Courtauld Gallery Virtual Tour

Courtauld Gallery Virtual tour

The Courtauld Gallery is offering free virtual tours of their collections in exceptional close-up quality. Details can be found here:

You can roam each room of the Gallery, as it was before it temporarily closed in September 2018, and zoom in to look closely at masterpieces from our collection such as Vincent van Gogh’s Self-Portrait with Bandaged Ear or Édouard Manet’s A Bar at the Folies-Bergère, from individual brush strokes to the texture of the paint.

For more information visit their website:

Luna Drive-In Cinema

Luna Drive-In Cinema

Drive-In Cinemas are now back for the summer and Luna Cinema is offering tickets to these Drive-In Cinemas now. Details found here:

Luna Cinema is going to start up again with Drive-In Cinemas from Saturday 4 July in Allianz Park in London.

There will be regular viewings with a bespoke sound system and a fantastic selection of food and drink available to order from your phone with waiters speeding around on rollerblades to deliver it to you.

Don’t delay when booking your tickets as demand is very high.

For more information see below:

Two radio plays – premiered at the Bedford Park Festival

The XV Theatre Company proudly presents two radio plays, specially written for The Bedford Park Festival.

The Bedford Park Festival is going online this year with The Chiswick Calendar as one of several digital platforms hosting events.

Creature Features by Freya Alderson and Christina Balmer

Creature Features imagines what would happen if a journalist went to interview the pets and wildlife of West London during lockdown. What are their lives like with the humans all at home? Is their habitat disturbed by the constant ‘exercising’?

A play for all the family to listen to together, let’s find out what Gareth the overweight duck and Lula the over-excited Labradoodle have to say.

Featuring: Lucy Briers, Phyllis Logan, Veronica Quilligan, Eric Carte, Adam Leese, Andrew Maud, Kevin McNally,  John Rowe and Jeremy Vine.

Creature Features will be available to listen to on Tuesday 23 June. The link for the play will be added here nearer the time and will go live on Tuesday 16 June. For the time being, just make a note in your diary!

Images above: Jeremy Vine; Kevin McNally; John Rowe

Dusted With Sugar by Christina Balmer

In this short piece we meet two characters you might find at any church fete, anywhere in England. But are they really what they seem? Bittersweet, or sweetbitter? It’s not always what you think.

Featuring: Phyllis Logan and Kevin Morris.

Dusted With Sugar will be available to listen to on Tuesday 16 June. The link for the play will be added here nearer the time and will go live on Tuesday 16 June. For the time being, just make a note in your diary!

Images below: Phyllis Logan; Fr Kevin Morris, Vicar of St Michael & All Angels Church

Read More Stories on The Chiswick Calendar

See also: Bedford Park Festival goes online

See also: Trio Manouche – The Isolation Sessions

Trio Manouche – The Isolation Sessions

Since our Jazz at George IV nights came to an abrupt halt with the coronavirus, The Chiswick Calendar and Jazz promoter Larry Pryce are particularly pleased to be able to present the YouTube Premiere of Gypsy Jazz band Trio Manouche presenting their new album, recorded during Lockdown, as part of the Bedford Park Festival, on Friday 19 June.

The Bedford Park Festival is going online this year with The Chiswick Calendar as one of several digital platforms hosting events.

Trio Manouche, the UK’s premier Gypsy Jazz & Swing ensemble have used their Lockdown time well, recording their hot new album The Isolation Sessions. The band is launching the album with a special online concert as part of the Bedford Park Festival in June. The concert features special guests including Italian vocalist Francesca Confortini.

Overcoming the challenges of Lockdown, in a triumph of artistic determination, the band recorded and filmed the tracks in their own home studios, editing the resulting footage into one, continuous performance in a concert style show with band leader Simon Harris debuting two brand new songs including a cheeky take on Lockdown entitled Isolate Yourself as well as numbers already well known to their live audiences.

Recording the album “kept us sane”

“The album includes new arrangements of the repertoire that the band play at various venues” says Simon, “so the album very much feels like a regular gig.

“It really kept us all sane through Lockdown as it gave us all the feeling of being connected as if we were still playing live, despite not being in the same room as each other.”

Trio Manouche play some of the most joyous music you will ever swing your hips to, full of virtuosity and infectious energy. Their sets combine the core repertoire of the great gypsy guitar legend, Django Reinhardt together with the band’s own foot-tapping arrangements of the great trad greats such as Nat King Cole and Simon Harris’s own, highly acclaimed original material.

Celebrities, reviewers and industry press regularly line up to shower the band with praise. “Excellent ……” Sting. “Exquisite ……” Jools Holland. “Class Act ……” Suzy Klein, BBC Radio 3.

This special virtual concert is available to watch, but as all the band’s income is usually from performing live, if you are able to show your appreciation via the donor box, please do. Proceeds will be split between the band, promoters The Chiswick Calendar & Larry Pryce of Live Music To Go and The Bedford Park Festival’s ‘Upper Room’ charity for the homeless.

The link for the concert will be added here nearer the time and will go live on the evening of Friday 19 June. For the time being, just make a note in your diary!

More Stories on The Chiswick Calendar

See also: Bedford Park Festival goes online

See also: Two radio plays – premiered at the Bedford Park Festival

National Theatre at Home

National Theatre at Home

The National Theatre is offering free recordings of their plays to watch on their YouTube channel. They release new plays each week for the public to watch. Details can be found here:

Every Thursday, they release full length plays on their YouTube channel at 7 pm. On Thursday 28 May, they are showing James Graham’s This House – a hilarious insight into the workings of 1970s politics. Other plays, featured in their YouTube archive, include A Streetcar Named Desire with Vannessa Kirby.

They also do a National Theatre Quiz which you can participate in on their website with celebrity hosts including Imelda Staunton, Jim Carter, Lucian Msamati, Meera Syal, Simon Callow, Tamsin Greig and Jessie Buckley. Question topics include Maths, Science and Nature, Literature and Theatre.

For more information visit their website:

London Virtual Tours

London Virtual Tours

London Walks and London Live are offering you virtual tours around London without having to leave your sofa. Tours can be found on the website here: and 

London Walks tours include a Beatles, Dylan, Ghost and a Jack the Ripper tour.

Look Up London offers free live streamed tours of London with all your favourite places listed so you can pick where you would like to ‘go’. Places include Notting Hill, South Kensington, Marylebone and much more. They release a new tour every Monday at 2.00 pm.

If you prefer a more vivid tour of London, Look Up London is also offering a series of brand new virtual tours, where you can join via Zoom. Tours include:  ‘Sin City’, ‘Weird & Wonderful Westminster’, ‘Bankside’s Bad Behaviour’ and ‘Covent Garden: A History of Sex & Gin’.

Websites for the  London Walks can be found here: 

Websites for Look Up London can be found here:

Riverside Charity Quiz

Riverside Studios Quiz

Riverside Studios Charity Quiz Nights are raising money to ensure that Riverside Studios can reopen after the COVID 19 emergency. Tickets to the events can be found here:

These are family-friendly quizzes hosted by celebrities including, Eddie Izzard, Dara O’Brian and Robert Bathurst.

Wednesday 10 June Eddie Izzard

Wednesday 24 June Dara O’Briain

Wednesday 8 July Robert Bathurst

The quizzes start at 6.30 pm. Teams are made of households so only one ticket per household is necessary.

Prizes for the winners include dinner for four at Sam’s Riverside.

For more information and to buy tickets visit the website here:

Lungs cast reunites to save Old Vic

Lungs cast reunites to save Old Vic

Matt Smith and Claire Foy are going to reunite (socially distanced) to perform the widely celebrated play Lungs. The performance will be live-streamed and details can be found here:

The play will be performed on the Old Vic stage with each performance of Lungs available for up to 1000 people per night. It is in a bid to raise money for the Old Vic which has lost a lot of money to COVID-19.

The play is about a couple wrestling with life’s biggest dilemmas all streamed from the iconic Old Vic stage but this time with an empty auditorium backdrop.

For more information visit their website here:

BBC History Lectures

BBC History Lectures

The BBC History Magazine have created some online lectures about Medieval times, found here:

Perfect for all those interested in history, this festival of lectures provides the ultimate escape from lockdown. Topics include life and death, crime and violence, love and marriage and food, disease and medicine. The lectures were broadcast across the week of 18 – 22 May, but are still available to watch online.

Simply follow the link below to find out more:

Wise Children Musical

Wise Children Musical

You now can watch the widely celebrated performance of the Wise Children Musical by Emma Rice for free on the BBC iPlayer found here

Based on the novel by Angela Carter, the Wise Children Musical explores the trials and tribulations of a theatrical family based in Brixton. It follows the story of twins aspiring to join the world of showbiz.

Available until Thursday 11 June and performed at the Old Vic, the play deals with adult themes, so not one for children. But still terrific fun.

For more information on how to watch visit the BBC iPlayer here:

Shakespeare Readings Online

Shakespeare Readings Online

The Show Must Go Online has created weekly readings of Shakespeare through Zoom which can be found on their website here:

If you wish to take part or simply listen to the readings it is very easy to do so on the website linked above.

Rob Myles, who created the project believes “Shakespeare is for everyone”. Performing or listening to his iconic plays can create a perfect distraction from the lockdown around us.

For more information, you can visit their website here,

National Gallery Virtual Tours

National Gallery Virtual Tours

The National Gallery is offering free virtual tours of their galleries in London found on their website linked here:

The Gallery’s virtual tours allow you to see some of their greatest collections from the comfort of your own home on your desktop, phone or even virtual reality headset.

For more information visit their website here:

London Symphony Orchestra Online Performances

London Symphony Orchestra Virtual Performances

The London Symphony Orchestra is providing free concerts from their archives on YouTube every Sunday and Thursday from their website linked here:

They provide digital notes, artist interviews, playlists and activities for young musicians which are all available on their website.

For more details on dates and how to access the recitals please visit their website here:

English National Ballet Courses

Online National Ballet Courses

The English National Ballet Company is offering free online courses daily on YouTube found on their website, linked here:

Courses are with professional dancers and range from beginners to advanced. They teach classes for both youth and adults. Perfect for those wishing to learn something new whilst also keeping fit. 

Courses can be found on their YouTube channel among other content to keep you active and inspired.

For more information, you can visit their website here,

Churchill War Rooms – Virtual Tour

Churchill War Rooms – Virtual Tour

The Imperial War Museum is offering virtual tours of the Churchill War Rooms on their website linked here:

Take a look inside the Cabinet Rooms where Churchill stayed and worked throughout the Second World War, from the comfort of your own home.

To have tour simply follow the link on any device:

Some Virtual Voices – Online Choir

Some Virtual Voices

Some Virtual Voices is a free weekly uplifting singing session which can be found on its website, linked here

Some Voices is all about the love of singing together and therefore have created an online choir with over 900 members which you can join too.

They sing contemporary hits weekly, led by their incredible music director, Laura Howe.

It is very easy to join. Simply tune into their YouTube channel on Wednesdays at 7pm.

For more information, you can visit their website here:

Online Bread Making Courses

Online Bread Making Courses

Hen Corner is offering online bread-making courses through Zoom, linked on their website here:

Courses are ideal for those who have never baked bread before with courses for all levels. They are available not only about bread making but also include lessons on beekeeping and how to look after urban chickens.

Courses are normally in small groups of five or six. For details of dates and course fees see Hen Corner Website.

For more information, you can visit their website here,

Language Conversation Exchange

Language Conversation Exchange

Conversation Exchange allows you to practice your second language for free with a pen pal you can find online here:

You can easily improve your language skills by finding a native speaker on the website and talking with them on skype, email or any chat software applicable.

The website provides tips, tutorials and many other suggestions to help you improve your second language. Perfect for those taking exams or just interested in improving their language skills.

For more information visit their website and set up an account here:

Free Harvard Online Courses

Free Harvard Online Courses

Harvard University is offering free online courses of any subject through their website linked here:

With a large range of courses available, you can easily choose a course that suits you, from studying the roots of Buddhism to the principles of biochemistry. This unique opportunity allows you to delve deeper into a subject of your interest with online videos, powerpoints and further reading.

Courses can range in length from 2 – 17 weeks long with different difficulty depending on your choice.

For more information please see the Harvard University website:

Bridge Club – Play Online

Bridge Base Online

Play Bridge Online with friends on the Bridge Base website found here:

Bridge Base Online is a free online platform which allows you to play Bridge with your real-life partner or find a partner online. You can play bridge at any time in pairs or individually with humans or robots.

For more information visit their website and set up an account here:

Hogarth Online Live Classes

Hogarth Online Live Classes

The Hogarth Club is offering free online live classes through Zoom. Visit their website for more information:

Classes are available to members and non-members free of charge. However,  donations are being accepted through the link provided above.

Classes currently available include Pilates, Hatha Yoga, HIIT and much more. More classes are being planned -keep checking the link above for details.

For more information visit their website or contact them at:

020 3944 4640

Royal Opera House performance of Anastasia

Royal Opera House performance of Anastasia

Watch the Royal Opera House performance of Anastasia online for free via the Royal Opera House YouTube channel.

As part of the Royal Opera House’s ‘OurHouseToYourHouse’ series, join The Royal Ballet for a YouTube Premiere of Kenneth MacMillan’s Anastasia, a piece inspired by the true story of Anna Anderson, a woman who believed herself to be Anastasia, youngest daughter of Tsar Nicholas II and the only survivor from the assassination of the Romanovs in 1918.

This video will be available on-demand until Friday 29 May 2020.

For more information please see the Royal Opera House website.

Beauty and the Beast – Broadcast

Beauty and the Beast – Broadcast

Watch the Chichester Festival Theatre’s performance of Beauty and the Beast online. The performance will be available from Thursday 21 May until Friday 19 June, 2020.

You may think you know the story of Beauty and the Beast but director Dale Rooks has a few surprises in store in this brand new version adapted from the original fairy tale by Anna Ledwich, with music and lyrics by Richard Taylor. Set designer Simon Higlett and costume designer Ryan Dawson Laight deliver a visually spectacular production.

A foolish prince cursed to a life alone in a castle; a kind and beautiful girl who asks her father for nothing but a rose. One must learn to love and be loved in return, the other needs to realise there’s more to a person than first meets the eye. It’s a tale of magic, compassion and love, full of enchanting characters, marvellous musical numbers and some deliciously scary moments, guaranteed to delight the whole family.

For more information please see the Chichester Festival Theatre website.

Royal Albert Home – Sea Shambles

Royal Albert Home – Sea Shambles

The Albert Hall is offering a selection of events online.

The planned Sea Shambles live event at the Royal Albert Hall had to be cancelled, but the show is now being offered in a rejigged at-home version as part of the Royal Albert Home series.

The Royal Albert Hall has closed its doors because of the corona virus outbreak, but a virtual window is now open for you to experience some of the most talented artists around.

Anchored by Robin Ince (co-host of Radio 4’s Infinite Monkey Cage), Dr Helen Czerski (renowned physicist and oceanographer) and Steve Backshall (naturalist, explorer and wildlife presenter), the show will see a range of special guest scientists, comedians and musicians join the fun from their living rooms for a science, music and comedy show about the past, present and future of our blue planet.

For more information please see the Albert Hall’s website.

You can also support the Royal Albert Hall during the corona virus crisis by donating online or:

Text 5ALBERT to 70490 to donate £5
Text 10ALBERT to 70490 to donate £10
Text 20ALBERT to 70490 to donate £20

Registered charity No.254543. Text-to-donate operates via major UK networks only.

A Night In at the Orange Tree Theatre

A Night In at the Orange Tree Theatre

Just because you are at home doesn’t meant you cant enjoy the wonders of the theatre. The Orange Tree theatre is giving audiences the opportunity to watch UK premiere of the play Amsterdam by Maya Arad Yasur from the comfort of your home.

Amsterdam follows the life of An Israeli violinist. Living in her trendy canal-side Amsterdam apartment. Nine months pregnant. One day a mysterious unpaid gas bill from 1944 arrives. It awakens unsettling feelings of collective identity, foreignness and alienation. Stories of a devastating past are compellingly reconstructed to try and make sense of the present. A strikingly original, audacious thriller by Maya Arad Yasur, a prize-winning Israeli playwright, whose work has been produced worldwide.

This is a fantastic opportunity to not only immerse yourself in a compelling story but also to support your local theatre company in these unprecedented times.

Watch free for a limited time. For more information please click here

Dame Judi Dench in Conversation

Dame Judi Dench in Conversation

Dame Judi Dench in Conversation will be available to watch online to support the Orange Tree Theatre in Richmond. From Titania in A Midsummer Night’s Dream to M in the James Bond films, this is an exclusive insight into an incredible career from one of Britain’s best loved actors.

Filmed live at the Orange Tree Theatre in 2017, you can watch this exclusive 90-minute in conversation with Dame Judi Dench available online on your phone, computer or Smart TV.

As an independent theatre and registered charity that relies on ticket income, the implications of closure due to Covid 19 are serious for the OT. By paying £4.99 to view this unique film you’ll be supporting the OT’s Survival Fund.

This is an exclusive interview,  available until 24 May and a wonderful opportunity to support our national arts.

For more information please click here 

In order to contact Orange Tree Theatre please call 0208 940 3633

London literary pub crawl

London literary pub crawl

During lockdown in the UK, with pubs shut, theatres closed and everyone staying in, why not get involved in the fundraising, world premiere of The London Literary, Rock ‘n’ Roll Writers, Pub Crawl & Quiz!

This is a fantastic opportunity to visit many of the west London’s greatest literary pubs from the comfort of your own home. Written and hosted by Maverick Theatre Company’s award-winning Nick Hennegan, you can share on-line the saucy tales and stories of some of the world’s greatest writers and raconteurs – and take part in a Pub Quiz too!

Saturday, 23 May, 2020. 8.00pm start

You will have the opportunity to have a drink at every pub, but you choose your own tipple.  And you know you’ll get home safely, because you’re already there!  And if you visit us ‘in the flesh’ in London one day – we’ll buy you your first drink free!

To find out more please click here 

For additional information please contact

You can also call on 0208 090 5082

Free Online ‘Career Reboot’ Talks

Free Online ‘Career Reboot’ Talk

Melda Ekmen, who runs Mira Consulting and Coaching Ltd., describes herself as a ‘People Effectiveness Consultant’ and is a certified Executive Coach. She is offering a series of free, online talks about how you can reboot your career.

Dates: Thursday 11 June / Tuesday 11 August / Tuesday 13 October / Tuesday 8 December

This is how she describes her offer:

‘In this 60-minute online talk you will be able to hear and focus on what needs to be taken into account while rebuilding your career. Even if you are just looking to fine tune or strengthen your career you still will find what you hear useful.

‘The objective of the talk is for you to leave the session with insights that resonate with you personally and find access points that will help you continue rebuilding and strengthening your career.

‘The talk will be packed with clear guidance, tips and insights on how to build a fulfilling career regardless of circumstances – a recipe for a lifetime’.

To find out more please click here

For additional information please contact

Visit the British Museum Online

Visit the British Museum Online

You can easily lose an entire day visiting the British Museum, and the same can be said of its website. The Museum has recently ‘overhauled’ its online collection database, allowing over four million objects to be seen by people anywhere in the world.

There are nearly 4.5 million objects available to be enjoyed, with 1.9 million images. The new database has 280,000 new object photographs and 85,000 new object records published for the very first time, many of them acquisitions the Museum has made in recent years, including 73 portraits by Damian Hirst, a previously lost watercolour by Rossetti, and a stunning 3,000-year-old Bronze age pendant.

High definition images can be enlarged and examined in detail which will enable you to view the incredible workmanship on the Royal Game of Ur, the intricate carving on this African hunting horn, the amazingly preserved deerskin map from North America, or this delightful drawing by Raphael of an old man’s head – just a few of the thousands of highlights to discover.

View the entire British Museum’s online collection here

Walk a Mile for the Upper Room charity

The Upper Room is asking you to ‘Walk a Mile’ to raise money for the work they do.

The charity has been helping homeless people since 1990. It provides a number of inter-linked services that focus on giving people who are socially disadvantaged the tools and skills they need to restore their dignity, reduce their risk of homelessness and help them to become economically independent. They work with a broad range of adults with a variety of needs: living in poverty, socially isolated, elderly, substance misuse or mental health issues, offending history and unemployed.

Things are hard enough at the best of times for their clients but especially so now.

‘Our fundraising has taken a hit, and in the months ahead there will even greater competition for funds’.

They have had to close their doors and instead of offering face to face services, they are instead supporting Hammersmith and Fulham Council in placing the rough sleepers among their clients in hotels and supporting the food banks in delivering them food parcels. They are doing much more phone and online counselling and support.

Normally they need men’s clothing and sleeping bags and other essential items such as shampoo and deoderant. Now while they are closed, what they need more than anything else is your money.

Donations can be a one-off contribution or an ongoing commitment. You can make a financial donation here. Tel: 0208 740 5688.

The ‘Walk a Mile’ idea is that as part of your daily Government approved constitutional you Walk A Mile, donate £5 to The Upper Room, and nominate five friends to do the same.

Read More Stories on The Chiswick Calendar

See also: The Upper Room ‘braced’ for more people needing help

See also: Chiswick clergy support move to reopen churches for online worship