Things To Do Today In London: Thursday 27 April 2017

Looks like this article is a bit old. Be aware that information may have changed since it was published.

Things to do today is sponsored by CommuterClub.

Caught at Stratford Picturehouse and Rich Mix

What we're reading

Things to do

SYRIAN CONFLICT: This new Imperial War Museum exhibition highlights the origins and human impact of the current Syrian conflict through photos and personal objects and stories. Imperial War Museum (Lambeth), free entry, just turn up, 27 April-3 September

SLEEP WELL: Set yourself on track for a good night's sleep — learn how to make your own wheat pillows, lavender bags and camomile tea bags at this workshop. Lower Marsh (Waterloo), free, just turn up, noon-3pm

BLACK CABARET QUEEN: Celebrate the life and work of London-born singer Evelyn Dove. Speaker Stephen Bourne has just written a book about the cabaret performer. Black Cultural Archives (Brixton), £3, book ahead, 1pm-2pm

SCI-FI: Today marks the launch of Sci-Fi London, a festival dedicated to showcasing the best of British science-fiction film out there. On the opening day you can see the UK premiere of Caught, in which journalists ask a mysterious couple one too many questions. Stratford Picturehouse and Rich Mix, £5-£10.75, book ahead, 5pm & 8.45pm respectively

MUSEUM LATE: One of London's best small museums, the Hunterian, is closing for three years. To make sure everyone gets a chance to say farewell, it's staying open late on certain evenings in the run up to the closure. Hunterian Museum, free, just turn up, 5pm-8pm

Dead Talks at The Harrison Gastro Pub & Hotel

OVER THE RAINBOW: Nicola Field, an original member of Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners, is discussing a new, expanded edition of her 1995 book Over The Rainbow: Money, Class And Homophobia. Review bookshop (Peckham), £5, book ahead, 7pm-9pm

EXHIBITION LAUNCH: Beautiful Glorious Chaos is the name of this bar's latest exhibition, and that's what we're expecting at the launch night tonight. The Book Club (Shoreditch), free, just turn up, 7pm-midnight

DEAD TALKS: Spend an evening listening to the laughable and ludicrous ideas of the past. Explore the practices and notions that fell by the wayside over time: see the embryonic drawings of Ernst Haeckel and find out why cows are no longer legal tender. All proceeds go to Inner City Centre, a psychotherapy and counselling practice. The Harrison Gastro Pub & Hotel, £6, book ahead, 7.30pm-9.30pm

POLITICAL COMEDY: Join a bunch of comedians for a 'celebration' of the first 100 days of Donald Trump's presidency. 2 Northdown (King's Cross), £10, book in advance, 8pm-11pm

JAZZ QUARTET: Listen to the groovy tunes from the Chris Laurence Quartet, four of the most respected musicians in their field, who perform with intensity and creativity. Lauderdale House, £12/£10/£7, book ahead, 8.30pm


Sponsor message

Make your money go further with CommuterClub

Fancy saving money on your commute? We all know that annual tickets are much better value than the alternatives, but the upfront cost can be pretty daunting. CommuterClub lets you pay in instalments — you'll get the savings of a yearly travelcard, but with 11 monthly payments.

Get up to £300 more in your pocket, and say goodbye to long queues for costly monthly tickets.

An added bonus: when you sign up to CommuterClub, you'll also get a Gold Card, giving you 1/3 off National Rail fares, and 2 for 1 on tons of London attractions.

Until midnight Friday 28 April Londonist readers get an extra £20 off their first month.


Art review: weaving magic

© Chris Ofili. Courtesy the artist and Victoria Miro, London, The Clothworkers’ Company and Dovecot Tapestry Studio, Edinburgh. Photography: Gautier Deblonde

Chris Ofili has created a sumptuous massive tapestry that sits perfectly in The National Gallery. He has combined Renaissance imagery with references to black culture. It's a stunning centrepiece supplemented by studies that include comparing footballer Mario Balotelli to a mythical figure. Chris Ofili: Weaving Magic at The National Gallery, until 28 August, free ★★★★☆ Tabish Khan

Theatre review: up a blind alley

Some charming tunes and an unfamiliar story about the 15-year old Louis Braille — who invented a tactile reading system for the sightless — set in Les Misérables era France could have launched a clever new musical. After successes like Ragtime and Titanic, Charing Cross Theatre has a misfire with a book that fits its score awkwardly. It's a vision of Paris where it never gets light and there are some appalling lyrics translated by Ranjit Bolt where only the clichés survive. Sweet singing including newcomer Jack Wolfe as Louis, Thom Southerland's now-familiar rotable two-tier staging, and smart black and white costuming help. But not enough. Read more here. The Braille Legacy, Charing Cross Theatre, Villiers Street, WC2N 6NL, £17.50-32.50, until 24 June ★★☆☆☆ [Monday-Saturday] Johnny Fox

Guided walk review: Travel through the thin veil of London

In the London of folk-horror pioneer Arthur Machen, sinister ancient horrors – troglodyte races and malevolent fauns – lurk just beneath the surface; all that’s required to see them is to ‘lift the veil’ and step into this magical world. On this fantastical dusk walk around Holborn and Bloomsbury, Rich Cochrane and Robert Kingham seamlessly entwine centuries of history, myth, philosophy and literature to weave a wholly engrossing journey (with a couple of pub stops) that will completely change how you see the city.

Walk lasts approximately 2.5 hours with a 30-minute pub stop en route. Tickets £17.50/£12.50 concessions. Dates available 27 & 30 April ★★★★★ James Drury

Good cause for the day

FASHION FUNDRAISER: Four years ago Rana Plaza factory in Bangladesh collapsed. To mark the anniversary Traid Dalston is hosting a night of late night shopping, where all proceeds go to garment workers in Bangladesh. There's also a workshop where you can make your wardrobe moth repellent. Traid Dalston, workshop is £10, book ahead, 6.30pm

Fun things to do with our friends and sponsor Funzing...

A Secret London Tour


How well do you really know London? Visit the streets that inspired Harry Potter locations and see London's most superstitious hotel. On Matt's tour you will explore hidden places and discover stories unknown to even the most knowledgeable of Londoners. Get tickets

Lost London Walking Tour


London is a city of incredible transformation. With structural remains that date back to ancient history still in existence, this unique walking tour takes in Lost London in all its former glory. From the Titanic booking office to the graveyards of man's best friend, you'll discover the weird and wonderful places that used to exist in the capital but are now only committed to memory. Using old photographs, newspaper cuttings and stories from the past, you'll be amazed at what has largely been written out of our history books...   Get tickets

Hidden London Tour


Visit old pubs, even older churches, hidden rivers, mysterious tunnels and more on this tour of hidden Londo. You'll hear tales of the myths and legends which made the City of London what it is today, and find out the area's links to nursery rhymes and literary figures. Get tickets

Forgotten Old London


Have you visited London's Roman ampitheatre? What about London's Medieval market places? Hear weird and wonderful tales of our beautiful city as you take a walking tour, seeing everything from centuries-old churches to the hanging place of William Wallace. Whether you've lived here all your life or are visiting for a few days, you're sure to learn something new about London. Get tickets