What's On in London January 2015
Cirque Du Soleil: Kooza
Royal Albert Hall
Dates: 6th January to 8th February 2015
Acrobatics, clowning and the show-stopping Wheel of Death.
The Montreal-based Cirque du Soleil have made the Royal Albert Hallsomething of a home-from-home and they return once again to the iconic venue with their sensational show, Kooza, this January. Praised as a return to form and simplicity, Kooza has a wonderfully retro feel and combines two circus traditions - acrobatic performance and the art of clowning. Otherworldly, mystical, garishly colourful and intimate, Kooza tells the story of The Innocent, a melancholy loner in search of his place in the world. There are thrills, chills and surprises galore as the contortionists, trapeze-artists and acrobats test the limits of human performance - most notably with the show-stopping Wheel of Death.
English National Ballet: Swan Lake
London Coliseum - English National Opera (ENO), St Martin's Lane,
Dates: 7th to 18th January 2015
The English National Ballet perform Derek Deane's Swan Lake at the London Coliseum.
The English National Ballet perform Derek Deane's Swan Lake at theLondon Coliseum with a "superb, no-nonsense professionalism" that manages to make "such an old tale feel so very fresh" (writes Mark Monahan in The Telegraph). Guest stars Ivan Vasiliev and Vitor Luiz perform alongside Alina Cojocaru, and Fernanda Oliveira while Tamara Rojo takes on the lead role for three performances dancing alongside Alban Lendorf in the role of Prince Siegfried. A "ravishing", "sumptuous spectacle" - The Sunday Times.
The Vaults, Arch 233, 10 Leake Street, South Bank
Dates: 8th January to 8th March 2015
First rate six-week arts festival in Waterloo's Leake Street tunnels.
Returning for its third year, Vault Festival is a six-week arts festival in Waterloo's Leake Street tunnels featuring a wide-ranging programme of performance, live music, discussions and one-off late night parties. The line up for this year's festival includes Artful Badger, Filter's Macbeth, True Brits by Vinay Patel set in the aftermath of 7/7, and Yve Blake who collects stories from strangers to turn them into music and dance show 'Lie Collector'. Host to a choice of more than 30 shows (that's at least five shows a night!) in the atmospheric tunnels beneath Waterloo Station (accessed via Leake Street), Vault is one of the most exciting happenings on London's fringe.
London Boat Show
ExCel London Exhibition Centre
Dates: 9th to 18th January 2015
A must-see for anyone who likes messing about on the water.
London's biggest exhibition of boats hosts 500 exhibitors showcasing anything from 1.4-metre sailing dinghies to 37-metre tri-deck motor yachts. Visitors can also take part in a range of thrilling watersport activities such as kayaking, windsurfing and wakeboarding in a special Action Pool. With displays ranging from indoor canoeing to sailing, tall ships, historic vessels and a marina full of some the largest exhibitor boats in production (at the Royal Victoria Dock), it's set to be an action-packed event with all hands on deck. Additional activities include an anchor watch masterclass, boating for beginners area - free from people peddling products - new boat launches and the Dinghy Racing Weekend. A must-see for anyone who likes messing about on the water.
Royal Danish Ballet: Soloists and Principals
Dates: Friday 9th and Saturday 10th January 2015
The Royal Danish Ballet returns Sadler's Wells for the first time in ten years.
Not seen at Sadler's Wells for ten years, the Royal Danish Ballet returns with the internationally renowned company's principals and soloists performing a programme featuring excerpts from works by August Bournonville, the acclaimed 19th century Royal Danish Ballet choreographer and ballet master who created more than fifty works for the company. The programme includes the pas de sept from A Folk Tale, and the pas de six and tarantella from Napoli a work created by Bournonville in 1842 which became one of his most important and popular works - the tarantella, inspired by Italian folk dance, has become a signature dance of the Royal Danish Ballet.
London International Mime Festival
Linbury Studio Theatre, Bow Street
Dates: 13th to 20th January 2015
64 performances over 24 days celebrate the art of mime.
18 companies put on 64 performances over 24 days at some of the city's best arts venues for the London International Mime Festival which opens with the London premiere of 'Bromance' at Central Saint Martin's Platform Theatre. Taking place at the Barbican, Jacksons Lane, the Linbury Studio Theatre at the Royal Opera House, Sadler's Wells, Soho Theatre and Southbank Centre, performers include Chris Lynam, who takes us backstage into the private world of a clown performer, NoFit State Circus, Basil Twist and Trygve Wakenshaw who stages the London premiere of 'Kraken' at the Soho Theatre, an hour of physical stream-of-consciousness from the Gaulier-trained clown.
Lyric Hammersmith, Lyric Square
Dates: 13th to 31st January 2015
Frantic Assembly's acclaimed and award-winning Othello explodes onto the Lyric stage.
Frantic Assembly's acclaimed and award-winning Othello, set against the backdrop of Yorkshire during the race riots of 2001, explodes onto the Lyric Hammersmith stage following a successful UK tour. Known for its physical style of theatre, Frantic Assembly takes Shakespeare's brutal and gripping thriller-tragedy and transports it to 21st century Britain, exposing prejudice, danger and fear. The Yorkshire riots of 2001 were a time of divisions and some unexpected alliances which blend in well with the story of Othello. Mark Ebulue, recently of the RSC and a former kickboxer, plays Othello and Steven Miller, known for his four-year stint as Lenny Lyons in Casualty plays Iago, with Kirsty Oswald (The Judas Kiss, The Winter's Tale) as Desdemona.
Dates: Friday 16th and Saturday 17th January 2015
Contemporary cirque style skills and thrilling stunt action.
A highlight of Winter Wonderland in London's Hyde Park, Cirque Berserk comes to Hackney Empire in January 2015 following a sold-out 2014 theatre tour. Combining contemporary cirque style skills with thrilling stunt action, Cirque Berserk is a danger-filled spectacle that promises to amaze audiences of all ages. Acts include the "off the scale awesome" (Daily Telegraph) Globe of Death with three motorcyclists speeding at over 60mph inside a steel cage. A troupe of over thirty jugglers, acrobats, aerialists, dancers, musicians and death-defying stunt men are joined by award-winning physical comedian and clown, Tweedy.
The Adventure Travel Show
Dates: Saturday 17th January 2015 at 9am-6pm & Sunday 18th January 2015 at 9.30am-5pm
Meet the great explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes when he opens this year's show.
Sir Ranulph Fiennes the "world's greatest living explorer", according to The Guinness Book of Records, and the first person to reach both the North and South poles by foot opens The Adventure Travel Show on Saturday 17th January 2015. Touted as the biggest collection of specialist travel operators, The Adventure Travel Show offers advice on the kind of holiday adventures you can't find on the high street. There'll be more than 100 free talks from explorers, expedition leaders, and guide-book writers - including Sir Ranulph himself - and you can attend travel writing and photography seminars held in conjunction with Wanderlust travel magazine.
The Diary of a Nobody
The King's Head
Dates: 20th January to 14th February 2015
Weedon Grossmith's comic novel about a hapless Victorian clerk kicks off the King's Head Theatre 2015 season.
After a sell-out success last summer, Rough Haired Pointer Theatre Company presents Mary Franklin's inventive adaptation of George and Weedon Grossmith's comic novel about a hapless Victorian clerk as the first show of the King's Head Theatre 2015 season. With four actors playing 45 characters, a much-bashed-about front door, a human postbox and some living lamp shades, this heart-warming, hysterical production celebrates the joys and frustrations of everyday life.
National Theatre: Lyttelton Theatre
Dates: 20th January to 4th April 2015
Two brothers, heirs to the Muslim empire, fight for succession.
A play originally performed in Pakistan, Dara takes the audience to seventeenth century Mughal India two watch the story of two brothers - whose mother's death inspired the Taj Mahal - who are heirs to the Muslim empire. With two different interpretations of religion, they will fight for succession. Shahid Nadeem's intense domestic drama has been adapted by Tanya Ronder for the National Theatre.
London Art Fair
Business Design Centre
Dates: 21st to 25th Jan 2015
Museum quality modern British art and contemporary works vie for attention.
Now in its 27th year, the London Art Fair at the Business Design Centreshows no signs of losing its cutting edge. There are two shows within the show: 'Art Projects' where Anna Colin curates 'Dialogues', showcasing contemporary art from across the globe; and 'Photo50', where Sheyi Bankale curates 50 contemporary photographs. At the front is 'The Figure in Modern British Art', an exhibition of paintings and drawings by some of the leading British figurative painters of the 20th century including Walter Sickert, David Bomberg, Lucian Freud, William Coldstream and Frank Auerbach, presented by Simon Martin, Artistic Director of Pallant House Gallery.
Di and Viv and Rose
Vaudeville Theatre, 404 Strand
Dates: 22nd January to 23rd May 2015
Tamzin Outhwaite reprises her role in the Hampstead's West End transfer.
Following its sell out success at Hampstead Theatre, 'Di and Viv and Rose', a heart-warming play by Amelia Bullmore transfers to the Vaudeville Theatre in the West End and Tamzin Outhwaite, star of the original, makes the transfer too. People you meet at university often become lifelong friends, whether you like it or not. 'Di and Viv and Rose' all met when they were 18 while at university. They lived together which was intense but fun and they became a force not to be messed with. Together they felt unassailable. Fast forward a few years and life has thrown them some hurdles - what will the traumatic event do to their friendship? First shown in 2011 in the smaller downstairs space at Hampstead Theatre, this witty play was the first in-house production to move to the theatre's main stage in 2013 and now, due to its resounding success, it transfers to the West End. Critically acclaimed Anna Mackmin known for Hedda Gabler and The Real Thing directs, while Samantha Spiro and Jenna Russell take to the stage alongside Tamzin Outhwaite.
The Royal Ballet: Onegin
Royal Opera House
Dates: 24th January to 27th February 2015
An elegant portrait of a young girl's doomed infatuation, danced by the Royal Ballet.
John Cranko's adaptation of Pushkin's verse-novel, set to music by Tchaikovsky, "is suddenly flavour of the month" said The Telegraphreviewing this "welcome revival" of Onegin at the Royal Opera House in 2013. Two years on and it has lost none of its appeal. Made in 1965 for Cranko's Stuttgart company, this portrait of a young girl's doomed infatuation is "one of the great ballerina vehicles" and includes a dream pas de deux danced by the youthful Tatiana who transforms from a bookish country girl into a sophisticated woman at the pinnacle of St Petersburg society.
Rubens and His Legacy: Van Dyck to Cezanne
Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House
Dates: 24th January to 10th April 2015
More than 160 artworks reveal the Flemish artist's influence on the history of art.
Set to be one of the biggest art shows of the year, Rubens and His Legacy is a major exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts featuring over 160 artworks, incorporating paintings, drawings and prints, exploring the Flemish artist's influence on the history of art. As well as works by Rubens, the show also features works by the great artists who were influenced by him like Watteau, Manet, Renoir, Picasso, Van Dyck and Cezanne, covering the themes of poetry, elegance, power, lust, compassion and violence.
Richard Alston Dance Company: Rejoice in the Lamb (Burning | Nomadic | Madcap)
Sadler's Wells Theatre
Dates: Monday 26th and Tuesday 27th January 2015
The London premiere of Alston's Rejoice in the Lamb celebrates the dance company's 20 years.
A 20th anniversary celebration of the Richard Alston Dance Company featuring Benjamin Britten's Rejoice in the Lamb plus two new works at Sadler's Wells - the London premiere of Martin Lawrance's Burning and the premiere of Sadler's Wells commission Nomadic. For the London premiere of Alston's Rejoice in the Lamb - "both unfashionably easy to watch and sophisticated in construction" said the New York Times - Britten's setting of Christopher Smart's poetry is sung by Montclair State University Vocal Accord. The words are full of wild and witty details reflected in Alston's joyous choreography for his company's ten dancers.
London A Cappella Festival
Kings Place, 90 York Way, King's Cross
Dates: 28th, 29th, 30th and 31st Jan 2015
Showcasing some of the best choral, jazz, contemporary and beatbox ensembles.
Five decades on from their Grammy Award-winning debut album festival favourites and co-hosts The Swingle Singers perform at the London A Cappella Festival which celebrates its sixth birthday in 2015. Showcasing some of the best choral, jazz, contemporary and beatbox ensembles, the annual festival offers an eclectic assortment of music that ranges from choral masterpieces to extraordinary beatbox and Nordic folk to retro pop. Taking place at Cadogan Hall on 28th January and atKings Place from 29th to 31st January 2015, the London A Cappella Festival includes performances by British vocal harmony group The King's Singers, YouTube phenomenon Accent and America's hottest vocal talent Straight No Chaser. The schedule also includes blistering pop beats from Singaporean stars MICappella, the Finnish voices of Club For Five, Irish group Anuna, and Canada's Countermeasure - giving this year's festival a truly global feel.
Changing Britain 1945-2015
Southbank Centre, Belvedere Road
Dates: 30th January to 9th May 2015
3-month arts festival taking place across the Southbank Centre's 21-acre site.
The Southbank Centre looks at the last 70 years of British history in Changing Britain 1945-2015, a 3-month arts festival taking place across the centre's 21-acre site. Taking inspiration from historian David Kynaston's books, part of a series 'Tales of a New Jerusalem' on the social history of England, the festival asks if we still believe in the values of the 1951 Festival of Britain, created to give Britons a feeling of recovery and progress after the Second World War. The festival explores themes of history, society, culture and social justice since 1945, beginning with a series of BBC Concert Orchestra concerts and a major exhibition, History is Now: Seven Artists Take On Britain, in the Hayward Gallery from 10th February to 26th April. The festival builds up to three weekends of talks and debates (18th & 19th April, 25th & 26th April and 2nd to 4th May) ahead of the General Election on 7th May. Following the election, on 9th May, artists and audiences including the London Sinfonietta give a message to the new government about the importance of creativity.
Snowdrop Days 2015
Chelsea Physic Garden, 66 Royal Hospital Garden
Dates: 31st January to 8th February 2015
New for 2015, visitors to the charming Chelsea Physic Garden can see the snowdrops at eye level.
See the snowdrops at the historic botanical gardens and enjoy a walk through nature at the charming Chelsea Physic Garden, usually closed during winter but open especially for the Snowdrop Days. This year there's an opportunity to see the snowdrops elevated to eye level so you can marvel at these wonderful harbingers of warmer weather. While the snowdrops take centre stage you can also see other late winter flowers like wild primulas, miniature iris and crocuses. The Snowdrop Days also include a series of free talks and workshops including a talk by Joe Sharman, the plantsman of Monksilver Nursery, on Saturday 31st January.
The London Classic Car Show
ExCel London Exhibition Centre
Dates: 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th Jan 2015
The first event to showcase the thriving classic car network that the city has to offer.
In early 2015 London will play host to The London Classic Car Show, the first event to showcase the thriving classic car network that the city has to offer. Organised by the team behind Top Gear Live and CarFest, the four-day event will take place at London ExCel and will offer features such as The Grand Avenue, paying homage to the greatest classic cars with more than 40 models paraded along the avenue throughout the show; James May's Cars That Changed The World, a special exhibit curated by Top Gear star James May; and James Martin's Classic Café, where TV chef and car enthusiast James Martin will create dishes that showcase both food and cars.