London On The Cheap

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A beautiful mid-summer week in London lies ahead, and if you follow Londonist’s instructions to the letter, you’ll get some free champagne, flowers, live music, and, yeah, even some funfair rides out of it. You and your rolypoly pocketbook can thank us later.

Monday: Two films for the price o’ one: now that’s a deal London On The Cheap can get right behind, popcorn in tow. Rising director Aaron Katz is showing his two beautifully-shot short feature films Quiet City and Dance Party, USA every night this week (save Friday) at the ICA, both of which explore the quiet magic of boys and girls getting to know each other. 8.15 pm, £8/£7 concessions.

Tuesday: Lions and tigers and bears, oh my…bring the kiddies to Dangerous Beasts, a family activity day at the Museum of Zoology going on every weekday through 15th August from 1-5 pm. Interactive activities designed to (gently) introduce the little ones to the most dangerous creepy crawlers normally found in the wild, from tarantulas to snakes and scorpions. Shudder.

Wednesday: This is very midsummer madness. A summer in London would simply not be complete without the marriage of Shakespearean verse, al fresco. Luckily for us, the Oxford Shakespeare Company is bringing Twelfth Night to Kensington Palace Gardens, with performances Tuesday to Sunday at 7.30 pm. Tickets are a bit steep at £23, but concessions will only set you back £15. Plus, you can’t really put a price on iambic pentameter under the stars.

Thursday: Tonight and Tuesday, between 6 and 8 pm, you are cordially invited to free booze and blossoms at the Judy Blacklock Flower School in Knightsbridge. In this Pick Up A Posy event, you get a glass of champagne with your free masterclass in flower arranging, allowing you to create your own posy to take home.

Also tonight is Immersion, a music/sound-art night of experimental electronica at the invitingly-named Flea Pit on Columbia Road. From 7 to 11 pm, electronic artists Jamka, Michael Santos, Mr No, MOQ, Slub and Straight will be playing live while projecting visuals tailored to their performances. Free entry.

Friday: All you need is love…and free entry to some of the greatest museums in the world. The National Gallery just opened their Love exhibition, which is comprised of art from the 15th century to present day and boasts the efforts of sundry artists from Vermeer to Tracey Emin of depicting the most powerful and enduring human emotion of all.

Saturday: “Go green,” they all keep a-clamoring, but…well, how, precisely? Hop over to Hackney City Farm today to find out at the Savoir-Fayre, a festival of environmental know-how. A bevy of stalls await you to lend some creative ideas on how to reduce that Bigfoot-sized carbon imprint everyone keeps yammering on about. 11-4 pm, free.

Sunday: Join one of the biggest celebrations in Indian culture and creativity in Europe at the London Mela Festival in Gunnersbury Park today. From noon to 8.30, this free festival will be featuring seven zones of live classical and experimental Indian music, DJs, visual arts, circus, food, replete with – of course – a giant funfair.

Or, you could stay in, but it’s not as though you’ve got much cash at stake if you actually leave the flat. At the very least, you’re risking some free champers not making it down your gullet.

Image of some stylish fellaz courtesy of junketz‘s flickrstream.

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