Sunday 23rd April is St George's Day and the Mayor of London has muscled in on celebrations with three events over the weekend.
The sadism and shrill abuse of Punch and Judy shows are an acquired taste and Morris Dancing is less than enticing as a Saturday afternoon treat... however, that's what you're going to get at the Royal Society of St George organised Festival For St George at Covent Garden. Starting at 10.30am this Saturday, Covent Garden will be host to performances by the English Folk Song and Dance Society, Moulton Morris and the Jive Aces, Punch and Judy and Mummers Plays. Don't say we didn't warn you.
Not only is it st George's day this weekend, it is also Shakespeare's birthday. The Globe Theatre is putting on a day of events on the theme of Warriors and Queens – Roman style. There will be Roman-themed sideshows, workshops and the chance to get up on the famous Globe stage to have a go at some Shakespeare yourself. Cleopatra herself will appear to kick off events:
"Cleopatra will sail down the River Thames and arrive at the Globe at 10.15am, re-enacting the famous description from Antony and Cleopatra:
‘The barge she sat in, like a burnished throne,
Burned on the water. The poop was beaten gold;
Purple the sails, and so perfumed that
The winds were lovesick with them…’
She will be met by twenty Roman soldiers and a band of musicians to herald the start of the festivities."
All events are free, from 10.00am to 4.00pm, and coincides with the Globe's anual theatre season that starts on 5th May. This season is The Edges of Rome.
If Shakespeare's Roman plays aren't your cup of tea (and let's face it, they're not everyone's favourite hot beverage) and you're more in the mood for classic knockabout comedy, then head to Leicester Square for a day of Charlie Chaplin film screenings, children’s activities and workshops, plus street entertainment, Chaplin style. Five films will be shown, starting from 12.00pm, including the all time classic The Gold Rush. All events are free - bring kids, a picnic and something comfy to sit on.