Find fantastic ideas for things to do on a Friday, just in case you've left it to the last minute. Check out the best entertainment, nightlife and events happening in the capital this Friday. The weekend starts here...
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2016 marks the 150th anniversary of celebrated children's author and illustrator Beatrix Potter, who was a frequent visitor to the museum where she would often sit and sketch. This exhibition celebrates the date with artworks, original sketches and her earliest published works on show.
St Christopher’s Place has teamed up with artist Anna Garforth to launch a foliage-filled artwork marking the official arrival of spring. The botanical installation is inspired by Kokedama -the unique Japanese craft of planting succulents and other plants in moss-covered soil balls and will hang above St Christopher’s place nestled between Oxford Street and Marylebone. Alongside the installation Kokedama workshops run by Anna will take place on March 23 at 6:30pm and March 25 at 11:00am and 12:30pm, and a Spring Garden Party on Thursday 23rd March from 5-8pm.
Putting a spotlight on the health of the River Thames, artist Jason Bruges’ light installation will shine one of three patterns on to the Sea Containers at Mondrian London based on whether the water quality is good, average or poor according to that day’s Thames data reading. The lights will be a permanent fixture every evening from dusk until midnight, letting us know if the river’s health is improving or declining. The data will also be tweeted on via the @ThamesPulse account and a billboard will show readings on real time. The lights will be switched on for the first on March 16 at 6.30pm.The project was devised by MEC UK to help raise awareness about the condition of the Thames and to support charity Thames21 in its mission to protect London’s rivers.
A showreel of films opens this exhibition. One of them, ‘Unclassified Material’, features the pages of dozens upon dozens of encyclopaedias flipping across the screen at dizzying speed. It turns out to be a smart move; the sense of being overloaded with ideas and information acts as a forewarning of what you should expect in this survey of the late British conceptualist John Latham. Hard work, to say the least. At the heart of Latham’s work is something he called ‘Flat Time Theory’: a belief that if the universe is viewed in time-based rather than spatial terms, then a way could be found to unify art, science, philosophy, economics and pretty much everything. And if that sounds nigh-on unfathomable, then don’t worry: you’re not the only one. As you wander around his diverse output – painting, sculpture, text, film, performance – you get the sense of someone using anything at his disposal to send the contents of his head out into the world. There are books. Lots of books. Latham distrusted these arrogant little slabs of organised knowledge, and would chop them in half, tear them up, entomb them in plaster and even – in a 1966 ‘art action’ which cost him his teaching post at St Martins – chew them and spit them out. It’s tempting to think of him as the kind of person who might wear a tinfoil hat to keep out government radio signals and that kind of thing. But Latham was no crackpot recluse: he believed artists needed to play an active role in society, and co-founded the Arti
This latest season of late night fun at Styx rises to it's potential as a venue. Not only will '90s bands and DJs play every Friday and Saturday but there's after parties with loopy performance artists Figs in Wigs, a Bjork inspired Drag extravaganza with Take That tribute 'Take Twat', '90s techno from Vector Space, ITCH FM are doing a tribute to '90s hip-hip and folk covers of the decade's classics from Super Tennants. The '90s season also includes productions of that decade's most experimental theatre.
Roger Daltrey and Pete Townshend are celebrating 50 years since the first gig by The Who by retiring gracefully. Just kidding: clearly long done with hoping they die before they get old, they’re off on another massive arena tour, which (after a few postponed dates late last year) stops off in London for a set of ‘hits and misses’.
This new production of ‘The Mastersingers of Nuremberg’, Wagner’s glorious four-and-a-half-hour comic opera extolling the art of German vocal music, is the final one from The Royal Opera’s outgoing director of opera, Kasper Holten. With nothing to lose, one might expect either a full-on avant-garde wigout or ultra-traditional final roll of the dice, but the Danish director offers both and neither, eschewing the opera’s sixteenth-century world without replacing it with a coherent alternative. Holten focuses his attention on the sexism of the plot from the beginning, with cross-dressed, moustachioed women joining the men as the excellent ROH chorus opens proceedings in a 1930s-style wooden-stepped guildhall, a gentlemen-only members’ club for mastersingers. Meanwhile, Eva tries on her wedding dress, seated on a large trophy-shaped chair – she is to be the prize in a competition run by her father Pogner (a dignified performance from bass Stephen Milling). So far, so good. However, this attractive set by Mia Stensgaard does not change for the entirety of the opera; and while Anja Vang Kragh’s livery costumes for the mastersingers are sumptuous, their white tie and tails could work as an updated motif, except it makes no sense in act two with shoemaker Hans Sachs working at a formal dining table in his dinner suit. That aside, act three then gets a bit post-modern and we find the principals lounging around, apparently backstage while waiting to appear, distancing us from their c
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A café, coffee house and restaurant just around the corner from Leicester Square. There's an Italian slant to things here, with pizzas and pasta doing brisk business alongside cups of strong Italian coffee. Continental breakfasts and kebabs are available, too.