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34 ace things to do in London this week

By Stephanie Hartman

This week you can discover a series of free workshops, talks and performances around London Bridge, dine at a new supper club in the heart of Brixton, or get yourself down to the South Bank for David Byrne's Meltdown Festival where Sunn O))) and Maria Rodés are performing. Have fun!

Things to do 

World Landmarks Sand Sculptures, Peter's Hill, Tue-Thu, free. Three of the world's best sand sculptors will be digging, scraping and scooping a big pile of sand into iconic landmarks to celebrate the launch of Lonely Planet's Ultimate Travelist. 

Korfball Training, Petchey Academy, Wed, free. If you haven't heard of Korfball before then you're not alone, but we’ve had a google and it sounds like great fun. As far as we can make out it’s a mix of netball, quidditch and a year eight disco where mysterious magnetic forces separate boys and girls.

Ghostsigns Walking Tour, Stoke Newington Station, Wed, £15 incl set of postcards. Thanks to the founder of the Ghostsigns Project, Sam Roberts, we can delve into hand painted wall advertising of London. More than 15 old signs are covered on this tour, which lasts roughly two hours.

Shellsphere, South Bank Observation Point, Wed, free. Step inside a giant shell to be enveloped by evocative wafts of salty air, the sounds of waves and seagulls (though we have our share of those on the river), and mood lighting designed to encourage you to make good on your dreams of a seaside jaunt.

Twilight Gardening, Skip Garden, Wed, free. Lend a hand with the gardening at these evening sessions which invite visitors of all ages to tend the edible plants and flowers that grown in skips behing the King's Cross Pond Club.

Superheroes on Screen Lecture Series, Hackney Picturehouse, Thu, £12 per session ;£11 concs, £10 members. This six-week course will take a closer look at superhero movies, exploring the history, tropes and development of the genre, and the business behind them.

Bat Walks, London Wetland Centre, Thu, £10. Seven different species of bat swoop over the London Wetland Centre to hunt after dark. These walks are your chance to witness their impressive airborne aerobatics and to hear them chatter as they locate their dinner.

London Shh Summer Garden Party, Fenton House, Thu, £8. The charming walled garden of Fenton House, which dates to the 17th century, will be a captivating setting for cocktails: they'll be themed to the periods of London Small Historic Houses (London Shh) member properties, which include everywhere from Dr Johnson's House and Handel House to Ernö Goldfinger's modernist 2 Willow Road.

London Bridge Live Arts, various locations, all week, free. Enjoy London Bridge's loveliest venues and public spaces with the help of this annual arts festival, which will fill them with free workshops, talks, installations, performances and trails themed around 'exchange'.

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






Eating and drinking

Club Lola, secret London location, Tue, £25. This new supper club offers a casual, friendly evening of excellent food at Lola's home in Brixton. The tempting menu includes watermelon gazpacho consommé with lime and coriander prawns and pressed slow-cooked lamb with beetroot emulsion and an edamame, cannellini and green bean salad with feta.

York & Albany’s Beach Hut, Camden Town, all week. Order up beach-themed booze such as seaweed martinis, Pimm's ice lollies and rum slushies, or tuck into some mini fish and chips, pickled seafood or something more substantial from the barbecue menu.

Barrafina Drury Lane, Covent Garden. The third restaurant from the excellent Spanish tapas specialists, and it is a winner in every way.

…or check out the latest restaurant reviews.







Simon Evans – In the Money, Soho Theatre, Tue-Thu, £15, £12.50 concs. Slick, sharp, very funny stand-up Simon Evans – who's appeared on 'Live at the Apollo' and hosts Radio 4's Goes to Market – makes a welcome return to Soho. 

Iliza Shlesinger – Freezing Hot, Soho Theatre, all week, £10-£15. US stand-up Iliza Shlesinger – all the way from Dallas, Texas – makes her UK debut this summer. Shlesinger won the sixth season of 'Last Comic Standing' in the States (basically 'X Factor' for comedians) and she's an impressive stand-up: she's slick, caustic and tells it like it is, with plenty of strong opinions on dating, pop culture and the state of her nation. 

Camden Fringe: Jake Yapp – One-Derland, Camden People's Theatre, all week, £9, £7 concs. Comic Jake Yapp – who's recently been summarising things like Radio 4 in just four-minutes for 'Charlie Brooker's Weekly Wipe' viewers – presents a day in the life of BBC One in his solo show.

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






Live music

James Morrison, Wilton's Music Hall, Tue, £22.50. Croaky-voiced, Brit-winning singer-songwriter Morrison attempts another comeback, nearly a decade since his soul-pop number ‘You Give Me Something’ smashed charts across the world.

Sunn O))), Royal Festival Hall, Tue, £20-£30. Hooded dronemeisters Stephen O’Malley and Greg Anderson are back in town with the rest of their drone/doom crew for a set of devastatingly heavy, loud and hypnotic chords.

Dilated Peoples, XOYO, Tue, £18.50. The acclaimed, West-Coast underground hip hop trio return, with the turntable wizardry of DJ Babu still at the heart of their Jurassic 5-esque sound.

Pissed Jeans, 100 Club, Tue-Wed, £14. Pennsylvanian noise-rockers Pissed Jeans are signed to Sub Pop, and – along with likeminded Canadians Metz – are current guardians of that label's long-term commitment to scuzzy, badass alt rock.

Maria Rodés, Purcell Room, Thu, £10. Recording at home with found objects – taps, toothbrushes, cigarette lighters – and an acoustic guitar, young Catalan singer-songwriter Rodés creates fragile and very pretty folk-pop that combines traditional Spanish copla song with touches of ambient and electronic music.

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







Sounds Familiar Music Quiz, Trapeze, Tue, £40 (ticket for eight people). Eyes down and ears open for this delightfully raucous, super-fun music-fuelled quiz, featuring rounds such as 'Round of Cheese', 'Office Party' and 'Feel the Power Ballad', plus prizes including mugs, medals, champagne and more, and DJ AL compering and spinning the tunes.

Turntables, 119 Wallis Rd, Thu, free. A pop-up party on a canalside Hackney Wick terrace, with DJs, street food vendors and cocktails.

Gaz's Rockin' Blues, St Moritz, Thu, £9, £7 before 10pm. A hugely popular long-running weekly night – filled with rock 'n' roll history – that explores the best ska, blues, reggae and jive every Thursday.

…or see all the parties planned this week.








Tufnell Park Film Club: ‘The Talented Mr Ripley’, The Lord Palmerston, TONIGHT, £15 m’ship. Following last week’s screening of ‘Plein Soleil’, the French version of Patricia Highsmith’s ‘The Talented Mr Ripley’, here comes Anthony Minghella’s more faithful (but perhaps just a teensy bit less interesting) version. 

Trinity Hospice Summer Cinema: 'Casablanca', 30 Clapham Common, Thu, £15, £10 concs. Head to the lush gardens of Trinity Hospice in Clapham for a trio of audience-friendly film screenings: ‘The Breakfast Club’, ‘Mrs Doubtfire’ and this priceless wartime romance.

Or at the cinema...

Trainwreck ★★★★☆ American comedian Amy Schumer makes her leading-lady debut with this hilarious, insightful bad-taste comedy from 'Knocked Up' director Judd Apatow.

Mistress America ★★★★★ Greta Gerwig shines in this loveable low-budget comedy about a uni student and her new, cool step-sister.

…or see all of the latest releases.







Miss-Leading Ladies, St James Theatre, Tue-Thu, £12-£17.50. Brother and sister duo perform a sequin-slathered musical revue.

The School of Light, White Bear Theatre, Tue-Thu, £14, £12 concs. Even the biggest sceptic knows what astrological animal they were born under. But what happens if you get that fierce sceptic in a room full of free spirits? Ian Dixon-Potter and Robert Pope ponder just this in their new play ‘The School of Light’.

Carmen, Soho Theatre, all week, £15-£45. This is not the tale of Don José, an upright soldier whose life is destroyed over his obsession with a femme fatale, but rather that of a free-spirited woman who suffers increasing levels of domestic violence from a jealous lover.

…or see our theatre critics’ choices.






This week's best new art

The Temptations of Pierre Molinier, Richard Saltoun, Thu, free. The fetishistic eroticism of the French surrealist is demonstrated in this sexy selection of over 50 photographs, drawings and paintings from 1952 until his death.

…or see all London art reviews.

And finally

Win... one of 100 pairs of tickets to a private view of 'Soundscapes' at the National Gallery or your own taste of Italy 

Grab... a £10 deal for pizza and a beer or soft drink at NY Fold, Charing Cross Road

Book... these gigs while you still can

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