Things to do this week is sponsored by The France Show.
INTO THE NUMBERS: In just 90 minutes, the two leads manage to raise an almost bewildering array of questions about personal attachment, innate moral codes, and collective memory. Into the Numbers is not a fun watch, but it's certainly an important one. Read our review here. Finborough Theatre, £16-18, book ahead, until 27 January
BASQUIAT BOOM FOR REAL: It's your last week to catch the work of the eclectic genius that is Jean-Michel Basquiat. This is the first major UK exhibition dedicated to the frenetic painter and graffiti artist, which we gave four stars. The Barbican, £16, book ahead, until 28 January
TOVE JANSSON: Tove Jansson is the author who created the hippo-esque creatures, and this exhibition looks at her most famous creations as well as her wider career, proving that there was more to the painter than just the Moomins. Dulwich Picture Gallery, £14, book ahead, until 28 January
Monday 22 January
ART & CREATIVITY TALK: Juggling a creative career, social life and taking care of your mental health is no easy feat. If you're feeling the burn, you'll appreciate this talk offering tips and tricks on managing the practical, physical and emotional demands of being an art professional in this modern world. Cass Art, various prices, book ahead, 6.30pm-9pm
DRAWING CLASS: Love drawing, fashion and vintage? Then you're in luck as this life drawing class combines all three. Delve into the details of a particular decade and learn how the silhouette, waistline and hemline have changed over the years, before putting pen to paper. Paper Dress Vintage (Hackney), £15/£12, book ahead, 7pm-9pm
SHOOT FROM THE HIP: Looking for a casual night with guaranteed laughs, that won't empty your bank account? Just head upstairs at this Camden gem to hear the finest improv comedy you'll find in the city without spending a penny (except on the pints). The Camden Head, free, just turn up, 8pm-10pm
AUSTEN THE MUSICAL: You've read the books, seen the films and the BBC adaptions, so what's left? The musical of course. AUSTEN explores the challenges the female novelist faced in patriarchal Georgian England. Mirth, Marvel and Maud Theatre (Walthamstow), £16, book ahead, 22-24 January
Tuesday 23 January
ROOFTOP BOOKCLUB: Pick up some new reading material at this book club with a view. Tickets include a welcome drink, nibbles and a goodie bag containing an early preview book of one of the four debut authors, who you'll hear from tonight. Carmelite House (Blackfriars), £10, book ahead, 6.30pm-9pm
ORANGES & ELEPHANTS: Be transported to Victorian London in this musical depicting the shady goings-on between two all-female rival gangs and one woman's dream to be a music hall star. Hoxton Hall, £18, book ahead, 2.30pm-5.30pm and 7.30pm-11pm, until 10 February
FRANKENSTEIN AND ITS LEGACY: Anxious about where science is taking us? Imagine how people felt whwn Frankenstein was published. The book and its impact 200 years down the line is the topic of discussion tonight. The Royal Institution, £16, book ahead, 7pm-8.30pm
Experience the best of France in a day, all under one roof
This January, The France Show returns to London Olympia for a three-day bonanza featuring all the very best from our friends on the continent. Savour the flavours of France in live cookery demonstrations from top chefs (including Michelin-starred Daniel Galmiche), try some tipples in the champagne and wine tasting classes, or even pick up some tasty goodies to take home with you in the French market — it’s all here, and all under one roof.
But it’s not just food and drink: you can sample the best of French culture too, with live entertainment from top comedians and high-kicking can can dancers, language lessons to get your linguistic skills up to scratch, and even travel tips to inspire your next holiday across the Channel.
Sometimes a holiday doesn’t quite cut it, so if you’re looking to make a more permanent leap, you can browse thousands of properties for sale in the French Property Exhibition (the UK’s largest) too, and get your hands on free expert advice on all aspects of buying or living in France.
The France Show is taking place from 26-28 January 2018 at London Olympia, and Londonist has 250 tickets available at just £2.50 each (plus 10% booking fee), saving over £9 per person. Cheaper than a day trip on the train, right? Click here to book now.
Wednesday 24 January
WRECKED: If you'd rather be in the action than in front of it, become one of six audience members at the scene of a car crash, as Sam unravels and she attempts to piece her life together. Vaults Festival (Waterloo) £16, book ahead, 7.30pm, until 18 March
WE ARE FUNNY CHALLENGE: Each act gets five minutes to wax lyrical on a specific theme. This week they must come up with witty quips about cryptocurrency Bitcoin. Farrs School of Dancing (Dalston), £10, book ahead, 7.45pm-10.15pm
LONDON A CAPPELLA FESTIVAL: London's most tuneful vocal super groups descend on London for this four-day festival, featuring beatbox champions, jazz superstars and acclaimed "throat singers". Various locations and prices, book ahead, 24-27 January
VAULT FESTIVAL: Choose from more than 300 eclectic shows at Waterloo's annual underground theatre festival. Delightfully miscellaneous VAULT Festival is a smorgasbord of performance, welcoming acts across theatre, music, spoken word and comedy. The Vaults, various prices, book ahead, 24 January-18 March
Thursday 25 January
EAST SLEEP REPEAT: If your home is starting to look like you need to call in Kim and Aggie or worse you'd make a fine contestant on Obsessive Compulsive Hoarder, then make a clean sweep of it at this decluttering workshop aimed at busy parents. East London Liquor Company, £25-£30, book ahead, 1pm-3.30pm
BURNS NIGHT SUPPER*: Tuck into a two-course feast washed down with regional Scottish whisky while listening to a recital of Robert Burns's poetry. Your Burns Night celebrations are topped off with foot-stomping moves led by Ceilidh Tree. Leyton Technical, £40, book ahead, 6.30pm-11pm
ANDREAS GURSKY: After a two-year refurb, the Hayward Gallery is back with an exhibition of monumental proportions. Gursky's photographs are "precisely about the suffocating scale of things," writes critic Gabriel Coxhead. He also has the accolade of being the most expensive photographer at auction — a big artist for a big reopening. Hayward Gallery, £7.25-£16, book ahead, 25 January-22 April
DRAWING WORKSHOP: Taking Ovid's metamorphosis as a starting point, the pros at the London Drawing Group will be guiding you through a series of exercises designed to push your approach to drawing through collage, abstraction, composition and creative thinking. Royal British Society of Sculptors (Kensington), £30, book ahead, 6.30pm-9.30pm
* Check out the best places in London to celebrate Burns Night
Friday 26 January
HOUZZ OF 2018: Looking for home inspiration? You'll find it at this five-storey townhouse, which has been filled with stuff from more than 50 international designers. Plus head to the top of the house for colour workshops with Dulux, advice on taking care of house plants and a Nespresso masterclass. 19 Greek Street (Soho), free, just turn up, 11am-6pm
COMING OF THE LIGHT: How's this for awesome Friday night plans? Wander into a secret garden, where mulled cider and a roaring fire awaits your arrival. As you get toasty you'll be entertained by poets, storytellers and musicians. Bring a candle in a jar and cash. Secret location (Glengall Road), £6 cash on the night, book ahead, 7.15pm-9pm
THE MAGIC HOUR: Prepare to be stunned as Tony Middleton ‘Sonic’ delights with this Victorian style parlour magic show. Think: sleight of hand, mind reading, and even a séance. Hey, if it's good enough for Sir Roger Moore, it's good enough for us. Park Lane Hotel (Sheraton Grand), £45, book ahead, 8pm-9.45pm
Saturday 27 January
NATURAL DYES: Get back to nature with a traditional crafting session in Hyde Park. At this workshop, you'll learn how to use natural dyes to personalise a lovely tote bag, so you can ditch the plastic ones. The LookOut (Hyde Park), £18, book ahead, 10am-noon
TIE-DYE WORKSHOP: Tie-dye's longevity is admirable and it's also great fun to do yourself. Join artist Lizzie King, the queen of tie-dye, who'll be showing you how to fold, swirl and scrunch your fabric to make amazing patterns and effects. Arch 5, Bohemia Place (Hackney Central), £26, book ahead, 2pm-4pm
BIG FISH LITTLE FISH: If you've got kids, doesn't mean your party days are over, particularly when there are superb family-friendly raves like this one from BFLF and Camp Bestival. (Suggested age range 0-8 years) Fire/ Lightbox, £10, book ahead, 2pm-4.30pm
NOCTURNAL CITY: When it comes to city nightlife are you a Mancunian at heart or a Fabric fiend? Now's your opportunity to take sides as the nocturnal side of both cities is discussed at this evening of music, panel discussions and installations. Somerset House, £10-£15, book ahead, 4pm-midnight
93 FEET EAST RELAUNCH: 93 Feet East has been an essential venue on London's nightlife circuit since 1999, so it makes a change to spread the news of this relaunch (rather than a closure). Tonight's line up includes Archie Hamilton, Patrice Scott, Santé and Sidney Charles. 93 Feet East, £10, book ahead, 4pm-4am
Sunday 28 January
CLASSICAL COFFEE MORNINGS: Grab a pastry and a coffee and pull up a seat in front of Amy Lyddon (mezzo-soprano) and Ian Tindale (piano), two talents from the Royal College of Music. Royal Albert Hall (South Kensington), £13, book ahead, 11am
SOULFULL SUNDAY ROAST: Ease your hangover with a bloody mary before tucking into the Slow Fire London Sunday Roast, while DJs spin funk, soul and jazz vinyl. The menu includes canal-side smoked meat or a nut roast for the vegans. Meat is sustainably sourced and the veg and herbs come from the Grow garden. Grow (Hackney Wick), free, just turn up, noon-6pm
CURATOR TOUR: Tour The Lost Words with Museum Curator Kathleen Palmer, and find out how its themes of nature and childhood connect with the Foundling Hospital story. The Foundling Museum, £11, book ahead, 3pm
FOREIGN GOODS 3: The theatre and film industry often gets a bad rap for its lack of diversity but Arcola Theatre is shaking things up with ten new shorts exploring British Chinese themes from a range of exciting voices. Arcola Theatre, £14, book ahead, 5.15pm-7.30pm
Fun things to do with our friends and sponsor Funzing...
Get sorted into one of the four magical houses of Hogwarts, and go in exploration of the city’s famous filming locations on this 2-hour walking tour. You’ll meet your guide outside the Palace Theatre, where Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is showing, and set off on your journey across town - following in the footsteps of Deatheaters, visiting the inspiration for Knocturn Alley, and marvelling at the Ministry of Magic. And you better brush up on your Potter knowledge, because you can earn points for your house along the way, by taking part in trivia quizzes. The winners? You’ll find out when the tour ends at Platform 9 3/4… Get tickets
Tripping as treatment? It exists, and scientists at some of the world's most prestigous universities are studying the benefits of single-use psychedelic sessions to treat severe mental health conditions. But do hallucinogenic drugs have a place in our hospitals? Initial results have been positive, but how do these sessions work? What do these scientists use? What do the participants themselves have to say? Clinic Psychologic Dr Rosalind Watts leads this fascinating talk into the potential successes and pitfalls of using psychedelics in medicine, using her own personal experience as a "trip-sitter" at Imperial College London. Get tickets
We’re fed up of bog standard London tours. Been there, done that. So how about learning some more about the history and surprisingly dynamic modern politics of London’s public toilets? This 1.5hr walking tour covers iconic London from a whole new perspective, as you learn about ‘spending a penny’ at the Great Exhibition of 1851 and explore the capital’s most patriotic toilet. The tour ends in the Cellar Door Cocktail bar, a former gentleman’s lavatory. Delightful. Get tickets