Mon 20 - Sun 26 May
FOOD & DRINK: Cambridge Beer Festival, Jesus Green – 20 – 25 May
Even I’m partial to the odd pint on a sunny day (although I’m soon back to G&Ts) and you can get your fix of the golden nectar at the 46th annual Cambridge Beer Festival, held on Jesus Green (Mon 20 – Sat 25 May)- loads of local beers and those further afield, as well as wine, cider and food- it’s the oldest and one of the largest in the UK.
THEATRE: The House on Cold Hill, Cambridge Arts Theatre – 20 – 25 May
The world premier of horror/thriller The House on Cold Hill, written by best-selling author Peter James (Not Dead Enough, The Perfect Murder and Dead Simple) comes to the stage at The Cambridge Arts Theatre . It’s an all-star soap cast at this one including BAFTA nominated actor Joe McFadden (The Crow Road, Heartbeat, Holby City, and 2017 Strictly winner), Rita Simmons (Eastenders), Charlie Clements (Eastenders) and Persephone Swales-Dawson (Hollyoaks), Mon 20 – Sat 25 May.
COMEDY: Incurable Optimist, Cambridge Junction – 21 May
Award-winning comedy writer stalwart Paul Mayhew Archer (his creds include The Vicar of Dibley, Old Harry’s Game, Mrs Brown’s Boys and the brilliant TV adaptation of Roald Dahl’s Esio Trot, to name a few) performs his debut stand up at Cambridge Junction (Tues 21 May). Incurable Optimist explores the therapeutic power of comedy in relation to his own battle with Parkinson’s.
MUSIC: Russian Philharmonic of Novosibirsk, Cambridge Corn Exchange – 21 May
This week it’s a classical music extravaganza in Cambridge with two stunning shows: first up is Russian Philharmonic of Novosibirsk at Cambs Corn Exchange who’ll be performing Rachmaninov’s trio of Symphonic Dances as part of the Corn Exchange’s Orchestral Season.
MUSIC: The Piatti Quartet, Kettle’s Yard – 23 May
And then the second classical serving comes in the form of Wigmore Hall International String Quartet Competition winners The Piatti Quartet, who are performing at the cool contemporary galley Kettle’s Yard on Thursday.
FOOD & DRINK: Eat Cambridge, The Guildhall Cambridge, Until 25 May
Eat Cambridge returned for its seventh year on Saturday 11 May at The Guildhall, off Cambridge Market Square, with local foodie traders and a lineup of food and drink experts sharing their wisdom (and free samples!). Don’t worry if you missed the main event, Eat Cambridge is followed by a two week fringe event programme featuring the best, newest and most exciting indie food and drink in our ‘hood – think cooking demos, tastings, networking and more.
THEATRE: Skittish Warrior, Cambridge Corn Exchange – 26 May
Muddy met Shappi Khorsandi recently and we can confirm, she is hilariously funny (read the full interview if you don’t believe me), so it’s definitely worth snaffling a couple of tickets for her new show Skittish Warrior which she’ll be performing at Cambridge Junction (Sun 26 May).
ART: Beggarstaffs, Fitzwilliam Museum – 7 May to 4 Aug
This new exhibition, Beggarstaffs, at the Fitzwilliam Museum, displays the work of two young 19th century painters William Nicholson and James Pryde, innovators in collage techniques and graphics in Modern British art. The exhibition also displays the artists’ individual works, which will be shown alongside their joint graphics, for the first time.
ART: Oscar Murillo, Kettle’s Yard, until 23 June
Ongoing exhibitions this week include Columbian born multimedia artist Oscar Murillo’s first UK solo exhibit since his acclaimed exhibition at South London Gallery at the uber cool contemporary gallery Kettle’s Yard (until Sun 23 Jun).
FLOWERS: Covent Garden In Bloom, Covent Garden, London, Wed 15 May – Sat 15 Jun
Following their London debut in Covent Garden’s iconic Central Avenue last year, floral artists Fleurs de Villes will return to showcase the best floral designs in the Big Smoke and return Covent Garden to its roots as the original (or OG, as the kids say) flower market in London. Covent Garden retailers and restaurants are all mucking in with botanical window displays, exclusive products and spring collections, bespoke cocktails and dishes made with herbs and ingredients from Covent Garden’s veggie garden. coventgarden.london
NEW EXHIBITION: Beasts of London, Museum of London, Fri 5 May – Sun 5 Jan
This looks amazing- a fully immersive, digital installation (see above for a sneak preview) exploring the role animals have played in the shaping of London, from the Roman era all they way up to present day. The interactive show uses video projection mapping to bring the beasts, from rats to lions, to life as they narrate a virtual tour of London. There are some major British celebs involved too, with Kate Moss, Brian Blessed, Pam Ferris and more voicing the beasts. museumoflondon.org.uk
Must-see exhibitions in the big smoke this month include the V&A‘s retrospective of iconic 1960s designer and the mother of miniskirts, Mary Quant– over 200 garments, accessories and exclusive unseen pieces from the designer’s personal archive (until Sun 16 Feb 2020); also at the V&A is this year’s biggie, the largest House of Dior collection ever staged in the UK, which traces the history of Christian Dior and the six artistic directors who succeeded him (until Sun 1 Sept). It is sold out but there are a few first-come, first served tickets available from 10am from the Grand Entrance – it’s well worth trying your luck. Or you can see the exhibition by purchasing a membership for the V&A. Also worth checking out is the major Van Gogh show at Tate Britain, with over 45 works, including Starry Night on the Rhône 1888 from the Musée d’Orsay, Paris, and the rarely loaned Sunflowers 1888 from the National Gallery. There’ll also be work by British artist who were influenced by Van Gogh’s work including Francis Bacon and David Bomberg (until Sun 11 Aug).
KIDS: Great Brick Safari, ZSL Whipsnade Zoo, Beds, until Sun 2 Jun
I’ll be a few of you have a LEGO obsessive under your roof. At Easter Whipsnade Zoo introduced its Brick Safari, with one million bricks’ worth of beasts and animals dotted around the mammoth zoo (it’s the biggest in the UK doncha know), as well as hands-on family activities. It’s included in entry price and running throughout this month. zsl.org