all week, free. To coincide with the outdoor film screenings at Somerset House, Print Club has chosen 16 artists to respond to the movies using the medium of print.

Yvonne Rainer: Dance Works, Raven Row, all week, free. Focusing on Rainer’s output between 1961 and 1972, this exhibition comprises stunning black-and-white photographs, grainy videos, writings and diagrammatical instructions.

Giulio Paolini: To Be Or Not To Be, Whitechapel, Tue-Sun, free. An excellent retrospective of Paolini’s work dating from the mid 1960s.

…or see all critics’ choice art exhibitions.

And finally

The best of the blog…

58 marvellous things happening in London this August

Overheard in London: this week’s #wordonthestreet

16 candid photos of people on Brick Lane from Janssem Cardoso

A plate in the sun: seven great places to dine outdoors in London

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