How do you fancy some art and science in a disused former psychiatric hospital? Shuffle Festival (5-15 December), created by the Urban Community Land Trust in London, explores ‘seasons, light, and the scientific side of our traditional Christmas stories’.
Top bill is Danny Boyle in conversation with physicist Brian Cox in a session hosted by Mark Kermode. Under discussion: Boyle’s film Sunshine, and our quest to explore space. Alas, it’s already sold out, despite the press release going out only this morning.
But never mind, for there’s still much else to tempt the curious. Film screenings include Children of Men, Groundhog Day, In Bruges, The Thing and (best film of all time) The Muppet Christmas Carol. Elsewhere, there’s live music, children’s workshops, immersive theatre, a science-inspired art exhibition…and a tapestry created from data of the artist’s sleep/wake patterns.
In terms of talks, you can hear geneticist Aarathi Prasad on the possibility of virgin births, Simon Dein on the neuroscience of religious experience, Malcolm von Schantz on circadian rhythms, and more.
A restaurant in a forest of Christmas trees runs throughout the festival.
Tickets to individual events vary in price (many daytime activities are free), and can be purchased here. Bizarrely, we can’t find the exact address on either the press release or the website, but you can’t miss the place on Mile End Road, half way between Mile End and Bow Road stations.