From a live stream Bruce Springsteen party to a BalletBoyz digital premiere, virtual bars and a #SherLOCKDOWN – Londoners have come up with some ingenious ways to help us have fun at home this weekend
Lead image: Hoopla Improv Theatre (photo: Rebecca Need-Menear)
1 Hungry Heart’s Live Stream Springsteen Party
Hungry Heart has been running back-to-back Bruce Springsteen parties for a couple of years now, and during these testing times, when we might all need a little pick up from ‘The Boss’, they’re hosting their first live stream house party! Live from their living room to yours, it’s one for Bruce Springsteen fans the world over to get involved in. Don your Springsteen t-shirts and share a 30-second vid of you dancing and singing along for the after-video! Hungry Heart is an independent company, so if you can, do make a donation via PayPal. 8pm-9pm.
2 Brewdog’s Online Bar
Brewdog has been busy. After switching its UK bars into click and collect points via the Hop Drop app, they are now launching the first ever BrewDog Online Bar session. Kicking off at 6pm on Friday 27 March, Brewdog wants to go beyond offering its beers and food to you at home, it also wants to bring the Brewdog community through your doors – virtually, of course. Head on in for live beer tastings with co-founders James and Martin and other beer experts, homebrew masterclasses, virtual pub quizzes, Q&As with BrewDog crewmembers, live music and comedy, and giveaways and exclusive merch.
3 Hoopla Improv Theatre
28 March (and other dates)
If laughter is the best medicine for you right now, then Hoopla, the UK’s first improv theatre, is for you. Injecting comedy into the current crisis, these online improv drop-in sessions bring 100s of improv games and interactive scenes from their regular courses right into your living room. The focus is on having fun, letting yourself go, maintaining important social interactions and laughing your way through the lockdown. The online improv classes are running from now until 2 May almost daily. Saturday’s session takes place from 2pm-4pm. Tickets £10. Click here for the full calendar of live sessions.
4 The Indy-Tute’s Pub Quiz: Live to Your Living Room
The Indy-Tute, born of a love of pop ups, London and learning something new, has been offering gift experiences since 2013, and now it is creating ‘Indy-House’ experiences for these quarantine times! First up is a pub quiz, without the pub. Instead, download Zoom, pour yourself a drink, get some snacks in, and get ready to quiz from 8pm. Hosted by ex-Stranglers frontman Paul Roberts, you can win prizes from Fitz Wine and The Indytute, and all money raised will go to local food banks. £5. Tune in at 7.45pm for the warm up.
Since we can’t go to the immersive experiences, the immersive experiences will come to us. Sherlock: The Official Live Game has launched #SherLOCKDOWN, with daily puzzles and riddles and prizes to be won. Each day, Sherlock will be posting a mind-bending puzzle via Instagram and Twitter at 2.21pm every day. The fiendish puzzles will keep the ol’ quarantine brain ticking over, with giveaways and special discount codes up for grabs. Challenges include unlocking an encrypted enemy file using clues from a top secret document and cracking coded text to figure out geographic locations. Plus, you can also get 15% off all gift card purchases so fans can buy now and play when the immersive game reopens.
6 Sadler’s Wells Digital Stage
27 March (and other dates)
Sadler’s Wells is presenting new dance content for Digital Stage, its free online performance platform. New content will include digital premieres of full-length dance performances, screendance (choreography designed for film) and new dance workshops created for families with young children, and the over 60s, to take part in at home. The programme launches on Friday, World Theatre Day, with Deluxe by BalletBoyz at 7.30pm. Deluxe will be the first in a series of Sadler’s Wells Facebook Premieres, with one work released every week and available online for seven days. Sadler’s Wells is also expanding Take Part, a series of workshops and activities for audiences to dance along to in their own homes, available from Wednesday 1 April.
7 Virtual Cocktail Masterclasses
Cocktail bars are out, your personal at-home cocktail trolley is IN. But to make sure your serves are on point, premium spirit brands Villa Ascenti Gin, Belsazar Vermouth, Ketel One Vodka and Johnnie Walker are introducing a series of virtual cocktail masterclasses. The virtual cocktail masterclasses – led by skilled brand ambassadors like Ali Reynolds of Johnnie Walker and Kate Jackson of Ketel One vodka – will showcase cocktail recipes and tips using everyday ingredients found at home. Aside from perfecting mixology skills, you’ll learn how to craft syrups, citrusy cordials and more. The hour-long masterclasses will be broadcast daily at 1pm, 3pm and 5pm on World Class GB and Diageo Bar Academy’s social media pages.
8 #OKAatHome Instagram Takeovers
Get creative with OKA’s live #OKAatHome Instragram takeovers @oka. In order to provide some positivity and joy, the luxury British interiors brand is introducing Instragram takeovers guided by experts to help us unleash our creative side. First up, on Saturday 28 March at 1pm, is a simple painting class from Laura Gulshani (@lauragulshani), a fashion painter who combines fine art inspirations with modern design trends. Her vibrant paintings have been commissioned by clients that include Chanel, Burberry and Saks Fifth Avenue. Tune in at 1pm on Saturday when Gulshani will be showing us how to create a simple still life from objects you can find around the home. No paints? Just grab a pen or pencil and get drawing, or simply tune in for inspiration and to connect with like-minded creatives.
9 Become a Jewellery Designer with Carrie Elizabeth
Until 12 April
Ever fancied yourself as a jewellery designer? Well, now we all have a time on our hands, why not give it a shot? UK demi-fine and precious stone jeweller Carrie Elizabeth has reached out to her Instagram followers to ask them to design her next piece. Entrants to the design competition can design their piece either digitally or using a sketch. Then, in three weeks, when we all hope the lockdown is relaxed, Carrie will choose her favourite designs to go through to the sampling stage. Those chosen will receive £250 in Carrie Elizabeth vouchers, and the winners will win £500 in cash, be included in collections online, have their names credited on the site and even receive their personal design for free. Winners will be decided week beginning 13 April.
Find the full details in this Carrie Elizabeth Instagram post
3 fun ways to get your bake on
10 Bake at Home with Bread Ahead
Bread Ahead’s founder and master baker Matthew Jones is offering free online tutorials everyday at 2pm to keep us all occupied while spending some quality time indoors. This weekend you will be tutored through baking Easter brioche on Friday 27 March at 2pm, bagel and pretzel on Saturday 28 March at 2pm, and Hot Cross Buns on Sunday 29 March. The tutorials will be streamed live on Bread Ahead’s Instagram stories and will be available for 24 hours. In addition to the daily online baking courses, Jones will also be hosting a Q&A every night.
11 Cowcross Yards Show Us Ya Buns Challenge
Until 12 April
The YUM: Hot Cross @ Cowcross Yards was originally planned to be a hot cross bun taste experience, where you could try weird and wonderful twists on Easter’s top treat (in our opinion), such as the Marmite Hot Cross Bun, the lemon gin HCB and a popping candy creation. But alas, we are where we are, and instead Cowcross Yards is asking Londoners to ‘Show Us Ya Buns’ and baking your own twist on the hot cross bun with the ingredients you have in your cupboard. Take the Cowcross Yards special recipe (found on their Instagram, Facebook or website) and add your twist, then share your creations on Instagram or Facebook tagging @cowcrossyards with the hashtag #CowcrossShowUsYaBuns. Each week Cowcross Yards will pick their favourite and re-share them. The challenge runs from now until Easter Sunday.
12 The Big Bakes Online Baking Tutorials
The Big Bakes – the UK’s first and only live baking competition – usually pits keen amateur bakers against each in a marque in the gardens of the Castle Pub in Tooting. But now their team of bakers are hosting an array of remote tutorials to you baking at home. Broadcast from their famous, fully kitted out baking tents, the baking team will sharing three bake-at-home
classes each week across their social media channels, covering easy-to-follow recipes that use the day-to-day ingredients and standard kitchen equipment. To take part, just visit @Thebig_bakes on Facebook or Instagram, where you will find a list of necessary ingredients. Once you’ve completed your creations, share a photograph with @Thebig_bakes and each week the team will choose the winning amateur baker. The prize? Vouchers to attend a live session later in the year.
13 Plonk at Home with Plonk Crazy Golf
Remember the Blue Peter Tracy Island model that went down in history? The one that had us all nicking match boxes (careful!) and loo roll (so precious!) holders, empty or not? Ah, the 90s! Well the Plonk at Home build-your-own-crazy-golf-course could well be the noughties version… With Plonk Crazy Golf currently closed, the chief ‘crazies’ are asking us to design and build our own tricky crazy golf holes using bits and bobs from around the house and share them using the hashtag #PLONKATHOME to win prizes. Sign up for a £5 membership and each week Plonk will release videos, design packs and live lessons to help you make mini-golf courses out of upcycled materials, as well as a discount voucher for tickets down the line, all while raising money for Lennox Children’s Cancer Fund. You might even get your creation made out of wood in the Plonk Camden Market venue. If nothing else, it’s a perfect excuse to work your way through a few extra tubes of Pringles…
14 #GlobalTeaBreak with London Tour Guide Alex Lacey
#GlobalTeaBreak is an initiative created by London Tour Guide Alex Lacey to help bring the community together during these tricky times. Every day at 3pm, Lacey goes live on Instagram with a 15-20 minute video about British history and culture. On Saturday 28 March, it’s the Great Fire of London Part II with Blue Badge London tourist guide Laura Adams (catch up on Part I here), and on Sunday 29 March it’s Secret Sundays – Secrets of Soho with Look Up London founder Katie Wignall. Pop the kettle on and join in at 3pm. If you miss out, you can catch up via YouTube or Facebook afterwards. There’s no charge, but donations are welcome to support an out-of-work tour guide.