Arts Ahead is brought to you in partnership with Cardboard Citizens: A Few Man Fridays
DANCE: The Flamenco Festival opens at Sadler’s Wells tonight. It’s a fortnight of top flight flamenco dancers, sultry singers and master musicians sure to raise your temperatures above the current icy lows. We’ll bring you a review of Flamenco guitarist Gerardo Núñez and gypsy dancer Carmen Cortés later in the week.
OPERA: From Friday, The Tales of Hoffman takes a trip into the memory of eponymous poet at the London Coliseum. Alternatively, catch Mozart’s classic comedy Le Nozze Di Figaro at the Royal Opera House from Saturday.
CLASSICAL: First up, part of the Cultural Olympiad comes to the Queen Elizabeth Hall on Friday. Spinal Chords by Sally Beamish was commissioned for the Olympic Year, and is set to a text by Melanie Reid, who broke her neck and back in a horse-riding accident in 2010. The music reflects Melanie’s positivity and the spirit of the Paralympian movement; the rest of the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment’s programme features other Olympic nods. Then on Sunday, a senior figure in the piano world, American Richard Goode performs a 3pm recital at the Royal Festival Hall. An accessible programme of Chopin and Schumann makes this concert a highly pleasant prospect for a lazy Sunday afternoon.
THEATRE: Improbable’s The Devil and Mister Punch puppetry extravaganza opens at the Barbican tonight (check out the video below). Also opening is Master Class, starring Cagney and Lacey’s Tyne Daly as Maria Callas, pulling some younger singers to pieces. Absent Friends, starring Kara "Strictly Come Dancing" Tointon, Katherine "IT Crowd" Parkinson, Reece "League of Gentleman" Shearsmith and Steffan "Gavin and Stacey" Rhodri opens at the Harold Pinter Theatre on Thursday. From Monday, you can see innovative theatre company Filter remixing Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Lyric Hammersmith; or Black T-Shirt Collection by poet and visual artist Inua Ellams at the National.
ART / EXHIBITIONS: Designs of the Year 2012 opens at the Design Museum tomorrow, as does Queen Elizabeth II by Cecil Beaton at the Victoria and Albert Museum. On Thursday, you can see Lucian Freud's Portraits at the National Portrait Gallery, or Yayoi Kusama's spots at the Tate Modern. Both are extremely popular shows, and you might want to book ahead. Away from the blockbusters, The Last Days of Mubarak at the Foto8 Gallery sounds an interesting free option for anyone wanting to get a taste of the unrest in Cairo’s Tahrir Square this time last year.
Anything we’ve missed that you’re really looking forward to seeing this week? Let us know in the comments below.
We have listings for ongoing shows at London’s top museums on our Museums and Galleries page
Arts Ahead is brought to you in partnership with Cardboard Citizens: A Few Man Fridays a new play written and directed by Adrian Jackson.
In the 1960s the Chagos islanders were evicted from their Indian Ocean home to make way for a US military base and have been fighting for justice since. This world premiere from award-winning homeless theatre company Cardboard Citizens tells their story.
Moving, gripping and funny, A Few Man Fridays unearths an inglorious episode of British history, and explores the fantasies of the powerful, set against the dreams of the powerless.
For more information, tickets and to watch the trailer click here.
Performing at the Riverside Studios 10 February – 10 March, tickets £20 (£15 conc.) All previews £10 – Feb 10, 11, 13, 14.