London on Stage: Unmissable Gigs and Spring Spectacles
A survey of the top shows, plays, concerts and circus coming to the UK capital over the next few months – miss at your peril!
London is always a great place for culture – from small underground, intimate happenings to huge concerts and stadium-filling spectaculars, and 2013 looks unlikely to challenge that stellar reputation.
The Cultural Olympiad may now be a distant memory, but there’s still a lot to go for if you’re going to be visiting the city in the upcoming months. From top stage revivals and new works, to huge bootylicious superstar singers (umm…if you need a clue…it begins with B) and cutting-edge DJs, spring/summer 2013 is already looking pretty good.
Here’s a more in-depth gander at some of the events coming up in the big smoke:
Akram Khan Company, Sadler’s Wells
The creator on one of the most visually stunning parts of the Olympic ceremony, Britain’s favourite choreographer continues to manage a balance between great commercial success and precise, innovative practice. DESH, Khan’s solo show, premiered in 2011 at Sadler’s Wells, to huge acclaim. Now he’s back with his company in March at the dance house to premier the latest instalment of his A String of Rites series.
(Image via www.theculturist.com)
SPILL Festival of Performance, Barbican Centre
If you want something a little different, head to the Barbican between 3rd and 14th April for a taste of new performance from some of the world’s most talked-about alternative theatre-makers. Forced Entertainment put on a 24-hour show of their part-written, part-improvised Quizoola! and Norwegian experimenters Verk Produksjoner premiere The Eternal Smile.
Loads of big guns getting prepped for tours this spring and summer. If you’re a chart pop fan, you’re no doubt getting locked and loaded for Girls Aloud reunion tour, and plenty more besides.
It’s comeback year, by the looks of it, with everyone from Justin Timberlake to Destiny’s Child getting back on it – accompanied by plenty of 90s throwbacks also deciding to dust off the cargo pants and radio mics for some cheesy retro nights.
Biggest ticket of the year is undoubtedly Beyoncé and her The Mrs Carter Show world tour, hitting the O2 Arena in late April 2013. Tickets go on sale February 23rd – you’ll have to fight for them.
Expect ear-blasting lung power, a lot of shimmying and plenty of costumes that cross Vegas show-girl with Tina Turner-style pop megalith. In other words, amazing.
There is plenty else out there, though, from James Blake at Heaven on April 9th to the excellent electronicist Clark, at Camden’s KOKO with Daedalus, on April 20th. Check out Time Out’s recommendation for a bit more detail. Once we reach May and June, festival season starts to get warmed up again. Keep an eye out for old favourite Field Day, with another big dance/pop/hip-hop/electro line-up for 2013.
Hotels rooms in London aren’t always easy to come by; but if you’re making a big splash on concert tickets, choosing somewhere within easy distance of both public transport and the venue is a good idea. Try chain hotels like Holiday Inn as well as discount websites – they often have good last-minute deals and availability.
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