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April Things to do this Month
Photograph: Julia Zavalishina

London events in April

Plan an amazing April 2022 with our selection of the best events, exhibitions and things to do in London

Written by
Time Out London Things To Do
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April is an underrated month if you ask us. Winter is finally over and we’ve all started to emerge from hibernation, ready to properly commit to socialising again. The sun has put in a few appearances, London’s parks and gardens are in full bloom and the city feels alive with all the possibilities of summer, but without all the sunburn and sweltering, sleepless nights. 

There’s also the four-day weekend that Easter’s double Bank Holiday affords us, a handful of spring music festivals, some cracking art exhibitions and theatre (including the first open-air shows of the year) and plenty more amazing things going on around the city. 

Check out our roundup of the best of them, and start planning an amazing month now. 

RECOMMENDED: Our definitive guide to the best stuff happening in London this spring

Head to an springtime music festival

  • Music
  • Music

The under-representation of women and minorities on the average festival line-up has come up time and time again in recent years. This new one-day dance music festival is doing something about it. Curated by female DJs from the Percolate collective and spread over 16 warehouse venues around Hackney Wick, its non-male line-up features Girls Don’t Sync, Club Fitness, Ifeoluwa, Ambient Babestation Meltdown and Luxe.

See some brilliant art at the latest fairs and exhibitions

  • Art
  • Painting
  • Greenwich

Glistening waters, baby blue skies, romantic architecture... a trip to Venice certainly wouldn't go a miss right now. But even if it’s not so easy for you to jet off to Italy, you can still escape to the floating city with an exciting new exhibition coming to the capital this spring. A complete set of 24 Venetian views painted by Canaletto in the 1730s will be whisked from the famous collection at Woburn Abbey and into London's National Maritime Museum, promising a rare opportunity to see the works IRL as well as drawings, prints, photographs, and other objects that will bring the exhibtion to life. 

 

 

  • Art
  • Renaissance art
  • Trafalgar Square

Blockbuster exhibitions don't come more blockbuster-y than this. Raphael is one of the great masters of art history, his expert handling of colour and line and perspective, combined with his incredible talent for capturing emotion in scenes religious and historical scenes, made him one of the most influential artists to ever live. All while being a master of ninjutsu? Awe inspiring. This show is going to sell out, and it's going to be rammed, so get your tickets early. 

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Learn something new on a museum trip

  • Museums
  • History
  • Lewisham

Wander down an immersive high street filled with migrant-owned businesses ranging from a 1980s corner shop to a Chinese takeaway in ‘Taking Care Of Business’, a new exhibition co-curated by Time Out’s very own Food and Drink Editor, Angela Hui. You’ll find video installations, interactive artwork and personal accounts from well-known entrepreneurs including ‘Dragon’s Den’ contestant and Reggae Reggae Sauce owner Levi Roots and Darjeeling Express’s Asma Khan. The museum’s gift shop has been transformed into a Migrant Makers’ Market championing Lewisham’s diverse businesses for the occasion. 

  • Museums
  • Kensington

Hyped for the Women’s Euros and the World Cup later this year? The Design Museum’s new exhibition ‘Football: Designing the Beautiful Game’ is sure to take you to fever pitch. Through more than 500 objects, films and interviews, it explores how design has shaped the world’s most popular sport, touching on kit development, stadium construction and how technology helps elite footballers perform at their best, with reference to a squad of footballing legends including Messi, Pelé, George Best and Maradona. You’ll be begging for extra time at this one. 

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  • Things to do
  • City Life

Last year, London’s The Vagina Museum – the first physical museum dedicated to vaginas, vulvas and gynaecological anatomy – was forced to close its doors after being denied an extension on its lease. Thankfully, it managed to find new premises in Bethnal Green and has just reopened for business with an expanded edition of last year’s exhibition ‘Periods: A Brief History’. Speaking about the grand relaunch, the museum’s founder and director Florence Schechter said: ‘We’re thrilled to be able to reopen our doors to the public. During our temporary closure, we’ve had so many people express how much they missed us. Since the beginning of this project, it’s been crucial to us for the Vagina Museum to exist as a physical space, and we’re excited to become a part of the vibrant community in Bethnal Green.’ 

RECOMMENDED: 14 weird but wonderful museums in London.

  • Museums
  • Clerkenwell

The Postal Museum’s latest exhibition ‘Sorting Britain’ is a deep dive into the fascinating history and function of postcodes. Learn how they’re used to sort and deliver mail, and delve into the social history of postcodes, beginning with their 1959 trial in Norwich and examining how they have impacted life in the UK since, from affecting what services we can access to defining how we perceive ourselves and others. Along the way you’ll get to check out beautiful unseen maps of nineteenth-century London and some hilarious promo materials featuring Poco, the Postcode Elephant, who never forgets anyone’s address.

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  • Museums
  • Art and design
  • Bloomsbury

Superhero fans assemble! This is the first major exhibition dedicated to the depiction of foundlings, orphans, adoptees and foster kids in comics. It’s definitely a rich seam of storytelling to explore – after all, Black Panther is known as ‘the Orphan King’; Spider-Man’s parents die in a plane crash, and Batman’s parents are killed in a street robbery. The exhibition runs for five months and entry is included with the price of admission to the Foundling Museum

Catch a blockbuster new theatre show

  • Theatre
  • Immersive
  • Woolwich

Eight years after ‘The Drowned Man’, the mighty Punchdrunk – hands down the best immersive theatre company in the world – finally return with this immense new show. ‘The Burnt City’ takes the scale of Punchdrunk’s shows to the next level by playing in not one, but two buildings, both ex arsenals in the Woolwich docklands (with a third smaller temporary bridging building between them). Taking inspiration from Aeschylus’s ‘Agamemnon’ and Euripides's ‘Hecuba’, it’s a wild interpretation of the Fall of Troy, with one building playing host to a sci-fi Troy indebted to Fritz Lang’s ‘Metropolis’, and the other a barren, desolate Greece, with each having around 60 rooms to wander through. 

  • Theatre
  • Shakespeare
  • South Bank

It’s ‘Much Ado About Nothing’s turn to be the Shakespeare play that has a ‘big’ year, as the Bard’s beloved romcom opens the Globe’s 2022 outdoor season, shortly before a different production plays at the National Theatre for the summer. We don’t know much about this production other than it’s described as ‘riotous’ and is directed by Lucy Bailey – best known at the Globe for directing extremely violent productions of ‘Macbeth’ and ‘Titus Andronicus’, but also a dab hand with a gore-free comedy. The cast will be drawn from the Globe ensemble and will include Peter Bourke, Rachel Hannah Clarke, George Fouracres, Nadi Kemp-Sayfi and Ciaran O’Brien.

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  • Theatre
  • Musicals
  • Waterloo

Colloquially known as ‘Sexy Oklahoma’, US director Daniel Fish’s stripped back, smoulderingly intense, radically inclusive new version of the Rodgers & Hammerstein classic took Broadway by storm in 2019 and would probably have come over here earlier if it weren’t for you-know-what. The semi-immersive US production featured many innovations – not least chilli and cornbread served to the audience at the interval – but its boldest innovation is its darker reimagining of the love triangle between farm girl Laurey Williams and her two suitors, cowboy Curly McLain and farmhand Jud Fry. Anoushka Lucas and Arthur Darvill lead the UK cast as Laurey Williams and Curly McLain, with Patrick Vaill as Jud Fry and Liza Sadovy as Aunt Eller.

Find great things to do all year round

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