Things To Do This Week In London: 15-21 April 2019

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The Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition opens at Somerset House. Image © Maxwell Gifted, France, Shortlist, Open Competition, Travel, 2019 Sony World Photography Awards

EASTER HOLIDAYS: Running out of ways to keep your children occupied during the Easter break? Take a look at our guide to family-friendly events — it covers everything from theatre shows to exhibitions to chocolate trails.

HOLY WEEK: A variety of concerts takes place this week for the Holy Week Festival, including performances by the Civil Service Choir, The BBC Singers and The Choir of Clare College, Cambridge. St John's Smith Square (Westminster), various prices, book ahead, 14-20 April

PHOTOGRAPHY EXHIBITION: Stunning shots by photographers from all over the world go on display at the 2019 Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition. More than 800 images covering landscapes, portraiture, wildlife and street photography and architectural shots are all on display. Somerset House, £8-£14 (tip: weekdays are cheaper than weekends), book ahead, 18 April-6 May

Monday 15 April

Author Ian McEwan makes an appearance at Southbank Centre

FOOD IN FICTION: Joanne Harris's 1999 novel Chocolat contains some of the most sensuous descriptions of food in fiction that we've had the pleasure of reading. Happily, Harris herself chats to fellow author James Runcie about writing on the topic of food. British Library, £15/£10, book ahead, 7pm-8.30pm

IAN MCEWAN: Novelist Ian McEwan launches his new novel, Machines Like Me,  which is set in an alternative 1980s London: Britain has lost the Falklands War, and Margaret Thatcher battles Tony Benn for power. McEwan also talks about his career as a whole, in conversation with BBC Radio 4 presenter Martha Kearney. Southbank Centre, £10-£30, book ahead, 7.30pm

POET IN THE CITY: The work of American writer, feminist and civil rights activist Audre Lorde is celebrated in an evening of live poetry performances and discussions by Poet In The City. Sociologist Akwugo Emejulu, poet Bridget Minamore and feminist activist Chardine Taylor Stone share Lorde's legacy.  Wiltons (Limehouse), £8-£16.50, book ahead, 7.30pm

Tuesday 16 April

See comedian Ken Cheng at Soho Theatre

APPEASING HITLER: Political journalist Tim Bouverie discusses his new book, Appeasing Hitler. It looks at what went wrong between Neville Chamberlain's 1938 declaration that he had visited Hitler and averted a crisis, and the start of the Second World War the following year. Hatchards (Piccadilly), £6/£22 with book, book ahead, 6.30pm

STORYSLAM: Bamboozled is the theme of this month's Moth StorySlam, so if you've got a five-minute story about a great con, or a confession of gullibility, sign up to tell it to the crowd and have them rank you among your fellow storytellers. Otherwise, just sit back and enjoy the show (assuming it's not a wind-up). Rich Mix (Shoreditch), £12, book ahead, 7.30pm

KEN CHENG: Born to Chinese immigrants in the UK, comedian Ken Cheng tells the story of his unique childhood and complicated relationship with his parents in comedy show Best Dad Ever. Toy lambs also feature heavily, for some reason. Soho Theatre, £13.50-£16, book ahead, 9.30pm (repeated tomorrow)

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StubHub’s picks of the week

Shawn Mendes performs here in London

For live music this week, StubHub’s got most tastes covered. For starters, catch Damon Albarn, Paul Simonon, Tony Allen and Simon Tong performing as The Good, The Bad & The Queen on Friday. Their debut album paid tribute to London, themed around modern life here in the capital, so this one-off hometown gig is an extra-special show. Tickets from £23.09* on StubHub.

On Saturday, musical theatre lovers are in for a treat as Britain's Got Talent winners Collabro bring the culmination of their UK tour to London. Both the tour and their latest album are titled Road To The Royal Albert Hall, so experiencing their impressive vocals at the venue itself promises to be a memorable experience. Tickets from £30.38* on StubHub.

Finally, there's StubHub's Score of the Week — Canadian singer-songwriter Shawn Mendes plays three consecutive nights at the O2 Arena starting on Tuesday. It’s the final stop on the UK leg of his tour, so don’t miss it. Tickets from just £50* on StubHub.

*While stocks last

Wednesday 17 April

Sh*t-Faced Shakespeare at Leicester Square Theatre

AMERICAN IDENTITY: On the anniversary of Benjamin Franklin's death, cultural historian Dr Boudreau discusses how the statesman's passing set a precedent for a period of national and international mourning, triggering ideas of remembrance and identity that we still employ today. Benjamin Franklin House (Charing Cross), £6, book ahead, 5.30pm-7pm

TWILIGHT TOUR: Horace Walpole's Gothic masterpiece Strawberry Hill House is impressive enough in daylight, so imagine what it looks like on a twilight tour. Visit it out of hours, drink in hand, and admire the building in a whole new light. Strawberry Hill House (Twickenham), £25/£20, book ahead, 6.30pm

SH*T-FACED SHAKESPEARE: It's The Taming of the Shrew, but not as you know it. The cast of Sh*t-Faced Shakespeare attempt to perform the play, but as they're all getting increasingly tipsy as the show goes on, things have a tendency to go awry. Leicester Square Theatre, £16.25-£20.75, book ahead, 7pm

Thursday 18 April

Sydney Youth Orchestra performs at LSO St Luke's

BLACK FLAMINGO CABARET: We're promised wordplay and gender-defying drag featuring black and queer performers at Black Flamingo Cabaret. The event shares a title with performance poet Dean Atta's upcoming book, with Atta named one of the most influential LGBT people in the UK. Free Word Centre (Clerkenwell), £10/£7.£2, book ahead, 7pm-10pm

ALAN CARR: Comedian Alan Carr headlines a night of laughs raising money for Neuroblastoma UK, a charity helping young people affected by cancer. Also on the line-up are Joel Dommett, Sean Lock, Seann Walsh, Suzi Ruffell, Nish Kumar and Marlon Davis. Age 18+. Alexandra Palace, £28.75, book ahead, 7.30pm

SYDNEY YOUTH ORCHESTRA: All the way from Down Under, the Sydney Youth Orchestra offers a classical music performance featuring Rachmaninov's Symphony No 2,  Wagner's Tannhäuser Overture and Strauss's Horn Concerto No 2, all in an historic church building. LSO St Luke's (Old Street), £8, book ahead, 7.30pm

Good Friday 19 April

Springfest comes to Ally Pally

THE PASSION OF JESUS: One of London's annual traditions is the Wintershall Players' free open-air performance of The Passion Of Jesus, taking place in Trafalgar Square every Good Friday. It tells the story of the last few days of Jesus's life, and it's very popular — thousands of people usually turn up to watch so it's well worth getting there early. We chatted last year with the guy who plays Jesus. Trafalgar Square,  free, just turn up, 12pm/3.15pm

SPRINGFEST: Spend your bank holiday at a German Bier Festival. Springfest offers a range of premium German beers and craft beers, street food, and live music from an oompah band and a Beatles tribute act. Alexandra Palace, £17, book ahead, 5.30pm

LONG GOOD FRIDAY: It's an apt day to watch 1980 British gangster film The Long Good Friday. Starring Bob Hoskins and Helen Mirren, it follows a crime syndicate's plot to transform London's Docklands into an American-mafia funded venue for the Olympic Games. Harris Academy South Norwood, £8.50/£7/£5, book ahead, 7.45pm-10pm

Saturday 20 April

Where better to spend a bank holiday than at a bottomless drag brunch

DRAG BRUNCH: Tuck into bagels washed down with bottomless bubbly or Bloody Marys at this drag brunch. Entertainment comes in the form of drag double-act Oberon White and Sam Reynolds offering lip-sync battles and games. Drink, Shop & Do (King's Cross), £32-£36, book ahead, 1pm-4pm

SCREAMING WITH LAUGHTER: Families with babies aged 13 months and under are invited to Screaming With Laughter, a daytime comedy club where it doesn't matter if the little ones start crying or need to fidget in the middle of the show. Hatty Ashdown and Josie Long are on the line-up today. Underbelly (South Bank), from £11.50, book ahead, 1pm

LIVE MUSIC: Spend your Saturday night enjoying the music of all-female four-piece Bella, Polly & The Magpies. Their musical style is a blend of Celtic folk and bluegrass — all rather chilled out stuff. The Slaughtered Lamb (Clerkenwell), £10, book ahead, 8pm

Easter Sunday 21 April

Things get sparkly at Glitterfest

SPECIAL KINDA MADNESS: Tribute band Special Kinda Madness mash up songs by The Specials and tracks by... you guessed it, Madness. They play a lively set from each band, with one aim — to get the whole audience dancing. The Half Moon (Putney), £12/£14, book ahead, 7.30pm

GLITTERFEST: If you're lucky enough to have tomorrow off, keep the bank holiday going at Glitterfest, a club night dedicated to all things sparkly. Prepare for confetti cannons, stilt walkers and fire performances as r 'n' b singer Kele Le Roc performs live. Tropicana Beach Club (Covent Garden), £12-£40, book ahead, 10pm-3am

See our Easter weekend events guide for further things to do from Friday-Monday.