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40 delightful things to do in London this week

Posted at 12:10 pm, May 11, 2015 in Arts & Entertainment, Food & Drink, Free, Fun London, Music & Nightlife

Spannarama[Photo: Spannarama]

Visit London’s great institutions taking part in Museums at Night, check out the latest Italian-influenced offerings from House of Peroni or jump into a tub and bubble up with Hot Tub Cinema. Here’s everything you need to know about the next few days in the capital.

Things to do 

Pushing the Envelope, House of Illustration, Tue-Thu, free. Feast your eyes on 138 postal artworks on show at the King’s Cross gallery, commemorating the 175th anniversary of the Penny Black- the world’s first postage stamp.

Clare Winsten at 31 Fournier Street, Spitalfields, Tue, Thu, free. Rodney Archer, owner of 31 Fournier Street, and curator Trevor Newton present this selling exhibition of portrait drawings and sketches by Whitechapel Group artist Clare Winsten.

Plonk, EFES, Wednesday, £7.50. Combine beer with balls at this ramshackle but imaginative crazy golf course which has, er, plonked itself within Efes Pool Hall.

Cities After Hours, Bloomsbury Theatre, Wednesday, free. Tackling the inequalities of the city at night, this evening brings together a selection of film screenings and a panel discussion chaired by author Matthew Beaumont. The event will explore the numerous ways the city is experienced in the hours of darkness: as a place to work, a place to unwind or as a place to rest a head for those sleeping rough.

Life on Foot, Design Museum, Wed-Thu, £13, £9.75 student, £6.50 under-16s. Marking the 40-year anniversary of Camper, the family-run Spanish footwear brand, the Design Museum will take visitors on a journey from the design studios in Mallorca to mass production facilities in the Far East and on to shop floors across the globe.

Museums at Night: Night of the Bodysnatcher, Old Operating Theatre Museum, Thursday, £8, £6 concs. Find out about the creepy work of London’s resurrectionists, who furnished eighteenth- and nineteenth-century dissecting rooms with dead bodies using rather sinister methods.

Court Adjourned! Behind The Scenes at the UK Supreme Court, Westminster, Thursday, £10, £8 concs. The UK Supreme Court gets in on the Museums at Night action with this special late opening featuring live jazz and a bar. Court Ushers will reveal what goes on behind-the-scenes during a hearing, Former Judicial Assistants will describe their experience of working for a Supreme Court Justice, the Inner Temple’s amateur dramatics society will present a contemporary courtroom drama and plenty more.

Museums at Night: Mad Men and Bad Men, Museum of Brands, Packaging & Advertising, Thursday, £10. As part of the Museums at Night festival this exhibit-packed Notting Hill museum will open late for a talk on British politics’ collision with advertising. Writer Sam Delaney has had first-hand experience in both politics and advertising and will reveal the stories behind the ad campaigns of the last four British elections.

Museums at Night: Nature Late, Horniman Museum, Thursday, £5. Discover how contemporary artists are inspired by flora and fauna at this adults-only late featuring street art, musical performances, birdcall-influenced installations, typewriter art and plenty more.

London Photo Festival, The Crypt, Thursday, free. For the eighth biannual London Photo Festival, the theme of architectural photography will be explored by amateur and semi professional photographers alike.

…or check out more events happening in London this week.

Le Tour de Teisseire

Eating and drinking

Le Tour de Teisseire, St Pancras Champagne Bar, Wednesday, free. ‘French sirop Teisseire’ launch their drink sirups in the UK with this three-day pop-up at Searcy’s Champagne Bar at St Pancras International. Guests will be treated to three drinks within the space of 30 minutes including a ‘Famboise Cooler’, ‘Fraise de Champagne’ and a ‘Hazelnut and White Mocha’.

Dram & Smoke, Swan Wharf, Wed-Thu, £40. If you like your meals to scream ‘North of the border’ this five-course supperclub will have you donning tartan and borrowing bagpipes. Many of the ingredients on the menu have been smoked in a whisky barrel, and traditional Scottish flavours will include cullen skink (smoked haddock), tattie scones and hot toddies.

Pincer Punch: Crabbieshack Pops-Up, The Hat and Tun, Wed-Thu. Find crunchy, soft-shell crab burgers and margaritas to wash them down with as Crabbieshack sets up shop for three nights only.

The House of Peroni, The Boiler House, Thursday. Beer brand Peroni is once again bringing la vita bella to London to create a temporary themed venue offering specialist menus and classes. It’s our chance to peer at passers-by through oversized sunglasses, holding a negroni in one hand and gesticulating wildly with the other.

Rupert Street Market, Soho, Thursday. This lunch market, run by Street Food Union, gathers a tempting selection of traders to feed the hungry of Soho every Thursday, Friday and Saturday between 11am and 4pm. Benches are provided.

…or check out the latest restaurant reviews.

Standard Issue Stands Up for Comic Relief


Standard Issue Stands Up for Comic Relief, Lyric Theatre, TONIGHT, £20-£25. This belated benefit gig for Comic Relief is organised by Standard Issue – the excellent online magazine for all women, which regularly features comedian columnists. The line-up tonight is pretty spectacular, featuring spots from Sarah Millican, Katherine Ryan, Susan Calman, Jo Brand, Jenny Eclair, Sara Pascoe, Holly Walsh and Jessica Fostekew.

Beth Vyse – Get Up with Hands, Soho Theatre, Mon-Tue, £10. Madass character comic Beth Vyse (part of the Weirdos Comedy collective) brings her latest solo show, ‘Get Up with Hands!’, to London following an acclaimed Edinburgh Fringe run. Vyse plays Olive Hands, the presenter of ITV9’s daytime talk show. But that’s about the extent of the storyline – from there it’s a trip into Vyse’s insane, chaotic and stupidly funny mind.

Eddie Pepitone – What Rough Beast, Soho Theatre, Tue-Thu, £10-£15. Nicknamed ‘The Bitter Buddha’, Brooklyn-born comic Eddie Pepitone has been a huge hit at recent Edinburgh Fringes with his dark, angry and bitter stand-up. The US comic switches between bursts of philosophical outrage and moments of calm, introverted self-loathing and ridicules the notion of stand-ups performing scripted material.

Alex Horne – Monsieur Butterfly, Soho Theatre, all week, £15, £12.50 concs. In ‘Monsieur Butterfly’, Horne builds an elaborate, Rube Goldberg-style contraption on stage each night, made from bits and bobs bought at B&Q, as he talks about his current life. It’s delightfully daft, and his best show is yonks.

…or check out all the critics’ choice comedy shows.


Live music

Pinkshinyultrablast, Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen, TONIGHT, £7. Despite growing up in Russia, this young band do a good job of recreating the shinier side of the early ’90s Thames Valley shoegazing sound.

Bleachers, Dingwalls (Lock 17), Tuesday, £11.50. Jack Antonoff of hyper-successful US pop trio Fun launches his new project into the UK market, busting out infectious, punchy pop-rock which sounds tailor made to get thousands of pairs of hands in the air.

The Maccabees, The Coronet, Thursday, £25. Battersea’s finest are back once again, bashing out their radio-friendly indie rock full of angular riffs, south London accents and infectious, anthemic tunes.

Tyler The Creator, Roundhouse, Thursday, £22.50. The lynchpin of LA’s Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All skate-rap collective plays a solo show. Tyler Okonma is still only 23, but he’s already made three albums of dark hip hop that veer between irreverent and downright terrifying.

…or take a look at all the live music events in London this week.

Belle And Sebastian Afterparty


Belle And Sebastian Afterparty, The Social, Mon-Tue, £10. After both of their consecutive sold-out dates at Central Hall, melodic, sometimes melancholy indie heroes Belle And Sebastian are carrying on the fun at central London venue The Social.

Hot Tub Cinema, Former Shoreditch Underground Station, all week, £20-£25 per individual ticket. Kick back in a hot tub, quaff a few drinks and watch cult and classic films, with a party and music afterwards.

Turntables, 119 Wallis Rd, Thursday, free. This deliciously fun – and just plain delicious – pop-up seriously impressed us last year, so we’re chuffed to hear that it’s back in town. As before, it’s set on and around the considerable terrace space of Hackney Wick canalside venue Shapes and once again, there’ll be all kinds of delicious street food on offer and specially brewed Turntables lager.

…or see all the parties planned this week.



Cat People + White God, Regent Street Cinema, TONIGHT, £15, £13 concs. The brand new Regent St Cinema – London’s first ever film venue, history buffs – is reopened to the public with a terrific programme of new indies and classic double bills. ‘Cat People’ features a superbly judged performance from Simone Simon as the young wife ambivalently haunted by sexual frigidity and by a fear that she is metamorphosing into a panther.

A Woman’s Work: ‘The Alcohol Years’, Arthouse Crouch End, Tuesday, £10. Journalist Miranda Sawyer comes to the Arthouse cinema in Crouch End to discuss the work of one of Britain’s most promising filmmakers, ‘The Falling’ director Carol Morley, with a screening of one of her early documentaries. Realising that she’d lost several years of her life to drugs and alcohol, Morley advertised in the local press for anyone with a clearer memory and interviewed them on camera.

Or at the cinema…

Girlhood ★★★★☆ The title makes you think of Richard Linklater’s ‘Boyhood’ – but that takes away from the specialness of this French coming-of-age-drama which is powerfully attuned to race, solidarity and the dead ends that many kids have to be smart enough to avoid.

Top Five ★★★★☆ On the surface, this is an artist-in-a-rut comedy in the vein of Woody Allen’s ‘Stardust Memories’. But more deeply, it is also perhaps a semi-autobiographical reflection of the dead-end choices Chris Rock himself might be feeling.

…or see all of the latest releases.

The Verb To Love / Portia Coughlan


The Verb To Love / Portia Coughlan, Old Red Lion Theatre, Tue-Thu, £14, 12 concs. Aria Entertainment’s double bill at the Old Red Lion Theatre has a rather oddball feel. ‘The Verb, To Love’ is a sunny musical about romance and discovering oneself staged within a spring garden. ‘Portia Coughlan’ is a melancholic drama about death that has a distinctly wintery feel. Still, they are united in a slick production style which neatly showcases Aria Entertainment’s versatility – so maybe that’s the point.

Carrie: the Musical, Southwark Playhouse, all week, £18-£22. Whether you think Stephen King’s 1974 novel ‘Carrie’ is a key feminist tract or just a spot of lurid prose, there’s no denying it’s the height of horror. Blood, death, bullying, telekinesis and abuse: it’s an unsettling mix of ‘Matilda’, ‘Misery’ and ‘Mean Girls’, and the 1988 musical, here running in London for the first time, revels in the darkness.

As Good a Time As Any, Print Room, all week, £25, £17 concs. Veteran writer/director Peter Gill’s new play is a gentle and moving reminder that, although we can’t escape our own self-importance, we actually all think about the same stuff: friends who annoy us; wishing we could bring back the past; wondering what’s in the fridge for dinner; whether to get a dog.

Beyond Caring, National Theatre, all week, £10-£20. It’s hard to tell when this mesmerising show about a group of cleaners on zero-hour contracts actually begins. The lights stay up throughout, Natasha Jenkins’ realistic set barely feels like a set, and the performances are so well pitched that the cast doesn’t seem to be acting.

…or see our theatre critics’ choices.

Zabludowicz Collection: 20 Years

This week’s best new art

Zabludowicz Collection: 20 Years, Chalk Farm, Thursday, free. Can you condense 20 years of collecting art into a coherent and engaging exhibition? Let alone capture the spirit of two philanthropic collectors and still be representative of two decades of art history? This show, which celebrates the passion, commitment and dedication to contemporary art of London residents Anita and Poju Zabludowicz, does just that.

Peter Kennard: Unofficial War Artist, Imperial War Museum, Thursday, free. A look at the work of one of Britain’s most important political artists, this exhibition is the first major retrospective of Peter Kennard’s 50-year career.

Catlin Art Prize, Londonewcastle Project Space, all week, free. This annual exhibition showcases the most exciting and dynamic graduate and postgraduate artists working today.

…or see all London art reviews.

And finally

Win… a VIP experience for two at Christopher Williams: The Production Line of Happiness or one of five pairs of weekend tickets to Common People festival 2015

Grab… £15 tickets to ‘Bend It Like Beckham’ at the Phoenix Theatre

Book… these gigs while you still can 

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