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New St. James Theatre opens in London
St. James Theatre, the first newly built theatre complex in central London in 30 years, will open to the public this month. Rising from the site of the former Westminster Theatre at 12 Palace Street, in the heart of Victoria, the space will include a 312-seat theatre, a studio space, brasserie and bar. David Gilmore (Artistic Director) and James Albrecht (Assistant Artistic Director) will produce a varied programme to include musicals, comedies and classic revivals as well as offering a London venue to touring and regional productions. For more information, visit www.stjamestheatre.co.uk.
E17 Art Trail: 1-16 September
Art in all its forms will be popping up all over Walthamstow. Step inside neighbours’ houses or sample art on shop walls, hanging from trees, in estate agents’ windows, in galleries and gardens, on pavements and in pubs. Almost 3,000 people have contributed to this year’s programme of over 350 events to surprise, entertain and amaze residents and visitors to Walthamstow in the eighth annual E17 Art Trail. The full programme is available at www.e17arttrail.co.uk.
London Design Festival’s 10th anniversary: 14-23 September
This is one of the most important events on the global design calendar. This year, the Festival will present a programme that will more than equal the quality, imagination and innovation that it has demonstrated for the last decade. The inaugural Global Design Forum, a stimulating and intensive one-day event to set the global agenda for design, launches on 18 September at the Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design. Townhouse, another new feature of this year’s festival, will be located in a Georgian house in Belgravia, and will exhibit a rich diversity of contemporary design curated by Jan Withers. Other key Festival locations include: Trafalgar Square, Victoria & Albert Museum, and up to 250 smaller exhibitions, installations, talks and events. More at www.londondesignfestival.com.
Barbican presents Transcender Festival on 17 September
The Barbican’s contemporary music autumn season begins this month with a series of concerts that offers a look at transcendental, devotional, spiritual, hypnotic and psychedelic music. It explores music designed to transport the listener, to conjure trances or summon states of ecstasy. This year’s festival includes artists from Iran, the United States, Iraq and Armenia, and features a rare collaboration between Iranian maestro Hossein Alizadeh and one of Armenia’s greatest musicians, Djivan Gasparyan, a celebration of Iraqi music, the Sun Ra Arkestra led by Marshall Allen and a hypnotic multimedia collaboration featuring Oneohtrix Point Never, and Reliquary House at LSO St Luke’s. For more information visit www.barbican.org.uk/transcender.
Be Open Sound Portal (London Design Festival 2012)
Trafalgar Square project, 19-23 September
This year Be Open, the new global initiative to foster creativity and innovation, and the London Design Festival are co-producing a project in Trafalgar Square that focuses on the idea of “design you can’t see”. Taking as its basis the idea of sound as a means of conveying memory and evoking emotion, the Be Open Sound Portal will be an immersive space in the centre of the square that will take visitors on an intriguing journey. The Portal will transport visitors to inaccessible places and remote environments through a series of three-dimensional soundscapes created by leading musicians and sound designers. For more information visit www.beopenfuture.com.
South Place Hotel to open in London
South Place is an 80-bedroom, design-focused property, due to open this month. The hotel’s rooftop terrace will offer 7th-floor views of the City of London. South Place aims to bring something different to the hotel scene in London. Combining the buzz of D&D London’s restaurants, Conran-designed interiors and specially commissioned work by contemporary London artists, South Place looks set to be “more meet than sleep” than most London hotels. Handy for Liverpool Street commuters will be the two restaurants, including a brasserie on the ground floor, plus bars from hotel owner, the D&D London group, which also owns restaurants including London’s Bluebird and Coq d’Argent. www.southplacehotel.com.
James Cousins: New Adventures Choreographer Award showcase
Sadler’s Wells Theatre, 7 September.
Selected from hundreds, James Cousins is the winner of the inaugural New Adventures Choreographer Award (NACA). The evening features three world premieres. Cousins’ There We Have Been is a duet which takes inspiration from the climax of the 1957 novel, Jealousy, by Alain Robbe-Grillet; and Everything and Nothing is a dynamic collaboration between James Cousins, lighting designer Lee Curran and set designer Colin Falconer. The piece is performed to an original score fusing electronic and classical sound worlds by composer Seymour Milton. Visit www.sadlerswells.com.
Roald Dahl Day with Michael Rosen
Cottesloe BS, National Theatre, 8 September.
A morning of brilliant stories about Roald Dahl, celebrating his birthday and a new book about him, Fantastic Mr Dahl, written by the former Children’s Laureate and poet Michael Rosen. For more information, visit www.nationaltheatre.org.uk.
The Bartered Bride / A Night at the Chinese Opera
British Youth Opera, Sadler’s Wells Peacock Theatre, 8–15 September.
British Youth Opera celebrates its 25th anniversary with two new productions in association with Southbank Sinfonia. Smetana’s comic masterpiece, inspired by folk tales from his native Bohemia, tells of the Bartered Bride whose arranged marriage is thwarted by her true love’s cunning. A Night at the Chinese Opera is a colourful depiction of China in the time of Kublai Khan, Marco Polo and the “Orphan of Zhao”, whose tragic tale of military invasion and personal vendetta is mirrored by Judith Weir’s theatrically turbo-charged comic-opera-within-an-opera. For more information visit www.byo.org.uk.
Let It Be marks the Beatles’ 50th anniversary
Prince Of Wales Theatre, from 14 September.
Celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the world’s most successful rock’n’roll band, live in London’s West End. Let It Be is a spectacular theatrical concert jam-packed with over 20 of the Beatles’ greatest hits. Relive the Beatles’ meteoric rise from their humble beginnings in Liverpool’s Cavern Club, through the heights of Beatlemania, to their later studio masterpieces with live performances of early tracks including “Twist and Shout”, “She Loves You” and “All My Lovin’”, as well as global mega-hits “Yesterday”, “Hey Jude”, “Come Together” and, of course, “Let It Be”. For more information visit www.letitbelondon.com.
Theatre Royal Haymarket, 18–29 September
Michael Morpurgo’s Private Peaceful plays for a strictly limited 16 performances at the Theatre Royal Haymarket from 18 September. Directed and adapted for the stage by Simon Reade, Private Tommo Peaceful is a young First World War soldier awaiting the firing squad at dawn. During the night he looks back at his short but joyful past growing up in rural Devon; and the battles and injustices of war that brought him to the front line. Visit www.trh.co.uk.
The Tiger Lillies perform Hamlet
Queen Elizabeth Hall, Southbank Centre, 18–21 September.
Eccentric three piece band The Tiger Lillies comes to Southbank Centre with the UK premiere of their new show, The Tiger Lillies perform Hamlet. Co-produced by Southbank Centre and Danish theatre company Republique, the show combines new music, circus acts, giant puppets and video projections to give a macabre twist to Shakespeare’s classic tale of the Danish prince. Visit www.southbankcentre.co.uk.
Jazz Nights in the Cafe in the Crypt
St Martin-in-the-Fields, Wednesdays through September 2012
Café in the Crypt St Martin-in-the-Fields plays host through September to some of the UK’s top jazz musicians and singers. Get ready for jazz, swing, ska and rock and roll. Zena James’ heartfelt, unpretentiousness and lustrous vocals giving a fresh interpretation to soul-laden jazz and Santi, a bright-toned and nimble trumpeter performing world-class improvisation. For more information visit www.smitf.org.
Pre-Raphaelites: Victorian Avant-Garde
Tate Britain, 12 September–13 January 2013
Combining rebellion and revivalism, scientific precision and imaginative grandeur, the Pre-Raphaelites constitute Britain’s first modern art movement. This exhibition will bring together over 150 works in different media, including painting, sculpture, photography and the applied arts, revealing the Pre-Raphaelites to be advanced in their approach to every genre. Led by Dante Gabriel Rossetti, William Holman Hunt and John Everett Millais, the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood (PRB) rebelled against the art establishment of the mid-nineteenth century, taking inspiration from early Renaissance painting.
Art of Change
The Hayward Gallery’s new exhibition brings together some of China’s most innovative artists from the 1980s to the present including Chen Zhen, Yingmei Duan, Gu Dexin, Liang Shaoji and Wang Jianwei. It showcases some outstanding early examples from each artist, alongside more recent works and commissions. The acceptance that everything is subject to change is deeply-rooted in Eastern philosophy, and the artworks deal with themes of transformation, instability and discontinuity. The works on display all alter their appearance over time, or otherwise convey a powerful sense of volatility.
Everything was moving: photography from the 60s and 70s
Barbican Art Gallery, 13 September 2012–13 January 2013
This major photography exhibition surveys the medium from an international perspective, and includes renowned photographers from across the globe, all working during two of the most memorable decades of the 20th Century. everything was moving: photography from the 60s and 70s tells a history of photography, through the photography of history. It brings together over 350 works, some rarely seen, others recently discovered and many shown in the UK for the first time.
Walking Home, Simon Armitage
British Library, 14 September
Part journal, part nature writing and part autobiography, Simon Armitage’s heroic and sometimes hilarious travelogue Walking Home: Travels with a Troubadour on the Pennine Way combines prose and poetry as Armitage recounts his 256-mile epic walk along the Pennine Way. Contemplative, moving and droll, it is a unique narrative from one of our most loved writers. For more information visit www.bl.uk.
The Book Show LIVE! on 22 September
The Book Show 2012 is a show for authors and publishers. This full-day event will be held on the 22nd September 2012 over three floors at The Hat Factory in Luton, Bedfordshire. Being overseen by the UK’s leading digital publisher, Andrews UK, The Book Show brings authors and publishers together in one space to talk, network and build relationships with one another. Come along and take part in a full day’s worth of panels with both authors and publishers; ask questions to digital and traditional publishers; meet other authors and like-minded individuals and find out about getting your work out there, whether through a publisher or going it alone with self-publishing; hear from people talking about their experiences of self-publishing and make up your own mind. With talks on PR and marketing, there’s a chance to hear the professionals explain how they do what they do and to speak to experts about the impact of social networking and other media. www.thebookshow.co.uk.