It’s here, what is supposedly the most depressing day of the year, the dreaded Blue Monday! Boo hoo right. Luckily, people, we have a choice, we can either cry into our pillow and sit life out till spring or we can plan something fun to do to keep those blues at bay with the help of our handy guide to what’s on over the next seven days. So dry those eyes, it’s The Weekly EDIT.
London Art Fair (Islington, 21st)
A hundred galleries from around the world will come together this week for the London Art Fair where there’ll be the chance to browse and buy paintings, sculptures, photographs and ceramics from today’s leading artists. Alongside the main Fair, visitors will also find two curated sections focusing on emerging artists and contemporary photography.
B*ll*cks to Blue Monday! (Various, 20th)
In association with CALM, Bongo’s Bingo are putting on four special events across the nation to help raise awareness for mental health. They’re highlighting how anyone’s mental health and emotional well-being can be affected at any time – not just on one specific day like Blue Monday. Expect cash prizes, awkward dance-offs, rave intervals and tons of fun.
Food For Thought Festival (RE:CENTRE, London, 25th)
This feel-good one-day festival believes that nourishing your mind is the path to take to become a better you. Inspired by the podcast by leading nutritionist and author Rhiannon Lambert the fest celebrates the biggest voices in nutrition, health, food and fitness. Here Rhiannon will explore everything from nutrition, sustainability, climate change and meditation, dispelling every myth in between.
Touching the Void (Duke of York’s Theatre, Covent Garden, Until Feb 29th)
After its critically acclaimed premiere in 2018, the stage version of Touching the Void has hit the West End. Based on the true story which was later turned into a book and BAFTA-winning film, Touching the Void charts Joe Simpson’s and Simon Yates’ struggle for survival on the perilous Siula Grande mountain in the Peruvian Andes. The play takes the audience on an epic journey of survival that’s life-affirming and at times very funny.
Chinese New Year (26th, Liverpool)
If you’re planning on celebrating the year of the rat this Chinese New Year then one of the best places to do so is Liverpool, in the city’s bustling Chinatown. The big event here is taking place on Sunday, with thousands of Chinese lanterns adorn the city centre streets and loads of the famous buildings illuminated red, signifying good fortune and joy to everyone. Festivities kick off at 11 am with performances, aerial displays, a fairground, traditional food, firecrackers and lots more.
Mental Wellbeing with Head Talks (COMOShambhala Urban Escape, COMO Metropolitan London, 23rd)
The capital’s award-winning COMO Shambhala Urban Escape, is launching a new wellness speaker series, with one taking place every month starting this week. These inspiring sessions are hosted in partnership with the mental health and well-being advocates, Head Talks. This week sees Kimberley Parsons speak about Nutrition for Mind and Body and how we can use food and lifestyle techniques to help improve our mood and achieve a sense of calm and contentment each day.
Turner: Northern Exposure (Mercer Art Gallery, Harrogate, now till 19th April)
This show in Yorkshire retraces artist JMW Turner’s 1797 tour across the north of England when he was aged just 22. Some of the English master’s most critically acclaimed and rarely seen masterpieces will be on show here, with 13 of Turner’s paintings along with his two North of England sketchbooks. There will also be works displayed from contemporary landscape artists from Yorkshire such as Ed Kluz, Debbie Loane & Katharine Holmes.
Winter Lights Festival (Canary Wharf, till 25th)
The Christmas decorations may be locked away in the attic for another year, but it looks like London’s Canary Wharf didn’t get the memo. For the sixth year, their mid-January winter lights spectacular has returned to brighten up our lives with 20 installations filling the site. It’s completely free and runs till Saturday.
Slipknot (Sheffield/Newcastle/Birmingham, 20th/21st/24th)
After twenty years together, Slipknot have probably surprised themselves after their resurgence back to the mainstream of music thanks to last year’s number one smash album, We Are Not Your Kind. With their epic single Unsainted sure to bring some of the biggest roars from the crowd, this frenzied lot will be a riot to catch live with three UK dates this week.
Ronnie Scott’s Presents Viva Cuba (Twickenham Stadium, 25th)
Legendary Soho jazz club Ronnie Scott’s is set for an intimate evening of music and dancing in Twickenham Stadium’s Live Room. Prepare to be wowed by talented composer and trumpet player Yelfris Valdes, who spent the last 10 years mastering the art of Cuban improvisation with the band Sierra Maestra, and has performed alongside the likes of Madonna and The Clash. There’s also a set from Latina pianist Eliane Correa and late-night music from DJ Richie Rich.
Eats & Drinks
Manchester Beer & Cider Festival (Manchester Central, 23rd – 25th)
The Manchester Beer and Cider Festival is the largest celebration of beer and ciders in the north, with more than 750 assorted brews available for thirsty customers. A huge number of breweries from around the UK and far reaches of the globe will be represented with more than 15,000 beer-lovers expected to sink 65,000 pints between them. The all-inclusive ticket costs £40 per day where you get an exclusive souvenir glass and unlimited samples.
Burns Night Whiskey Tasting (68 & Boston, Soho, 24th/25th)
To celebrate Burns Night, Soho bar, 68 & Boston are hosting six one-hour whisky tastings. Each night there will be three whisky tastings hosted in the writer’s room at Boston where experts will guide you through the history of the spirit and guests can enjoy drams from Bunnahabhain, Tobermory, Ledaig and others as well as some Scottish nibbles and treats to complement the whiskies. Cheers everyone!
The Skewer (BBC Radio4, Out now)
From the mind of controversial comedian Jon Holmes comes topical satire like you’ve never heard it before. This new radio 4 podcast, chopped into 15-minute bites, mashes up audio from current affairs to create a strange, dizzying, at times disturbing, but absolutely brilliant listen. It’s all a bit like a dream you might have after a night stuffing cheese down your grill. The news never sounded quite so mental.
Andy Shauf – The Neon Skyline (Anti, 24th)
Andy Shauf is quickly becoming one of the most important songwriters of his generation. On his latest record, The Neon Skyline, Shauf intertwines stories of a group of friends who frequent a local dive bar, and through them, makes observations about human nature. The songwriting is down to earth, yet sophisticated and inventively melodic. This album is another step forward for this already acclaimed artist.
Wolf Parade – Thin Mind (Sub Pop Records, 24th)
Canadian indie rockers Wolf Parade have been consistently garnering praise since their 2005 debut album. The Montreal trio of, Spencer Krug, Dan Boeckner and Arlen Thompson have slipped out a new release every few years and singles like Forest Green show the boys are in fine form. They’ve got three dates coming up in March so you can check out their brand of musical magic for yourselves.
Picard (Amazon Prime, 24th)
At the tender age of 79, Patrick Stewart is once again going boldly where no man has gone before as he reprises his iconic role of Jean-Luc Picard in a new Star Trek series. Star Trek: Picard will explore the retired Admiral Picard’s life post-Starfleet, as a new arrival in his life takes him on an unexpected journey of discovery. He’s already lived long, but will he prosper?
Chilling Adventures of Sabrina: Part 3 (Netflix, 24th)
The third season of Netflix’s entertaining and at times surprisingly chilling Adventures of Sabrina pitches up on the streaming platform on Friday. This time around our favourite teenage witch is still reeling after last seasons climax (spoiler alert), where here boyfriend sacrificed himself to the depths of hell to defeat Lucifer (her Dad). Here Sabrina rallies her friends in an effort to save him, which involves her taking the title of Queen of Hell. All in a day’s work right?
The Personal History of David Copperfield (Cinemas, 24th)
When the brilliant Armando Iannucci is on directing duties, you know you’re in safe hands and that’s the case with his reimagining of the classic Dickens novel. It follows the life of David Copperfield (Dev Patel) as he narrates his story, starting with his childhood where he has to contend with an abusive stepfather, to being packed off to London, before starting out on a career path that sees plenty of misadventures. It’s not as biting as Iannucci’s usual satires, but it’s heartfelt and still very funny.
The Grudge (Cinemas, 24th)
Ok, so the original was a great little Japanese horror, but having been remade what feels like a hundred times with ever-diminishing levels of dread, we were a bit concerned when this reboot was announced. But this latest version, having The Eyes of My Mother director Nicolas Pescehelming and Sam Raimi on producing duties is a marked improvement on those efforts. Brit actress Andrea Riseborough stars as a detective targeted by a vengeful spook.
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