For those enthusiastic about art and willing to combine cultural action with fresh air, we have researched a number of events to attend, for those last few lingering days of summer.
Sculpture at Southbank Centre
Southbank Centre is one of largest arts centres in the world, and this summer it has become home to a suitably vast array of outdoor sculpture.
Lion and Unicorn and Appearing Rooms are just a couple of these exhibitions. While Lion and Unicorn will have a strong symbolic meaning to any Brit, Appearing Rooms will be something young and old can find both artistic and amusing. Created by a Danish artist Jeppe Hein, Appearing Rooms is made of jets of water shooting into the air, forming spaces that appear like rooms. They disappear quickly, leaving visitors wondering what the next move will be. Despite being around for more than five years, the popularity of the exhibitions is only increasing.
Look out for the Urban Fox too – a giant straw sculpture facing Waterloo Bridge with an air of menace and melancholic nostalgia, depicting the tumultuous harmony between country and city. Entry is free.
Rooftop Film Club at Queen of Hoxton
Outdoor cinema has been going for decades, but summer is without a doubt the best time of the year to enjoy it.
Queen of Hoxton, which itself is a work of art created by local artists, musicians and designers, has converted its roof garden into a Rooftop Film Club, where modern films, such as The King’s Speech, as well as all-time classics, Some Like It Hot, are being screened. A number of special events are also being hosted this summer, such as an Italian film weekend with Benigni’s classic La Vita è Bella.
Open Air Theatre in Regent’s Park
The only professional outdoor theatre in Britain, Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre is offering a variety of cultural events this summer.
The theatre has been presenting great productions all summer, including Lord of the Flies, Pericles Re-imagined and now showing Crazy For You, a comedy full of classic songs viewers can sing along to.
A number of music acts are also being hosted, beginning with Kate Rusby on 17 July and ending with Clare Teal and the BBC Big Band on 21 August.
Regents Park Open Air Theatre allows viewers to bring hampers full of treats and set up on the picnic lawn to enjoy the spectacle. Despite the theatre’s claim to one of the largest auditoriums in London, it remains an intimate experience.
Designed and created by Hackney-based architects Studio Weave and artist duo Somewhere, this one of a kind boat navigates waterways of Tower Hamlets, Newham, Forest Hill and Hackney while showing films.
Artists such as Nina Pope and Karen Guthrie (aka Somewhere) will be showing their movies this summer, often along with canal tours, talks and workshops. Outdoor film events will also be hosted at The Floating Cinema, with informal Open Thursdays, when you can drop-in to meet filmmakers, and the East End Film Festival.
An outdoor amphitheatre recommended by Time Out, The Scoop is hosting a number of free events throughout the summer, including music and theatre.
In terms of music, The Scoop is rich in variety and offers everything from lively Latin songs over lunch to gospel music for a more glorious end of the day.
Free outdoor theatre can be seen at the Scoop in August from Thursdays to Sundays with a noted production of Around the World in Eighty Days. Post-show talks will also be hosted where those willing to share their experiences, ideas and comments can vocalise them to the Company.
The Scoop will stand in competition to the Queen of Hoxton with an eclectic mix of classic and contemporary film. If you missed out on Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland at the cinema, or feel nostalgic about Dirty Dancing, The Scoop is the place to go. Most of the film events are free.
Theatre in St Paul’s Church at Covent Garden
A number of entertaining events are being hosted in the gardens this summer. Iris Theatre, also recommended by Time Out London, will be presenting adaptions of A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Die Fledemaus.
The theatre works with emerging artists and also has a volunteer programme, enabling the public to get involved before the productions are staged.