Tuesday, 14 October 2014

Dates for your Diary

As some of you may know, until the beginning of this year I was editor of a London arts and culture website which involved previewing and reviewing lots of wonderful things that go on in this city. It can be hard to find stuff to do in London, precisely because there's so much on offer that it can be tricky knowing where to start. I realised recently that I really miss the satisfaction of having someone say; ' Oh, I saw you recommend X on your site, so I went along and it was brilliant!' So I've decided to start doing a little monthly round up of what's on- the chances are if you read this blog, we probably have similar taste, so I hope there'll be lots here that you like.

As it begins to get dark earlier in the evenings, there's nowhere more appropriate to head than The British Library's celebration of all things Gothic. 'Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination' is a wonderful exhibition, exploring the origins of the Gothic style through to Dickensian Penny Dreadfuls, Hammer Horrors and Hitchcock. Expect all the usual suspects; from authors like Shelley and Poe to modern masters of the artform like Sarah Waters and Neil Gaiman ( keep reading for more Neil Gaiman news). The only bit I found disappointing was the final room dedicated to modern 'Goths'; it felt like a slightly misplaced afterthought that wasn't in keeping with the rest of the exhibition at all. I's also have been interested in hearing more from psychologists on WHY it is we're so fascinated by 'the dark side.'
On until 20th January

If you haven't seen Bourgeois and Maurice before, then you've been missing out on one of the city's best kept secrets. In fact, if London were a cabaret act, it might look something like this; outlandishly talented, darkly funny and hugely politically incorrect. For their latest venture, these self proclaimed 'obnoxious little shits' have teamed up with London legend David Hoyle for Middle of the Road.
'A musical journey through some of the most offensively ‘middle of the road’ music around. This is everything you ever wanted to happen to a James Blunt song. And more.' 16-18 October

Dylan Thomas in Fitzrovia is a wonderful new festival celebrating the centenary of the poetic genius. Expect to see lots of Dylan love in the coming months; there's a new film of Under the Milk Wood coming out filmed in both English and Welsh, starring Rhys Ifans and Charlotte Church alongside an entirely bilingual cast. I saw the trailer for it at the Welsh affair that is Festival no 6 at Portmeirion this summer, and it looked fantastic; both dreamy and nightmarish and appropriately batshit crazy. 20- 26 October

Earlier this year I went to an immersive theatre production inspired by Philip Pullman's re-telling of Grimm's fairytales. It was so incredible I was sure it would just keep on running, but instead they went away for a while and have now come back with a new production based on a different set of fairytales- I can't wait to see what they've done this time. Read my review of the last show here and book tickets for the new season here.  21 November-15 February

Fancy more Grimm stuff? Bourne and Hollingsworth are throwing a Grimm Halloween party on 1st November, complete with gingerbread cottage and glass coffin photo booth.

One of my best friends and favourite musicians Gabby Young (above) is back with a new album and a show at trendy new London venue Oslo, on 27th November- book now!

For more music, see Mercury Award nominee Kate Tempest performing her album which takes her away from the poetry and plays she's become known for and back to her roots as a rapper. I had the track 'Circles' on repeat for days. 11th November, Village Underground.

photo by Catalin Plesa

Fashion historian extraordinaire Amber Butchart is hosting a series of fashion talks at Viktor Wynd's museum; put these dates in your diary now. I'm particularly looking forward to hearing Ian Kelly speak about writing Vivienne Westwood's life story. Read my interview with Amber here.

Catch Bridget Christie putting the Funny is Feminism with 'An Ungrateful Woman' at Soho Theatre next month. If it's anything like her last show 'A Bic for Her', it'll leave you feeling empowered, informed, amused, angry, and yes, possibly ungrateful.  3- 21 November

Book Ahead: Neil Gaiman is presenting the Douglas Adams Memorial Lecture in March 2015,  register now. He also has this new book out, which has shot straight to the top of my wishlist.

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