If you fancy a macabre-celebration double whammy, then why not recover from your Halloween high jinx with some Day of the Dead antics? This annual Mexican holiday, known locally as Dia de los Muertos, is a day for people to remember and honour their late loved ones.
A time of remembrance and a joyful celebration of life, Day of the Dead has worked its way across the Atlantic and there are a few events taking place in London this year to mark it. Let us know of ones we have missed in the comments below.
Day of the Dead Festival
Taking over the Dalston Department Store pop-up venue for four days, Day of the Dead Festival starts on 31 October with a good old-fashioned party. The remaining three days are dedicated to a variety of art workshops (sugar skulls, Aztec flowers, masks and more), a traditional altar at which you can join in the Mexican ritual of bringing flowers, pictures or mementos in honour of your lost loved ones, and a March of the Dead through the streets of London on 2 Nov. £7/£5.95 per day, prebook, 31 October-3 November
Catch the Crick Crack Club performers digging deep into their storytelling repertoires to come up with tales of God, the Devil and Death on 1 November at Rich Mix. £8/£6, prebook, 7.30pm
Also on 1 November is a suitably-themed late-night screening of a Hispanic chiller, The Devil’s Backbone (El Espinazo del diablo). Directed by the Mexican master of terror, Guillermo del Toro, it’s sure to get your knickers in a twist. £9.50/£7, prebook, 11.15pm
If that’s not enough, then head back the next day to start your evening with a screening of Federico Méndez’s gothic tale, The Black Pit of Dr M, before experiencing Day of the Dead dance and theatre performances, horror film visuals, live music and Mexican face-painting. £12.50/£10, prebook, 2 November 6.30pm-late
Learn about the historical use of skulls in art, their symbolism in relation to Day of the Dead, and even design your own with a series of skull workshops at Wahaca on Charlotte Street. Led by skull artist, Lauren Baker. Free, apply for a place via email@example.com, November 1 and 2 from 10.30am
Drink, Shop & Do
Another party gets in on the Day of the Dead action, as King’s Cross venue Drink, Shop & Do offers the potent combination of dancing and, um, face painting. Free before 11pm (£3 after), just turn up, 1 November from 7pm
The New Cross & Deptford free film festival are holding a Day of the Dead Silent Disco fundraising event tonight, to help raise money for next year’s festival. Death and silence are a rather natural mix, so head along to Hill Station Café for music, dancing, cocktails and the chance to be crowned King or Queen of the Dead. £16.32, prebook, 1 November from 7.30pm
For something slightly more sedate, try a Mexican veggie supper club by the excellently-named, Fat Gay Vegan. You’ll be served five courses of food in a decorated room furnished with party supplies direct from Mexico City, with projected visuals and Mexican pop music to make it a fully immersive experience. £43.05, prebook, 2 November 4.30-7pm
As well as an altar and traditional Dia de los Meurtos decorations, Lupita East on Commercial Street restaurant will serve tamales and calabaza pudding between 31 October-2 November
Mestizo restaurant on Hampstead Road has also commissioned a special altar to be displayed in the restaurant where diners can place photographs before enjoying a special menu of seasonal specialities, 1-2 November
Or raise a glass to your dearly departed at Cantina Laredo in Covent Garden, who have created a bespoke cocktail list just for the festival, 1-2 November
Horniman Museum and Gardens
This excellent south London museum puts on an after hours night of carnival processions, music, film and dance. There will also be a special skeleton-focused tour of the museum’s Natural History collection, short film screenings that explore the lighter side of death, and puppet theatre performances. £3, prebook, 7 November from 6-9pm
What have we missed? Let us know in the comments.