So British Summer Time is here, along with the rain. So whether you’re looking for somewhere to shelter from the rain for a couple of hours, or something to do this Bank Holiday, there’s loads to choose from. It’s your last chance to see Lucien Freud at the National Portrait Gallery, and the double showing at the Hayward of David Shrigley and Jeremy Deller to raise a smile. In the theatre there are transfers and new openings in the West End and a sci-fi film festival in town or a jazz festival in Cheltenham.
Damien Hirst @ Tate Modern.
All bluff and bluster, or is there more to his work than meets the eye? Check out this comprehensive retrospective of his spots, sharks, butterflies and bejewelled cabinets and that skull. But if you fancy skipping the main exhibition (and the shop – the last “room” in the show), you could just see “For the Love of God” his $100m skull, on display in the main Turbine Hall, but like the exhibition itself, you’ll still have to queue. On until 9 September
Read more here: http://bit.ly/KO01Ry
Ron Mueck @ Hauser & Wirth
There’s something unnerving and yet laugh-out-loud funny about the works by Australian Ron Mueck. This tiny exhibition (four pieces) is worth the effort though, tucked away on Saville Row as it is. No photographs can do them justice, not just because of the better- than-Madame-Tussaud- life-like creations, but also because you need to see the scale in person. On until 26 May
Read more here: http://bit.ly/KuNqhF
Mondrian|Nicholson: In Parallel @ Courtauld Galley
The sublime Courtauld Gallery always puts on fascinating exhibitions. And this one is no exception featuring some great works by these 20th Century stalwarts and telling the story of their relationship during the 1930s. On until 20 May
Read more here: http://bit.ly/IXEBjt
Van Dyck in Sciliy: Painting and the Plague @Dulwich Picture Gallery
Closing this month, this small exhibition (16 painting) covers a short period of his life when he was working in Palermo at the time the plague struck and decimated the local population. Also showing is the exhibition Ragamala Paintings from India: Poetry, Passion, Song. On until 27 May
For more information: http://tgr.ph/IBsbj2
Bauhaus: Art as Life @ Barbican Art Gallery.
This major exhibition is the biggest in the UK for over 40 years and is going to include a rich array of painting, sculpture, design, architecture, film, photography and ceramics. With work from many Bauhaus masters including Marcel Breuer (with his famous Wassily chair), Wassily Kandinsky, Paul Klee and László Moholy-Nagy. And if you don’t know the names, you’ll surely recognise their work and influence. On from 3 May – 12 August
More details: http://bit.ly/ImW3LF
The Browning Version + South Downs @ Harold Pinter Theatre
Continuing the on-going fascination and revival of the works of Terrence Rattigan (following last year’s stagings of Cause Celebre and Flare Path and the Terence Davies film of The Deep Blue Sea), this two-for-the-price-of-one transfer from Chichester incorporates a new, companion play by David Hare. The Browning Version, where a Classics teacher at a public school has to face up to his failed life as he is forced into retirement (Michael Redgrave and Albert Finney both playing the embittered teacher in 1951 and 1994 film versions), is staged here with South Downs, a new play about school life, here centred on a pupil whose intellect ostracises him from the rest of the school before befriending a more outgoing pupil. On until 22 July
Read a review by Whatsonstage here
Written on the Heart @ Duchess Theatre
A critically acclaimed RSC production of this play by David Edgar transfers to the Duchess Theatre for a West End season. It tells the story of two men and the translation King James Bible at the end of a turbulent period in the history of the English Reformation. And if you hurray, you can join Whatsonstage on the 8th May for an exclusive post-show Q&A with the cast and director. More details of this offer here. On until 21 July
Royal Court’s Posh @ Duke of York’s.
Laura Wade’s 2010 production caused waves at the time because of the number of hose in the government who were members of the Bullingdon Club. On from 11 May – 4 Aug
Detroit @ Cottesloe Theatre, National
The Chicago theatre group Steppenwolf, that had a huge hit with August: Osage County is back with another suburban drama and glowing reviews from across the pond. On from 8 May – 15 June
More details here: http://bit.ly/IGhaw7
Cheltenham Jazz Festival
Featuring an extensive line-up from the guitarist Bill Frisell; jazz, funk and soul from master bassist Marcus Miller; the classic New York jazz sound of drummer Jeff Williams; world-class piano playing from the UK’s own John Taylor; and American sax sensation Chris Potter unveiling his collaboration with the Birmingham Conservatoire. Paloma Faith programming a film noir series of films and she’s performing an orchestral version of her new album. Oh and Jamie Cullum will be there too!
On from 2-7 May
Breakin’ Convention @ Sadler’s Wells.
Ballet too fuddy-duddy? Modern dance too impenetrable? How about locking, B-boying, breaking and popping? Get along to pick up some hip-hop and street-dance styles. On from 5-7 May
More details here: http://bit.ly/IBvSp2
Rambert Dance Company: L’Apres-midi d’un faune / What Wild Ecstasy @ Sadler’s Wells
This leading British dance company commemorates their 85th year and 10 years of artistic director Mark Baldwin with Nijinsky’s great dance piece L’Apres-midi d’un faune, now 100 yeas old, and their modern day tribute What Wild Ecstasy. On from 15-19 May
More details here: http://bit.ly/K9NQzn