What’s On In April 2019: 10 Things To Do In London This Month

Celebrate springtime in London this April with new exhibitions, pop-up shops and Maggie Smith on stage 

BETWEEN US at The Shop at Bluebird, Covent Garden

The spirit of Lagos is coming to Covent Garden in April. The Shop at Bluebird is launching a multi-brand pop-up of African designers, curated in partnership with Lagos Fashion Week. The project aims to support and build awareness of emerging African designers in London and celebrates the country’s vibrant and diverse culture. Just when we thought The Shop at Bluebird couldn't get more tempting...

Date: 2 April – 16 May 2019 Location: Carriage Hall, 29 Floral St, Covent Garden, London WC2E 9DP Closest Station: Covent Garden

Website: theshopatbluebird.com

Flea at Vinegar Yard Opening, London Bridge

The newly-opened Vinegar Yard in London Bridge comprises street food, art installations and a range of pop-up shops. The buzzing new hub welcomes Flea this April, a sustainable vintage and makers market that is ideal for conscious shoppers. Expect to find anything from vintage Burberry coats to mid-century furniture and antique ceramics. 

Date: From 3 April Time: 11am-6pm Price: Free entry Location: Vinegar Yard, St Thomas Street, SE1 3QX Closest Station: London Bridge

Website: flealondon.com

A German Life starring Maggie Smith, Tower Bridge

Dame Maggie Smith returns to the stage for the first time in more than a decade for a riveting one-woman play. A German Life, written by Christopher Hampton, is based on the real-life story of Brunhilde Pomsel, the secretary to Hitler’s closest associate, Joseph Goebbels. Christopher Hampton’s play is drawn from the testimony Pomsel gave to a group of Austrian filmmakers, when she finally broke her silence shortly before she died. 

Date: 6 April-7 May Time: 7.30pm Price: From £15 Location:  Bridge Theatre, 3 Potters Fields Park, SE1 2SG Closest Station: London Bridge

Website: bridgetheatre.co.uk

Mary Quant at Victoria and Albert Museum, South Kensington

Immerse yourself in mini skirts, colour-popping pinafores and Peter Pan collars at the V&A's new retrospective celebrating Mary Quant. The colourful exhibit, which is sponsored by the King's Road, is the largest collection of Mary Quant in the world, showing more than 200 garments and accessories, as well as photographs, sketches and unseen pieces from the designer’s personal archives. When the V&A announced the special exhibition, they did so with a public call out asking people to search their own wardrobes for Quant pieces; 35 of these rare finds will also be on display, alongside stories from those who donated them.

Mary Quant and models at the Quant Afoot footwear collection launch, 1967 © PA Prints 2008

Date: 6 April-16 February Time: 10am-5.45pm/10pm on Friday Price: £12 Location: Victoria & Albert Museum, Cromwell Rd, Knightsbridge, SW7 2RL Closest Station: South Kensington

Website: vam.ac.uk kingsroadlondon.com

Sanlé Sory - Peuple de la Nuit exhibition at David Hill Gallery, Ladbroke Grove

Sanlé Sory’s Peuple de la Nuit captures the vibrant youth culture, dance parties and flourishing music scene of his home town in West Africa between 1960 and 1985. The photographer’s collection, displayed at the David Hill Gallery, highlights the carefree spirit and nightlife of a bygone era. The exhibition coincides with a book of the same name which also uses these portraits to depict the enigmatic night-life during the first decades of African independence.

Date: 4 April-31 May Time: 11am-5pm on Friday and Saturday only Price: Free Location: David Hill Gallery, 345 Ladbroke Grove, W10 6HA Closest Station: Ladbroke Grove

Website: davidhillgallery.net

Earth Day Season at Somerset House, Charring Cross

Somerset House is celebrating Earth Day – an annual event commemorating environmental protection – with an extended two-week programme. Somerset House’s Earth Day Season brings together leading artists from across the world for a programme of installations and events focusing on climate change and sustainability. Highlights include environmental artist, Justin Bryce Guariglia’s REDUCE SPEED NOW!, a courtyard installation consisting of nine large solar-powered LED signs, Hyphen-Labs who uses graphics and animations to explore an underwater dystopian future, and Serena Korda's, Khaos Spirit, which explores society's relationship with the elements. 

Date: 16-31 April Time: Varies Price: Free (some events priced) Location: Somerset House, Strand, WC2R 1LA Closest Station: Charring Cross

Website: somersethouse.org.uk

Small Island at the National Theatre, South Bank

The world lost a great writer when Andrea Levy passed earlier this year. This April, one of her most famous novels, Small Island, debuts on stage at the National Theatre. The award-winning novel dives into 1940s Britain and Jamaica, looking at themes of racism, war and relationships. Adapted for the stage by Helen Edmundson, Small Island sees five lives collide and changed forever as a result of the HMT Empire Windrush and the Second World War.

Date: 17 April-10 May Time: 2pm and 7.30pm Price: From £15 Location: National Theatre, Upper Ground, South Bank, SE1 9PX Closest Station: Waterloo

Website: nationaltheatre.org.uk

Stanley Kubrick at Design Museum, Kensington

This April, Design Museum in Kensington celebrates cinematic legend Stanley Kubrick, the epic filmmaker behind A Clockwork Orange, 2001:A Space Odyssey, and The Shining. The exhibition, which has been travelling around the world, is curated by a long-time friend of Kubrick’s, alongside his brother-in-law, and draws on the gargantuan archive built up at Kubrick’s Hertfordshire home. Explore the enthralling world of Kubrick via rare photographs, original props and costumes, while reliving iconic film footage. 

2001: A Space Odyssey, directed by Stanley Kubrick (1965_68; GB/United States). Still image. © Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc.

READ MORE: Why Stanley Kubrick's A Clockwork Orange Was Banned For Three Decades

Date: 26 April-15 September Time: 10am-6pm Price: £16 (adult), £8 (child) Location: The Design Museum, 224-238 Kensington High St, Kensington, W8 6AG Closest Station: High Street Kensington

Website: designmuseum.org

I AM BATEMAN: The Relations shopping pop-up, Notting Hill

An immersive retail project launches in Notting Hill this April. Following the success of a similar venture in Soho last year, I AM BATEMAN: The Relations is a unique installation combining art, fashion and interiors, created by artist Selena Beaudry, vintage fashion dealer Clemmie Myers and interiors designer Natalie Tredgett. Weave between seven vignettes, encountering curious characters and objects along the way, all of which are available to purchase. 

Date: 26 April-11 May Time: 10am-6pm Price: Free entry Location: 2 Blenheim Crescent, Notting Hill, W11 1NN Closest Station: Ladbroke Grove

Website: mrsandmrbateman.com

Liquor Lanes at QUEENS, Queensway 

Scatter skittles in style this April at QUEENS, London's original bowling alley, which first opened during the 1930s. QUEENS, which also boasts London's only all-year-round ice rink, has launched Liquor Lanes, inspired by The Big Lebowski. Five ruby-red bowling lanes are equipped with a private bar and bartender, serving cocktails and dishes from the MEATliquor menu. Ready, set, strike. 

Date: Throughout April and onwards Time: 12pm-11pm Price: £12.50 per person per game Location: 17 Queensway, W2 4PQ Closest Station: Queensway

Website: queens.london