I certainly hope that you’re either well-rested or completely tired out given the bonus day off that we’ve received. There’s no in-between, else you clearly haven’t quite got the grasp of living in London.
I, rather sadly, am more well-rested than I usually am. I didn’t even have a drink over the weekend, but that’s because I had some job-hunting and other administrative matters to take care of. But that’s life. It always catches you somewhat unexpectedly when you least want it to.
So here’s this week’s update to help you sort out what to do with your free time, if life has similarly gotten in your way.
- Chase down the Ben & Jerry’s Core Tour which will be dishing out free ice-cream in London until Friday. The van hits North, Central, West and South London over Tuesday to Friday. (It hit the East on Monday.) Various venues, till May 11th, free
- Catch the last week of Opera UpClose’s modern-day interpretation of Bizet’s Carmen. Set in North London, Carmen, an irresistible young lady, becomes the fatal link between law-abiding society and the gritty underworld where she belongs. The adaptation is directed by recent ROH Jette Parker Young Artist Rodula Gaitanou in an English libretto, accompanied by piano and Spanish guitar. King’s Head Theatre, till May 12th, 7.15 pm, £25
- Check out the self-explanatory World Burlesque Games which are on in London this week. Various venues, till May 13th, £20 - £49.50 depending on the day
- Head off after-work to the Honourable Artillery Company’s Open Evening featuring displays by the King’s Troop, Pikemen and Musketeers, Light Calvary and so on. There’s even a parachute drop into the garden! If that isn’t enough to entice you, the Open Day also has music, bar and free barbecue. While you’re in the area, check out William Blake’s and William Defoe’s graves at the nearby Bunhill Fields burial grounds, one of my favourite little secrets of London. HAC, May 8th, 5.30 pm to 8.30 pm, free
- Authors Martin Hickman and Tom Watson MP will be discussing their new book, Dial M for Murdoch, delving into the story behind News Corporation, the efforts it put into maintaining and extending its reach, and how all of this was finally brought to light. LSE Old Theatre, May 9th, 6.30 pm to 8.00 pm, free
- This month’s Future Human looks at the unforeseen fall-out of economic disruption, focusing on the dichotomy between innovation and employment, where the relation between amount of revenues generated and number of people employed is not commensurate. How should we view economic and technological innovation? Is it all doom and gloom? The Book Club, May 9th, 7.00 pm to 9.30 pm, £10
- Sing the blues with Lewis Floyd Henry at the conclusion of the Blues Kitchen Festival. One-man-band Lewis has notched up four star album reviews from both Mojo and Q Magazine. Blues Kitchen, May 10th, 7.00 pm to 1.00 am, free entry (reservations recommended)
- Every long-time Londoner should go to Hip Hop Karaoke once, assuming you’re reasonably fond of hip hop, of course. It’s quite a remarkable experience, whether as a spectator, or, if you’re incredibly brave, a performer. Get there early to sign-up and ensure seats. The Social, May 10th, 6.00 pm (doors), £3
- Indulge your belly at the Real Food Market. Featuring a whole slew of talented street food purveyors including Tongue ‘n’ Cheek (Italian cooking inspired by lesser-used cuts of meat – don’t miss out on the Porky Sub!) and the friendly duo consisting of Hari and Zam at the Malaysian Food Stall. Wash it all down with some of the best, smoothest red wine I have ever had the pleasure to drink from the Catalan stall (it’s the £3 wine from the barrel). South Bank, every Friday t0 Sunday in May (check website for times), free entry
- Get in touch with your dark side at Friday Night Freakshow, a showcase of some of the finest dark and delicious old-style acts in London. The line-up includes MC Miss Behave, Richard Herring, juggler Mat Ricardo, comedian Nick Helm, magician Paul Zenon and mastero Pete Johansson. Udderbelly, May 11th, 10.45 pm, £17.50
- Geek out at the Imperial Festival, a science fair taking place in Imperial College (where else?) over Friday and Saturday. There’ll be talks on science, technology and medicine, performances by the college’s music and dance groups, and even a silent disco. If you’re parched, head to the hilariously-named Haemo Globe Inn for a pint or two with the college’s researchers. Imperial College, May 11th, 6.00 pm to 10.00 pm, May 12th, 12 noon to 6 pm, free
- Complete your ‘sciencing’ out with Robin Ince who’s exploring happiness through science. Join him as he seeks to answer whether we can truly be happy and rational simultaneously. Bloomsbury Theatre, May 12th, 7.30 pm, £15
- Bugged Out presents When 2 Become 3, a series of parties where The 2 Bears are joined by a DJ who has had a major influence on them. The first party features Joe Goddard and Raf Daddy being joined by Chicago house legend Derrick Carter. For a limited time only, buy two tickets and get upgraded to a threesome at no extra cost. Get in! Fire, May 12th, 10.30 pm (doors), £12
- Amon Tobin returns to London with his groundbreaking A/V show, Live Beyond 3D ‘Isam’. Catch one of the greatest electronic artists of our time perform tracks from ISAM, as well as classic material. May 12th, O2 Academy Brixton, 7.00 pm (doors), £28.50
- Get set for Field Day with an all-day pre-party featuring DJ sets from Field Day 2011 headliners Wild Beasts supported by three up-and-coming bands: NZCA/Lines, Novella and a special guest. The Lock Tavern, May 13th, 3.00 pm (doors), free entry
- If you’re still up for it on Sunday – and, why wouldn’t you be? Sleep is for losers – Bootleg Social presents an extraordinary afternoon of DJing from one of the undisputed godfathers of house, Danny Rampling, in the incredibly intimate setting of Gigalum, one of London’s best DJ pubs. Support includes Jason Chance, tipped as being one to watched by Roger Sanchez. Entry is free, but donations are encouraged as this party’s being held for the benefit of Save The Children. Gigalum, May 13th, 3.00 pm, free