The UK's leading international arts centre
The Barbican Centre, a vast concrete estate of 2,000 flats and a leading arts complex, is a prime example of brutalist architecture, softened a little by time and rectangular ponds of friendly resident ducks. The lakeside terrace and adjoining café are good spots to take a rest from visiting the art gallery, cinema, theatre, concert hall or library within the complex. The art gallery on the third floor stages exhibitions on design, architecture and pop culture, while on the ground floor, the Curve is a free exhibition space for specially commissioned works and contemporary art. At the core of the music roster, performing 90 concerts a year, is the London Symphony Orchestra (LSO). The annual BITE season (Barbican International Theatre Events) continues to cherry-pick exciting and eclectic theatre companies from around the globe. The Barbican regularly attracts and nurtures experimental dance, and the Pit Theatre is a perfectly intimate space.
|Venue name:||Barbican Centre|
|Transport:||Tube: Barbican; Rail/Tube: Moorgate|
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- While widely regarded as one of the finest Japanese directors working today, Hirokazu Kore-eda has a somewhat uneven body of work to his name, notwithstanding the fact that his measured pacing, gentle tone and uncluttered visuals make his style un...Read more
- Telemarketers aren’t really sorry to bother you and rapper-turned-writer/director Boots Riley surely isn’t sorry if anything in his debut feature rubs you up the wrong way. It’s an unabashed provocation, rife with the ambition and tonal messiness ...Read more
- The best horror movies, just as major as the more reputable stuff, work on a primal level, beyond plot or words. They grab at your bowels. Dario Argento’s 1977 stunner ‘Suspiria’, an explosion of color, gore and vaulting stylistic ambition, is und...Read more
- Who knows what makes mountain climber Alex Honnold – the daredevil at the heart of the so-terrifying-you’ll-hyperventilate ‘Free Solo’ – risk his life thousands of feet up with no ropes or securing gear of any kind. Maybe it’s a quest for perfecti...Read more
- Loose-limbed and rascally, ‘The Old Man & the Gun’ is a throwback to an era when making beautifully understated crime comedies was the peak of Hollywood’s ambition (before all the spandex took over). The movie’s weathered star, Robert Redford, sho...Read more
- If ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ is 2018’s most decadent cinematic portrayal of Chinese culture (albeit in Singapore), then ‘An Elephant Sitting Still’ is its antithesis. There is no rose-tint applied to the 230-minute film, rather a grey chill that encompa...Read more
Pick a date
Modern Couples: Art, Intimacy and the Avant-garde review
Think modern love is complicated? Wait until you see this exhibition. Here’s half a century’s worth of explosive couples, transgressive throuples, affairs, gaslighting fuckboys and, mercifully, some great art to contend with. ‘Modern Couples’ wants to...Mixed media Until Sunday January 27 2019
Francis Upritchard: Wetwang Slack review
It’s like every museum in London has been chucked into the Barbican’s Curve gallery. Vases from the V&A, reliefs from the British Museum, hats from the Fashion and Textile Museum, figures from the Tate, artefacts from the Museum of London. But there’s...Until Sunday January 6 2019
Wolfgang's Magical Musical Circus
This show is a chance to discover Mozart's music - but with a kid-friendly twist. Top Aussie troupe Circa are known for making slick, witty, creative acrobatics shows, and here, they'll mix tunes from a live classical musician with acts of daredevilry...Circuses Until Saturday December 22 2018
RSC: The Merry Wives of Windsor
Shakespeare's silliest comedy was apparently written at the behest of old queen Bess, who was so taken with the character of Falstaff that she wanted a whole play about him. 'The Merry Wives of Windsor' hasn't historically delighted its audiences, thanks...Shakespeare Until Saturday January 5 2019
‘Romeo and Juliet’ review
The RSC’s new ‘Romeo and Juliet’ is almost impressively tone deaf. Styled as a modern-dress production about knife-happy teens, it transfers down to London at a time when youth stabbings in the capital are massive news. And yet it has nothing to say about...Shakespeare Until Saturday January 19 2019
Something wicked this way comes – it’s Shakespeare’s spookiest play, in an RSC production which really is dead good. With its witches, macabre slayings and existential despair, ‘Macbeth’ suits the film noir makeover of director Polly Findlay’s thrilling...Shakespeare Saturday December 15 2018 - Friday January 18 2019
Waltz of the Hommelettes
Fans of all things uncanny, look sharp: Les Antliaclastes are back at London International Mime Festival 2019 with a thoroughly creepy looking wordless performance. Masked performers, automatons, and puppets made of broken toys and animal skulls combine...Experimental Tuesday January 15 2019 - Saturday January 19 2019
Peeping Time: Father
After thoroughly unsettling audiences with last year's show 'Mother', Peeping Tom are back at LIMF 2019 with another instalment in their family trilogy. 'Father' unfolds in a care home waiting room, and takes a hallucinatory look at ageing and memori...Experimental Wednesday January 30 2019 - Saturday February 2 2019
Average User Rating
4.3 / 5
- 5 star:14
- 4 star:22
- 3 star:1
- 2 star:1
- 1 star:0
The barbican is fabulous - one of those establishments that embraces all art forms, making them accessible to everyone. I've seen Waiting For Godot here, the ballet, Winton Marsalis.. I think your soul is made richer just standing next to that beautiful concrete slab by osmosis!
Love this building. Plenty of exhibitions plus concerts and cinemas. Many places to have food so you can spend all day there. Nice terrace to have lunch in a sunny day
The Barbican is always worth a visit if you are in the area, regardless of what's on. It's a beautiful complex which has so much to see, both inside and outside. I always wonder who lives around the Barbican as I understand the apartments / flats that surround it are housing designers / artists / locals which adds to its community feel.
This brutalism monster might seem scary on the first visit but the more you see it the more you love it! Ageing has definitely made it more special and in combination with the new activities it hosts, it's one of the most important cultural centres London is offering. Any kind of art exhibition can be found here from time to time, as well as theatre, music and cinema shows. And all of them always carefully selected and with special prices for young and older people. Even if you're not interested in anything that's on, visiting is still an experience itself -as it feels like a journey to the past- and you can always enjoy sitting at the ground floor cafeteria by the ponds or even next to them when it's sunny!
Check out my review of the Jean Paul Gaultier exhibition at The Barbican Centre: http://eatwearwander.com/2014/06/30/sidewalk-to-catwalk/
I would love to do a gig here as this is London's answer to Carnegie hall on 7th Avenue. It is however sad to read the comments from the dissatisfied bride below. So anyone getting married in London should have a look at recommended venues: www.youtube.com/watch?v=DIB4nvvLkNk Notwitstanding, the Barbican does other things very well and is worth a visit.
I had a lovely wedding, the location was spectacular and I had a fantastic day as did all my guests. It ended rather abruptly though with the music being turned off at 11 on the dot. I can hardly complain, but I do have some serious complaints regarding the service. The food at the wedding was a much lower quality than what I was served at my tasting. The appetiser, which had been lovely at the tasting, held no resemblance to what I was served at my wedding and the creme brulée instead of being luscious and creamy as it had been at the tasting, was a stiff gelatine. After the wedding the staff didn't pack up my crockery hire correctly which made me lose my deposit and they were completely unremorseful about it, ignoring my emails and not helpful at all. The cherry on top of the cake, 2 months after the wedding, after we had settle all accounts the wedding planner started bothering us for another 600 pounds. We had spent the budget, the invoices had all been settled and he was haggling us for more money. Quite unprofessional.
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