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34 cool things to do in London this week

By Stephanie Hartman

This week you can chow down on five-star grub at a croqueta competition, catch a screening of 'Psycho' with Nomad cinema, or seek out a speakeasy serving up crisp sarnies from behind a newsagent. Have fun!

Things to do 

Cycle Speed Dating, South Bank, Tue, £16.50 + booking fee. Take speed dating up a gear and go on 15+ short dates with cycle-minded Londoners. After the event cyclists will receive an email with their matches. The event takes place at the Look Mum No Hands! Southbank pop-up.

Christie’s Lates: Incredible Inventions and Curious Collections, Christie's South Kensington, Tue, free. An evening inspired by the annual Out of the Ordinary sale featuring a selection of memorabilia collected by David Gainsborough Roberts. Expect mini golf in the gallery and the chance to see a 1.5-metre mechanical corkscrew and wine-pouring machine.

London Design Biennale, Somerset House, Wed-Thu, free. The inaugural edition of this month-long festival of contemporary design will fill Somerset House with works from over 30 countries. 

The Story of the Banknote, Bank of England Museum, Wed-Thu, free. To mark the launch of the new polymer fiver, and the Museum's Banknote Gallery, the Bank of England Museum is uncovering all the untold stories of paper money with a new exhibition.

The Gathering, Cecil Sharp House, Thu, £34.50. This evening is curated by meditation expert Will Williams who will lead a guided class, and he's asked along the Hemsley sisters to talk about the nutritious food they champion, and singer-songwriter Lucy Rose to perform an acoustic set.

Star Trek: Fact and Fiction, Royal Institution of Great Britain, Thu, £14, £10 concs. It's been 50 years since the original series first aired and to celebrate the Starship Enterprise and its team, the Royal Institution are hosting this panel discussion with a group of scientists and Star Trek fans.

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






Eating and drinking

Croquetas Challenge, Ember Yard, Tue, £15. An impressive list of restaurants and chefs are taking part in this competition which requires them to create the ultimate croqueta. 

Introduction to English Wine by Chapel Down, St Pancras Renaissance, Tue, free. A complimentary introduction to the history of English wine led by Chapel Down in Kent. 

Disappearing Dining Club x Jameson Caskmates: A Night of Classic Pairs, Geffrye Street Studio, Wed, £20 adv. Cool cocktails and top notch nosh make for a pucker pairing. That's probably why whiskey giants Jameson have teamed up with Disappearing Dining Club, the foodie pop-up party crew, to tickle some tastebuds with this luscious duo.

Snooty Fox Wine Club, The Snooty Fox, Wed, £20. A monthly wine club hosted by sommelier Raul Diaz. Tonight focusses on Sauvignon Blanc and guests will be guided through a number of summery flavours. 

Beer Meats BBQ: Bodean’s and BrewDog Hosted Dinners, Bodean's, Wed-Thu, £40. Brewdog and Bodean's team up for two nights and five finger-licking courses of meat paired with fine beer.

Walkers Crisp Sarnie Club, Tooley Street, Thu, £3. This speakeasy-style crisp club coincides with the launch of Walkers' new range of sandwich flavoured snack in partnership with Heinz. Step into 'Chris Peters News', down a secret walkway and into the club where you can build your own crisp sarnie.

…or check out the latest restaurant reviews.






Live music and nightlife

M Ward, Koko, Tue, £20. Wonderful singer-songwriter M(att) Ward has worked both as half of She & Him, a collaboration with actress Zooey Deschanel that's yielded two albums, and as a member of Monsters Of Folk.

Animal Collective, Scala, Thu, adv £19.50. The Baltimore post-psych innovators deliver another heady dose of ecstatic, harmony-drenched avant-pop.

King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard, Electric Brixton, Thu, £15. The Aussie collective explore the outer regions of psychedelic rock, with tasty results.

Petite Meller, ICA, Thu, £12. Super-weird but super-catchy pop from Island Records’ signing: a Parisian singer (and philosophy student) who comes across like a three-way cross between Lady Gaga, Lana Del Rey and Nabokov’s Lolita. 

Mystic Bounce, XOYO, Thu, £5-£15. House and techno courtesy of George The Poet, Tom Misch and DJ Milktray.

Beatnik Bassment, Old Street Records, Thu, free. Kelis's official tour DJ, Nikki Beatnik pitches up in the basement of Old Street Records every Thursday night for the forseeable. Dj Statis also spins. Expect hip hop, bass and more.

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







Scalarama & Tufnell Park Film Club: ‘The Virgin Suicides’, The Star, Tue, £15 m’ship. This extremely assured directorial debut from Sofia Coppola finds an unexpected perspective on what should be difficult subject matter – teenage suicide. 

Silent Cinema, ZSL London Zoo, Tue-Thu, £29.99, members £24.99. Anyone who's ever seen a Disney classic will know that animals and the silver screen are a match made in heaven. London Zoo are taking the combination further than any other attraction could manage by screening animal-related movies and letting you actually visit the real-life critters that will star in your chosen flick beforehand. 

The Nomad: ‘Psycho’, Brompton Cemetery, Wed,  £18. One of the most important, iconic and still downright unsettling horror movies of all time screens in a unique and spectacular location – one of London’s finest cemeteries.

Science on Screen: ‘Pi’, Barbican Centre, Thu, £11.50, £10.50 concs. Physicist Simon DeDeo will discuss humanity’s obsession with finding patterns – the perfect introduction to this spiralling, nightmarish drama. 

Or at the cinema...

Things to Come ★★★★☆ Isabelle Huppert is a philosophy teacher whose life is unravelling in Mia Hansen-Løve’s deep and meaningful Paris-set drama.

…or see all of the latest releases.







TANK, New Diorama Theatre, Tue-Thu, £10-£12. Breach Theatre's dreamy second show about a real-life attempt to teach English to a dolphin.

Revolt. She Said. Revolt Again., Shoreditch Town Hall, Tue-Thu, £15, £5 concs. Alice Birch's ferocious feminist odyssey finally hits London.

Two Man Show, Soho Theatre, Tue-Thu, £12.50-£17.50. Brave, absurdist, silly skewering of the language of patriarchy from RashDash.

The Entertainer, Garrick Theatre, all week, £15-£95. The Kenneth Branagh West End season ends with John Osborne bitter classic.

Diary of a Madman, Gate Theatre, all week, £10-£20, £7.50-£15 concs. Al Smith's slightly perplexing Scottish rewriting of Gogol's classic.

…or see our theatre critics’ choices.






This week's best new art

Ik-Joong Kang, Robilant + Voena, Tue-Thu, free. The New York-based artist's work often deals with globalisation, geopolitics and the troubled history of his Korean home country. In this new show, jars will be featuring as a key motif. 

Maggi Hambling – Touch: Works on Paper, British Museum, Thu, free. Although she's probably best known for her controversial public sculptures (Oscar Wilde, 1998 opposite Charing Cross Station and Scallop, 2003 on Aldeburgh Beach), Maggi Hambling has also amassed a huge body of work on paper, with drawing continuing to be fundamental to her practice.

Giuseppe Penone: Fui, Saro, Non Sono (I was, I will be, I am not), Marian Goodman Gallery, Thu, free. The Italian sculptor makes art that fuses the man-made world with the natural – doing things like attaching a bronze cast of his hand to the trunk of a sapling tree. 

…or see all London art reviews.

And finally

Win... a culture trip with Bombay Sapphire

Grab... two cocktails and a sharing board for £15 at Jamie Oliver's Barbecoa

Book… these gigs while you still can

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