May in London 2018

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The Royal Ballet - Elizabeth

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The Royal Ballet - Elizabeth
Affordable Art Fair Hampstead
Urban Village Fete
Opera Holland Park
Breakin' Convention
Rita Ora
J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan
Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan: Formosa
RHS Chelsea Flower Show


The Royal Ballet presents Queen Elizabeth, the Chelsea Flower Show blossoms, Rita Ora plays Brixton Academy and Regent's Park Open Air Theatre opens with Peter Pan in May 2018.

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London Original Print Fair

Exquisite etchings, engravings, linocuts and lithographs.

Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House, Mayfair, London, W1J 0BD

Tube: Green Park Station , Piccadilly Circus Station


Dates: 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th May 2018


The London Original Print Fair, the world's longest running specialist fair dedicated to prints, returns to the Royal Academy of Arts for the 33rd time in 2018, gathering 50 of the world's leading print dealers together at the prestigious London art gallery. It's a chance to see exquisite etchings, engravings, linocuts and lithographs from all periods of printmaking, from the earliest woodcuts of Durer to the latest additions by contemporary masters. Galleries including Alan Cristea Gallery and Marlborough Gallery typically take part, showcasing works by Royal Academicians and high profile artists - last year these included Gillian Ayres, Cornelia Parker and Paula Rego. If you're planning to visit the fair from outside London, have a look at our hotel deals near the Royal Academy of Arts for all your accommodation needs.


Breakin' Convention

Sadler's Wells Theatre, Rosebery Avenue, London, EC1R 4TN

Tube: Angel Station


Dates: 5th, 6th and 7th May 2018


This annual three-day international festival of hip hop and dance theatre, curated by Sadler's Wells associate artist Jonzi D, is back for a 15th year in 2018. Breakin' Convention features performances from some of the world's greatest poppers, lockers, B-boys and B-girls. Taking place every May bank holiday weekend, this world-renowned celebration of hip hop dance culture takes over the whole Sadler's Wells space with dance workshops, graffiti, DJs and freestyle sessions all over the building.


Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan: Formosa

Sadler's Wells Theatre, Rosebery Avenue, London, EC1R 4TN

Tube: Angel Station


Dates: 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th May 2018


Choreographer and writer Lin Hwai-min's new work takes inspiration from the legendary words of the Portuguese sailors in the 16th century, as they spotted the land that would one day be known as Taiwan. A new show by Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan, whose "open-air summer shows attract audiences of up to 40,000 people" (The Guardian), Formosa gets its UK premiere at Sadler's Wells this spring. With music by award-winning Taiwanese singer Sangpuy and projection designs made up of Chinese characters.


Affordable Art Fair Hampstead

Lower Fairground Site, East Heath Road, London, NW3 1TH

Tube: Hampstead Station


Dates: 10th, 11th, 12th and 13th May 2018


The second Affordable Art Fair of the year in Hampstead is the little sister of the Battersea Park original which occurs in spring and autumn. Held in a marquee on the Lower Fairground Site on Hampstead Heath over a May weekend, there are over 100 galleries under one roof, exhibiting paintings, original prints, sculpture, etchings and photography from both established names and emerging talents - all priced from £100 to £6,000. It's the eighth consecutive year the Affordable Art Fair has come to Hampstead in its 13-year history with artists and gallerists presenting workshops and talks. Thursday is the Late View, an evening of art and activities with music and wine as well as art and sculpture demonstrations.


Planet Earth II Live in Concert

Scenes from the popular TV show are shown on the big screen alongside live classical music.

Royal Albert Hall, Kensington Gore, London, SW7 2AP

Tube: South Kensington Station


Dates: Sunday 13th May 2018


Classical music and nature on the big screen, a combination that will get you racing to the Royal Albert Hall faster than a baby iguana escaping the clutches of a deadly racer snake. Planet Earth II Live in Concert is staged by the BBC Concert Orchestra and BBC Singers, conducted by Jessica Cottis, playing live while specially-selected footage from the award-winning BBC series is shown in high-definition on the big screen. The stunning score is by Oscar winner Hans Zimmer and his composers, Jacob Shea and Jasha Klebe. Zimmer is renowned for his work on the likes of Gladiator, Interstellar and Blade Runner 2049, but the landmark BBC series has a special place in his heart: "Filmmaking at its absolute peak."


The Royal Ballet: Elizabeth

Barbican Theatre, Silk Street, Covent Garden, London, EC2Y 8DS

Tube: Barbican Station , Moorgate Station


Dates: 16th, 17th, 18th and 19th May 2018


Former Principal of The Royal Ballet Zenaida Yanowsky is Elizabeth I in this dynamic exploration of her life and loves. Covering key moments in the queen's reign, choreographer Will Tuckett and playwright Alasdair Middleton have created a chamber work that weaves together dance, music, text and song. Taking inspiration from letters, diaries, poetry and plays, including material written by her famed suitors, the script for this dance-drama is spoken and sung by female actors and a baritone.


J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan

The Olivier Award nominated production opens the Open Air Theatre's 2018 season.

Open Air Theatre, Regent's Park, Inner Circle, Regent's Park, London, NW1 4NR

Tube: Regent's Park Station


Dates: 17th May to 15th June 2018


The Regent's Park Open Air Theatre 2018 season launches in May with a return of their Olivier Award nominated production of Peter Pan. Based on the re-discovered original play written by J M Barrie, Timothy Sheader and Liam Steel's production tells the story of George Llewelyn Davies, one of the children who inspired the author to create the character of Peter Pan. Using puppetry in places, the drama reveals how the wounded soldiers of World War One used the fantastical lagoons and pirate ships of Never Land as an escape. Recommended for ages 9 and above, not suitable for children below 4.


Rita Ora

O2 Academy Brixton, 211 Stockwell Road, London, SW9 9SL

Tube: Brixton Station


Dates: Friday 18th May 2018


Pop star Rita Ora undertakes a seven-date UK tour in May 2018 stopping off at London's O2 Academy Brixton on 18th May. Popular as a judge on the The Voice, Rita made her return to music with the release of Your Song in May 2017 and now she's back playing live and performing the follow up Anywhere. Her collaboration with Avicii, a melancholy dance hit, Lonely Together climbed to the top three, giving Rita another turn in the limelight. Hosting and performing at the MTV EMAs at Wembley Arena in November2017, these shows give fans a chance to see her perform her live.


Urban Village Fete

Greenwich Peninsula, 1 Green Place, London, SE10 0PE

Tube: North Greenwich Station


Dates: Sunday 20th May 2018


Back for a fourth year Urban Village Fete offers a contemporary twist on the traditional summer fete. Roaming acts - think brass band house music and life-sized slinkies - perform alongside Gilles Peterson who DJs all day. Curated designer marketplaces, street food vendors, art and design workshops, pop-ups and talks hosted by BBC Radio London's Robert Elms are all part of the fun. Further activities in the flourishing Peninsula Garden include workshops (we had group hoola hooping and paper hat workshops last year) and the chance to become a DJ for the day with The Charity Shop DJ, all pulled together by HemingwayDesign who are also behind the Classic Car Boot Sale.


RHS Chelsea Flower Show

Beautiful and inspiring blooms signal the start of the season.

Royal Hospital Chelsea, Royal Hospital Road, London, SW3 4SR

Tube: Sloane Square Station


Dates: 22nd to 26th May 2018


Regarded as a highpoint of the London summer season, the fragrant Chelsea Flower Show is a wonderful showcase of blooms and celebrities - even the Queen attends. In 2018 they're introducing a new Space to Grow garden category, offering ideas and inspiration which can be taken home to your own garden, and for the first time on Friday 25th May, Ranelagh Gardens will remain open to the public until late for an evening of live music, entertainment and more. Particularly spectacular are the gardens created by eight hundred imaginative garden designers who spend nearly a month creating a horticultural wonderland over the 11-acre site. This beautiful and inspiring show is a real treat, even for non-gardeners.


Opera Holland Park

Operatic arias soar over the tree tops as four brand new productions begin with Verdi's La traviata.

Holland Park Theatre, Holland Park, Holland Park, London, W8 6LU

Tube: Kensington (Olympia) Station


Dates: 29th May to 28th July 2018


The annual Opera Holland Park is a highlight of summer in London, when the temporary structure of Holland Park Theatre is erected in West London's Holland Park and the operatic arias soar over the tree tops. The magical atmosphere of these productions owe a lot to their surroundings but it's also a tribute to a remarkable opera company that has defied expectations and budgets to produce productions of the very highest standard. The 2018 season brings four brand new productions, kicking off with Verdi's La traviata, followed by Mozart's Cosi fan tutte, Strauss's Ariadne auf Naxos, and the season's rarity Mascagni's Isabeau. The Royal Ballet School returns for its end-of-year summer performances giving a rare opportunity to glimpse the next generation of aspiring young ballet dancers.

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