North London's Cultural Guide

Shakespeare performer concealed by colourful smoke

MUST DO: Queen’s Park bookfest, open-air Shakespeare & Zabludowicz

A weekend literary festival in NW6, outdoor plays in NW1 and filmmaker Ericka Beckman in NW5

ARTS: Read all about it: Queen’s Park bookfest

Portrait of Zadie Smith
Zadie Smith. Photo: Dominique Nabokov

his year’s brainy NW6 bash boasts a fairly fabulous array of authors, actors, chefs, musicians, journalists, poets and sportsmen in its line-up. Literary giants and local ledges Zadie Smith and Nick Laird join academic and critic John Mullan to talk about their lives in writing and to read from new works.

Elsewhere former Tory MP Stanley Johnson and daughter Rachel (Notting Hell) discuss the intersection of politics and TV. And food lovers might prefer restaurateur and award-winning author Russell Norman (the founder of Polpo), who’s set to interview Michelin-starred chef Giorgio Locatelli about his career and passion for cooking, as well as the secrets behind his latest recipes. Tickets here, 30th June – 1st July, Queen’s Park NW6

THEATRE: As You Like It alfresco

Want to sit outside and soak up the Bard on a blustery night? This outdoor performance of Shakespeare’s genuinely quite hilaire cross-dressing comedy plays at Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre for the whole month of July.

Olivia Vinall and Edward Hogg take the roles of Rosalind and Orland and, with original music by former Noah and The Whale frontman Charlie Fink, it should feel like a fresh version of the classic play set in the mythical Forest of Arden, where two young people discover love. Tickets here, Fri 6th July – Sat 28th July, Regent’s Park NW1


VISUAL ART: Ericka Beckman

Woman with pink gloves and a yellow wig emerging from spaceship
Ericka Beckman, Hiatus. Photo: Tim Bowditch

In her first major solo exhibition are four seminal works by American artist Ericka Beckman that span over 30 years of genre-defying filmmaking. Beckman’s work consistently treats film as a performance medium, and draws on the pioneering energy of her years at CalArts and the do-it-yourself sensibilities of New York’s Downtown Scene in the late 1970s and early 80s.

It also astutely anticipates the social and cultural impact of video gaming and online networks over recent decades. Free, until 8th July, Zabludowicz, Prince of Wales Road NW5

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