Welcome to our round up of all the top shows exhibitions and performances in March/April around Britain. If you are visiting Britain and looking for regular updates on cultural events please follow our apple news channel – click here
1. New Opera Stars
A new production of Verdi’s La Traviata makes its British debut at the London Coliseum from 16 March. “It is the opera for the first time opera goer,” says English National Opera’s artistic director, Daniel Kramer. “Verdi packs a story in every beat. And his music is popular and accessible.” Rising opera star, Irish soprano Claudia Boyle, plays Violetta, the courtesan whose doomed love is at the heart of this 19th century opera. Her love interest, South African tenor, Lukhanyo Moyake makes his British debut.
La Traviata is on from 16 March to 13 April 2018 at the London Coliseum, St Martin’s Lane, London WC2N 4ES, 020 7845 9300, eno.org
2. Best Action
Game-turned-movie heroine, Lara Croft is back on the big screen on 16 March – this time with a bulked up Alicia Vikander in the tough action title role, shooting with bow and arrow rather than guns. Set in London and Wiltshire (the 16th century Wilton House near Salisbury) and elsewhere, the film explains Croft’s British backstory. She is looking for a tomb discovered by her aristo father (played by Brit actor Dominic West) before the badass Trinity organisation finds it and destroys the world. Motherly advice is doled out by Four Weddings’ Kristen Scott Thomas.
Tomb Raider is released 16 March 2018 by Warner Bros
3. Watch This Space
Harrods completes the re-vamp of its popular watches and jewellery spaces this March, spreading out to the store’s lower ground floor. Cartier’s new mega space has high jewellery pieces alongside its panthers and other icons whilst David Morris’s statement gems have double the space too. Exclusive pieces mark Vacheron Constantin’s boutique including a new Métiers d’Art timepiece with a hand-engraved gold hot air balloon. Linger over vintage books and sketches at A. Lange & Söhne alongside colourful bricks from the Berlin Wall.
4. Breakout Gig
The breakout pop star of 2017, Dua Lipa tours the UK in April. The 22 year old who grew up in London (and Kosovo) writes her own music and became the first woman to top the British charts since Adele in November 2015 with New Rules last August. Her self-titled debut album has spawned multiple hits including Hotter than Hell and a collaboration with Coldplay frontman, Chris Martin. With her synth pop sounds and raspy vocals, get ready to party.
Dua Lipa is on from the 12 to 20 April 2018 at the SSE Hydro, SEC, Glasgow G3 8YW; O2 Apollo Manchester, Stockport Road, Manchester M12 6AP; Genting Arena, Perimeter Road, Marston Green, Birmingham B40 1NT; Motorpoint Arena Cardiff, Mary Ann Street, Cardiff CF10 2EQ; Alexandra Palace, Alexandra Palace Way, London N22 7AY, livenation.co.uk
5. Macbeth Magic
With its witches, ghosts and royal intrigue, Macbeth remains one of Shakespeare’s most popular plays. This March sees two new productions by two theatrical powerhouses. London’s National Theatre opens its version from 6 March with James Bond actor, Rory Kinnear and Anne-Marie Duff as the scheming husband and wife. Whilst two weeks later, former Doctor Who, Christopher Eccleston and Niamh Cusack take the same roles in Shakespeare’s hometown of Stratford-upon-Avon for the Royal Shakespeare Company. Let the toil and trouble begin.
Macbeth is on from 6 March (previews from 26 February) to 23 June 2018 at the Olivier Theatre, National Theatre, Upper Ground, London SE1 9PX, 020 7452 3000, nationaltheatre.org.uk/shows/macbeth; Also from 20 March (previews from 13 March) to 18 September 2018 at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Waterside, Stratford-upon-Avon CV37 6BB, 01789 403493, rsc.org.uk
6. Dance Divas
Making its British debut this March is top Canadian contemporary dance company, the Ballet British Columbia. In the 100th year of women’s suffrage, it’s fitting that the three ballets are choreographed by women. One is even inspired by the work of Virginia Woolf, Jeanette Winterson and other arch feminists. Be prepared for a rollercoaster ride through explosive athleticism, languorous moves and edgy contortions to clubby electronic beats.
Ballet British Columbia – Emily Molnar/Crystal Pite/Sharon Eyal is on from 6 to 24 March at the Sadler’s Wells Theatre, Rosebery Avenue, London EC1R 4TN, 020 7863 8000, sadlerswells.com; Brighton Dome, Church Street, Brighton BN1 1UE, 01273 709709, brightondome.org; Theatre Royal, Newcastle, 100 Grey Street, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 6BR, 0844 811 2121, theatreroyal.co.uk; Birmingham Hippodrome, Hurst Street, Southside, Birmingham B5 4TB, 0844 338 5000; The Lowry, Pier 8, The Quays, Salford M50 3AZ, 0843 208 6000, thelowry.com; The Alhambra Theatre Morley Street, Bradford BD7 1AJ, 01274 432000, bradford-theatres.co.uk/venues/the-alhambra-theatre
7. Poetry in Motion
Manchester’s Whitworth Art Gallery shows its recent acquisition, Ten Thousand Waves by British installation artist and film-maker, Isaac Julien from 30 March. Inspired by the 23 Chinese cockle pickers who drowned off Morecambe Bay in 2004, Julien interweaves past and present stories from the cocklers’ native culture to create a haunting elegy of “the risks people take to get a better life,” says curator, Poppy Bowers. Looming on the nine suspended screens, unfolding stories range from ancient myths to Mao-era parades.
Ten Thousand Waves is on from 30 March to 30 August 2018 at The Whitworth Art Gallery, The University of Manchester, Oxford Road, Manchester M15 6ER, 0161 275 7450, whitworth.manchester.ac.uk
8. Iconic Art
It’s 1932. The BBC begins broadcasting to the Empire. Marlene Dietrich makes red carpet history in a tux. And Pablo Picasso has his first retrospective. Now Tate Modern are displaying over 200 works by Picasso from that career-defining year from 8 March. “Structured chronologically the show gives a feel for the ebbs and flows of an artist’s work depending on what is happening in his life,” says curator Nancy Ireson, adding that “the sheer variety shows why we still talk about him now.”
Picasso 1932: Love, Fame, Tragedy is on from 8 March to 9 September 2018 at Tate Modern, Bankside, London SE1 9TG, 020 7887 8888, tate.org.uk
9. The Comeback
Expect a dramatic return to form as Plan B aka Ben Drew has a new album, Heaven before All Hell Breaks Loose, and nationwide tour after a five year hiatus. Whilst he has been “creative in ways other than music,” he says, his comeback is eagerly awaited. After all, the She Said singer’s five years at the top to 2011 spawned multiple awards including a Brit for British Male Solo Artist and an Ivor Novello for Songwriting as well as critical acting and directing acclaim.
Plan B is on from 26 April to 3 May 2018, O2 Apollo Manchester, Stockport Road, Manchester M12 6AP; O2 Academy Birmingham, 16-18 Horse Fair, Birmingham B1 1DB; O2 Academy Glasgow, 121 Eglinton Street, Glasgow G5 9NT; O2 Academy Newcastle, Westgate Road, Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 1SW; Cliffs Pavillion, Station Road, Southend-on-Sea, Westcliff-on-Sea SS0 7RA; Colston Hall, Colston Street, Bristol BS1 5AR; O2 Academy Brixton, 211 Stockwell Road, Brixton, London SW9 9SL. And from 1 June to 27 July, Market Rasen Racecourse, Legsby Road, Market Rasen, LN8 3EA; Haydock Park Racecourse, Newton-le-Willows, Merseyside, WA12 0HQ; Sandown Park Racecourse, Portsmouth Road, Esher KT10 9AJ; Newmarket Racecourse, Westfield House, The Links, Newmarket CB8 0TG livenation.co.uk
10 Modern Makeover
Near Cambridge’s medieval universities lies a hidden art treasure: Kettle’s Yard. “It’s a mix of great 20th century art with things that aren’t worth anything,” says the gallery’s director, Andrew Nairne of the renowned collection that includes a Joan Miró abstract, Henri Gaudier-Brzeska’s playful sculptures and a delicate Constantin Brancusi head atop a grand piano. Now the house has had a modern makeover with new gallery spaces for must see exhibitions – including Anthony Gormley’s first solo show in nine years from May.
Kettle’s Yard, Castle Street, Cambridge CB3 0AQ, 01223 748100, kettlesyard.co.uk; Actions. The image of the world can be different is on to 6 May; Anthony Gormley is on from 22 May to 28 August 2018
*Lead image credit: ARTISTS OF BALLET BRITISH COLUMBIA 16 + A ROOM. PHOTO BY MICHAEL SLOBODIAN.
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