15 Things to Do this Weekend in London: 30 October-1 November 2020

From a socially distanced live music event under the tracks to David Hare’s coronavirus-inspired monologue starring Ralph Fiennes and a new murder mystery cruise of Regent’s Canal

Lead image: Lockdown Town by One Night Records (photo: Nobby Clark)

1 The Murder of John Dory: A Murder Mystery Cruise, Paddington
From 31 October
London Shell Co. is launching a new series of Murder Mystery Cruises aboard The Prince Regent. Running every Thursday and Friday throughout November, with the first cruise on Saturday 31 Oct, the night will unfold around the fishy murder of Admiral John Dory. Brutally murdered while out at sea, the murderer has to be hidden among the passengers and crew. Everyone aboard is a suspect, and dining on a five-course seafood meal, passengers will have to crack the clues and discover the killer. Each guest will be vital to the story and assigned a character profile and script the week before so they can prepare to hide their guilt or come ready to defend themselves. Could it be the friendly lady at the table next door, or even the smiling sommelier? While cruising along the Regent’s Canal, you’ll pass iconic landmarks such as London Zoo and Regents Park, passing through the iconic Maida Hill Tunnel before returning to Paddington for 9.30pm. Boarding from 6pm. £65pp.
Sheldon Square, Paddington Central W2 6PY; exploretock.com/londonshellco

2 Lockdown Town, London Bridge 
Until 30 December
Immerse yourself in five musical worlds from 1950s rock ‘n’ roll to 1918 Ragtime in a maze of tunnels under the tracks near London Bridge station. Created for the age of social distancing, Lockdown Town offers five immersive gigs over two hours with limited spaces available so that you can dress up as your favourite decade, cut loose and enjoy live music accompanied by themed food and cocktails. According to Gigwise, ‘You’ll find gems you’ve never heard before and also see and hear the hits and legends of the future”⁠’, while Music News says the experience is ‘propelled by some of Britain’s most ground-breaking and exciting underground food pioneers’. Running Weds to Sat from 2 October till 30 December. Tickets £30 during the week, £52 at weekends.
Wardens Grove, London Bridge SE1 0HT; onenightrecords.com

3 The Rocky Horror Picture Show, The Clapham Grand
31 October
The Clapham Grand is celebrating Halloween with a number of spook-tacular events in late October. On Halloween itself, the venue will be screening The Rocky Horror Picture Show in what’s sure to be a fun-filled, costume-garbed night of debauchery. There are screenings from 4pm-7pm and 8pm-11pm, so if you really dig the cult classic you can go in for the double bill and do the Time Warp again – and again! You can also catch a screening of Hocus Pocus on Friday 30 November and a huge Halloween Ball fronted by drag queens Crystal Methyd and Sum Ting Wong on Sunday 1 November. Ticket prices vary.
21-25 St John’s Hill, Clapham Junction SW11 1TT; claphamgrand.com

4 Secret 7″ at NOW Gallery, Greenwich Peninsula
Until 1 November
Secret 7” – the anonymous charity record-sleeve sale that marries leading artists with legendary musicians – returns for its seventh and final show at Greenwich Peninsula’s NOW Gallery. Sculptor Sir Anish Kapoor, British painter Lubaina Himid and Jake & Dinos Chapman are among the 700 designers – including artists chosen via an open submission – who have created one-of-a-kind vinyl pressings for their choice of this year’s iconic seven tracks. The tracks include Aretha Franklin’s One Step Ahead, Bob Dylan’s Blind Willie McTell, and Miles Davis’ Miles Runs The Voodoo Down. On Sunday 1 November, all the records will be sold to the public via an eBay auction, but the identity of the sleeve designer remains under wraps until the record is purchased. Secret 7” will support the work of Help Refugees. Free entry.
The Gateway Pavilions, Peninsula Square, Greenwich Peninsula SE10 0SQ; secret-7.com

5 The 5G Bus at Samsung KX, King’s Cross
With faster connectivity shaping the future, Samsung KX has launched the 5G Bus, a supercharged experience within London’s hub of innovation. Designed as a one-of-a-kind replica of the city’s most iconic form of transport, this new installation uniquely portrays the endless capabilities of Samsung 5G technology while on the go. It boasts a home office and gaming zone, interactive shelter and a life-sized bus installation. Situated in the west wing of the 20,000 sq ft experience space, these three stations fuse work, gaming and entertainment with Samsung’s ecosystem of 5G products, promising to educate on the power of 5G with a connected journey like no other.
Coal Drops Yard, King’s Cross N1C 4DQ; samsung.com

6 Tadesse Mesfin: The Pillars of Life at Addis Fine Art, South Kensington 
28 Oct-15 Nov
Addis Fine Art London is permanently relocating to South Kensington’s Cromwell Place and relaunching with an exhibition of 10 new paintings by Ethiopian modernist Tadesse Mesfin. A giant of the Ethiopian art scene, this will be Mesfin’s first-ever European solo show. He holds a unique position as both a figurehead of the Ethiopian modernist movement, and as a long- time educator through his role as a professor at the influential Alle School of Fine Art and Design in Addis Ababa. Mesfin’s latest work is a continuation of his ongoing The Pillars of Life series, an ode to the women who work as small-holder vendors in markets across Ethiopia. As a visual paean to them, Mesfin pays homage to their occupations and personae by placing them front and centre, celebrating their importance within the social and cultural framework of Ethiopian life.
1-5 Cromwell Place, South Kensington SW7 2JE; addisfineart.com

7 Pioneers by Nick Smith at Rhodes Contemporary Art, West End
22 Oct-28 Nov
Pioneers is a new solo exhibition by Nick Smith that examines the American canon of art and cultural heritage through a personal lens of word-colour associations. The exhibition features a new series of works Nick Smith created during lockdown. Thematically, the exhibition explores and remasters canonised North American art and culture, from Grant Wood, Edward Hopper and Chuck Close to The Simpsons. It is a celebration of iconic American art and design, and how a simple bottle of Coca-Cola has intertwined with art, design history and culture. In this series, Smith incorporates his method of word-colour associations he has coined ‘psycolourgy’, combining text and image to create intriguing and provocative collaged works. Colour-chips playfully pixelate iconic artwork and popular culture, but step closer and the image is abstracted and the words become readable, each pixel corresponding to a word.
42 New Compton Street, West End WC2H 8DA; rhodescontemporaryart.com 

8 Bluebird Chelsea Café x Bread & Truffle, Chelsea
From 26 October
Truffle lovers rejoice! Bluebird Chelsea welcomes Italian street food favourites Bread & Truffle to the iconic King’s Road cafe for a three-week pop-up featuring gourmet filled focaccia’s. Born during the Covid-19 lockdown, Bread & Truffle champions Italian street food with simple recipes done really, really well. Known for their fresh-out-of-the-oven delicious focaccia bread, the team will be bringing seven indulgent focaccia sandwiches to the Bluebird Café for Londoners to enjoy. Handmade from scratch, the sandwiches all feature mouth-watering Italian ingredients, from the Truffle Treasure with truffle and parmesan cream, beef carpaccio, rocket salad and shaved truffle, to the Nutty Ham with creamy burrata, Mortadella ham, pistachio pesto and crumbled pistachio. To dine with friends, book a spot on the terrace, which has been kitted out for winter with heaters and blankets.
350 Kings Road, Chelsea SW3 5UU; bluebird-restaurant.co.uk

9 Ann Veronica Janssens: Hot Pink Turquoise at South London Gallery, Camberwell
Until 29 November
South London Gallery, which has just been announced as an Art Fund Museum of the Year 2020 winner, is currently hosting the first major presentation of Belgian artist Ann Veronica Janssens’ work in London. Hot Pink Turquoise spans the SLG’s Main Gallery and three floors of the Fire Station, with works ranging from an expanse of glitter through to a coloured light installation exploring ideas around perception. Janssens’ Untitled (Blue Glitter), an expanse of blue glitter scattered across the floor, occupies the Main Space for the first half of the show after which, on 28 October, it will be replaced by Janssens’ reflective wheeled Bikes, 2001, where visitors are invited to cycle round the Main Gallery on one of five custom-made bicycles with mirrored wheels. Janssens’ sculptures, projections, light works and installations also occupy three floors of the Fire Station.
65-67 Peckham Road, Camberwell SE5 8UH & 82 Peckham Road SE15 5LQ; southlondongallery.org

10 Dante’s In Furlough at The Vaults, Waterloo
Until 30 December
The devil is getting hitched, and given the Covid chaos, there’s no better time to accept an invitation to the underworld… The bottom line of this socially distanced interactive show – inspired by Shel Silberstein’s epic poem, Billy Markham and the Devil, written for PlayBoy in 1977 – is betray or be betrayed. Travel down into the many circles of Hell and navigate your way to the wedding of the millennium. But to prove yourself worthy of a seat at Devil’s table, you’ll need to lie, sin and cheat your way there. Should your morals interfere, your punishment will be to return to the altogether more disappointing plains of Earth and miss out on all the hedonism down below. Covid-secure measures include a limit of six attendees at a time, with ample space to stand two-metres away from those not in your bubble. Face coverings are mandatory. Tickets from £20 (previews), drinks tokens £6. Open Thurs-Sat 5.30pm-8.30pm and Sun 4.30pm-7.30pm.
The Vaults, Leake Street, Waterloo SE1 7NN; thevaults.london

11 The Baby Show Live @ Home, online
30 Oct-1 Nov
Avoid the queues and ditch the facemasks with The Baby Show Live @ Home. Following the success of their debut virtual event in May, The Baby Show is returns with a new digital platform and app to deliver all the benefits of the live event and more. As well as a one-stop-shop for great offers on baby essentials, the event is also a vital source of information for parents and parents-to-be from parenting and baby experts. Attendees can watch product demonstrations, shop new launches, create wish-lists and chat directly to brands via live chat, plus, the virtual live stage will host the UK’s top experts, offering advice on birth, sleep, breastfeeding, fitness, nutrition, mental health, infant learning and more. Weekend passes start from £20pp.

12 House of Vans London x The Auction Collective, online
30 Oct-18 Nov
House of Vans London and The Auction Collective combine fine art and skate culture in a virtual 360° exhibition, followed by a live fundraising auction to raise funds for leading youth homelessness charity Centrepoint. Titled Objects of Art | The Skateboards, the exhibition and auction will feature 19 customised skateboards transformed into works of fine art by a mix of street artists, emerging artists and Royal Academicians including Grayson Perry, Yinka Shonibare, Charley Peters, Trust Icon, Olly Fathers and Camille Walala. Plus, those who hunt out a hidden image of Vans’ legend Tony Alva among the exhibition could win a prize – find out more via @houseofvansldn and @theauctioncollective on Instagram. The public can start bidding when the exhibition opens on 30 October, with the live stream auction on November 18 drawing the exhibition to a close.

13 We Dance as One 1.0, online
30 October
Defected Virtual Festival presents We Dance As One, a live-streamed music event in three parts, beginning Friday 30 October and culminating on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day 2021. Kicking things off with a suitably heavyweight line-up, this weekend’s event will feature sets from Carl Cox, CamelPhat, Dennis Ferrer, Disciples, Mike Dunn, Natasha Diggs, Sam Divine and more, streamed via YouTube, Facebook and Twitch. Sets will be broadcast from the DJs’ home studios or where possible, their favourite local nightclubs, with Sam Divine playing at London’s beloved Ministry Of Sound. While continuing to provide hope and uplift for the global dance community affected by the ongoing impact of the pandemic, Defected is also seeking to raise awareness for the plight of the events business in this post-pandemic era.

14 London Never Dies at London Cabaret Club, Bloomsbury
Until March 2021
London Never Dies is a new, re-vamped show from The London Cabaret Club. The James Bond-themed show – the name of which also seems profoundly apt during this time of crisis for the hospitality industry – returns with a host of brand new surprises, from beautifully choreographed dance routines to gravity defying acrobats, iconic tracks from the Bond movies and pioneering 4-D special effects. The show will be accompanied by a fine dining menu created by new head chef Burim Asllanaj, a talented culinary expert with over 20 years of experience working for exclusive private clients, along with LCC’s signature cocktails and martini’s galore. Channel your inner Bond girl or super-spy as some of the capital’s most talented West-End performers immerse you in a glamorous world of romance and espionage. Tickets from £45.
The Bloomsbury Ballroom, Victoria House, Bloomsbury Square, Holborn WC1B 4DA; thelondoncabaretclub.com

15 Insight Investment Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2020 at National Maritime Museum, Greenwich
Until 8 August 2021
French photographer Nicolas Lefaudeux has beaten thousands of photographers from around the globe to win the Royal Observatory Greenwich’s title of Insight Investment Astronomy Photographer of the Year 2020. As well as securing the £10,000 top prize, his image takes pride of place in the exhibition of winning photographs, opening at the National Maritime Museum on 23 October. Winning images of the other categories include the breath-taking Aurora Borealis above Hamn i Senja, Skaland, in Norway by Nicholas Roemmelt; Łukasz Sujka’s image showcasing the alignment of our moon and Jupiter; a remarkable illustration of the satellite trails between earth and the Albireo double star by Rafael Schmall; and the captivating Dark River by Julie F. Hill – the inaugural winner of the Annie Maunder Prize for Image Innovation. Adults £10, kids £6.50.
Park Row, Greenwich Peninsula SE10 9NF; rmg.co.uk


Beat the Devil with Ralph Fiennes at Bridge Theatre, Tower Bridge
Until 31 October
Nick Hytner’s Tower Bridge theatre is emerging from lockdown with a collection of star-studded monologues including Beat the Devil, starring none other than Ralph Fiennes. Directed by Hytner and written by David Hare, the production depicts Hare’s experience of contracting Covid-19 early on in the pandemic. Suffering a pageant of apparently random symptoms, Hare recalls the delirium of his illness in a monologue of furious urgency and power. The playwright previously described the government’s response to the pandemic as worse than the handling of the Iraq war, so don’t expect this soliloquy to pull any punches. Tickets £10-£30.
One Tower Bridge SE1 2SD; bridgetheatre.co.uk

Drive In Film Club at Alexandra Palace
Until 31 October
Drive In Film Club returns to Ally Pally with a new October featuring bold new blockbusters, Halloween classics and a sprinkling of special events. The socially distanced drive-in event, delivered by the team behind Rooftop Film Club, has everything you need for a great movie night out, including a giant 40-foot LED screen, in-car audio via local FM stereo, concessions like hot dogs, popcorn, chocolate and drinks (ordered online and dropped off outside your car door), and, of course, loos that are cleaned regularly. Still to come this week is Gremlins on 28 Oct, Ghostbusters on 29 Oct, The Addams Family on 30 Oct and, on Halloween itself, Casper, Hocus Pocus and Relic. Tickets from £27.50 per car plus booking fee.
Alexandra Palace Way N22 7AY; driveinfilmclub.com

London Restaurant Festival, various locations
1-31 October
OpenTable has once again partnered with London Restaurant Festival to launch exclusive Festival Menus across the capital, which should just fill the big shoes that Eat Out to Help Out has left behind. The Festival Menus will showcase a number of bespoke menu offers with six themes to help you find just what you fancy. There’s London Legends, which will take you top some of London’s long-standing establishments; Outside and Cosy, for those who prefer to keep things alfresco as Covid-19 insists on hanging around (heaters and blankets aplenty); Talk of the Town, which showcases the hottest openings and rising stars; Neighbourhood Gems, for those who like to keep it local; Flights and Pairings, which will upgrade food experiences with drinks pairings; and London with a View, which, frankly, speaks for itself.
To scope out all the Festival Menus, see opentable.co.uk

London Cocktail Week, various locations
1-31 October 
October truly is the month of indulgence in London, with both London Restaurant Festival and London Cocktail Week in full swing. London Cocktail Week, the biggest city-wide celebration of cocktails in the world, is expanding across the entire month this year as it strives to help London’s cocktail industry get back on its feet. Taking place in London’s best bars – alongside a new at-home element – the festival offers cocktail lovers access to an unrivalled collection of top bars with the renowned self-guided Cocktail Tours, as well as a timetable of masterclasses and immersive experiences – all socially-distanced and fully compliant with the latest governmental guidelines. A £15 festival wristband is valid for the entire month of October – and for the last week you can bag one for just a fiver! The wrist band unlocks access to The Cocktail Tours, offering £6 Signature Serves in bars hand-picked by the organisers, including the likes of The Artesian at The Langham, Lyaness at Sea Containers London, Sketch and Blue Bar at the Berkeley.

West End Musical Drive-In, Enfield
Until 31 October
Alongside London’s many drive-in cinemas, there’s the West End Musical Drive-In, a socially distanced musical theatre party from the producers of West End Musical Brunch. Taking place at The Drive In at Troubadour Meridian Water, the entirely contact-free concert experience delivers you live performances from the biggest West End superstars. The performances, featuring songs from a host of different musicals, will be projected from the stage onto a massive screen with sound provided straight to your car radio. Tickets from £65 (based on one car with two attendees). Running every Saturday until 31 October.